Gov. Brown Announces Bill Providing Nearly $700 Million in Drought Funding

February 20, 2014 9:00 am · 30 comments

Gov. Jerry Brown and state Democratic leaders today announced emergency legislation providing $687.4 million in funding to support drought relief projects.

The legislation includes funds for housing and food for workers directly affected by the drought, local projects that will help communities capture and manage water more efficiently, and emergency water supplies for communities hit hard by the drought, according to state officials.

It also includes increased funding for state and local conservation corps to help communities with efficiency upgrades and fire fuel reduction, as well as $1 million for a public awareness campaign urging California residents to conserve water.

“This is a call to action,” Brown said today in announcing the legislation. “We must all do our part to conserve in this drought.”

Many projects targeted in the legislation are those already in progress that lacked funding or that were planned for a later date but will now be moved up, officials said.

“We don’t have to ignore environmental protections, raise fees or get bogged down in political arguments over projects that will take many years to produce a single drop of water,” said Sen. Darrell Steinberg today.

“It’s time we focus on what we can do right now.”

The bill also calls for the state Department of Public Health to adopt new groundwater replenishment regulations by July 1, and to work with the state Water Resource Control Board on measures to allow for the use of recycled water and storm water. In addition, it streamlines enforcement of water rights and increases penalties for illegally diverting water during drought conditions, officials said.

“Early actions now are critically important for the ‘angry summer that may await us.”, Steinberg said.

Republican leaders were not present at today’s news conference with Brown.

Republicans in January put forward a $9.2 billion water bond for the November ballot that they said would provide $3 billion for water storage, $2.5 billion to protect the Delta water supply and $1 billion for clean drinking water. The proposal has drawn fire from Democrats and environmental groups, however, because it includes new dams on some rivers.

Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff, R-Diamond Bar, said today that the state needs a plan that includes increased water storage.

“The governor wants to spent $688 million but his only solution moving forward is to urge more conservation and that won’t put people back to work,” Huff said in response to the legislation announced today.

Brown announced a drought state of emergency in California in January and the California Department of Water Resources announced on Jan. 31 that it would not be making deliveries to customers this year.

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1 Duh February 20, 2014 at 9:08 AM

Millions of illegals = depleated resources. Simple. Immigration is controlled for a reason. Population control.

I cannot understand why California is encouraging the propagation of populations that over produce.

2 Where is the water? February 20, 2014 at 9:16 AM

$700 million in welfare, public awareness, more regulations, more conservations, more studies, more environmental impact and more bureaucracy.

The need is water? What amount of water will spending this $700 get the people of this state?

Not much, if any at all.

3 Where is Mark? February 20, 2014 at 9:22 AM

Mark usually has a statement out by now.

4 @duh February 20, 2014 at 9:32 AM

I know some idiot would blame the illegals. Since 1977 the last drought, our pop has doubled. They are all illegals. Really? We need alternative water sources and need to start now. In 20 years Ca pop will double again. Who you gonna blame then?

5 Duh February 20, 2014 at 10:01 AM

Just do your part, I put a 5 gallon bucket in the shower to catch the water. I then water our plants outside, and have turned off those sprinklers. Every little bit helps, plus it reduces the water bill.

6 Anon777 February 20, 2014 at 10:15 AM

This money should be spent first on putting water meters on every house in California. There are too many people paying nothing or not enough and without a meter have no idea of their use. If you want people to conserve, they need to know their usage and PAY FOR IT!! Same goes for all apartment complexes and commercial buildings.

7 Noj February 20, 2014 at 10:31 AM

First, those idiots in Sacramento shut off the water going to the Central Valley over some dumazz fish, and now they want to spend our hard earned tax money to pull themselves out of the ditch. Who voted for these effen morons anyway? Think about that for a minute. People think the sun revolves around the earth for crying out loud. This is the Food Basket of America people. Guess who’s gonna holler the loudest when you go to Safeway in July and pay 5 bucks for a tomato? I’m ready for a march on Washington DC on July 4th complete with pitchforks. Who’s with me?

