Leaders comment on water infrastructre project

The U.S. Department of the Interior on Feb 23 recommended providing $33.3 million for water infrastructure projects, primarily in California, in keeping with the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act.

“I want to commend President Trump and Secretary [Ryan] Zinke for prioritizing much-needed water infrastructure projects in California,” said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

“These recommended funds will advance the Shasta Reservoir Enlargement Project to the design and pre-construction phase. Additionally, these funds will be used to complete the Sites Reservoir and Temperance Flat Reservoir studies that have been pending for decades. These three projects alone would create 3.6 million acre-feet of new water storage in our state.”

Funding has also been recommended for starting the process of fixing subsidence on the Friant-Kern Canal, which would restore 3,000 acre-feet per day for conveyance that directly benefits communities and farms on the eastern side of the Central Valley in Tulare and Kern counties.

“This action is the direct result of the WIIN Act that was signed into law in 2016 and through subsequent funding provided by Congress. The WIIN Act included the largest reforms to California water policy in 25 years and prioritizes water storage projects and water deliveries to the Central Valley and Southern California. The recommendation from the Interior Department shows that this new law is working. I look forward to working with the Appropriations Committee to ensure that Interior’s recommendations are enacted into law as we finalize this year’s spending bill.”

State Sen. Jean Fuller and Assemblyman Vince Fong added their comments, following a recent meeting with Secretary Zinke in Sacramento.

“For over a decade, I’ve worked closely with Congressman McCarthy to ensure that long overdue investments into our state’s water infrastructure become a reality and we are now starting to see the fruit of that labor. I appreciate the Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, for taking the time last week to sit down and discuss his plans for California,” said Fuller.

“Water is key to our way of life and to the economic vitality of the Central Valley. Congressman McCarthy deserves much of the credit for continuing to make this a top priority for California while other state regulators drag their feet.”

“Investing in needed water infrastructure and water storage is vital for the long-term well-being of California. Congressman McCarthy has delivered critical resources to make that happen,” said Fong.

“While Sacramento bureaucrats appear to be ignoring the needs of more water storage, we must work with our federal partners to ensure that our state’s water needs are finally answered. I look forward to continue working … to make more investments to better California and the Central Valley.”

Story First Published: 2018-03-02