On September 9, 2014, Congressmen John Garamendi (CA-03), Jerry McNerney (CA-09) and Congresswoman Ami Bera (CA-07) introduced HR 5425, which would prevent FY 2015 federal funds to be used for California’s Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP), for which the State Administration has asked for $4 billion in funding.
“Instead of reigniting the California water war, let’s build consensus and invest in the priorities that create more reliable water for the entire state. We can increase supply without destroying the Delta or undermining water rights,” said Garamendi.
While Garamendi’s statement suggests that the bill is intended to hold federal resources until a consensus-driven approach that meet the states “co-equal” goals of restoration and water supply reliability can be reached, the simply work bill faces an uphill battle for passage. Shortly after the bill was introduced Congress adjourned until after the election—which means it would have to pass in the post-election lame duck session.
However, a hold on the BDCP is in order anyways. In late August, the federal government’s concerns of environmental and economic impact have slowed BDCP’s implementation.
As an alternative to the BDCP, including the twin tunnel plan, Garamendi, former Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, authored “A Water Plan for All California,” which focuses on conservation, recycling and storage of water in addition to infrastructure funding while preserving the Delta.
Written by Stratecon Staff