March 20, 2013
Dear Secretary Salazar, Governor Brown, Acting Secretary Blank, and Commissioner Connor:
As we wrote you on February 21, 2013 we again request that your agencies consider all of the alternatives for the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP). This includes the portfolio-based conceptual alternative for the BDCP from a coalition of Northern and Southern California water agencies, business and environmental groups.
We specifically ask that you do so BEFORE releasing any other draft chapters of the BDCP. This is critical so that the outstanding draft chapters appropriately reflect full consideration of this promising alternative and do not omit critical information that could potentially greatly improve these draft chapters.
We request that you analyze the portfolio approach fully. This would include a scientifically defensible operations proposal and a finance plan that provides for full water user funding for the facility. We believe it would be reckless for BDCP to further commit to a large facility in the absence of a credible analysis of the portfolio alterative, operations and financing.
We believe the portfolio approach could offer California a better path forward when it comes to assuring the dual goals of restoring the Delta and securing a reliable water future, and deserves full consideration along with other viable alternatives. Equally important to these dual goals is recognizing the senior water right holders of the Bay-Delta. They expect to have their legal rights intact at the end of this process, legal rights that were committed to them by the federal government when the Central Valley Project was built.
We look forward to your immediate response.