Sarah D. Wire
October 21, 2015

The Republican members of California’s delegation are demanding a government plan to store the deluge of water that could come with El Niño this winter.

Fourteen GOP lawmakers will send a letter to President Obama and Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday asking for specifics about how federal and state agencies expect to capture, save and transport water.

A new federal forecast released last week showed El Niño is continuing to strengthen, with experts saying it’s on track to potentially produce record rainfall across the state.

Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Tulare) said the governor has opposed a plan approved by the House, and the Senate hasn’t proposed one of its own.

“We need him to offer up solutions,” Nunes said in an interview Wednesday. “If it does rain this winter and we let it all go to the ocean again like we did three years ago, the whole state is going to run out of water. A plan is not opposing what we’re trying to propose. He has a responsibility as the governor of California to come clear with what his plan is.”

He said that without a plan, Brown should identify which farms and homes are going to lose and what land is going out of production.

“It’s either-or. You show us how you’re going to get the water, or you show us the impacts and how we’re going to deal with the impacts,” Nunes said.

The delegation letter specifically asks what plans federal and state agencies have in place to capture precipitation from El Niño, or what the timeline is to develop a plan if one doesn’t already exist. It also asks if the agencies would lift regulations that have limited water exports from northern California to central and southern California.

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