South Bay rallies behind proposed water bond


Although there is a great push behind the bond measure, it may never get to voters.

The predictions are as dire as water levels in Lexington Reservoir.

The state drought only promises to get worse.

Crop loss in California is hitting a quarter billion dollars this year, the Sacramento delta ecosystem is on the verge of collapse and a court order has reduced pumping.

"You don't have to wait for global warming, you don't need to wait for climate change, we're in a crisis right now. We need the water, we need to plan ahead," said San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District gets half of its water from the delta which is why a news conference was held in San Jose. Various business and elected leaders support a $9.3 billion dollar water bond they say will protect the economy and the environment with a combination of reservoirs and conservation projects.

The bond was first proposed by Governor Schwarzenegger and U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein.

"This water bond that we're trying to put on is a real comprehensive plan. It would solve a lot of problems for a lot of different areas of the state," said Jim Earp of California Alliance for Jobs.

State Senator Don Perata says the timing for the multi-billion dollar bond is not good and argues the state hasn't spent all the money voters approved for other water projects.

State Senator Don Perata stated "You keep faith with the voters of California by doing what you say you're going to do. That's not what this is- this is saying we need more."

Supporters of the bond measure say long-term planning is urgently needed.

"We need to do everything we can to guarantee and assure safe clean drinking water for our purposes into the future," said California State Assemblywoman Anna Caballero of Salinas.

Even if the legislature comes to a quick agreement, Governor Schwarzenegger may have boxed himself into a corner.

"The secretary of state says the drop-dead date for getting a water bond on the November Ballot is August 16th but a spokesperson reiterated today the governor won't be signing any bills until a state budget is passed, including those he supports."

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