Valley state senators Vidak, Cannella propose $9.2 billion water bill

The Fresno BeeJanuary 30, 2014 

Valley state Sens. Andy Vidak, R-Hanford, and Anthony Cannella, R-Ceres, announced Thursday new legislation to put a water bond on the November ballot in an effort to improve California's water system.

Senate Bill 927, the Safe, Clean and Reliable Drinking Water Supply Act of 2014, proposes $9.2 billion in bonds for projects relating to drought relief, water supply reliability, ecosystem and watershed protection and restoration, and emergency actions that ensure a clean water supply.

SB 927 pares down the $11 billion water bond that the Legislature negotiated in 2009, Vidak and Cannella said. The new bill prioritizes water storage, clean drinking water, and protecting the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta water supply.

"Water is life, it's food, it's jobs. It's a crying shame to let precious water wash out to sea," Vidak said, referring to water being sent down the San Joaquin River to help restore historic salmon runs. "It's time for leadership, not delay. It's time Sacramento made water storage and access to clean drinking water a state priority."

Among its provisions, SB 927 offers $3 billion for water storage, $2.5 billion to protect the delta water supply and $1 billion for clean drinking water.

The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6659, or @DianaT_Aguilera on Twitter.

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