[env-trinity] FW: SFGate: Legislature passes water-system overhaul

Byron Leydecker bwl3 at comcast.net
Wed Nov 4 10:49:11 PST 2009


Thanks to Jeff Shellito for sending this SF Chronicle website article.

Byron

-----Original Message-----
From: Jeff Shellito [mailto:jshellito at comcast.net] 
Sent: Wednesday, November 04, 2009 10:35 AM
To: byron leydecker
Subject: SFGate: Legislature passes water-system overhaul


 SF Chron story about passage of water package, from the paper's website
(not in print edition)
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This article was sent to you by someone who found it on SFGate.
The original article can be found on SFGate.com here:
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2009/11/04/BA0O1AETO1.DT
L
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Wednesday, November 4, 2009 (SF Chronicle)
Legislature passes water-system overhaul
Wyatt Buchanan,Marisa Lagos, Chronicle Sacramento Bureau


   (11-04) 09:01 PST SACRAMENTO -- The state Legislature passed a sweeping,
multibillion-dollar overhaul of California's water system this morning,
after an all-night session on a plan that has been years in the making.
   The package of legislation will affect how Californians will receive and
use water and won immediate praise from Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
   "Water is the lifeblood of everything we do in California,"
Schwarzenegger
said. "Without clean, reliable water, we cannot build, we cannot farm, we
cannot grow and we cannot prosper. That is why I am so proud that the
Legislature, Democrats and Republicans, came together and tackled one of
the most complicated issues in our state's history."
   Legislative leaders have worked almost nonstop for weeks on the final
deal, which includes an $11 billion bond that passed by slim margins in
both the Senate and Assembly. The bond must go before the voters to win
approval.
   "This Legislature did something that no Legislature has been able to
accomplish in decades," said Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg,
D-Sacramento. The package's success, he said, shows that the Legislature
"can tackle the biggest and most intractable problems in the state."
   The water package consists of five major parts:
   -- A new seven-member board to oversee the Sacramento-San Joaquin River
Delta. The board would consist of gubernatorial and legislative
appointees, along with the head of an existing delta commission. The board
could approve a controversial peripheral canal to channel water around the
delta.
   -- A 20 percent conservation mandate for urban areas, with credits for
cities that have made significant conservation efforts. Agricultural
entities will have to follow best practices for water use.
   -- New regulations to monitor groundwater levels throughout the state.
   -- Increased penalties for illegal water diversions, although the
penalties and enforcement were significantly weakened from an earlier
plan.
   -- A $11.1 billion bond to pay for the overhaul. Of the total, $3 billion
would be set aside for new water storage, which could be reservoirs, and
more than $2 billion would go toward restoration of the delta ecosystem.
Other money in the bond would pay for water recycling, drought relief,
conservation and watershed protection projects.

E-mail the writers at wbuchanan at sfchronicle.com and
mlagos at sfchronicle.com.
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Copyright 2009 SF Chronicle



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