Chair Esquivel. Time to re-start the Bay-Delta Plan.

Chair Esquivel. There will be no Voluntary Agreements for the foreseeable future. Westlands says so at their Board meetings. Met is supporting the Bi-Op, and says VAs are halted. Reclamation and the feds aren’t in a negotiating posture. I’m told there have been no VA meetings this year. The Newsom administration is primarily focused on the pandemic. The mainstream papers are reporting that the VAs aren’t happening. My friends and colleagues gossip that the VAs are over.

There are no Voluntary Agreements, and the conditions that would restore them are no closer. The discrepancy between the Bi-Ops and the ITP would have to be resolved. The federal administration would have to want to negotiate. The water agencies would have to think that they have better chances working with the State than they do with the Feds. None of those things are true for now or for the foreseeable future.

Time to restart the Bay-Delta Phase 1 plan. Are you waiting for the Newsom administration to take a break from managing the pandemic to give you the OK sign? Shame on you. The State Board is an independent agency, with the duty to protect the rivers of the state. You want Crowfoot and the rest to write a public message, admitting their failure? Spare them the embarrassment! Let them lay low and discreetly take up your responsibility. They already cost your board a year and a half; you should be furious about that.

The Bay-Delta Plan Phase I could be an inspiring change that sets a tone for dealing with climate change (no, we will not live by 19th century rules forever; no, extractors can’t have everything; there are higher values than capitalism). There could be COVID money coming down the pike for restoration. There could be a new federal administration soon. We are in a turbulent time and there is a lot of potential. A strong State Board could play an important role; it must step up to its responsibilities.


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5 responses to “Chair Esquivel. Time to re-start the Bay-Delta Plan.

  1. Noel Park

    I completely agree.

    There is no future in negotiations with the likes of Westlands. They are doomed in the long run anyway. The best we can hope for is to avoid some kind of a multi billion dollar bailout when the land finally becomes useless.


    I am writing directly to the Board, copying this post and expressing my agreement with these ideas. I urge everyone to do this.,,,,

    • Noel Park

      Diane Livia,

      Done! Thanks for your leadership.

      I note that OTPR is quoted in the most recent commentary from Restore the Delta. Your influence is spreading!


    Dorene D’Adamo
    (880) 210-3250, ext. 002
    Tam Doduc
    (880) 210-3250, ext. 004

    • Noel Park

      Great idea. I’ll try it too. Thanks for the addresses.