After five waterless water bonds approved over the last two decades, the Legislature came together in near unanimity to pass a $7.5 billion bond that, if approved by the voters in November, will build two new reservoirs to greatly expand California's water storage capacity. The bond, which will be designated Proposition 1 on the November ballot, replaces an $11.1 billion bond that many believed was doomed to failure because voters would not approve of its size or the amount of pork contained in the spending of taxpayer dollars.
It is well documented that California is in the midst of a historic drought that encompasses nearly 100-percent of this state. The time was now for the Legislature to act in a bi-partisan way to provide a pathway to expand the state's water system significantly for the first time in more than 50 years.
This water bond brought together Republicans and Democrats and created a consensus between agriculture and environmental communities in order to move this vital measure forward to the voters in just two months.
Some of the highlights of the bond:
*It provides $2.7 billion in funding for water storage, which is nearly $1 billion more than the Governor originally proposed. When matched with federal and local funds, these funds could build two new facilities - one in Colusa County and the other in Fresno County, the Temperance Flat Dam.
*Republicans fought to ensure that any water bond that goes on the ballot will actually provide more water for all Californians. That goal was accomplished by nearly 40-percent of the bond funds being dedicated to water storage.
*Because the water storage money is "continuously appropriated," it can't be blocked by the Legislature in the future. This means we can ensure new reservoirs will be built and helps the rest of California's water system work for the long term.
For more information:
Office of Senator Ted Gaines
1670 Market Street, Suite 244
Redding CA 96001
Phone: (530) 225-3142
Fax (530) 225-3143