The Republican-backed legislation would allow Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta pumps to continue to send water to the Central Valley as long as water is available.
Those pumps are sending minimal water to the valley now because of low reservoir levels and river flows, not environmental regulations that protect endangered fish.
The bill would also stop the restoration of the San Joaquin River until 2015.
Shawn Coburn of Firebaugh farms in three counties in the valley and uses water from two federal systems.
“It’s like closing the gate after the cow has gotten out, it’s a little bit late now, but anything is better than nothing,” says Coburn.
Environmentalists and several Democratic House members called the legislation a “water grab” and an attempt to throw out the Endangered Species Act.
“Sucking the Delta dry is not the answer to California’s water issues," said Democratic Congresswoman Doris Matsui in a statement. "We need long-term solutions that will benefit the entire state, and should be working together to solve California’s water problems through a balanced approach. This proposal is anything but balanced and will only create further discord.”
The legislation is backed by Congressmen Devin Nunes, Kevin McCarthy and David Valadao.
(AP) - A deadly parasite is thriving in the drought, infecting all the juvenile chinook salmon in the Klamath River in Northern California as they prepare to migrate to the ocean.
The State Water Resources Control Board is considering whether to allow some farmers in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to voluntarily cut back their water use. In exchange, they want the board to agree not to curtail their remaining water.
After it was called off in 2014 due to the drought, Old Town Sacramento's Gold Rush Days is back in 2015.
For the first time in its history, the city of Roseville is limiting outdoor watering to two days a week.
Governor Jerry Brown has proposed an additional $ 2 billion in his revised budget to help California respond to the drought.