California Water Reforms Presented at Farm Bill Conference Committee

Taylor HillmanGeneral

Washington – At the request of Speaker of the House John Boehner and California Congressmen David Valadao (CA-21), Kevin McCarthy (CA-23), and Devin Nunes (CA-22), Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas has presented a legislative fix in a bicameral conference committee to relieve the water crisis in the South Valley. The proposal, meant for inclusion in the Farm Bill that could pass Congress as early as this week, calls for two main actions:

• Turning on the Delta pumps this year and next year to capture future rain events
• Ending restoration flows in the San Joaquin River for this year and next year in order to stop wasting water

In a joint statement, the three California representatives declared, “We’d like to thank Speaker Boehner and Chairman Lucas for their leadership and for acting quickly on this urgent issue. With more than 50,000 acre feet of water about to be flushed into the ocean, this is the last chance to make a difference for tens of thousands of Central Valley farmers and residents whose water supplies are running critically low. We urge California’s senators to support this language and cooperate with the House to get it passed into law as soon as possible.”