The Metropolitan Water District has opened a review into its own ethics office, hiring a Washington, D.C.-based law firm to look into at least two investigations carried out at the agency. The MWD is paying attorney Alejandro Mayorkas, the former deputy secretary for the Department of Homeland Security, nearly $1,100 per hour to examine the policies and procedures of the office, which investigates potential violations of internal ethics rules.
Archive for date: September 5th, 2017
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The California Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD) has released updated information on 1,249 dams under its jurisdiction, including downstream hazard classification, condition assessment and reservoir restriction status for each dam. According to DSOD, this latest information on dam safety “reflects the most recent physical inspections and comprehensive re- evaluations by DSOD engineers and engineering geologists, as well as technical analyses performed by dam owners.”
More than 10,000 firefighters were battling 23 large wildfires statewide, California fire officials said Tuesday. The Helena Fire in Trinity County was among the most troublesome, with 72 homes destroyed and more than 11,000 acres consumed about five miles northwest of Junction City. Kelly Wood, a fire information officer, said crews spent Tuesday on strategic burn operations, conducting control burns ahead of the fire to prevent its spread. One such burn was being conducted Tuesday evening in the Junction City area.
The clues that the main spillway at the Oroville Dam could fail were embedded deep in state records, but officials did not recognize the evidence before the structure broke apart in February, investigators said Tuesday. A history of damage when the spillway was used, cracking in the concrete surface and unexpectedly large amounts of water exiting drains under the deck should have raised suspicions that something was wrong. But annual inspections gave the state false confidence that the spillway could handle a big flood event, investigators found.
We respectfully disagree with your Aug. 24 editorial, “Water Board: Vote ‘No’ on Billion-dollar Delta Tunnels project,” which was based on erroneous rhetoric and incorrect information. We depend on water imported from Northern California through the Delta for about 30 percent of the supplies we use in the Southland. But that system is aging and less reliable than it should be. We need an updated, modernized and cost-effective water system, and we need it to protect the Delta environment. Scientists tell us California WaterFix, with its new intakes, twin tunnels, and environmental safeguards will help achieve those goals.
The first time Jerry Brown was governor of California, his greatest policy defeat came when resentful Northern Californians voted almost unanimously in 1982 to reverse a legislative vote authorizing a massive ditch around the delta of the San Joaquin and Sacramento rivers. This was called the Peripheral Canal; it aimed to bring Northern California river water to the farms of the San Joaquin Valley and cities in Southern California.
One of California’s largest Colorado River farm water districts is suing the state’s largest municipal water agency, charging that efforts to move farm water to cities are threatening the viability of agriculture in one of the oldest farming valleys on the river.