Newsletter

Delta Flows: Delta Residents and the Single Tunnel Plan

In a recent column for CALmatters, Ellen Hanak and Jeffrey Mount of the Public Policy Institute of California offer a bit of advice to us Delta residents.“By proposing to build one tunnel instead of two, Gov. Newsom has opened the door for a grand compromise. The Delta’s many interests should seize this opportunity.” Thanks for the tip, PPIC. Residents of the San Francisco Bay-Delta (there are more than 4 million of us) agree to evaluate proposals by the Newsom administration with clear eyes and in a spirit of collaboration. Here are some questions Delta people plan to ask as we engage with this new process. Does the plan reduce water exports? The primary purpose of a single Delta tunnel is no [...]

Delta Flows:  Delta Residents and the Single Tunnel Plan

In a recent column for CALmatters, Ellen Hanak and Jeffrey Mount of the Public Policy Institute of California offer a bit of advice to us Delta residents.“By proposing to build one tunnel instead of two, Gov. Newsom has opened the door for a grand compromise. The Delta’s many interests should seize this opportunity.” Thanks for the tip, PPIC. Residents of the San Francisco Bay-Delta (there are more than 4 million of us) agree to evaluate proposals by the Newsom administration with clear eyes and in a spirit of collaboration. Here are some questions Delta people plan to ask as we engage with this new process. Does the plan reduce water exports? The primary purpose of a single Delta tunnel is no [...]

ICYMI: Brown Hints at “Big Water Deal” in Next 30 Days

In Case You Missed It: Secret Negotiations on Bay-Delta Plan Unfolding as Brown Hints at Major Water Announcement in Next 30 Days It’s been a busy week at Restore the Delta. Here’s what you need to know: Newsom and Brown wade into California water wars to delay plan to help fish – Ryan Sabalow for The Sacramento Bee “Gov. Jerry Brown and incoming Gov. Gavin Newsom have waded in one of California’s fiercest water wars, prompting state regulators to delay a key vote on a proposal meant to help struggling salmon and steelhead trout. “In a letter Tuesday to the California State Water Resources Board, Brown and Newsom urged it to postpone consideration of proposed regulations to give the various [...]

Delta Flows — WaterFix Alphabet Soup Edition: JLBC; CBA; DCFA; WIFIA; Series AZ Revenue Bonds

By: Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla   JLBC Hearing Recap After the Joint Legislative Budget Committee (JLBC) Hearing last month for the State Water Contract Extensions Amendments, Restore the Delta joined in working with coalition partners on an analysis, and legislative follow up on outcomes from the hearing. While the “holding” of the hearing itself does indeed advance the WaterFix process, we were pleased with legislators, under the leadership of the Committee Chair, Senator Holly Mitchell, for asking tough questions and asserting their authority for further oversight of State Water Project Contract Extensions, specifically in relation to the Delta tunnels. In effect, it was the best possible outcome from a bad process. This does not mean we were pleased, however, with the Department [...]

Delta Flows: Prop 3, Water Quality Plan Update For the San Francisco Bay-Delta

Yet, another water bond Restore the Delta has been working on so many issues this year that we have not weighed in with our members on Proposition 3, the $8.9 billion dollar water bond, on the November ballot.  Additionally, we did not open a PAC and lead an opposition campaign opposing Prop 3, as we did against Prop 1 in 2014, because we knew that even if we could raise the money, we didn’t have the mental/physical/spiritual bandwidth to lead an opposition campaign on top of all the other work we have undertaken this year in our advocacy to stop the Delta tunnels, and to ensure that adequate flows are restored to the Delta estuary, for all Delta communities. We [...]

ICYMI: Highlights from RTD’s EJ Report Press Conference

In Case You Missed It: Highlights from RTD’S EJ Report Press Conference  Read our press release here. Tunnel foes shift focus to Delta’s most disadvantaged communities – Stockton Record “It is the role of government agencies to consider environmental justice concerns as they affect all groups of people, including communities of color and low-income residents that comprise a significant number of residents in Stockton and throughout the Delta region. Many of those communities are impoverished, according to the report. “’This report addresses a number of things that San Joaquin County has been fighting for and we stand behind the principles that seek protection of the Delta and the people that we serve,’ Miller said. ‘The story of San Joaquin County [...]

California’s Real “Fix” for Affordable Water

By: Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla Recently, I had the opportunity to hear Mr. Gary Brown, Director for the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD), address government water leaders from an assortment of California’s state and local water agencies about how Detroit reworked policies to address water affordability issues—a strategy that has led to 95% of Detroit’s water customers now paying their monthly water bills on time. While there are numerous differences between how a water-rich area like Detroit and an arid region like Los Angeles County can manage water availability, distribution, and rates, Mr. Brown described an ethos that is sorely lacking in water management throughout California. Mr. Brown said, and I am paraphrasing here, that while the Detroit Water and Sewerage [...]

Where do we go from here? We keep going.

Today is a new day, and not a day to feel defeated. As we reflect on yesterday’s decision, it becomes clear that we have a choice on how we move forward—we can choose to accept defeat or choose to see where we have made tremendous progress and keep going. As we are seeing on many fronts in our country, there is a disconnect between what Californians are looking for in terms of public planning, and a sustainable use of our resources for the greater good, and what political leaders insist on doing. They may have won the battle, but this effort to cling to the last century’s methods for water management in California will not hold. The long arc of [...]

One Major Way to Stop the Tunnels in 2018

Dear Friends of Restore the Delta:   We are very grateful for your support that comes to us in many ways throughout the year — from attending events and key government meetings, to writing comments, to making contributions.  You are the glue that holds our efforts together.   This is why in 2018, we are asking you all to make a concentrated effort to let your local elected officials (at the city, county, state, and federal levels), and candidates running for statewide offices why you oppose the Delta tunnels.  It doesn't matter which candidates you support.  What matters is that they understand that the Delta tunnels are an environmental and economic boondoggle and that there are many better solutions for [...]

California WaterFix, WaterFantasy

<bodyDenial can be a very powerful motivator. On September 26, 2017, we saw what was perhaps the greatest display of institutional denial in California water planning at Metropolitan Water District’s Board Workshop on California WaterFix.   Throughout Southern California, a number of MWD member agency board members, various city council members, and elected officials of all stripes had indicated in recent weeks that they were looking to the MWD workshop for answers to specific questions about costs and water delivery allocations for WaterFix before they could give their approval for the project. These sentiments were even echoed by officials who wanted to see WaterFix move forward, but who, quite understandably, also wanted to ensure that sound financial planning was in [...]