8 Its all about Agriculture February 20, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Agriculture uses 75-80% of the states water. Vast quanities of it is wasted in conveyance and poor irrigation practices. The solution is investing in piping instead of dirt ditches where large amonts are lost to evaporation and seepage. Investing in modern sytems such as drip instead of flood irrigation and more. Theres a lot of water out there, we just waste to much by doing things the same way we did in 1900….Time to modernize.

9 Ted K., SuperMax February 20, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Here is the solution . Who is the actual party of “No!”?

“Republicans in January put forward a $9.2 billion water bond for the November ballot that they said would provide $3 billion for water storage, $2.5 billion to protect the Delta water supply and $1 billion for clean drinking water. The proposal has drawn fire from Democrats and environmental groups, however, because it includes new dams on some rivers.

10 @ Duh February 20, 2014 at 11:12 AM

Appropriate name, by the way.

I don’t think it is illegals that “over produce”, I think it is illegals that “pick produce”.

I guess the illegals control the weather too. They sure have a lot of power. They can make it not rain so that there will be fewer crops and they will be out of work.

Let’s start to solve our water problems by stopping the high speed rail program and funneling that money into building desalinization plants up and down the coast.

11 old concord February 20, 2014 at 11:50 AM

Thank you , may we have more sir ?

12 Forget It February 20, 2014 at 12:25 PM

Straight up sick of the @person. All he or she does is harass others, and it gets old. Most people use their name or a screen name. I’m sure it’s the same person day in and day out. Ignore IT!

13 @Forget It February 20, 2014 at 12:31 PM

I hate to break this to you, but it’s not just one person who uses the “@” symbol. Just like a whole bunch of people post as “Anon”. We’re all just too cowardly to use our real names, like you do. Oh, wait…

14 Clayton Valley Grad February 20, 2014 at 12:59 PM

@Forget It, #13. You’re proving the point of #12. You’re annoying, and all your posts are for “harassment purposes.”

If you were the person who was harassing @Maria last night, you might want to watch your harassment of Latino’s on Claycord. Racism towards any race will get you nowhere. That’s a reflection on you.

By the way, I’m a white guy, and I’m not going to tell you my name.

You need a taste of your own medicine.

And, yes, I also think @whomever is always the same person. (You). People use their real first name, or a handle.

When people use Anon, they use it in several different forms, to separate themselves from others.

All your posts are the same. You’re either showing annoyance toward someone, or harassment. (Maria, Denise, etc.)

The truth hurts, and I’m calling you on it!

15 No matter what February 20, 2014 at 1:27 PM

the anonymity of this blog precludes anyone from really knowing who anyone else really is.

So bluster all you want, no one can call you out.

People can be as obnoxious as they want and no one will really know who they are.

16 Craig February 20, 2014 at 1:28 PM

Clayton Valley Grad…….wow! I agree with you. This person has it coming.

I’m in favor of this bill, as well as water conservation. I wish those who don’t conserve would reconsider their decision, and realize how important it is to conserve water. You’re only hurting yourself as well as your fellow citizens if you don’t.

17 Idiocracy February 20, 2014 at 2:09 PM

How about a water pipeline from up north (where it rains all the time) and a few dams to store it? BTW Duh has a point with the illegals. Less illegals more water for CITIZENS. Less illegals = less TRAFFIC (act like you don’t get held up by their 1975 toyata pick up with leaf debris flying out all over your preppy BMW’s). Less illegals = little to no wait time at the county hospital. Less illegals = less crime case in point Monument. The way I look at it and have even seen it is that they are parasites and I have no compassion for their plights because they broke the rules period. Any of you that support ppl breaking our Sovereign Laws need to pack up and leave!! This America not Mexico

18 We have always concerved February 20, 2014 at 2:21 PM

Frankly I don’t know how much more we can reduce our water usage.

I guess we could take cloths the a laundromat and dry cleaner.

