[env-trinity] RTD urges Brown to back 'clean water bond'/Lawmakers blast secret drought bill negotiations/Vandenberg Marine UnProtected Area

Dan Bacher danielbacher at fishsniffer.com
Wed Jun 25 19:51:54 PDT 2014


http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/06/25/1309591/-Restore-the-Delta-calls-on-Brown-to-back-clean-water-bond

http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2014/06/25/18757877.php


brown-gov6.jpg

Restore the Delta calls on Brown to back 'clean water bond'

by Dan Bacher

Restore the Delta (RTD) called on Governor Brown to back a “clean  
water bond” for the November 2014 ballot that does not include any  
taxpayer funding for mitigating the damage from the Bay Delta  
Conservation Plan (BDCP) to build the peripheral tunnels.

The group's statement was issued after Brown told legislators in  
private meetings on Tuesday, June 24 that he opposes the existing  
$11.1 billion water bond and supports a $6 billion water bond instead,  
including about $2 billion for storage.

Brown also reportedly told legislators that Republicans “must accept  
less than their stated priority of $3 billion” for water storage  
projects, according to Capitol Public Radio. (http://www.capradio.org/articles/2014/06/24/brown-opposes-existing-water-bond,-wants-$6-billion-replacement/ 
)

The Governor’s Office has declined to comment on the specifics of his  
proposal, including whether any funding in the bond will help pay for  
mitigation for damage caused by the construction of two massive  
tunnels under the Delta proposed under Brown's Bay Delta Conservation  
Plan (BDCP). "The Governor is concerned about ongoing debt service and  
its impact on future budgets," according to Jim Evans of the  
Governor's Office.

However, a draft of Brown's blueprint obtained by the Sacramento and  
Fresno Bee also "suggests $1.5 billion for water supply and water  
reliability, encompassing areas like safe drinking water and  
groundwater cleanup; $1.5 billion for watershed protection; $500  
million for flood control; and $500 million for the Delta." (http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/06/25/3996045/capitol-alert-governors-bond-plan.html 
)

"The document also states a general rule shared by Senate leaders: the  
bond must be 'Bay Delta Conservation Plan neutral,'" the Bee reported.

In response to the latest water bond developments, Barbara Barrigan- 
Parrilla, Executive Director of Restore the Delta, said, “California  
desperately needs a new sustainable water policy and a bond measure  
that invests in conservation policies that have broad and deep  
support. We call on Gov. Brown to leave tunnels mitigation out of a  
water bond.”

Barrigan-Parrilla cited records obtained through the Freedom of  
Information Act showing that the BDCP appears to plan to use bond  
funds to help fund purchases over the next 50 years of up to 1.3  
million acre feet of water annually from upstream areas, such as the  
Sacramento Valley.

"These purchases are supposed to make up for over-pumping for the new  
water export Tunnels,” said Barrigan-Parrilla. “This provision would  
become a referendum on the tunnels project and would likely doom the  
water bond to failure, leaving us with no progress on our need for  
drought resilient water projects.”

“In bond provisions labeled as BDCP ‘restoration’ and ‘habitat’  
funding, the public would pay to purchase so called ‘enhanced  
environmental flow’ water from previously identified districts in the  
Upper Sacramento River Basin – leading to the devastation of their  
groundwater supplies. That same water would be diverted into the new  
BDCP Tunnels before it flows into the heart of the Delta,” said  
Barrigan-Parrilla.

“Mega-growers within Westlands and Kern County are depending on public  
subsidies to make the BDCP pencil out. The public purchase of  
‘environmental’ water with bond funds has already been shown to be a  
waste. From 2000-2007, an ‘environmental water account’ was set up and  
spent nearly $200 million in public funds as the species crashed and  
the State Water Project over pumped the Delta, creating, huge profits  
for private landowners like billionaire Stewart Resnick. The voters  
will not agree to that kind of waste and profiteering again,” Barrigan- 
Parrilla added.

In addition, BDCP water exporters are relying on the public, through a  
combination of state and federal funds and two successive state water  
bonds, to pay $7.824 billion (before interest in today’s dollars)  
toward the cost of BDCP. The draft BDCP describes how state bond  
measures would provide $3.759 billion in funds to carry out the  
project, according to Barrigan-Parilla.

