DAILY DIGEST: Board agrees to Newsom-Brown request to delay decision on water plan; Prop 3 failed, so what’s next for the Friant Kern canal?; How Gov-Elect Gavin Newsom could shape California’s future, issue by issue; and more …

In California water news today, Board agrees to Newsom-Brown request to delay decision on water plan; Prop 3 failed, so what’s next for the Friant Kern canal?; How Gov-Elect Gavin Newsom could shape California’s future, issue by issue; The State of Jefferson’s plan for a California divided; 5 crops in the crosshairs of climate change; and more …

On the calendar today …

  • Drought Preparedness Workshop in Ventura from 12pm to 4:30pm.  This no-cost workshop is targeted to small communities and rural, disadvantaged systems.  Click here for more information.

In the news today …

STATE WATER BOARD DECISION

Board agrees to Newsom-Brown request to delay decision on water plan:  “The State Water Resources Control Board honored a request by Gov. Jerry Brown and Governor-elect Gavin Newsom for 34 days to work out voluntary settlements with irrigation districts in the Northern San Joaquin Valley, which are under pressure to divert less water so salmon populations can rebound in rivers.  Wednesday, the state board voted 3-0 to postpone approval of a water quality control update for the Sacramento-San Joaquin delta that’s fiercely opposed by water districts, agricultural interests and communities that rely on water from the Tuolumne, Stanislaus and Merced rivers. … ”  Read more from the Modesto Bee here:  Board agrees to Newsom-Brown request to delay decision on water plan

Brown, Newsom wade in to delay plan to withhold water from cities, farms: From the San Francisco Chronicle:  “A river restoration plan that would restrict the water supplies of California cities and farms, including San Francisco, was put on hold Wednesday after Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom joined Gov. Jerry Brown in requesting more time for negotiations over the controversial initiative.  The State Water Resources Control Board was scheduled to vote Wednesday on a years-long proposal to boost flows in the San Joaquin River and its tributaries, part of an effort to restore California’s declining salmon population and revive the languishing Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. … “  Read more here: Brown, Newsom wade in to delay plan to withhold water from cities, farms

Brown, Newsom win brief truce in brewing California water war:  “Yielding to the governor’s office, California regulators on Wednesday agreed to postpone a restoration proposal that would reduce water for cities and farmers during droughts in hopes of spurring last-minute negotiations among the plan’s critics.  The State Water Resources Control Board spent more than three hours of discussion before agreeing to Gov. Jerry Brown and incoming Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “historic” request for an emergency 30-day bargaining period. The Democratic duo say the extension could allow the state, water districts, farmers and environmentalists to finally reach a new agreement on minimum flow standards for the San Joaquin River and its main tributaries after nearly a decade of debate. … ”  Read more from Courthouse News Service here:  Brown, Newsom win brief truce in brewing California water war

Decision on Bay-Delta Plan Update Postponed After Brown, Newsom Letter Urges Continuance: “The State Water Resources Control Board today decided to postpone until Dec. 11 a vote on proposed amendments to the Bay-Delta Plan update for the Lower San Joaquin River and Southern Delta following a request in writing late Tuesday by Gov. Jerry Brown and Gov. Elect Gavin Newsom.  Brown and Elect Newsom urged State Water Board Chairwoman Felicia Marcus to grant a short extension to allow progress on negotiations toward voluntary agreements. … ”  Read more from ACWA’s Water News here:  Decision on Bay-Delta Plan Update Postponed After Brown, Newsom Letter Urges Continuance

OTHER STATEWIDE NEWS

Prop 3 failed, so what’s next for the Friant Kern canal? Local water officials went back to the drawing board Wednesday, looking for a way to fund needed repairs to the Friant-Kern canal.  The canal is damaged and requires an expensive project to repair. Farmers and water districts hoped voters would authorize the state to foot the bill by approving Proposition 3.  They didn’t. … ”  Read more from Bakersfield.com here:  Prop 3 failed, so what’s next for the Friant Kern canal? 

How Gov-Elect Gavin Newsom could shape California’s future, issue by issue: Gavin Newsom first ran for governor in 2010, an effort he abandoned and then relaunched in 2015 with the long, long campaign that crescendoed Tuesday tonight. Now that California voters have given the 51-year-old Democrat the job he has sought for eight years, he is about to discover that winning was the easy part.  Governing is hard, particularly in a state as big, complex, troubled and expensive as California. We have the world’s fifth largest economy and, with our cost of living, the nation’s highest rate of poverty. … ”  Read more from the San Jose Mercury News here:  How Gov-Elect Gavin Newsom could shape California’s future, issue by issue

The State of Jefferson’s plan for a California divided:Almost anywhere you drive through Northern California, you’ll see green and gold signs, flags and banners heralding the arrival of the State of Jefferson, a separatist movement that nearly succeeded in 1941 and, more recently, has grown like a grass fire in the era of Trump.  The signs feature “The Great Seal of the State of Jefferson,” a gold pan emblazoned with two X’s—Jeffersonians have long believed they’ve been double-crossed by big city politicians in Sacramento who take their money but ignore their concerns. ... ”  Read more from the Sacramento News and Review here:  The State of Jefferson’s plan for a California divided

CLIMATE CHANGE

5 crops in the crosshairs of climate change:  “Climate change is coming like a freight train, or a rising tide. And our food, so dependent on rain and suitable temperatures, sits right in its path.  The plants that nourish us won’t disappear entirely. But they may have to move to higher and cooler latitudes, or farther up a mountainside. Some places may find it harder to grow anything at all, because there’s not enough water.  Here are five foods, and food-growing places, that will see the impact. ... ”  Read more from Capital Public Radio here:  5 crops in the crosshairs of climate change

