The governance section emphasizes that forming water markets can quickly move water out of a region, causing substantial third party impacts and severe dislocation within the community. Because it is hard to foresee all of the potential impacts, it is important to have a governing board with members of the most vulnerable communities: farmworkers, tribal representatives, people from historically disadvantaged communities.
HahhahahahahaHAHHAhahaha! No it didn’t. Of course it doesn’t. It says that decisions that normally land in the courts be settled by 5 to 7 person appointed boards. Of those, half should be water-users, the rest from water management. They should be good listeners with good communication skills and not crooks who succumb to the temptations of insider trading.
I am tired of typing “reinforces existing power structures”, so I’ll switch to my other complaint about Australian proposals. How does this scale up in California? How many of these local boards do we need? One per local market? Could irrigation district board members fulfill this function? County supervisors? What happens if there aren’t enough people who want to do this? Is the market suspended? Do boards combine when markets are stable enough to merge? Are board members paid out of the proceeds from the market? Are trades assessed an administration fee?
2 responses to “Unbundling Water Rights, Governance, pg 22-23”
Since the Young paper imagines a corporate-type of organization that sets policy, then we can imagine the corporate response: Let a particular watershed General Manager advise us on what to do in their watershed. The WGM in turn gets input from his sub-watershed Deputy Managers, and so on down the line.
Would we really need a whole new governing body? Does it need to supersede the courts when it comes to water decision making? Could decisions be left to a coalition of state agency representatives? We already have EPA, Forestry, Agriculture departments and the like that have developed considerable expertise in their respective areas.
It does seem like a currently existing Board could do this. Regional Water Quality Control Boards? Irrigation District Boards?