BLOG ROUND-UP: Leaving the Board, Water is essential, public trust doctrine and groundwater, and more …

Leaving the Board: We think we’re going to see more resignations from water boards across the State of California as the deadline for implementing SGMA gets closer:  Families Protecting the Valley writes, “Below is a letter from Sarah Woolf to the Board of Directors at the Westlands Water District announcing her resignation from the Board.  She has been a positive and effective advocate for agriculture particularly on water issues, and part of a family operation that has deep roots in the San Joaquin Valley. We think we’re going to see more resignations from water boards across the State of California as the deadline for implementing SGMA (the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act) gets closer. … ”  Read more from Families Protecting the Valley here:  Leaving the Board

Water is essential, this year and next:  Charley Wilson writes, “We’re almost at the finish line. As many of you know, this Friday marks the end of the legislative cycle, the last day to pass bills before they head to the Governor’s desk. (Cheers from the crowd!) And, my golly, has it been a jam-packed year. Our work is never done – and it has never been more important than it is right now.  As the region’s leading voice on the state’s most pressing water issues — from sustainability and supply to water quality and infrastructure – we’re on the front lines of change for Southern California’s water future. We’re driving conversation, advocating for solutions and always looking ahead at what’s next. With members spanning from San Diego County all the way up to Kern County, crossing sectors like business, agriculture, government and of course, water, we provide a representative, balanced and non-partisan voice to the issues impacting our daily lives and economic vitality. ... ”  Read more from the Southern California Water Committee here:  Water is essential, this year and next

Want water? “Donors first,” says Jeff Denham:  “Ordinarily, a Beverly Hills billionaire, a Sacramento attorney, and an Oakdale farmer wouldn’t have much in common, but politics, water, and money are the ties that bind Stewart Resnick, Tim O’Laughlin, and John Brichetto to Congressman Jeff Denham.  Brichetto is the only one of the three who lives in Denham’s district (CA-10), but as one of the largest independent landowners within the Oakdale Irrigation District (OID), Brichetto provides the loudest and strongest voice for selling OID water to buyers south of the San Joaquin Delta—water sales cover OID’s overhead and enable Brichetto and his friends in the district to get their own water at well below the cost of delivery. … ”  Read more from the Valley Citizen blog here:  Want water? “Donors first,” says Jeff Denham

California Court Finds Public Trust Doctrine Applies to State Groundwater Resources: “The California Court of Appeal for the Third Appellate District has issued an important decision declaring that California’s powerful public trust doctrine applies to at least some of the state’s overtaxed groundwater resources.  The court’s opinion also rejects the argument that California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) displaces the public trust doctrine’s applicability to groundwater resources.  The Court of Appeal’s opinion in Environmental Law Foundation v. State Water Resources Control Board decides two key issues of first impression for California water law: first, whether the public trust doctrine applies to California’s groundwater resources; and, second, if it does, if application of that doctrine has been displaced and superseded by the California Legislature’s 2014 enactment of SGMA.  A unanimous appellate panel answered the first question in the affirmative, the second in the negative. ... ”  Read more from the Legal Planet blog here:  California Court Finds Public Trust Doctrine Applies to State Groundwater Resources

What happens in the next 26 days could change our food and farm future:  “It feels like I’ve been thinking about the 2018 farm bill forever, but we may have finally reached the beginning of the end. Tomorrow, an unusually large group of 56 (!) negotiators from the House and Senate are expected to shoehorn themselves into a room on Capitol Hill to begin the formal process of reconciling two very different visions of our food and farm system.  What happens next will either help small and midsize farmers thrive, put more healthy food on the dinner tables of our most vulnerable neighbors, and invest in farming practices that prevent water pollution and build healthy soil for the future…or not. There’s also an unfortunate third option, in which the farm bill process fails completely, leaving farmers and eaters in limbo. … ”  Read more from The Equation blog here:  What happens in the next 26 days could change our food and farm future


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About the Blog Round-up: The Blog Round-up is a weekly journey through the wild and varied tapestry of blog commentary, incorporating the good, the bad, the ugly, and sometimes just plain bizarre viewpoints existing on the internet. Viewpoints expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily my own; inclusion of items here does not imply my endorsement of their positions. Items are chosen to express a wide range of viewpoints, and are added at the editor’s discretion. While posts with obvious factual errors are excluded, please note that no attempt is made on my part to verify or fact check the information bloggers present, so caveat emptor – let the buyer beware.

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