She said taxpayers, through other state and federal funding  
allocations, would also pay the remaining $4 billion needed for the  
estimated $25 billion dollar project. With the water exporters paying  
for the cost of the water export Tunnels through increased water rates  
to families, the public would pay additionally through taxes for the  
cost of creating more than 140,000 acres of experimental habitat, on  
Delta farmland, the largest strip of prime farmland in California.

“According to independent scientific reviews, BDCP habitat is unlikely  
to yield the benefits assumed by BDCP, in part because the Tunnels  
will starve the Delta of needed fresh water flows. The BDCP water  
export Tunnels will remove life-giving flows of high quality water  
through the Delta. The massive acquisition of farmland for habitat is  
a ruse to justify building the BDCP Tunnels, and the water exporters  
are planning to stick the taxpayers with that bill,” said Barrigan- 
Parrilla.

Restore the Delta calls on Governor Brown support the following three  
principles in the 2014 water bond:

• Remove all funding for Delta habitat and water purchases tied to the  
BDCP. Funding actions needed by the still draft, unfinished BDCP will  
take away funding from other crucial water projects that will make  
California drought resilient. Taxpayers should not be expected to pay  
to restore habitat or purchase paper “environmental” water to make the  
Tunnels appear to be an environmental project.

• Support levee improvement funding in order to upgrade Delta levees  
to the minimum PL194-99 standards. The Governor needs to recognize  
that if there is a catastrophic event in the Delta, one hundred  
percent of the loss of life and 80% of the economic loss will fall on  
the Delta region. Levees protect statewide water supplies and provide  
local flood protection. Regional infrastructure worth billions of  
dollars (roads, railroads, electric transmission lines, gas lines) is  
also at risk.

"The State claims to be worried about an earthquake in the Delta, yet  
inexplicably is focused not on shoring up the Delta’s earthquake  
defenses, but on building Peripheral Tunnels to “protect” the water  
exported. The State has forgotten that 4 million people live in the  
five Delta Counties and need to be protected from a catastrophic flood  
event," she said.

• Support conservation and local water supply and treatment projects  
throughout California to make the state more water resilient and less  
dependent on Delta exports.

"We are calling on Governor Brown to support principles that will  
actually lead to more secure water supplies for all Californians,  
rather than endorsing a water exporter driven bond that will deliver  
only for certain special-interest water districts to the detriment of  
the largest estuary on the west coast of the Americas," she summed up.

“If the governor and Westlands mega-growers insist on including  
taxpayer subsidies for the tunnels mitigation in the water bond, it  
will become a vote of the people of California on the mammoth and  
destructive BDCP Tunnel project, estimated to cost a total of at least  
$54.1 billion after interest,” said Restore the Delta’s media  
consultant, Steve Hopcraft.

The current water bond on the November ballot was created as part of a  
water policy/water bond package passed by the Legislature in a special  
session called by then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in November  
2009. The water bond was rescheduled twice, first in 2010 and then  
again in 2012, due to strong opposition to provisions in the bond that  
facilitate the construction of the twin tunnels under the Sacramento- 
San Joaquin River Delta.

Brown is a relentless advocate for the widely-criticized Bay Delta  
Conservation Plan to build the peripheral tunnels - and looks at the  
tunnel plan, estimated to cost up to $67 billion, as a "legacy" project.

On Monday, June 23, Senator Lois Wolk’s new water bond, SB 848, failed  
to gain required two-thirds vote “due to Republican opposition and  
demands that the measure include more funding to enable the  
construction of two tunnels underneath the Delta to divert water to  
farming interests in the Southern San Joaquin Valley,” according to a  
statement from Wolk’s Office.

The vote was on party lines, with the Senate Democrats supporting the  
measure and the Senate Republicans voting against it.

The 22 yes votes were Beall, Corbett, Correa, De León, DeSaulnier,  
Evans, Galgiani, Hernandez, Hueso, Jackson, Lara, Leno, Lieu, Liu,  
Mitchell, Monning, Padilla, Pavley, Roth, Steinberg, Torres, and Wolk,  
all Democrats.

The no votes were Anderson, Berryhill, Fuller, Huff, Knight, Morrell,  
Vidak, Walters, Wyland, all Republicans.

