Sen. Cannella Meets with Central Valley Water Agency and Agriculture Industry Leaders to Discuss State's Water Crisis

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

During a meeting hosted by Friant Water Authority, Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Anthony Cannella (R-Ceres) today met with water agency and agriculture industry leaders to discuss the Central Valley’s water issues and their impact on the region’s agriculture industry.

“Water is the lifeblood of the Central Valley, and our state’s $35 billion agriculture industry must have access to a safe and reliable water supply in order to be successful. In particular, we must address our state’s outdated water infrastructure system, which was built three decades ago for a California population half the size of what it is today. That’s a big part of the reason why I support the water bond passed by the Legislature in 2009 and why I will continue to support efforts to modernize our state’s water system,” said Cannella. “Today’s meeting was a good opportunity to hear feedback from water agency and agribusiness leaders – those closest to the problem – about the challenges they’re experiencing and what we can do to ensure California can deliver water to the families, businesses and communities that need it most.”

In attendance at the meeting were representatives from a number of water agencies and agriculture groups, including the Madera, Fresno, Alta and Orange Cove irrigation districts, the Westlands and Metropolitan water districts, the Nisei Farmers League, the Grape and Tree Fruit League, the Madera County Farm Bureau, California Citrus Mutual and the California Cotton Ginners Association.

“California’s aging water infrastructure systems, combined with several years of drought conditions, have caused farmers across the Central Valley to face chronic water shortages for years. While conservation is obviously an important priority, California must act now to improve our water infrastructure so farms and communities across the state can continue to thrive,” said California Water Commission member and Los Banos farmer Joe Del Bosque, who also participated in the roundtable. “I very much appreciated the time Sen. Cannella took to listen to the concerns of our local water and agriculture interests. His continued partnership in the years ahead will be critical to the health and vitality of our state’s agriculture industry.”

This afternoon, Sen. Cannella also spoke at the Merced Rotary Club’s weekly meeting.

Photo Caption: Senator Anthony Cannella (R-Ceres) is briefed on water issues by Central Valley water agency and agriculture industry leaders.
Photo Credit: Jessica Hsiang, Office of Senator Anthony Cannella