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OPINION: More Misdirection on Our Plan for California Water

Let’s just get right to it. Appearing in yesterday’s Sacramento Bee, is an editorial titled, “GOP should drop effort to gut Endangered Species Act.” And like past editorials on this topic, the misrepresentation is as blatant as the Kern River is dry — and both are damaging for our state.

This “effort” the editorial board refers to is just the latest in numerous efforts from the House to get the Senate to act on California water. When Republicans regained the majority in the House, we passed legislation each Congress to address California’s water crisis.

OPINION: Ending Water Crises Requires Policy-Level Changes

Growing up in Massachusetts, “drought” was a word on a sign in the center of town that reminded us not wash our cars between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. That was the extent of our involvement in water conservation, so, upon arriving at UC Berkeley, I was bewildered by the lengths to which people went to save even a few drops. I once inquired about the bucket left in a friend’s shower — it was used to collect extra water. My incredulous “seriously?” was met not with laughter but with a stern lecture on the very real water shortage.

Delta Islands: Opponents Sue to Stop Sale to Southern California Water District

Two counties and several environmental groups on Thursday sued to challenge the giant Metropolitan Water District’s pending purchase of five Delta islands and tracts along or near the route of the state’s proposed twin water tunnels estimated at $15.5 billion.

Contra Costa and San Joaquin counties filed the suit in San Joaquin County Superior Court along with four other organizations, saying the Los-Angeles based water district erred in claiming that its $175 million purchase is exempt from a state law requiring an analysis of the acquisition’s potential effect on the environment.


Scientists Confirm: El Niño a Disappointment in still-too-dry Southern California

The National Weather Service has confirmed what many Southern Californians suspected during a scorching February: El Niño, and its badly needed rainstorms, are pretty much kaput.

“It’s looking pretty grim,” said Anthony Barnston, the chief climate forecaster for the International Research Institute for Climate and Society in New York. “This winter was really disappointing.” This week, the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center published an El Niño advisory that not only forecast the end of the Pacific Ocean-warming phenomenon, but also warned that El Niño’s drier flip side, La Niña, would replace it by the end of the year.

FPUD One Step Closer to Changing Election Method

Senate Bill 927, which would allow the Fallbrook Public Utility District to change its method of electing directors from at-large seats to by territorial unit, passed out of the State Senate’s Governance and Finance Committee on a 7-0 vote March 30.

“We were pleased with the support of the committee and look forward to testifying if necessary before the Elections Committee,” said FPUD general manager Brian Brady. The passage out of the Governance and Finance Committee sends the legislation to the State Senate’s Elections and Constitutional Amendments Committee, which is expected to hold a hearing on the bill in late April.

Morning Report: Sycuan Finds Shortcut to Water

The Sycuan Indian reservation is situated deep in East County, and the tribe would very much like to undertake some new development projects like a hotel and casino expansion. One problem: they just don’t have the water to do it. Ry Rivard reports how the tribe has summoned significant support in the California legislature to bypass the normal processes and give them quick access to Colorado River water, desalinated water, and other water sources used by San Diego.

Contra Costa County Joins Other Agencies, Groups to Sue L.A. Water District over Delta Islands Purchase

On Thursday, Contra Costa County, the Planning and Conservation League and Food and Water Watch, as well as two other Delta local agencies, Central Delta Water Agency and San Joaquin County announced they will file a lawsuit against the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (Met) over their plan to purchase several islands in the San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary.

On March 14, 2016, Metropolitan Water District had filed a Notice of Exemption under the California Environmental Quality Act for the purchase of the Delta islands, claiming the purchase was for Delta habitat restoration purposes.

Water Authority Sues MWD for 4th Time

It is the fourth lawsuit filed by the San Diego County Water Authority against the Metropolitan Water District. The latest litigation alleges the Los Angeles based Metropolitan Water District’s newly adopted rates for 2017-2018 violate California Law, The state Constitution and common law that will require rates to be set based upon cost of service. – See more at:

Agency Files Another Lawsuit Against Water Wholesaler

San Diego County Water Authority has filed another lawsuit over rates charged by the Metropolitan Water District, a Los Angeles-based water wholesaler.

In its complaint filed in Superior Court in Los Angeles, the water authority contends that the rate structure approved Tuesday by the MWD board for 2017 and 2018 used the same methodology as costs from 2011-14 that were previously ruled illegal by a Superior Court judge.