Statement of Senator Feinstein on Updated Water Supply Allocations for Central Valley Farmers
May 04 2010
“The Department of the Interior today announced yet another increase in this year’s water supply allocations for Central Valley Project users. Based on a 90 percent forecast, farmers on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley will receive 40 percent of their contractual water supply – up from 30 percent last month. As previously announced, farmers in the Sacramento Valley will receive their full contractual allocation.
This is terrific news, and should come as a welcome relief to thousands of California’s family farms. This latest allocation, in particular, should ensure that South-of-Delta farmers have enough water to plant, hire and harvest their crops this year.
The increased federal allocation is largely thanks to the additional administrative measures announced in February after discussions with water users, environmental groups, the fishing community, and the State and federal agencies, as well as the fact that spring storms have pushed snowpack levels to more than 140 percent above normal.
The State of California has also upgraded its water allocation to 40 percent, up from the 30 percent level announced last month. This additional State water will also help farmers and communities across the State meet their vital water supply needs.
Although California is a long way from fully solving its water crisis, these announcements were made possible because of the collaborative discussions, creativity, and resourcefulness of Californians and the federal agencies. In particular, let me offer my thanks and appreciation to Interior Secretary Salazar and Deputy Secretary Hayes for responding to the urgency of our State’s crisis water, and helping to avert a disastrous year for California’s farmers. Senator Boxer and Representatives Costa and Cardoza have also worked tirelessly to address California’s ongoing water challenges. Let me also extend a thank you to Lester Snow and Mark Cowin for their constructive and creative work to help California obtain the water our State so desperately needs. Finally, I thank the Metropolitan District, the exchange contractors and Friant water users for making it possible to provide additional spring and summer water to South-of-Delta irrigators through sourceshifting, transfers, and other water supply measures.”