Thursday, May 25, 2006

Congressman Doolittle Moves Water & Dam Funding

In this May 11th Press release from Congressman Doolittle, who is spearheading Northern California water and flood projects and the Auburn Dam through Congress, the details of what is being proposed is described.

Here is an excerpt.

May 11, 2006
Panel Funds Auburn Dam StudyDoolittle Secures $187 Million for Nor Cal Water and Flood Control Projects

House Republican Conference Secretary John T. Doolittle (R-Roseville) announced today that the House Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee has approved over $187 million for water conservation, flood control, and watershed restoration projects throughout Northern California in the Fiscal Year 2007 (FY07) Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill.

Included in the measure is $3 million to fund a feasibility study for a multipurpose dam on the American River at Auburn and $1 million to assess the feasibility of relocating Highway 49 where it crosses the American River between Auburn and Cool, California. “This bill shows a tremendous commitment by Congress to help Northern California meet its water management challenges.

I am especially gratified that the committee supports my efforts to push forward solutions to both our region’s short-term and long-term flood protection needs,” said Doolittle, who is vice chairman of the committee. “While making immediate improvements to Folsom Dam and the levee system, now is the time that we get serious about completing the Auburn Dam.”

The original Auburn Dam plan called for traffic on Highway 49 to cross over the top of the dam upon completion. Due to modern security concerns, a new bridge over the American River would now be required for the relocation of the highway when the dam is built. In addition to being an essential component of the overall Auburn Dam project, the relocation of this stretch of Highway 49 would resolve transportation concerns which have been commonly expressed in the surrounding communities for years.

Said Jack Sweeney, Chairman of the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors, “Anyone who has driven between Cool and Auburn knows how precarious it can be, particularly at night or in bad weather. Building a safer Highway 49 river crossing is something for which locals have wished a long time.”

Included in the House Fiscal Year 2007 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill are:

$3 million to update the 1996 Auburn Dam feasibility report;
$1 million for an assessment on the feasibility of Highway 49 relocation ;
$15 million for the new Folsom Dam Bridge;
$2 million for the Placer County Regional Waste Water Treatment Plant;
$1 million for the California Hydrogen Infrastructure Project (research in Lake Tahoe);
$7 million for Sacramento Area water conservation projects;
$1.25 million to fund the El Dorado Irrigation District’s Temperature Control Device at Folsom Lake;
$1 million to study diverting Sacramento River water to Placer County;
$2 million for the Placer County Water Agency’s American River Pumping Plant;
$46.8 million to improve Folsom Dam and the Lower American River levees;
$15 million for Sacramento River Bank Protection;
$9.7 million for South Sacramento Streams flood protection;
$40.11 million to fund CALFED, including $6 million for delta levees and $750,000 for the Upper Feather River Basin Assessment Study in Plumas County; and
$41.478 million for watershed restoration projects under the Central Valley Project Improvement Act.