Action Alert

Update on CEQA and Budget Trailers

Restore the Delta has been tracking what is happening in Sacramento with the aid of several partner organizations. Language and bills have evolved. Here is what we have learned. Thanks to leadership in both the State Assembly and Senate, they have curtailed the Newsom Administration’s efforts to loosen up CEQA requirements for Delta tunnel construction. We are grateful to the California Legislature for putting up these guard rails. The CEQA provision in the trailer bill could apply to the adoption of regulations by state agencies to large-scale habitat restoration projects. The new adopted language makes clear that the CEQA exemption “does not apply to a project that includes construction activities, except for construction activities solely related to habitat restoration.”  In addition, the trailer [...]

ACTION ALERT UPDATE: No Delta Tunnel in the CEQA Exemption Bill!

As we stated in our Sunday newsletter, the Newsom Administration is trying to move forward with disingenuous Delta watershed restoration bills that replace water with habitat (instead of doing both).  This is part of their full court press to create “voluntary agreements” to fill the Delta tunnel.  We need you to call your legislator and Governor Newsom’s office to express opposition to the following two bills: In Section 23 of SB 155 published Sunday is current wording re  CEQA exemption for habitat projects:https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220SB155In section 10 of SB 170 published today is funding for habitat projects:https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220SB170 What they are proposing completely disregards the needs of Delta communities for healthy water quality and quantity. Furthermore, as explained Sunday, it will allow a political appointee of any and [...]

ACTION ALERT: No Delta Tunnel in the CEQA Exemption Trailer!

Govenor Newsom is trying to slip in pro-tunnel language into the CEQA exemption trailer. The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) generally requires state and local government agencies to inform decision makers and the public about the potential environmental impacts of proposed projects, and to reduce those environmental impacts to the extent feasible. Call your legislator and Governor Newsom and tell them #NoDeltaTunnel in the CEQA reform bill. 1. Contact your legislator here. Enter your address and it will show you who your State Senator and State Assemblymember are, with links to each of their websites and contact information.2. Contact Governor Newsom’s office:  Via Email: Through his website, scroll down to the email submission form. Via Phone: (916) 445-2841Via Twitter: @CAGovernor  Yours in action,Restore the Delta

ACTION ALERT: Federal Water Infrastructure Bill

Please contact Senator Padilla’s Office today regarding Senator Manchin’s draft water section in the infrastructure bill. While there are necessary items in the infrastructure bill, Senator Dianne Feinstein (who does not serve on the Energy and Water Committee) drafted this water section for Senator Manchin and loaded it up with big dam projects that will not help solve our drought challenges in California.Please let Senator Padilla know that infrastructure that promotes water reuse, recycling, clean up, conservation, floodplain capture and flood control, groundwater banking, and technology are cost-effective ways to put more water in the system with California’s extended droughts — not empty dams that release methane into the air — and that will be dry most of the time. Attached is [...]

ACTION ALERT: The Newsom Delta Tunnel Process Begins

The long process of official DWR-sponsored meetings around the Environmental Impact Report for the Delta tunnel begins this summer. We recommend that all our followers register for the webinars sponsored by DWR and the Design Construction Authority to listen and respond with smart, factual, yet passionate critique as necessary. Head and heart make for the best responses. We will be reading documents and providing analysis in great detail on the first topics rolling out the door because we are already picking up on flaws in messaging.  However, the details are always what matter — and we will be combing through the details as we have always done to share with all of you. Our work on the Delta tunnel isn’t over.  Let’s [...]

Restore the Delta – Action Alert 5/5/21

We have two requests this week.1) SB222 and SB223 – Prevent Water ShutoffsCall Senator Susan Eggman today at 916-651-4005 and urge her to support SB222 and SB223. 500,000 Californians are facing water shutoffs coming out of the pandemic and ratepayers have $1 billion of water debt presently. These bills would help low-income families pay their bills and keep their water on. Senator Eggman is a champion of mental health services; being able to pay bills eliminates a great deal of mental stress on struggling families and goes hand-in-hand with physical health during a pandemic. 2) Bay-Delta Plan Delays Must EndDespite efforts by environmental partners, Northern California Tribes, and our own climate water advocates, the State Water Resources Control Board is not [...]

ACTION ALERT: MWD Decision on Delta Tunnel Tuesday, December 8th Noon

Dear Friends,This is it folks, the BIG VOTE on the Delta Tunnel.This is our last chance, and the biggest chance, of 2020 to kill this terrible project.Caty Wagner of Sierra Club California has written an accurate alert with many good links for Tuesday’s Metropolitan Water District vote regarding funding of the tunnel project.We would add that during an extreme economic downturn, during a pandemic, the question should not even be on the table. Those who want the tunnel are not going to stop the push for their misguided project. But it is unconscionable that they are hoisting this on Californians during this crisis. Don’t let Covid become an excuse for robbing the Delta of its much-needed flows and environment. Please help by sending in your comments.This Tuesday, [...]

ACTION ALERT – Survey on MWD’s New General Manager + Priorities

Friends,Metropolitan Water District of Southern Californiais looking for a new general manager as Jeff Kightlinger is retiring; click on the link to complete the survey as to what you believe the priorities for MWD should be going forward. This is time sensitive, as the survey closes tomorrow November 25.Also be prepared to participate on-line December 8, 2020 in their on-line board meeting to add a public comment as to whether MWD should spend hundreds of millions of dollars to continue with Delta planning – during a pandemic and severe economic downturn for water ratepayers – of if they should begin seriously working on water sustainability plans to be prepared for a changing climate.  We will send talking points and directions out next weekend to give you [...]

UPDATED ACTION ALERT – Santa Clara Valley Water District

Dear Friends,Tuesday, Valley Water indicated that their funding measure (discussed in yesterday’s alert) for the November ballot will not include funding for Delta tunnels planning.  That is good news.We think, however, that you may want to share two observations with Valley Water’s Board of Directors.Tell them that the language for the bond measure cannot be squishy so the funds can  be moved around at a later date for tunnel planning.  Make sure the tunnel is not included in this funding explicitly.Also, ask the Board to explain how the funding measure then allows for money to be freed up through the general fund for tunnel expenditures.  Is this what Valley Water ratepayers want? Will Valley Water ratepayers support an expenditure if a [...]

ACTION ALERT – Santa Clara Valley Water District

On June 23, 2020, the Santa Clara Valley Water District will be discussing the possibility of putting a funding measure on the November ballot. We believe the ballot in part is to raise funding for the Delta tunnel project. Valley Water describes their first priority as:  Priority A: Ensure a Safe, Reliable Water Supply   This is exact language used by the Department of Water Resources to describe the Delta tunnel project.  With all the funding challenges for Valley Water associated with dam repairs and flood control, a bond measure that could finance a risky Delta tunnel project that still requires permitting, CEQA review, and a 23-year construction period — all for a diminishing water supply due to climate change — is problematic for [...]