2.8.2012 Costa Announces $6.8 Million for Valley Water Projects

Madera Water Bank to receive $1.5 million

Washington, D.C. - Rep. Jim Costa announced that water infrastructure projects in the Central Valley will receive $6.8 million in federal funds from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation. The Madera Water Bank alone will receive $1.5 million to facilitate further construction of a groundwater facility that will store up to 250,000 acre feet of water for the region. In 2009, Costa joined with former Congressman Radanovich and Senator Feinstein to secure Congressional approval for the Madera Water Bank, which broke ground last year. Costa’s letter from December to Reclamation Commissioner Mike Connor urging funding for the water bank can be found here.

Reclamation’s announcement shows they are thinking outside the box to guarantee an adequate water supply for our Valley,” said Costa. “This funding is critical to make our projects more reliable and efficient, especially the Madera Water Bank. Water is the lifeblood of our Valley, and these funds mark the Bureau’s commitment meeting our short and long-term water needs. ”

Funding was also provided for other South of Delta water projects to improve water reliability and upgrade pumping systems.

Today, the Bureau announced that funding would be provided for the following projects:

Water Conservation and Delivery at Madera Water Bank

$1.5 million for the Friant Division (Central Valley Project) in California: This funding will reinforce users’ water supply by enhancing such features as reliability, affordability, reducing aquifer overdraft, and improving groundwater quality by acquiring refuge water for the current water year. The water will be credited toward the long term agreement with Madera Irrigation District for acquisition of 10,000 acre feet of storage in the water bank should Reclamation’s ongoing analysis show that the annual yield and cost per acre foot of banked water from the Madera Ranch Water Bank be competitive and justified in the current water market.

Improved Water Supply Reliability Grants through CALFED

$2.5 million for the Miscellaneous Project Programs (Central Valley Project) in California: This project will provide added funding opportunities within the CALFED Water Use Efficiency and Water Conservation Grant Program to complement/leverage Natural Resources Conservation Service funds for improving water supply reliability through water conservation or improved water management, improving energy efficiency and addressing endangered species and other environmental concerns.

Improve and Maintain Jones Pumping Plant Systems

$1.044 million is for Replacements, Additions and Extraordinary Maintenance (Central Valley Project) in California: These funds will support the contract for system replacement of an insufficient switchgear/breaker system so that the Jones Pumping Plant can operate at full capacity without restrictions, ensure continuity of operations and make it more safe and reliable.

Engage Stakeholders in Environmental Compliance Processes

$1.75 million for the Water and Power Operations (Central Valley Project) in California: These funds will support the completion of the National Environmental Policy Act and Endangered Species Act environmental compliance processes to comply with federal district court rulings on both the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service Biological Opinions. Funds will be used to support development and analyses of various actions and alternatives and facilitation of a stakeholder engagement process in the preparation of any required environmental documents associated with at-risk species.