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Water folks

Last week, after Deputy Secretary of the Department of Interior David Hayes, California Natural Resources Agency Secretary John Laird, and Ca Resources Under Secretary Jerry Meral made a show of listening to non-exporter perspectives at a public meeting on the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (see our 4/27 Special Edition), they had a REAL meeting with the REAL players: “environmental reps and several of us water folks,” as the Metropolitan Water District’s Roger Patterson described the meeting. He told his board that the public meeting in Sacramento was “pretty much a gripe session.” From now on, the REAL players won’t be asking what non-exporters think; they’ll be telling us what they are doing. So there Delta folks. Just because we haven’t [...]

Out on a limb in Santa Clara County

We’re used to MWD and Westlands being dismissive of Delta communities. For another example of regional chauvinism, let us turn our attention in a direction we usually don’t consider: west, toward the Santa Clara Valley Water District, which was a member of the BDCP steering committee. On May 10, the SCVWD’s board will get its own briefing on Delta issues and the BDCP, along with a PowerPoint similar to MDD’s (but without the photos of the massive dredgers and tunnel borers). Santa Clara County relies on water from the Delta for 40 percent of its annual water needs. Part of this comes from the State Water Project, part from the Central Valley Project. The County gets another 15 percent of [...]

Whose actions are “covered”?

Fifty-eight export contractors, water districts, utilities, business organizations, and farming representatives from outside the Delta have signed on to a letter to Delta Stewardship Council chair Phil Isenberg complaining about the DSC’s interpretation of “covered actions” under the Delta Reform Act. Says the letter, “[The] Council’s attempt to regulate actions outside the legal Delta exceeds its statutory authority.” Here’s what the relevant part of the Water Code says: 85020. The policy of the State of California is to achieve the following objectives that the Legislature declares are inherent in the coequal goals for management of the Delta: (a) Manage the Delta’s water and environmental resources and the water resources of the state over the long term. The rest of 85020 [...]

Here’s the wind-up

San Francisco Giants fans who listen to broadcasts on KNBR have been hearing commercials about the need for water infrastructure to prepare the state for the next drought. Click here to viewToo bad Will Durst is using his good name to sell our Bay Area neighbors on a boondoggle project that’s bad for the economy, bad for rate payers, and bad for California’s budget.

Meral, Laird, and Hayes give the appearance of listening

In August of 2009, with the BDCP in full stride, Lester Snow invited Deputy Interior Secretary David Hayes to Sacramento for a briefing by people from outside the Delta about what should be done about the Delta.  We challenged him to come back and hear from people of the Delta. This past Monday, he finally made it back, this time hosted by Natural Resources Secretary John Laird and Deputy Secretary Jerry Meral, Governor Brown’s appointee to move the BDCP forward.  Even after they brought in extra chairs, it was Standing Room Only at the Tsakopoulos Library Galleria in Sacramento. They apparently weren’t expecting so many of us, all cleaned up and well-behaved. In his remarks, Laird linked work to date [...]

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