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Denham continues fight for water storage funding

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Washington, November 9, 2018 | comments

Today, U.S. Representative Jeff Denham continued his push to bring more water storage to the Central Valley, sending a letter to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation requesting funding for major California water projects including Temperance Flat, Los Vaqueros Reservoir expansion, Sites Reservoir, raising Shasta Dam, and restoring the Friant-Kern Canal. All of these projects are integral to the Central Valley Project and critical to both storing water and providing it to Valley communities.

The Bureau of Reclamation is currently developing its project list for Fiscal Year 2019 Water Infrastructure for Improvements to the Nation (WIIN) Act funding. As California’s water resources become further constrained, these projects offer real solutions to provide stability for the Valley’s communities, farms and economy.

“We need more water in the Central Valley, not less,” said Rep. Denham. “I’m going to keep fighting for Valley water to ensure a reliable water supply for our farmers and our future generations.”

Rep. Denham has taken historical steps to secure water storage for the Central Valley and stop Sacramento’s radical water grab, including passing his New WATER Act (H.R. 434), which was signed into law on October 23 as part of America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 (WRDA) and will provide financing for water projects throughout the western United States, including new reservoirs, below ground storage projects, recycling and desalination projects. The bill also enhances long-delayed and badly needed local flood protection for more than 50,000 Valley residents. Read more about Rep. Denham’s bill here.

Rep. Denham also secured a presidential memorandum in October to directly address hydroelectric relicensing like what is currently happening at Don Pedro and establish timeliness for environmental reviews of infrastructure projects to support the Central Valley Project and streamline water storage projects across the western United States. The president’s executive action came on the heels of visits to the Central Valley of several key administration officials, including Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, Environmental Protection Agency Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler, and Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works Rickey “R.D.” James. Rep. Denham last week hosted a call with the Bureau of Reclamation to discuss the details of the recent presidential memorandum on California water storage and brief local agriculture leaders on next steps in the process.

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Tags: Water