No votes were recorded by Block, Calderon, Cannella, Gaines, Hancock,  
Hill, Nielsen, Wright and Yee.

Three of those recorded not voting - Leland Yee of San Francisco, Ron  
Calderon of Montebello and Rod Wright of Inglewood - were suspended  
from the State Senate with pay this March. Senators Yee and Calderon  
were indicted in separate federal corruption cases, while Senator  
Wright will be sentenced on July 21 on criminal charges that he lied  
about where he lived when he ran for office in 2008. (http://blogs.sacbee.com/capitolalertlatest/rod-wright/#storylink 
=cpy)

“Yesterday’s vote was a missed opportunity,” said Senator Wolk. “It  
was especially disappointing to see my Republican colleagues from  
Northern California tie their horses to the Delta Tunnels and support  
the current bond written in 2009 rather than the tunnel neutral  
approach in SB 848 that was before them. The 2009 bond promotes the  
tunnels and is doomed to be rejected by the voters.”

“We are in a drought," she said. "The voters want real solutions, not  
the tunnels. There is no better time than now to act. SB 848 includes  
water solutions for every region of the state that reflect local needs  
and priorities. This bond doesn’t hurt any region and, critically, it  
avoids investments in controversial projects like the Delta Tunnels  
that will result in opposition at the ballot. SB 848 is the only  
proposal that doesn't provoke a North-South water war and meets  
Republican core demand for surface storage."

For more information, go to: http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2014/06/25/18757859.php



2.

http://yubanet.com/california/Dan-Bacher-NorCal-lawmakers-call-for-opening-up-secret-drought-bill-negotiations.php#.U6uBnN3DyRo

Photo of Congressman George Miller, courtesy of George Miller's Office.

200px-george_miller_house...

NorCal lawmakers call for opening up secret drought bill negotiations

by Dan Bacher

Six Northern California Congress Members on June 23 called on Senators  
Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer to open up secret negotiations on  
controversial drought legislation that threatens salmon populations,  
family farmers and California Indian Tribes.

Representatives Jared Huffman, George Miller, John Garamendi, Jerry  
McNerney, Doris Matsui, and Mike Thompson on June 23 asked for "public  
and transparent negotiations" between the Senate and House on  
legislation responding to the historic California drought.

In a letter to California Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer,  
the members noted that "negotiations to date have left the public  
without adequate information or opportunities for input." Any  
compromise between the Senate drought response bill and the  
destructive House-passed bill, the members argued, would ultimately be  
harmful to California.

The House bill, H.R. 3964, severely undermines numerous state and  
federal statutes, would irreparably damage the Bay-Delta, degrade  
drinking water quality, and cost California thousands of jobs,  
according to the Representatives.

“We are deeply concerned that it appears that negotiations with the  
House majority are being held out of the public eye. We believe the  
process by which Congress responds to this drought crisis should be  
transparent,” the members wrote. “Our constituents are rightly  
concerned about a closed-door approach that picks winners and losers  
amid California’s statewide drought, and they deserve a public  
discussion of the merits of the legislation being considered.”

"The House majority has already demonstrated their intention to  
irresponsibly override state water law and decades of federal  
protections for clean water, fisheries, and northern California  
tribes, farms, and cities – all to benefit a select few," they said.

"The House-passed H.R. 3964 provides neither new resources nor useful  
tools, but instead undermines numerous state and federal laws,  
including: the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act, the  
Central Valley Project Improvement Act, the San Joaquin River  
Restoration Settlement Act, and the California constitution and its  
public trust doctrine. We all agree that this would take California in  
the wrong direction, and the House majority’s draft Energy & Water  
appropriations bill would continue this harmful approach. Our state  
cannot risk the negative repercussions of trying to reconcile the  
differences between H.R. 3964 and S. 2016," they wrote.

The members also called for direct assistance to communities hurt by  
the drought, including farmworker and fishing communities. Neither the  
Senate nor House-passed bills provide any new funding for emergency  
drought relief projects, water recycling infrastructure, or  
conservation and efficiency projects, in contrast to the House  
Democrats’ bill and an earlier Senate bill, they wrote.

