Amended in Assembly April 22, 2015

Amended in Assembly March 26, 2015

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 1201


Introduced by Assembly Member Salas

February 27, 2015


begin deleteAn act to add Section 85308.5 to the Water Code, relating to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.end deletebegin insert An act to add Chapter 8.5 (commencing with Section 6940) to Part 1 of Division 6 of the Fish and Game Code, relating to fish and wildlife.end insert

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 1201, as amended, Salas. begin deleteDelta Stewardship Council. end deletebegin insertFish and wildlife: Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta: predation by nonnative species.end insert

begin insert

The California Endangered Species Act prohibits the taking of an endangered, threatened, or candidate species, except as specified. Under the act, the Department of Fish and Wildlife may authorize the take of listed species if the take is incidental to an otherwise lawful activity and the impacts are minimized and fully mitigated.

end insert
begin insert

This bill would require the department, by June 30, 2016, to develop and initiate a science-based approach that addresses predation by nonnative species upon species of fish listed pursuant to the act that reside all or a portion of their lives in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

end insert
begin delete

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Reform Act of 2009 establishes the Delta Stewardship Council as an independent agency of the state, and requires the council to develop, adopt, and commence implementation of a comprehensive management plan for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Delta Plan), meeting specified requirements. The act also establishes the Delta Independent Science Board to provide oversight of the scientific research, monitoring, and assessment programs that support adaptive management of the Delta through periodic reviews.

end delete
begin delete

This bill would require the council, in the course of implementing the Delta Plan, to direct the board to conduct an assessment of stressors, in addition to the operations of the State Water Resources Development System and the federal Central Valley Project, on populations of native fish species in the Delta, the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, and the tributaries to those rivers below the rim dams of the central valley, containing specified information, and to recommend changes in statute and actions that may be taken by state agencies to remedy the situation at the earliest possible time.

end delete

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P2    1begin insert

begin insertSECTION 1.end insert  

end insert

begin insertThe Legislature finds and declares all of the
2following:end insert

begin insert

3(a) Promoting the long-term ecological health of the
4Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and its native species is critical
5to ensuring a reliable and sustainable water supply for all
6Californians.

end insert
begin insert

7(b) Salmon are an iconic native California fish that are
8important to California’s economic, recreational, and
9environmental welfare. California’s $1.5 billion commercial and
10recreational salmon fishing industries employ tens of thousands
11of people, provide endless recreational opportunities, and remain
12an important part of the cultural heritage of California’s Native
13American tribes. Winter-run Chinook salmon were listed as
14endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act in 1994.

end insert
begin insert

15(c) Despite efforts to protect the species, the latest spring Kodiak
16trawl survey by the Department of Fish and Wildlife recorded the
17lowest number ever for the species.

end insert
begin insert

18(d) Ongoing drought conditions have significant impacts on
19California’s environment, fish and wildlife, residents, farms, and
20businesses, and have worsened conditions for endangered Chinook
21salmon and delta smelt and further threatened of their extinction.

end insert
begin insert

P3    1(e) State and federal regulators must take concerted efforts to
2protect the environment, fish and wildlife, the economy, and
3residents of this state from the ongoing implications of drought
4and future water scarcity.

end insert
begin insert

5(f) Predation by nonnative species can cause mortality among
6endangered Chinook salmon and delta smelt and, as these
7populations continue to decline, ongoing predation may further
8negatively impact their potential recovery and hasten their
9extinction.

end insert
begin insert

10(h) It is the policy of the State of California to protect native
11species, particularly those at risk of extinction. Consistent with
12that policy, it is important to evaluate whether populations of
13nonnative species that pose a risk to such native species can be
14managed in a way that enhances the potential for native species’
15survival.

end insert
16begin insert

begin insertSEC. 2.end insert  

end insert

begin insertChapter 8.5 (commencing with Section 6940) is added
17to Part 1 of Division 6 of the end insert
begin insertFish and Game Codeend insertbegin insert, to read:end insert

begin insert

18 

19Chapter  begin insert8.5.end insert Predation by Nonnative Species
20

 

21

begin insert6940.end insert  

The department shall, by June 30, 2106, develop and
22initiate a science-based approach that helps address predation by
23nonnative species upon species listed pursuant to Chapter 1.5
24(commencing with Section 2050) of Division 3 that reside all or a
25portion of their lives in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, as
26defined in Section 12220 of the Water Code.

end insert
begin delete
27

SECTION 1.  

In order to protect and preserve the existing
28populations of native fish species that live and migrate through
29the San Francisco Bay and the Sacramento-San Joaquin River
30Delta, it is the intent of the Legislature that the Delta Stewardship
31Council consider, in addition to measures addressing the impact
32of the State Water Resources Development System (State Water
33Project) and federal Central Valley Project operations, the
34identification of effective and scientifically justified measures to
35reduce or eliminate the impact of other significant stressors on
36California’s native fish populations.

37

SEC. 2.  

Section 85308.5 is added to the Water Code, to read:

38

85308.5.  

The council, in the course of implementing the Delta
39Plan, shall direct the Delta Independent Science Board to conduct
40an assessment of stressors, in addition to the operation of the State
P4    1Water Resources Development System and the federal Central
2Valley Project, on populations of native fish species in the Delta,
3the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, and the tributaries to those
4rivers below the rim dams of the central valley, and shall
5recommend changes in statute and actions that may be taken by
6state agencies to remedy the situation at the earliest possible time.
7The assessment shall include, at a minimum, a description of those
8stressors identified in the Delta Vision Strategic Plan, including
9the impacts of invasive species and nonnative species, water quality
10impairments, and predation on native species.

end delete


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