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Trump Asks Supreme Court To Resolve Groundwater Fight

The Trump administration is pushing the Supreme Court to review what could be the most consequential environmental case of the term: a broiling Clean Water Act debate. The Justice Department yesterday recommended the high court decide whether the landmark environmental law applies to pollution that travels through groundwater before reaching federally regulated water. Two recent circuit court decisions say yes, but critics think that approach vastly expands the statute.


Statewide Snowpack At 67 Percent Of Average For This Time Of Year

Storms have come to California early this winter, but a survey of the Sierra snowpack on Thursday (Jan. 3) shows it is only at 67 percent of average statewide for this time of year, according to the state’s Department of Water Resources. The snowpack survey was the first of 2019 in California and included a manual survey at Phillips Station just off of U.S. Highway 50 near Sierra-at-Tahoe.

OPINION: New leaders On Monterey Peninsula Must Finish The Job On Water Project

In September of 2018, a busload of local citizens traveled to San Francisco to support approval of our local desalination plant by the California Public Utilities Commission. Included among the supporters were local elected officials, representatives of labor, environmental, housing and business organizations, and people from the community at large. The one thing all these people had in common was the understanding that an adequate and drought-proof water supply is a necessity for a thriving community.

OPINION: Jerry Brown’s Four Biggest Incompletes

As Gov. Jerry Brown leaves office amid high praise and some criticism, it’s impossible to give him anything but a grade of incomplete on several major issues. The most prominent of these is criminal justice reform, where Brown has sought huge changes to the overly punitive system he helped create in his first stint as governor. His decision to sign the Uniform Determinate Sentencing Act in 1976 was a major early step in an excessive war on crime that peaked in 1994 when California voters passed the nation’s harshest “three strikes and you’re out” law.

Leading Women In Water, Colorado River Drought And Promising Solutions — Western Water Year In Review

The growing leadership of women in water. The Colorado River’s persistent drought and efforts to sign off on a plan to avert worse shortfalls of water from the river. And in California’s Central Valley, promising solutions to vexing water resource challenges. These were among the topics that Western Waternews explored in 2018. Western Water, the Foundation’s flagship publication, has provided in-depth coverage of significant water resource issues in California and the Southwest for more than 40 years. In 2018, we took Western Water news entirely online to make it more accessible to a broader range of readers.

Water: It’s Maybe Being Taxed, And Definitely Being Measured

A state law meant to document and combat racial profiling by police has produced some unnerving findings: Racial profiling complaints against law enforcement are rarely sustained, and police in California kill black and Latino citizens at a rate higher than those groups’ share of the population, according to a new report released this week by the state’s Racial and Identity Profiling Advisory Board. The 2015 law, written by San Diego Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, is still being implemented in phases, and the latest report is based on data collected from the eight largest law enforcement agencies in the state – including the San Diego Police Department and the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.

Water Rate Increase Planned For This Year

Water rates will go up nine percent in 2019 as the City of Santa Monica embarks on several projects to wean itself off of imported water. City Council is expected to approve the rate hike at its Tuesday meeting. The average single-family home customer will pay about $4.33 more per month for water to fund the design of a larger, more efficient water treatment plant, the purchase of a new well and the cost of replacing the city’s aging water mains, said chief sustainability officer Dean Kubani. The rate increase will go into effect retroactively on Jan. 1.

Tiny Community Has Tried For 20 Years To Force Southern California Edison To Fix Water System

Retired firefighters Julie and Dale Hutchinson stepped out the back door of their Banning Heights home on a hot night last July. A column of smoke and flames towered over the ridge above their home — the Valley fire was advancing toward their tiny community. Their first thought wasn’t the wildfire, it was lack of water. For two decades, the Hutchinsons and their neighbors in this rural enclave tucked above the I-10 freeway have fought to have Southern California Edison repair a century-old system that carries water down the San Gorgonio mountains to their homes.

Will Gavin Newsom Change The State’s Water Course? Fish And Farmers Will Soon Find Out

In the final weeks of Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration, his appointees on a state board ordered some powerful water districts to cut their historic river diversions to protect endangered salmon populations. It was a major move by a panel that in the past has often been leery of flexing its regulatory muscles. But while the State Water Resources Control Board was demanding more water for fish, other Brown appointees were busy crafting deals that could ultimately mean less water for the environment. Despite a flurry of activity, Brown is leaving plenty of unfinished water business as he heads to his ranch in the Sacramento Valley.