Congressman McCarthy Issues Statement on California's Man-Made Drought
Washington D.C. – Congressman Kevin McCarthy today issued the following statement after the House Natural Resources Committee's Subcommittee on Water and Power held a field hearing in Fresno on California's man-made drought:
"The recent drought has shown vividly how state and federal regulations on water flows have exacerbated the damage of a natural drought on our local economies. California is the largest producer of agricultural products in the nation, and a reliable water supply is vital to job creation and food production in our communities. Unfortunately, government overregulation and overzealous environmentalists continue to perpetuate a man-made drought by putting a tiny fish above our residents. This is wrong.
"Protecting our ecosystem should be a priority, but it must not come at such a devastating cost to those living and working in our local communities. Thousands of acres of land have been fallowed, countless agricultural jobs have been lost and double-digit employment rates plague the Central Valley. This is unacceptable, and the worst part is, there are solutions to this man-made crisis.
"For years, I have fought in Congress to get the pumps turned on and increase the water flows in our communities. Today's hearing will prove a vital stepping stone for Congress to move forward in implementing effective solutions to bring a more reliable water supply to the Central Valley in both dry and wet years. I will not give up our fight to get the water flowing and overcome this man-made crisis."
Congressman McCarthy has had a long standing commitment to ensuring a reliable water supply to the Central Valley. The Congressman has cosponsored legislation to help alleviate the man-made water crisis in the San Joaquin Valley:
- H.R. 869, which would increase water storage capabilities in the Valley during wet years rather than just releasing it. (112th Congress)
- H.R. 3105, the Turn on the Pumps Act, which would allow for the continued operation of the Central Valley Project, which would help get more water back into our communities regardless of biological opinions issued under the Endangered Species Act of 1973. Congressman McCarthy also signed a discharge petition to force an up or down vote on this legislation. (111th Congress)
- H.R. 856, which would increase water deliveries to the Central Valley and Southern California urban and agriculture users by waiving regulations regarding the Delta Smelt at Delta pumps during times of drought. (111th Congress)
- H.R. 996, which would increase water deliveries by temporarily exempting the operations of any water supply or flood control project from the Endangered Species Act when the Governor declares an emergency. (111th Congress)