A divided House committee passed a new California water bill Wednesday that is intended to restore California's Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and ensure supplies for millions of residents.
A Senate committee approved a similar measure last week. There are significant differences between the two bills, but key lawmakers seemed confident they could be resolved. This finally puts the passage of a CalFed bill within reach after years of controversy.
CalFed is the huge state and federal program with a goal of protecting the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, restoring wetlands and rivers and building additional reservoirs. Over time, CalFed planners anticipate spending more than $10 billion.
The House Resources Committee passed the $389 million CalFed bill on a voice vote. It includes various plans for new water distribution and levee reconstruction projects, as well as measures to increase storage.