I loved this article, interviewing two local district managers and listing their critiques of the Delta Plan. It is a great synopsis of the types of comments I’ve heard at DSC meetings (no, I don’t go. I watch online.).
Every single complaint, every last one of their objections, is from a “this might hurt my agency” perspective. That’s fine. They’re doing their jobs as managers of particular agencies. But the thing I want to point out is that the Delta Plan is supposed to achieve the co-equal goals of the State. It is possible for a good Delta Plan to inflict injury on individual agencies and still do more good for the State overall. Further, right now the Delta is in a world of concentrated hurt. It may well be the job of the Delta Stewardship Council to partition that concentrated hurt to water users in various forms all around the state (spreading the costs upstream, for example). I can totally see how any one district could find that the Delta Plan imposes costs on it. But I believe we’re out of the realm of no-cost solutions to the Delta. The current state of the Delta is itself an on-going cost. The DSC should not hold itself to a standard of “imposing no new costs on anyone.” Saying that the Delta Plan imposes a new cost elsewhere does not disqualify the Plan from meeting the co-equal goals.
A quick note on rhetoric:
And they questioned the types of fees that the council would recommend for local water users. For instance, Kampa said the plan is looking at imposing three separate fees for TUD — one for the district’s role as a “stressor” of the system, one for being a “beneficiary” and a “public goods charge” that would help them comply with the plan’s details.
I’m sure that plays well with the locals, but I’ll point out that “stressor pays” and “beneficiary pays” are not separate fees. They’re different ways to apportion the cost of bringing the Delta right.