Feinstein is the primary author of the emergency drought relief bill,  
S 2918, that was passed by unanimous consent in the Senate in May.  
House Republicans passed their own, even more dangerous legislation in  
February that would waive Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections,  
repeal the restoration of the San Joaquin River below Friant Dam and  
override the federal “wild and scenic river” designation for a short  
stretch of the Merced River.

Environmental groups, fishing organizations and Indian Tribes oppose  
Feinstein's bill, since they say it will enable more Delta water to be  
exported to corporate agribusiness interests on the west side of the  
San Joaquin Valley during the current drought.

Restore the Delta (RTD) on May 16 issued a strongly-worded statement  
criticizing Senator Feinstein for pushing S 2918 “to allow more water  
to be exported for Westlands’ and Kern Water Districts’ mega-growers  
in the midst of a severe drought.” The group also blasted Feinstein’s  
bill for posing a grave threat to Central Valley salmon and other fish  
populations and wildlife refuges.

“It is disappointing that Senator Feinstein has chosen to rush harmful  
legislation with no public hearings, debate or scrutiny, so that  
industrial growers who have planted tens of thousands of acres of  
almonds and other permanent crops in the midst of the past several  
very dry years,” said Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, executive director of  
Restore the Delta. “Sen. Feinstein is using every tactic she can to  
aid these growers at the expense of the rest of California. There’s a  
better solutions, despite Sen. Feinstein’s statement that she has  
received no useful input on alternatives. She has received the input,  
but has ignored it.”

“Sen. Dianne Feinstein is rushing legislation through Congress that  
uses the current drought to make changes that undo critical  
protections for our salmon and other fisheries, and the people who  
rely on our river system. While it makes sense to take prudent steps  
to address the drought, it is unwise to use the current lack of water  
to do the bidding of mega-growers who want more and more water for  
permanent crops on unsuitable lands. That’s who gets most of the water  
in our public projects: huge industrial farming operations in the  
Westlands and Kern Water Districts. Sen. Feinstein is responding to  
the urging of these growers, many of whom have contributed mightily to  
her campaigns,” said Barrigan-Parrilla.

S 2918 is harmful to salmon migration, since it would lock in a 1:1  
ratio of San Joaquin-San Francisco Bay Delta water inflow to water  
exports, according to Restore the Delta. This permits exporting water  
that can be diverted by massive pumps in April and May, and affects  
the San Joaquin River’s flow at a critical time when salmon and  
steelhead are migrating down the river to the ocean.

S 2918 also weakens protections for salmon and regulates the flow rate  
at which Old and Middle Rivers, two channels of the San Joaquin River  
that feed the Bay-Delta, can be made to flow in the reverse of their  
natural direction by the operation of the federal and state pumps that  
export water south. Those pumps redirect the flow of the Delta and  
pull millions of salmon and other fish to their deaths each year.

Between 2000 and 2011, more than 130 million fish were ‘salvaged’ at  
the State and Federal Project water export facilities in the South  
Delta, according to a white paper published by Bill Jennings,  
Executive Director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance,  
on March 7, 2013. Actual losses are far higher. For example, recent  
estimates indicate that 5-10 times more fish are lost than are  
salvaged, largely due to the high predation losses in and around water  
project facilities.

Feinstein is pushing the dangerous legislation as Jerry Brown is fast- 
tracking the Bay Delta Conservation Plan to build the peripheral  
tunnels. The same agribusiness interests advocating for Feinstein’s  
legislation are the same ones promoting the construction of the tunnels.

The project, estimated to cost up to $67 billion, would hasten the  
extinction of Central Valley salmon, Delta and longfin smelt, green  
sturgeon and other fish species, as well as imperil the salmon and  
steelhead populations on the Klamath and Trinity rivers.

The full letter from the Congress Members is below:

June 23, 2014

The Honorable Dianne Feinstein
United States Senate
331 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
The Honorable Barbara Boxer
United States Senate
112 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senators Feinstein and Boxer:

We applaud you for your effort to produce workable solutions to  
California’s statewide water shortages, and for your leadership in  
expediting state and federal agencies’ response to the drought. The  
passage of S.2198 in the Senate has sent a strong message that  
California’s drought requires the highest level of attention and  
continued action, and we hope to continue to work with you as we push  
for solutions. However, we are deeply concerned that it appears that  
negotiations with the House majority are being held out of the public  
eye. We believe the process by which Congress responds to this drought  
crisis should be transparent.

