AG Watch

California Allocates Water for 2010

Monday, November 30, 2009

California's water supply is hitting an historic low. The department of Water Resources said state contractors will only receive 5% of water allocations next year.

Mark Borba is a fourth generation farmer in Riverdale. "I have a pretty diversified crop map ... almonds, garlic, tomatoes, onions, lettuce ... " he said.

Like most farmers in the Central Valley he has muscled through a three year drought all the while receiving reduced federal water allocations.

Borba: "Water is a really problem out here and it's becoming more of a problem because of the new court rulings and the application of biological opinions."

Borba said an early predictor for how much water he and others will receive is the state's announcement of how much water it plans to allocate to its contractors like the Tulare Lake Basin Water Storage district in Corcoran.

Tuesday the California department of Water Resources announced its contractors would only receive 5% ... the lowest allocation in its 42 year existence.

Water Resources Director, Lester Snow: "It's important that we do as much as we can to conserve water. We need to make sure that transfers are made available to those areas that are most impacted."

There may be some hope. Last year water resources allocated 15% but by May increased the percentage to 40. Borba and other Valley farmers believe they will receive somewhere from 1-10% of the federal allocation at the start of next year.

Borba said, "The writing is on the wall. We are in for a very tough year again," he went on, 'I'm kind of a fighter. Fortunately the family has been out here for many years. I have some equity."

(Copyright ©2014 KFSN-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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Tags:
agriculture, california water, west valley, ag watch, john-thomas kobos
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