Rep.Costa Comments Regarding Assistance to West Side Farmers

Jan 27, 2010
Press Release
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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following yesterday’s announcement from the United States Department of the Interior that 350,000 to 400,000 acre feet of water will be made available for the upcoming growing season, Congressman Jim Costa (D-Fresno) made the following statement.

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“Secretary Salazar’s announcement yesterday suggests that he and the Department of the Interior are either out of touch with reality, completely misinformed, or trying to dupe the Valley.  Our economy depends on fair water allocations and I am angry and frustrated because the people of the San Joaquin Valley deserve far better from this Administration. 

“President Obama has made no attempt to use his emergency executive powers to save our Valley’s economy and the farm communities from the drought caused by his Administration’s excessive regulations.  Those most at risk by this announcement, our farmers, farm workers and farm communities, are some of the very people President Obama is reaching out to in the State of the Union tonight.

“At best, the announcement is helpful for planning purposes, but to claim somehow that this is additional water or more than what is already owed to the water users is at best a misstating of the facts, and at worst a falsehood. 

“I have been working with the Administration since last year to convince them to back off of the regulations and reject the faulty science that is leading to extreme water cuts and severe local hardship.  The Administration just does not seem to get it.

“The people of the San Joaquin Valley have seen President Obama spend more time being on the ‘Jay Leno Show’ than he has working on our water crisis in California.  They are losing hope and faith that the Obama Administration truly cares, and sadly, so am I.”