The House majority has already demonstrated their intention to  
irresponsibly override state water law and decades of federal  
protections for clean water, fisheries, and northern California  
tribes, farms, and cities – all to benefit a select few. The House- 
passed H.R. 3964 provides neither new resources nor useful tools, but  
instead undermines numerous state and federal laws, including: the  
Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act, the Central Valley  
Project Improvement Act, the San Joaquin River Restoration Settlement  
Act, and the California constitution and its public trust doctrine. We  
all agree that this would take California in the wrong direction, and  
the House majority’s draft Energy & Water appropriations bill would  
continue this harmful approach. Our state cannot risk the negative  
repercussions of trying to reconcile the differences between H.R. 3964  
and S. 2016. As the Los Angeles Times observed in their June 8th  
editorial, “a compromise between the two bills would be bad for  
California.”

We believe Congress should focus on solutions, and we cannot accept  
the destructive Valadao-Nunes approach, which flouts state and federal  
law, will irreparably damage the Bay-Delta, degrade drinking water  
quality, and cost our state thousands of jobs. We strongly urge you to  
prioritize providing the resources and additional tools that  
California needs to respond to this and future droughts, as both H.R.  
4239 and your original S. 2016 would have done. Although we still have  
concerns with a provision from S. 2016 that remains in S. 2198, we  
believe both S. 2016 and H.R. 4239 have important provisions in common  
that would: directly assist communities harmed by the drought,  
including farmworker and fishing communities; provide funding for  
emergency drought relief projects; expand funding for water recycling  
infrastructure, conservation, and efficiency projects that can be  
rapidly brought online; ensure that drought damages are properly  
recognized under the Stafford Act; and reduce wildfire risk. Not one  
of these priorities is addressed by H.R. 3964.

Since neither H.R. 3964 nor S. 2198 received a public hearing nor  
considered by committees in open session, and a formal conference  
process is not possible at this point, we strongly urge you to conduct  
any further negotiations in public, and to seek comment from the  
relevant state and federal agencies, as well as tribes, recreational  
and commercial fishing interests, water managers, farms, counties, and  
cities. Our constituents are rightly concerned about a closed-door  
approach that picks winners and losers amid California’s statewide  
drought, and they deserve a public discussion of the merits of the  
legislation being considered. The changes envisioned between both  
bills are so great, and there are so many stakeholders at risk, it  
would be a great disservice if these decisions were made without  
transparency and public input.

Thank you again for your leadership.

Sincerely,

###

3.
http://www.fishsniffer.com/blogs_/details/bill-introduced-to-ban-oil-drilling-in-vandenberg-marine-protected-area/

BILL WOULD BAN OIL DRILLING IN VANDENBERG MARINE PROTECTED AREA
Written By: Dan Bacher, June 21, 2014

Fishermen, Tribal leaders and grassroots environmentalists have  
repeatedly criticized the privately funded Marine Life Protection Act  
(MLPA) Initiative for creating questionable "marine protected areas"  
that fail to protect the ocean from oil drilling, fracking, pollution,  
military testing, corporate aquaculture and all human impacts on the  
ocean other than fishing and gathering.
The Coastal Justice Coalition, a group of members of the Yurok, Hoopa  
Valley, Karuk and other Tribes who agree that the State of California  
has no right to regulate tribal gathering, exposed this severe flaw in  
the MLPA Initiative when they stated, "Protected areas would allow for  
deep water drilling yet would ban tribal gathering," in a news release  
issued in June 2010. (http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/06/29/18652206.php 
)
While MLPA Initiative officials let the oil industry, corporate  
polluters and ocean industrialists off the hook in their strange  
concept of "marine protection," offshore oil drilling will be banned  
in one state marine protected area, the Vanderberg State Marine  
Reserve, if State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) has  
her way.

Senator Jackson has introduced a bill, SB 1096, to ban offshore oil  
drilling from an area of state waters in the Santa Barbara Channel  
known as Tranquillon Ridge. The area is designated as a "marine  
protected area" because of its sensitive marine ecosystem, according  
to a statement from Senator Jackson's office.