We don’t have a lawn or any plants outside or inside. Cars are seldom washed and then only at recycled water car wash. We vacuum instead of washing a lot of stuff. Sweep instead of washing. Bath every other day with minimal water. Purchase water for drinking and coffee/tea. Use the dishwasher once a week and only when crammed full.

A 25% mandatory reduction would take us down to a few gallons a week. I think I’ll look into washing dishes with sand and going to the corner gas station for personal needs. As for bathing, well, its not going to odiferous for other people.

19 VikingPrincess February 20, 2014 at 2:21 PM

@forget it #12 – glad someone said it

@Clayton valley grad – good for you! Call it like it is…you’re right on..

20 Craig February 20, 2014 at 2:52 PM

I agree with Forget It, Clayton Valley Grad and Viking Princess.

I also think the @whomever I feel like harassing today is the same person. I ‘ve also read the exact same comment before. “More than one person uses the @sign, just like Anon.”

Funny how it’s “the exact same excuse” again. It’s the same person.

If someone is called out “often enough”, hopefully they’ll give it up.

21 Sheila February 20, 2014 at 3:15 PM

I don’t know about bathing every other day or washing dishes once a week…..

22 Elwood February 20, 2014 at 3:20 PM

Jerry’s $700 million won’t provide any water but it will provide a lot of feel good for the usual fools.

And feeling good about ourselves is important. We need to build our self esteem.

So next time you’re thirsty, don’t hold back. Pour yourself a big glass of self esteem.

23 RANDOM TASK February 20, 2014 at 3:36 PM

700 million hmmm seems we should follow that money as half is going to campaign funding and half of the rest to other funding that has backed the dems so about 750,000 going to drought promise …………nice

24 Anon2you February 20, 2014 at 4:34 PM

I he buys $700 million dollars of bottled water, that should do the trick!

25 anon February 20, 2014 at 5:51 PM

any of that money going to the farmers who grow or produce our food?
they thought about the workers…but if the crops fail or are not planted then the farming businesses fail. farming as a business is often touch and go as it is.
I think this bill is starting at the middle or end of the line instead of the front.
politicians are stupid.

26 RoseQ February 20, 2014 at 7:53 PM

Adding new ones costs billions and the added water would be minimal at best. The last major dam was built in the 40s, the New Melones Dam, and it has never been a significant source of water for anyone. Future sites would add even less water and the cost would be very high for little gain. The San Joaquin watershed, for example, has an average annual runoff of 6 million acre-feet. The storage capacity of dams and reservoirs capturing that water is 8.6 million acre-feet. There’s no point to adding anything more there.

Someone suggested bringing water from the north. If by that you mean Oregon and Washington, forget it. Those states have no interest in sending water to California, so it won’t be happening.

There is no easy way out of this. We need to make conservation a way of life. That’s the best method of dealing with water scarcity.

27 RoseQ February 20, 2014 at 8:06 PM

Whoops, I meant my first sentence to say that every major river in California has already been dammed and adding new ones would cost billions. Sorry for the comment fail.

28 Rick February 20, 2014 at 8:35 PM

They will cut our water use and send the Delta water south so San Diego can continue to water their lawns.

29 I agree with Post #1 February 21, 2014 at 12:51 PM

I agree with post #1, these illegals do tend to waste alot of our natural resources. Due in large part to the fact that they come from poorer countries where water is a scarcity. As a result they all think it is ok to come here and waste water by the buckets. I have seen some of these illegals watering down their cars and then leaving the damn hose running for hours.

At least post #1 was brave enough to admit what the real problem is – illegals consuming too many of our precious resources in California. And most of you trolls know that was what you are thinking – but were too chicken-sh&$ to admit it.
And the idea about keeping a 5 gallon bucket in the shower then using it to water the plants was smart as well. I bet most of you (trolls) just turn on your sprinklers full blast three times a day, including washing down your cars every weekend.

30 I'm saving water. February 21, 2014 at 1:31 PM

I haven’t washed my car in like six months.

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