Lindsay City Council to address water supply
LINDSAY - Lindsay City Councilmembers will consider sending a statement to federal lawmakers Tuesday in hopes they will plan to revive local water supply when implementation of the San Joaquin River settlement leaves the city high and dry.
Last week, City Mayor Pro Tem Pamela Kimball was one of 10 councilmembers, representing communities countywide, who signed a letter asking Congress to replace the urban water supply that will be lost under the proposed settlement.
Members of Farmersville, Tulare, Lindsay, Porterville, Dinuba, Woodlake and Exeter city councils attending the meeting at the invitation of Tulare County Supervisor Allen Ishida. They added their signatures to a resolution that will go before the Board of Supervisors for approval at Tuesday's regular meeting in Visalia.
Kimball will present a similar letter to the city council, reflecting issues of concern more specific to Lindsay, at Tuesday's meeting.
“Basically, it's a letter to the federal government asking them to consider the impact the settlement will have on us during a dry year,” Kimball said.
Under the San Joaquin River settlement, reached in September 2006, water will be returned to a dry 60-mile stretch of the San Joaquin River by 2009. To accomplish this, water will be diverted from small communities and farmers served by the Friant Dam. The settlement was the end to an 18-year legal dispute between Friant Water Users Authority and the Natural Resources Defense Council.
Lindsay gets 60 percent of its drinking water from the Friant-Kern while neighboring community Strathmore gets all of its water from the canal.
Kimball said Lindsay has a single water well that can be used, but said much of the underground supply is unsafe for drinking.
“The settlement is done and we can't change that,” Kimball said. “We're not arguing with the settlement. In a dry year, we don't want to be in a position where there's no water.”
On Friday, legislation authorizing the U.S. Department of Interior to implement the settlement was reintroduced in both houses of Congress.
The “San Joaquin River Restoration Settlement Act” seeks to restore the San Joaquin River and support the salmon population, much like the actual settlement.
The bill also authorizes provisions of the settlement permitting programs directed at water recapture, reuse and re-circulation to minimize the impact on towns and farmers served by the Friant-Kern and Madera canals.
Contact Sarah Villicana at 784-5000, Ext. 1045, or email@example.com.
This story was published in The Porterville Recorder on Jan. 9, 2007