Declaring that "offshore oil and gas production in certain areas of  
state waters poses an unacceptably high risk of damage and disruption  
to the marine environment of the state," the California Legislature in  
1994 banned any new offshore oil and gas leases when it passed the  
California Coastal Sanctuary Act.

But a glaring loophole in state law left Tranquillon Ridge, which  
extends into state and federal waters, with reserves that are  
currently being tapped in federal waters from Platform Irene, uniquely  
vulnerable to offshore drilling, according to Jackson's office.

This loophole in the California Coastal Sanctuary Act authorizes the  
State Lands Commission to enter into a lease for the extraction of oil  
or gas from state-owned tide and submerged lands in the California  
Coastal Sanctuary, "if the commission determines that the oil or gas  
deposits are being drained by means of producing wells upon adjacent  
federal lands and the lease is in the best interest of the state."

Senate Bill 1096 repeals this loophole, found in Public Resources Code  
6244.

"For too long, oil companies have been eying this precious marine  
ecosystem as theirs for the taking," said Senator Jackson. "With each  
new proposal, we have mustered our resources, and fought for our  
environmental future. This bill would close the book on the  
possibility of future offshore drilling in these state waters and help  
ensure that our precious coastline remains protected forever."

Jackson said oil companies have made numerous attempts to tap into  
Tranquillon Ridge's offshore reserves from state waters over the  
years. Since 2003, an oil development proposal has been pursued by  
Sunset and Exxon to drill into Tranquillon Ridge reserves from an  
onshore location at Vandenberg Air Force Base.

"Slant drilling from onshore into offshore waters raises significant  
concerns about possible oil spills, impacts on marine life, air and  
water pollution, and contributions to global climate change," said  
Jackson.

"We are thrilled to sponsor this bill, which would protect one of the  
most environmentally rich areas on the California coast," said Linda  
Krop, chief counsel of the Environmental Defense Center, a nonprofit  
environmental law firm headquartered in Santa Barbara County. "This  
region is recognized as one of five important ecological regions on  
the planet. For this reason, the state has designated this area as a  
Marine Protected Area, which means that it warrants the highest  
possible level of protection."

"If a project like the original T-ridge, which contained significant  
environmental benefits, was rejected by the state, then our community  
should vehemently oppose an oil project that has even worse  
environmental impacts and no benefits," said Assemblymember Das  
Williams (D-Santa Barbara). "This bill would protect our waters from  
potential harmful new oil development."

Vandenberg State Marine Reserve (SMR) is a marine protected area  
located offshore of Vandenberg Air Force Base, near the city of Lompoc  
on the Central Coast. The marine protected area covers 32.84 square  
miles.

Vandenberg SMR is supposed to "protect" all marine life within its  
boundaries and fishing and take of all living marine resources is  
prohibited. However, the "marine reserve," like others established  
under the MLPA Initiative, doesn't ban oil drilling, fracking or  
pollution.

Vandenberg SMR was established in September 2007 in a controversial  
public-private partnership between the Resources Legacy Fund  
Foundation and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. It was  
one of 29 marine protected areas adopted during the first phase of the  
Marine Life Protection Act Initiative.

The time to ban offshore oil drilling, fracking, pollution, corporate  
aquaculture, military testing and other harmful activities to marine  
life in the "marine protected areas" created under the MLPA Initiative  
is long overdue. The oil industry's inordinate influence over the MLPA  
Initiative and other environmental processes, the Legislature and the  
Governor's Office is due to the enormous amount of money that the oil  
industry dumps into campaign contributions and lobbying in Sacramento  
every year.

A report released on April 1, 2014 by the ACCE Institute and Common  
Cause reveals that Big Oil has spent $143.3 million on political  
candidates and campaigns – nearly $10 million per year and more than  
any other corporate lobby – over the past fifteen years. (http://www.indybay.org/uploads/2014/04/10/bil_oil_floods_the_capitol_4.1.14v2.pdf 
)

But Big Oil exerts its influence not just by making campaign  
contributions, but also by lobbying legislators at the State Capitol.  
The oil industry spent $123.6 million to lobby elected officials in  
California from 1999 through 2013. This was an increase of over 400  
percent since the 1999-2000 legislative session, when the industry  
spent $4.8 million. In 2013-2014 alone, the top lobbyist employer,  
Western States Petroleum Association, spent $4.7 million. 
     
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