The City of Modesto has historically been considered a model of success in maintaining its “water wealth” through the use of reservoir storage and dams. What Modesto residents may not know, however, is our access to water is at risk of being compromised as a result of the proposed amendments to the State’s Bay-Delta Plan.
The Bay-Delta Plan was adopted in 2006 by the State Water Resources Control Board, which identified a number of issues that required further evaluation regarding the water supply of California, San Joaquin River flows, and southern Delta salinity. Over the years, the Bay-Delta Plan has gone through several public comment periods and proposed amendments.
In 2016, the Board released draft amendments that included the increase in flows by 40%, which would significantly reduce Modesto’s surface water. Following the release of these proposed amendments, the Board held a public hearing here in Modesto to listen to the concerns of our community. Elected officials, city staff, and members of our community provided feedback regarding how this reduction in water would affect the community. The Board received over 6,500 public comments from the Central Valley region opposing the proposed amendments to this plan.In July 2018, following the public comment and response period, the State Water Resources Control Board released the final draft of amendments relatively unchanged.