Climate change and the elections: Five takeaways:  “The results of Tuesday’s elections could have a significant influence on how the United States deals with global warming in several ways.  In the Trump era, much of the action to fight climate change has been happening at the state level. On that front, the results were mixed: Several key climate policies on the ballot, including a carbon tax in Washington State and an aggressive renewable power target in Arizona, were defeated soundly. But Democrats who favor clean energy also took control of a number of key governorships and state legislatures, opening doors for expanded action. … ”  Read more from the New York Times here:  Climate change and the elections: Five takeaways

In commentary today …

Water board’s concerns don’t include us, says the Merced Sun Editorial Board:  They write, “Don’t ask us to feel sorry for the people who want to act as arbiters of our fate. When members of the State Water Resources Control Board failed to deliver a “victory” for Bay Area environmentalists Wednesday, their anguish was palpable. Any sympathy for a million lives possibly uprooted or ruined in the Northern San Joaquin Valley was, well, not apparent.  We’re happy the state water board agreed – at the written request of Gov. Jerry Brown and governor-elect Gavin Newsom – to delay a vote that would devastate our region’s ag-based economy. But listening to the rants, rationalizations and disclaimers of board members who finally acquiesced to the governors’ request rubbed us the wrong way. … ”  Read more from the Merced Sun here:  Water board’s concerns don’t include us

In regional news and commentary today …

Klamath: Mikkelson, tribes at odds over water talks; forms ‘coalition of the willing’:  “Department of Interior official Alan Mikkelsen — who spent the week in Klamath Falls and Medford — said he will return to the Basin next month to continue water talks, but that he has no plans to reach out to the Klamath Tribes based on their last interaction.  Mikkelsen, senior adviser to Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke on water and western resources, said he’s met with a group of stakeholders at the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) office in Medford on Monday for what he calls a “coalition of the willing.” ... ”  Read more from Herald & News here:  Mikkelson, tribes at odds over water talks; forms ‘coalition of the willing’

EPA: Salinas plant to pay $28K fine over Clean Water Act violations:  “A Salinas company has settled with the federal government over alleged violations of the Clean Water Act, officials reported Wednesday.  American Cooling, Inc., will pay $28,900 in fines over allegations it improperly disposed of industrial wastewater, the Environmental Protection Agency said in a press release.  It allowed industrial wastewater to enter Salinas’ sewer system, instead of the Monterey One Wastewater treatment plant, because of improper operation of the waste and storm drain system at American Cooling, the EPA said. … ”  Read more from the Californian here:  EPA: Salinas plant to pay $28K fine over Clean Water Act violations

Exeter changes water conservation ordinance in favor of development: “California’s drought continues to keep local government on edge when it comes to water conservation. But the City of Exeter is making some exceptions in favor of development.  The Exeter City Council voted 4-0 in favor of slight changes to their Stage 3 water conservation ordinance, including lifting a prohibition on water meters for contractors. Public works director Daymon Qualls said some parts of the ordinance may in effect be hurting the city more than it is helping. Specifically, he noted the prohibition on issuing construction water meters that Stage 3 calls for. … ”  Read more from the Foothills Sun Gazette here:  Exeter changes water conservation ordinance in favor of development

Farmers keep majority on Coachella Valley Water District board as John Powell Jr. defeats Ed Muzik:  “The Coachella Valley’s largest water agency will still have three farmers on its five-member board next year, as Peter Rabbit Farms CEO John Powell Jr. won re-election over Ed Muzik, general manager of the Hi-Desert Water District in Yucca Valley.  Powell is one of several incumbents who won re-election to local water boards Tuesday. At Coachella Valley Water District, where Powell has served as board president since 2012, G. Patrick O’Dowd was also re-elected. So were three members of the Desert Water Agency’s board of directors, Jim Cioffi, Patricia Oygar and Joe Stuart. … ”  Read more from The Desert Sun here:  Farmers keep majority on Coachella Valley Water District board as John Powell Jr. defeats Ed Muzik

San Diego Unified likely to tackle lead in drinking water and security upgrades with new bond money this summer: “Voters delivered a solid endorsement of the San Diego Unified School District on Tuesday when they approved a $3.5 billion bond measure for the school system, the district’s largest ever bond measure and the third approved since 2008.  About 62 percent of voters said yes to Measure YY, despite critical media coverage of the measure, opposition from watchdog groups and residents and “no” endorsements from multiple organizations, including the San Diego County Taxpayers Association, which only disapproved of one other school bond measure on Tuesday’s ballot. … ”  Read more from the San Diego Union Tribune here:  San Diego Unified likely to tackle lead in drinking water and security upgrades with new bond money this summer

Also on Maven’s Notebook today …

BAY DELTA SCIENCE CONFERENCE: Emergent groundwater and sea level rise in the San Francisco Bay Area: the silent and largely unknown underground threat

NEWS WORTH NOTING: State Water Board delays final decision on San Joaquin River Bay Delta Update; Army Corps of Engineers approves request to allow more winter storage in Lake Mendocino

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About the Daily Digest: The Daily Digest is a collection of selected news articles, commentaries and editorials appearing in the mainstream press. Items are generally selected to follow the focus of the Notebook blog. The Daily Digest is published every weekday with a weekend edition posting on Sundays.

 

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