In the Feb. 21 Bee, Rep. Devin Nunes called for Congress to both fund restoration of the San Joaquin River and finance a drainage system for farm wastewaters in the western San Joaquin Valley.
It seems unlikely that Congress will expend the kind of money needed for both projects. In my view, restoring the San Joaquin River first will partially resolve salinity problems in the Delta, which now receives drainage water from some west-side irrigation districts.
If the Westlands Water District thinks it can solve the drainage problem on its high selenium soils, more power to it. The taxpayers are tired of funding endless studies and pilot projects that seem to go nowhere. I think it's time they retire the worst problem soils without another public bailout. Much of that land should never have been farmed in the first place. Enough is enough.
Walter A. Shubin
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