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SAVE THE

DELTA

October 2, 2009

The Honorable Darrell Steinberg The Honorable Karen Bass


Senate President Pro Tempore Speaker of the Assembly
State Capitol, Room 205 State Capitol, Room 213
Sacramento, CA 95814 Sacramento, CA 95814

Re: Water Bill Package Impacts on Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Region

As government, business, labor and community leaders of the greater Sacramento-


San Joaquin Delta region, we support efforts to find a solution to the issues facing the Delta
and the state’s water supply system, but insist that Delta policies designed to secure water
for other parts of the state must not adversely impact or occur at the expense of the Sacra-
mento-San Joaquin Delta region. Further, we demand the opportunity to be represented in
discussions as the legislation package is further developed.

Our region’s economic prosperity and growth hinge on four vital components that may be
significantly affected by a water bill package: 1) water rights and supply; 2) local land use
authority; 3) wastewater treatment discharge requirements and capacity; and 4) power
generation. Without specific guarantees that impacts to our region will be fully mitigated
by those who benefit from these policies, the proposed Delta water bill package will exact a
high price from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region by putting our region’s water
supplies, aesthetic quality, environmental vitality and economic stability at risk, and it will
impose an undue financial burden on the region.

Since our region is being asked to subordinate its own well being to the needs of the rest of
the California, we strongly believe that the region deserves corresponding protection.
Hon. Darrell Steinberg
Hon. Karen Bass
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Our specific concerns include:

• The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region is self-sufficient in its water supplies. We resolved
the tension between water supplies and the environment by negotiating the landmark Water
Forum Agreement. The proposed water bill package could undermine this hard-won
self-sufficiency by demanding that we send water to the Delta to support exports to other
regions. Any water supply reductions or cost increases unrelated to regional benefits without
an evidentiary hearing establishing responsibility would constitute an unacceptable realloca-
tion of our local water supplies and rights.

• Protection of critical water uses is essential, including non-consumptive use of water to


generate clean hydroelectric power to support the region.

• Fees on upstream diverters or dischargers, unrelated to specific impacts demonstrated by


sound science of an individual diversion or discharge, would result in a significant economic
impact to our region. Local residents cannot be expected to pay to fix Delta problems we did
not create.

• Furthermore, the Sacramento Regional Sanitation District meets all current regulatory and
water quality requirements. Proposed new Delta water conveyance facilities will significantly
alter the Sacramento River’s flow and, as a result, could force the construction and operation
of costly treatment facilities that would not otherwise be necessary. Those costs should be
borne by the downstream interests who benefit from these facilities and not our local
ratepayers.

• Granting broad powers to a Delta Stewardship Council composed of political appointees will
complicate decision making and erode local control and authority over a myriad of critical
issues related to land use and management of our water and watershed. For example, it is
very important that we protect the economic activity at and surrounding the Port of Sacra-
mento and the Port of Stockton. We cannot accept putting the future of this region into the
hands of a decision-making body with little connection or accountability to the people of this
region, or the required expertise to deal with a variety of complex issues.

• Mandatory water conservation targets, without regard to a region’s net impact on the
watershed or whether such measures are locally cost effective and feasible, would result in
requiring our residents to subsidize water users in other parts of the state.
Hon. Darrell Steinberg
Hon. Karen Bass
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We ask that the water bill package be revised to contain specific language that will ensure that it:

• Guarantees all impacts to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region will be fully mitigated;
• Employs fair-share financing to ensure those served pay for the benefits derived;
• Requires actions to be based on comprehensive, sound science; and
• Includes broad representation from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region in all governing bodies
and planning processes to assure outcomes that benefit our region, in addition to the rest of the state.

An issue as critical and far-reaching as this one must be addressed in a thoughtful, collaborative and trans-
parent manner. Because of the potentially very serious effects of a water bill package on our region, we
must have a seat at the table as the details of that package are negotiated. The needs and interests of the
more than 2 million people who live here and the thousands of businesses, farmers and community service
providers in the region deserve to be given adequate representation and full consideration and the same sig-
nificance as other parts of the state.

Simply put, a fair and balanced Delta solution should not be crafted without the involvement of – or at the
expense of – the greater Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region.

Respectfully,

Don Nottoli Jim Santangelo


Member President
Sacramento County Board of Supervisors California Teamsters Public Affairs Council 42

John DiStasio Ken Payne


General Manager & Chief Executive Officer Director, Utilities Department
SMUD City of Folsom

Shauna Lorance Denice Seals


General Manager Chief Executive Officer
San Juan Water District West Sacramento Chamber of Commerce

John Woodling Dennis M. Rogers


Executive Director Sr. Vice President, Governmental and Public Affairs
Regional Water Authority North State Building Industry Association

Robert Roscoe Sharon Wilcox


General Manager General Manager
Sacramento Suburban Water District Orange Vale Water Company

I.L.W.U. Northern California District Council Brice W. Harris


Chancellor
Mike McGowan Los Rios Community College District
Supervisor
Yolo County
Hon. Darrell Steinberg
Hon. Karen Bass
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Henry Tingle Grant Deary


City Manager Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing
City of Citrus Heights Nor-Cal Beverage Company, Inc.

Lynne Bohan Michael Ault


Vice President, Public Relations & Government Af- Executive Director
fairs Downtown Sacramento Partnership
HP Hood LLC
Dee Swearingen
Jim Whiteaker General Manager
Chairman of the Board of Supervisors Natomas Central Mutual Water Company
County of Sutter
Susan A. Bonilla
Laura Gill Chair
City Manager Contra Costa County
City of Elk Grove
Steve Heringer
Debra Sedwick Board Chair
General Manager Reclamation District 999
Del Paso Manor Water District
Derrick Whitehead
Kim Glazzard Director of Environmental Utilities
Director City of Roseville
Organic Sacramento
Michael J. Reagan
Barbara Daly Member
Chair Solano County Board of Supervisors
Save the Delta
Larry Ruhstaller
Steve Nugent Supervisor
General Manager San Joaquin County
Carmichael Water District
David A. Breninger
Robert A. Churchill General Manager
General Manager Placer County Water Agency
Citrus Heights Water District
Mary Snyder
Ed Crouse District Engineer
General Manager Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District
Rancho Murieta Community Services District
Tim O'Halloran
Marty Hanneman General Manager
Director, Department of Utilities Yolo Flood Control & Water Conservation
City of Sacramento District

Tom Gray
General Manager
Fair Oaks Water District