The Los Angeles Times is reporting that an $8.25-billion dollar California water bond due to be unveiled today in Sacramento at an Appropriations Committee hearing has been put on hold until Assembly members could come to agreement on more details before the bill is introduced publicly. The compromise legislation represents the middle ground of proposals -- at least in terms of cost -- falling between Governor Jerry Brown’s $6-billion package and Sen. Lois Wolk’s $10.5 billion bond legislation.
The Assembly’s proposal is intended to replace an $11.1-billion water bond scheduled to be on the ballot in November. Most consider that proposal to be bloated and unpassable especially with Governor Brown indicating his opposition to it should it stay on the ballot.
The plan currently being negotiated by the Assembly would provide $2.75 billion for reservoir and dam storage projects while allocating $650 million for the Delta. Of the $650 million being directed to the Delta, $400 million would be used for the construction of levees and $250 million would go towards ecosystem restoration, a figure that concerns environmentalists.
Also expected to be included in the plan is $900 million for groundwater clean-up and another $900 million for water recycling.
Western Growers staff and other organizations are continuing their discussions with legislators, staff and the Brown Administration on this critical topic.
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