NEWS WORTH NOTING: New resource: A beginner’s guide to the Delta; Byron Bethany Irrigation District honored with historical declaration for protecting water rights
New resource: A Beginner’s Guide to the Delta
This guide is meant to serve as a resource to learn more about this integral place in California. Whether you have no idea what or where the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is or you work in Delta-related science or policy and want to take a moment to step back and look at this system anew, this was written for you. This platform will begin with the basics of what the Delta is, where it is, and why it’s important. Following that are sections on its history, its people, and the animals and plants as well as some of the environmental challenges and how agencies and managers are trying to manage them.
The guide was produced by Heidi Williams, a Sea Grant Fellow working with the Delta Science Program.
View it here: A beginner’s guide to the Delta
Byron Bethany Irrigation District Honored with Historical Declaration for Protecting Water Rights
On Wednesday, Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Turlock) officially recognized the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) for its commitment to protect the oldest water rights in California. Rep. Denham presented District leaders with a plaque commemorating a passage the Congressman read into the Congressional Record, the official historical record of the United States Congress.
In those remarks read on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Denham congratulated BBID for receiving the Association of California Water Agencies’ 2017 Excellence in Water Leadership Award. He also recognized the District’s “bold actions in defending the water rights of the farming communities within their area of service.”
In 2016, BBID prevailed before the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), which sought enforcement against the District for allegedly diverting water when none was available under its priority of right, and alleging a potential $5 million fine. BBID’s legal team argued that careful analysis of the prosecution team’s evidence proved the SWRCB was ultimately incorrect. The SWRCB eventually dismissed the complaint, citing the prosecution team’s failure to prove its case.
“There are not too many irrigation districts that are willing to take on the state, and certainly the few that did have not won,” Rep. Denham said at Wednesday’s ceremony. “The fact that you took them on – and the fact that you won – not only made sure that our water rights are held dear to us, but I think it tells the State we’re a force to be reckoned with. I was very proud to tell my colleagues in Washington, D.C. about the good work you’re doing here, and that you took the fight on and won the fight.”
Rep. Denham was joined by BBID’s Board of Directors and District staff. Several of the District’s growers were in the audience, as well.
“We are humbled,” said BBID General Manager Rick Gilmore. “To receive formal recognition from Congressman Denham, as well as having our efforts read into the Congressional Record, is a tremendous honor.”
Rep. Denham’s full remarks read into the Congressional Record are below:
Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) is a multi-county special district serving parts of Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Joaquin Counties across 47 square miles and 30,000 acres. The district serves 160 agricultural customers and approximately 12,000 residents of the Mountain House community. For additional media information, contact Nick Janes at 630.915.6493, or via email at email@example.com.
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About News Worth Noting: News Worth Noting is a collection of press releases, media statements, and other materials produced by federal, state, and local government agencies, water agencies, and academic institutions, as well as non-profit and advocacy organizations. News Worth Noting also includes relevant legislator statements and environmental policy and legal analyses that are publicly released by law firms. If your agency or organization has an item you would like included here, please email it to Maven.