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Delta Stewardship Council Intends to Adopt Interim Delta Plan in August
The Delta Stewardship Council (Council) is quickly nearing completion of its Interim Delta Plan. It issued a first draft on June 14 and intends to issue two more drafts for public comment before adopting a final Interim Delta Plan on August 27, 2010. The Council was directed to adopt an Interim Plan “…that includes recommendations for early actions, projects, and programs” (Water Code § 85084). While not to be confused with the final Delta Plan, which the Governor and Legislature directed the Council to adopt no later than January 1, 2012 (Water Code § 85300), the Interim Plan is important because it will guide the Council’s near term actions until adoption and implementation of the Delta Plan.
Both plans will assist in meeting the State Legislature’s basic goals for the Delta, enumerated in Public Resources Code § 29702. Those goals include the need for balancing conservation and development of Delta land resources, protecting the Delta ecosystem, improving flood protection, and achieving the coequal goals of “providing a more reliable water supply for California and protecting, restoring, and enhancing the Delta ecosystem.” In addition, “[t]he coequal goals shall be achieved in a manner that protects and enhances the unique cultural, recreational, natural resource, and agricultural values of the Delta as an evolving place.” (Public Resources Code § 29702) The Council indicates that it has decided to structure both the interim and final Delta Plans around the common set of policy objectives contained in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Reform Act of 2009 (SBX7 1; Water Code § 85020).
The Council will consider the first Interim Delta Plan at its next meeting on July 22 and 23, 2010. More information on the upcoming meeting and the Interim Delta Plan is available at the Council’s website at: www.deltacouncil.ca.gov.
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