Part of the reason the State response is so uninspiring is that the State vision is uninspiring. Far as I can tell, the State vision is to keep status quo going just a little longer. With a boring-ass vision like that, there’s nothing especially pressing to do. Yesterday, the Drought Task Force guy could have said “When I get done with this drought, every damn treatment plant in the state will have tertiary treatment and be hooked right back into the supply main.” He could have said “Every last farmer in this state is going to be there when the rains come back if I have to hand them fat stacks of cash to get through.” He could have said “There won’t be a lawn in this whole state when I’ve had my way with this drought.” But there’s no vision but “please more of status quo,” so he’s got nothing to say but “the State will work together.”
I am using the Drought Task Force guy as synecdoche for the whole executive branch. I don’t know a thing about him personally, and assume he is nothing but bright, hardworking and skilled. I don’t mean to imply a thing about him personally. I might if he becomes a public figure or starts giving awesome interviews, but for the moment, he’s just a stand-in for the California executive agencies. My apologies, Mr. Drought Task Force, should you ever see this.)
By the way, I don’t think it’ll be the same for Central Valley flood. I think there is a vision (some Peripheral Canal variant) and flood response will come with diggers and concrete trucks. There’s no way a Delta levee break would get the same vague response this drought is getting and that’s because the State has a vivid goal for that aspect of water policy.