BILL NUMBER: AJR 38	AMENDED
	BILL TEXT

	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  MAY 13, 2010
	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  APRIL 22, 2010

INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Members Caballero, Fuller, and Arambula

                        FEBRUARY 25, 2010

   Relative to public resources.


	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   AJR 38, as amended, Caballero. Public resources: Two-Gates Fish
Protection Demonstration Project.
   This measure would request the United States Department of the
Interior to  complete   prioritize completion of
 its study of the Two-Gates Fish Protection Demonstration
Project in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
   Fiscal committee: no.



    WHEREAS, From 2007 to 2009, inclusive, California experienced
a severe drought that adversely affected water supplies in many
parts of the state, including water exported from the Sacramento-San
Joaquin Delta (Delta) by the State Water Project (SWP) and the
federal Central Valley Project (CVP), and also adversely affected the
environment, including commercially valuable fish species; and 

    WHEREAS, While most of the 2009 SWP and CVP water delivery
reductions resulted from the multiyear drought, some additional
reductions were made to protect state and federally listed smelt,
salmon, and steelhead species native to the Delta, pursuant to
federal biological opinions required by the federal Endangered
Species Act; and 
    WHEREAS, Water shortages during the drought of 2007 to 2009,
inclusive, and the adverse economic, social, and environmental
effects resulting from those shortages, underscore the need for
California to do everything possible to manage our limited water
resources efficiently, carefully, and responsibly; and 
    WHEREAS, Currently, scientific studies of the causes of
declines in populations of fish species in the Delta are ongoing and
continue to further our understanding of the delicate environmental
balance in the Delta and the influences of the various stressors
affecting these populations; and 
    WHEREAS, While there are many projects to be considered in
working to protect and recover fish populations in the Delta, the
Legislature urges expedient consideration of the Two-Gates Fish
Protection Demonstration Project. With $28,000,000 of funding for the
project allocated as part of Proposition 84 (Senate Bill 1, Chapter
5 of the Seventh Extraordinary Session of the Statutes of 2009) and
additional funding available from a combination of federal and
private funds, this experimental project proposes to install barriers
and gates that could reduce the loss of Delta smelt at state and
federal pumps; and 
    WHEREAS, While information about how the Two-Gates Fish
Protection Demonstration Project will affect Delta smelt and other
imperiled fish species is currently unclear, the project presents a
creative option that should be expeditiously analyzed and, if viable,
implemented; and 
    WHEREAS, In light of the importance of the Delta estuary, its
fisheries, the millions of Californians who depend on the Delta for
drinking water, and the millions of acres of prime farmland that
depend on the Delta for irrigation, there is great urgency to
identify and implement programs and projects that advance California'
s coequal goals of protecting and restoring the Delta ecosystem while
ensuring a reliable water supply for California; now, therefore, be
it 
   RESOLVED BY THE ASSEMBLY AND THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF
CALIFORNIA, JOINTLY,  That the Legislature requests the United
States Department of the Interior to prioritize completion of its
study of the Two-Gates Fish Protection Demonstration Project in the
Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta; and be it further 
   RESOLVED,  That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit
copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.
 
   WHEREAS, According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration's Satellite and Information Service, the western
region of the United States experienced a severe to extreme drought
from 2007 to 2009, inclusive, which decreased water supply by as much
as 8 percent; and  
   WHEREAS, The people in the state must do all they reasonably can
to reduce water use and ensure that water is made available to meet
the state's demands in an environmentally conscious way; and
 
   WHEREAS, Although all Californians suffer from reduced water
supply, especially affected may be those who live in rural farming
communities; and  
   WHEREAS, In 2009, the Westlands Water District, which serves the
western parts of Fresno and Kings Counties, caused 220,000 acres of
land to lie fallow when it reduced outflow to farm lands to 10
percent, which was a full 15 percent lower than reductions made in
much more severe droughts in the past. This in turn caused 4,200 jobs
tied to that land to be lost, causing citizens and workers to join
the ever-growing ranks of the unemployed, according to a study
conducted by the University of California at Davis; and 

   WHEREAS, The Legislature is aware that the outflow reductions were
made in an effort to protect the state and federally listed Delta
smelt, a fish native to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Estuary.
These reductions came about as a result of a United States Fish and
Wildlife Service biological opinion that is the subject of further
legal challenge in a federal district court; and  
   WHEREAS, Because of the three-year drought and the restrictions
imposed by the biological opinion, the State Water Project water
allocation was just 40 percent of its contracted water supply last
year, and the federal Central Valley Project water allocation was
just 10 percent of its contracted water supply. As of March 30 of
this year, the State Water Project water allocation is just 20
percent, and the water allocation for agriculture served by the
federal Central Valley Project is 30 percent; and  
   WHEREAS, Restrictions imposed on state and federal pumping
facilities to protect the Delta smelt and salmon have been in place
for over a decade, but the decline of these and other species
continues; and  
   WHEREAS, These outflow reductions have produced very human
consequences. In 2009, the Western Farm Press reported that farmers
lost 600,000 acre-feet of water because of environmental protections,
meaning that 500,000 acres of farmland were made to lie fallow. This
caused growers and processors to cut as many as 1,150 field-related
jobs and 21,000 general agricultural jobs, contributing to a
40-percent unemployment rate in parts of San Joaquin Valley. This has
produced a net economic loss of $1 billion at a time when the state
cannot afford to lose income; and  
   WHEREAS, Currently, studies are ongoing to further investigate the
influences of water pumping on the Delta smelt population; and
 
   WHEREAS, While there are many projects to be considered, the
Legislature urges expedient consideration of the Two-Gates Fish
Protection Demonstration Project. With $28 million of funding for the
project allocated as part of Proposition 84 (Senate Bill 1,
chaptered as Chapter 5 of the Seventh Extraordinary Session of the
Statutes of 2009) and the rest of the costs being met by a
combination of federal and private funds, the project will provide
for an experimental program that will install gates to reduce the
loss of the Delta smelt at the state and federal pumps; and 

   WHEREAS, While information about how the Two-Gates Fish Protection
Demonstration Project will affect Delta smelt is unclear, the
project presents a viable option to immediately protect an endangered
species and begin to return much needed jobs to rural Californians;
and  
   WHEREAS, Swift action must be taken to protect the Delta smelt and
salmon and to protect the water supply for California's citizens,
businesses, and farms; and  
   WHEREAS, It is important to preserve endangered species, as well
as to conduct studies efficiently and accurately, and given the
previously mentioned human tragedy, expediency is of utmost
importance in this matter; now, therefore, be it  
   Resolved by the Assembly and the Senate of the State of
California, jointly, That the Legislature requests the United States
Department of the Interior to complete its study of the Two-Gates
Fish Protection Demonstration Project in the Sacramento-San Joaquin
Delta; and be it further 
    
   Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of
this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.