CSPA/C-WIN chide House subcommittee on lack of notice, unbalanced character of congressional hearing on federal response to the California drought emergency
July 25, 2008. In a sharply worded letter, Bill Jennings, Chairman and Executive Director of CSPA and Carolee Krieger, President of the California Water Impact Network registered their disappointment at the lack of adequate notice and imbalance of invited witnesses to testify at the House Subcommittee on Water and Power hearing held July 21, in Fresno, CA.
The two found that, "that the witnesses were drawn almost exclusively from water agencies in the Valley and agricultural interests, and that ... no effort was made to include a broad spectrum of views and interests."
Jennings and Krieger questioned the subcommittee's de-facto assumption that a drought was in place and posed a number of questions dealing with the current availability and use of water, especially the water used to irrigate drainage impaired lands of the west side of the San Joaquin Valley.
CSPA and C-WIN held that if the water currently available was managed properly and utilized efficiently and if lands unsuitable for farming were retired the current supply would, "go a long way to alleviate this “drought emergency” without even another drop of rain falling in California this year."
The two organizations asked the letter be included in the hearing record and and adequate notice of any future meetings.