What Was Wrong, What Was Right, About Water Meet
October 27, 2016
week’s meeting with the executive director of the
State Water Control Board was a good trial run for the meeting
coming up on Dec. 19 in Merced, and Dec. 20 in Modesto.
However, people need to remember that this first meeting
was with only one man and not the whole Water Board.
The meetings in December are with the full board and one
person said the scheduling of the meetings right before
Christmas was another sign of how poorly the public comment
period had been scheduled.
This same group, and many more people, need to reiterate
the many concerns which were brought out at the most recent
meeting. We now know that the research conducted was done
by college students who tend to lean toward liberal understanding
of the problem.
That research did not take into account any other solutions
to the problem of how to provide sufficient water flow for
the salmon and the Delta environment. The idea that the
fingerling salmon can not run the gauntlet of non-native
predatory fish like the stripped bass.
The research did not consider what affect the restoration
of the natural river bed would have on the salmon and the
temperature of the water in the San Joaquin valley rivers
due to the state’s droughts.
The research, which was supposed to be dealing with a balance
between the environmental needs and the needs of the people
who live and work in the valley, did not consider the loss
of food products to the state and the nation when water
is cut in half.
We have already seen major price increases at the grocery
store, but in fairness of the research, these prices needed
to be doubled, to see what affect it has on the people who
depend on this food.
There were so many flaws in the research, and if there is
to be any balance in the decision by the State Water Control
Board, then the flaws need to be underlined.
One other major problem with the State Water Control Board
is that it is not balanced. It is only answerable to the
Governor Jerry Brown. The people of this state do not select
these members, and they cannot be removed from the Board
for good cause.
The State Water Control Board does not work at the convenience
of anyone else's schedule. Meeting dates are changed at
the whim of the board and its executive director. The latest
deadlines of Jan 17 for the public comments, and mid July
for the final approval of the State Water plan, is the decision
made by the board.
Do these deadlines take into consideration that it took
20 years to come up with a new plan and less than six months
to evaluate that plan which we can assume needs to last
another 20 years?
Can this plan be changed once it is approved?
Is there time for local groups who oppose the plan to hire
their own research team to challenge the findings of the
in university research teams?
There are far too many unanswered questions regarding the
plan which will put San Joaquin Valley agriculture at risk.
We strongly urge everyone who attended this most recent
meeting, and others who failed to make it, to spend the
next month preparing an organized assault on the research
which the State’s Water Control Board is using for
the basis of their latest plan.
The State's Water Control Board's plan will doom this valley
to an even more severe recession than the one which we are
just getting over. Let the board members know how bad this
Merced's meeting is Dec. 19 at the Multicultural Arts Center,
645 W. Main St, in downtown. Modesto's meeting is Dec. 20
in the Tuolumne River Room of the Modesto Centre Plaza,
1000 K Street.
Written comment received until Jan. 17 will be evaluated.
More information is online at waterboards.ca.gov/waterrights.