Governor Eases Water Transfer Rules
An executive order has been issued by Governor Brown seeking to ease water restrictions for farmers, following two dry winters in a row.
The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) and Department of Water Resources (DWR) were directed to expedite review and processing of transfers and existing water rights claims during the 2013 growing season.
Brown said he hopes to alleviate effects of low water supply availability, particularly in the San Joaquin Valley. “Agriculture is vital to the health of California’s economy, and this order ensures we’re doing what’s necessary to cope with a very dry year,” said Brown.
Representative Jim Costa (D-Fresno), who represents many of the farms hit hardest by water shortages, welcomed the action.
Costa said, however, that protecting the tiny Delta smelt under the Endangered Species Act through pumping restrictions spells perennial disaster statewide.