Jim Wisler: Water Board’s proposal flawed; must be stopped

I attended the Water Board hearing in Modesto on Dec 20. I also watched much of the live feeds from Merced and Stockton. The irrigation districts, local, state, and federal representatives showed the damage that will occur to our communities. The irrigation districts have spent millions to study the rivers and restore habitat. I watched farmers, dairymen and ranchers plead for their very existence.

Chairwoman Felicia Marcus scolded one speaker for mentioning the twin tunnels proposal. Whenever water rights were mentioned, Marcus replied public trust prevails. I find it disturbing that we have a regulatory agency that has the power to destroy the agriculture and lives of so many without consequence. It seems to me that the regulatory process in California has become poisoned by ideology that puts unrealistic environmental demands that will provide little or no benefit to society.

There is an expectation that anyone in a regulatory capacity must be able to act in an objective and reasonable manner. Demanding 40 percent unimpaired flows is neither. The Substitute Environmental Document is a document full of more holes than Bonnie and Clyde’s car. It is a document infected by false conclusions, and like a syphilitic pimple, it must be popped.

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