The End of Auburn Dam? CSPA to Present Case at Hearing to Revoke Dam's Water Rights
by Chris Shutes, FERC Projects Director
July 15, 2008. CSPA will present a case-in-chief at the July 21 and 22, 2008 hearings before the State Water Resources Control Board in Sacramento concerning the Board's proposed revocation of water rights for Auburn Dam. Mike Jackson will represent CSPA as counsel. Bill Jennings, CSPA's Executive Director, and Chris Shutes, CSPA's FERC Projects Director, will provide testimony in support of revocation.
Almost exactly ten years ago, CSPA protested a petition for extension of time filed by the Bureau of Reclamation for its Auburn Dam water rights. After ten long years of procedural delay by the Bureau, in which the Bureau failed to produce requested environmental documentation requested by Water Board staff, and completely failed to secure funding from Congress, Board staff took action to revoke. The Bureau requested a hearing for its iconic project, and the stage for arguments is set.
Shutes's testimony states, in part, "After 37 years, there is no project, no prospect of a project, no Congressional interest in a project, no federal funding for a project, no funding partners for a project, and no environmental documentation for a project."
"It is flatly unacceptable that it took the Board ten years to act on a simple protest to extend the time to put to use. It's worse than staring at a dead car in front of your house for a decade because your neighbor's big brother might come home with the key one day and decide to use it," Shutes continues.
Jennings' testimony discusses today's statewide implications of the proposed massive diversion from the American River that was authorized by the Board in a bygone era:
"Given the over-appropriation of water in California, massive increases in State Water Project and Central Valley Project export levels, grievous degradation of the Delta and its tributary waters, precipitous declines in pelagic and salmonid species and pervasive impairment of water quality, it is virtually impossible that the permits could be issued today in their present form."
The hearings are scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m., July 21, at the Cal EPA building, Second Floor, 1001 I Street, Sacramento 95814.
Testimony of Bill Jennings, Executive Director, CSPA
Testimony of Chris Shutes, FERC Projects Director, CSPA
Persons wishing to support revocation of the Auburn Dam water rights via e-mail can follow this link to a page on the website of our allies in this fight, Friends of the River:
Friends of the river Message page regarding Auburn Dam