“The nation’s largest agriculture-to-urban water transfer has been deemed legal and valid, closing another chapter in a decade-long dispute over rights to Colorado River water that is crucial to California, six other states and Mexico.
“Sacramento Superior Court Judge Lloyd Connelly ruled Wednesday that the Imperial Irrigation District was in compliance with state environmental regulations and had the authority to enter into the landmark Quantification Settlement Agreement.”
“Four-plus years ago, when Stanislaus County leaders asked their Agricultural Advisory Committee to draft a proposed ordinance to restrict export (sales) of groundwater outside the county, there was fierce opposition from some irrigation district leaders, who basically said, You’re not in the water business; we are. Go away.
“Today, one Modesto Irrigation District director, Larry Byrd, wants the county to do something immediately about the overdraft of groundwater on the east side of the county …
“Concerns over Imperial Irrigation District procurement practices were raised Tuesday as two public relations firms were hired by the Board of Directors to work on matters related to the Quantification Settlement Agreement and the Salton Sea.”
“The message is clear: We must do more to prepare for increasingly harmful dry years by capturing more water in wet years. In short, California needs a lot more water storage – and we need it now. … California’s Legislature also must do its part by updating the long-anticipated water bond and ensuring that it includes adequate funding for water storage.”