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AB-176 Water project: Friant-Kern Canal.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 01/18/2017 08:55 PM

Revised  March 30, 2017


Assembly Bill
No. 176

Introduced by Assembly Member Salas
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Arambula, Bigelow, Fong, Gallagher, Mathis, and Patterson)
(Coauthors: Senators Glazer, Vidak, Bradford, Cannella, and Fuller)

January 18, 2017

An act relating to water, and making an appropriation therefor.


AB 176, as introduced, Salas. Water project: Friant-Kern Canal.
Existing law requires the Department of Water Resources, upon appropriation by the Legislature, to provide funding for a project that substantially conforms to the project description for the Reverse Flow Pump-back Facilities on the Friant-Kern Canal Restoration Project, as specified, provided that certain conditions are met. Existing law requires that the appropriation be no more than $7,000,000.
This bill would appropriate $7,000,000 from the General Fund to the department for this project.
This bill would make legislative findings and declarations as to the necessity of a special statute for the Friant-Kern Canal.
Vote: 2/3   Appropriation: YES   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


 The Legislature finds and declares the following:
(a) The Friant-Kern Canal, an aqueduct operated and maintained by the Friant Water Users Authority on behalf of the United States Bureau of Reclamation, conveys water south over 152 miles from Millerton Lake to the Kern River for agricultural and urban customers.
(b) Currently, the Friant-Kern Canal has limited pump-back operational capacity which is used occasionally to deliver water north from the Cross Valley Canal or deliver water extracts from water banks on the Kern River Alluvial Fan.
(c) Construction of the Reverse Flow Pump-back Facilities on the Friant-Kern Canal Restoration Project will improve the Friant Division’s ability to recirculate and return captured restoration flows as part of the San Joaquin River Restoration Program.
(d) The project has the potential to convey between 15,000 and 30,000 acre-feet of water per year from the west side of the San Joaquin Valley, providing needed relief to the east side of the San Joaquin Valley and irrigation water districts after two consecutive years of zero allocation of water supply from the Central Valley Project.
(e) Additional water supplies that would be made available by the construction of the pump-back facilities will reduce the division’s dependence on groundwater wells to offset unreliable surface water deliveries on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley.

SEC. 2.

 The sum of seven million dollars ($7,000,000) is hereby appropriated from the General Fund to the Department of Water Resources for purposes of Section 140 of the Water Code.

SEC. 3.

 The Legislature finds and declares that a special statute is necessary and that a general statute cannot be made applicable within the meaning of Section 16 of Article IV of the California Constitution because of the emergency circumstances of the ongoing drought and the benefits that the construction of sustainable water conveyance projects on the Friant-Kern Canal will provide to the region by improving water supply and delivery and increasing drought resiliency by facilitating recovery of banked groundwater.

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