04.13.10 Reps. Costa And Cardoza Announce Funding To Deliver More Water To The Valley

“This funding is another step forward in our fight for the Valley,” said Congressman Costa. “The Intertie will deliver more water to our farmers to help put people back to work and get our economy going again. I have repeatedly pressed the Administration to do more to address the immediate needs of the Valley as we work on long-term solutions to the water crisis. I am pleased that the Interior Department is responding to these efforts. While this announcement is good news, the fact still remains that our farmers need a minimum allocation of 40 percent to make it through the year. I will continue to push the Administration to increase the flow of water to our Valley.”

“As I have said many times, we need to get the pumps turned on and get water to our farmers,” said Congressman Cardoza. “Until we obtain long-term solutions to this regulatory drought, we must also pursue all practical means of delivering irrigation water to those in need. I have worked hard over the past year to get the Intertie built and I am pleased to see this real-world solution finally bearing fruit.”

When completed, the Intertie will connect the Delta-Mendota Canal to the California Aqueduct with a new pipeline and pumping station. The project with provide much needed flexibility in managing the water system and allow transfers of water to farmers who have been hardest hit by drought. According to the Bureau of Reclamation, the Intertie is scheduled to be online to deliver water in fall of 2011. It was initially identified in the August 2000 CALFED Bay-Delta Program Programmatic Record of Decision.

Congressmen Costa and Cardoza have long advocated for the Intertie project and were successful last year in passing legislation (click here) to help fund and support it.

In July 2009, Congressmen Costa and Cardoza introduced two legislative amendments to alleviate the effects of the water supply crisis. One amendment cut through bureaucratic red tape by making it easier for water to be transferred from one county to another. The second amendment increased funding for the California Bay-Delta Restoration Program, providing a $10 million down payment on water projects including the Intertie.

Both amendments passed Congress in October as part of a conference report for the FY 2010 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill. Since then, Congressman Cardoza and Costa demanded (click here) that the Interior Department make the Intertie project a top priority.