We object!

We’ve been saying that in the Department of Water Resources (DWR) December 7 letter withdrawing the WaterFix (Delta Tunnels) from the current process DWR did not admit that WaterFix’s through-Delta tunnel construction would be abysmal for Delta communities and farmers, nor did they admit WaterFix violated sections of the Delta Plan relating to reducing reliance, maintaining water quality standards, and protecting boating and recreating.

In the DWR letter, Karla Nemeth, DWR Director, claimed the opposite, that “WaterFix is consistent with the Delta Plan Policies.” In addition, she made the request to dismiss all appeals which resulted in the immediate dismissal of all appeals three hours later, without opportunity for Appellants to respond.

The Council took only three hours to act!

Save the California Delta Alliance calls “foul!” We object! It appears to the public to be an end-run by the Department around the public process.

The appeals are not moot. The DWR does not commit to or even discuss the possibility of making any changes to aspects of the project that we find objectionable. No facts have changed.

We want the DWR to commit to making changes in their project, which include:

  1. Moving the tunnel route East, avoiding damaging construction traffic on two-lane Delta levee highways, avoiding tunneling under fragile levees, and avoiding barge traffic impacts to boating and recreation.
  2. Relocating pumping facilities to not impact the legacy towns (Hood, Clarksburg, Walnut Grove).
  3. Committing to the proper removal and treatment of tunnel muck.
  4. Developing a real operations plan which includes measurable targets for reduction of exports and reduction of reliance on the Delta (instead of a hand-waiving “adaptive management” proposal).
  5. Providing a valid, peer-reviewed Cost/Benefits Analysis.

Else the Council should vote and remand the matter to the DWR. We believe that this is the only lawful course at this point given the current WaterFix Plan.

It looks like a closed-door process to us, lacking transparency. The DWR wants to push its interpretations of the Delta Reform Act and Delta Plan behind closed doors without our due process rights.

We are requesting no ex party closed door communications between the Council and the DWR!

Here is the email sent objecting to the withdrawal of our appeals: Subject: California WaterFix C20185 request to reconsider dismissal of appeals .

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