Garamendi Secures Wins for Delta and Central Valley in Water Resources Development Act

Press Release

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WASHINGTON, DCCongressman John Garamendi (D-CA), a senior member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, whose district includes 200 miles of the Sacramento River and is adjacent to several major ports, secured key provisions in the “Water Resources Development Act of 2020” (H.R.7575) for the California Delta and Central Valley.

The legislation passed the committee unanimously and now heads to the House floor for a vote at the end of July and is expected to become law this year.

“This critical legislation supports levee projects throughout the Sacramento Valley, which provides critical flood protection and makes local communities more resilient to climate change,” Garamendi said. “I secured provisions in this bill to authorize and expedite construction of flood protection and aquatic ecosystem restoration projects, address harmful algal blooms in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, and give local agencies greater flexibility in using federal Army Corps funds to meet local needs. This is a strong piece of legislation, and I will work tirelessly to ensure it becomes law,” Garamendi concluded.

Congressman Garamendi secured the following provisions in the “Water Resources Development Act of 2020” (H.R.7575):

Yuba River Ecosystem Restoration: Garamendi secured Congressional authorization for the Yuba River Ecosystem Restoration Project, at the request of the Yuba Water Agency. This project will restore approximately 178 acres of aquatic and riparian habitat along the lower Yuba River, between Englebright Dam and the confluence of the Yuba and Feather rivers, downstream of the City of Marysville.

Yolo Bypass System Improvement: Working with Rep. Doris Matsui (CA-06), Garamendi included the “Yolo Bypass System Improvement Act,” to develop a coordinated planning and review process for all restoration projects and federal permitting in the Yolo Bypass.

Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Islands and Levees: Working with Rep. Jerry McNerney (CA-09), Garamendi secured Congressional authorization for the Delta Islands and Levees Ecosystem Restoration Project, at the request of California’s Department of Water Resources. This project will restore the interior Delta’s ecosystem and provide vital flood control.

Sacramento Riverbed Gradient Restoration Facility: Garamendi transferred control of the riverbed gradient restoration facility in the Sacramento River to the Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District. These riverbed gradient restoration structures were constructed along miles 205 and 206 of the Sacramento River Flood Control Project, as part of fish screen improvement projects for the Hamilton City Pumping Plant.

Western Pacific Interceptor Canal: Garamendi transferred control of a portion of the Western Pacific Interceptor Canal to the Three Rivers Levee Improvement Authority–removing this canal section from unnecessary inspection, and operation, maintenance by the Army Corps as it no longer serves a purpose.

San Francisco Bay to Stockton Navigation Improvement: Working with Rep. Jerry McNerney (CA-09), Garamendi expedited completion of the Army Corps feasibility study for the “San Francisco Bay to Stockton Navigation Improvement Project.” This feasibility study would examine deepening the John F. Baldwin and Stockton Deepwater Ship Channels from their existing depths of -35 feet mean lower low water to -40 feet and beneficially reusing dredged sediment for marsh restoration of subsided islands in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Delta “Focus Area” for New Army Corps Harmful Algal Bloom Program: Working with Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11), Garamendi included all 5 California Delta counties (Contra Costa, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Solano, and Yolo) as a “focus area” for the new proposed Army Corps Harmful Algal Bloom Demonstration Program to determine the causes of, and implement measures to effectively detect, prevent, treat, and eliminate, harmful algal blooms associated with Army Corps Dredging and flood control projects. This will help protect the Delta’s precious ecosystem from toxic algal blooms.

City of Woodland and Lower Cache Creek Flood Risk Management: Garamendi expedited completion of the feasibility study for the Army Corps’ Lower Cache Creek Flood Risk Management Project with the City of Woodland, Central Valley Flood Protection Board, and California Department of Water Resources to reduce flood risk and lower  the cost of flood insurance for property owners.

Sacramento Regional Water Bank: Working with Reps. Rep. Doris Matsui (CA-06) and Ami Bera (CA-07), expanded the Army Corps’ environmental infrastructure assistance to the Sacramento Area to include all of Sacramento County and increase from $35 million to $45 million the authorized federal funding to support the development of the Sacramento Regional Water Authority’s proposed groundwater bank.