Hurtado Releases Statement After the State Water Resiliency Act Passes Senate 34-1

May 28, 2021


For Immediate Release: May 28, 2021

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SACRAMENTO, CA – Today, Senator Melissa Hurtado (D-Sanger) released the following statement after her bill, Senate Bill 559—The State Water Resiliency Act – passed the Senate 34-1:


“As California faces yet another drought limited water is forcing many farmers to make the hard decision to not plant crops this year,” said Senator Hurtado. “The drought has created a looming food crisis exacerbated by the lack of adequate and reliable water delivery systems. Fixing our state’s broken water canals will help prevent and protect against future droughts, as well as ensure 31 million Californians have access to clean drinking water. This can only be accomplished by fully funding Senate Bill 559.”


“With its approval of SB 559, the Senate has taken action to improve climate resilience and mitigate drought impacts not only in the Central Valley, but across the state, which will create and support local jobs, increase food security and protect disadvantaged communities,” said Tom Birmingham, Westlands Water District, General Manager. “We applaud Senator Hurtado for her leadership in championing these critical water infrastructure repair investments, and we are proud to stand with a broad coalition of supporters urging passage of this bill in the Assembly.”


“Repairing California’s water conveyance infrastructure is essential to building a more resilient water supply future – one that can withstand the long-lasting impacts of climate change while delivering on the public benefits of clean, reliable, affordable water,” said Jennifer Pierre, General Manager of the State Water Contractors. “SB 559 will address and provide these critical repairs, and we are thrilled to see this key piece of legislation approved by the State Senate today."

The State Water Resiliency Act of 2021 will allocate $785 million to repairing vital water delivery systems that provide drinking water to communities throughout California and water to sustain the state’s leading agricultural economy. The funds would go to fixing the Friant-Kern Canal, the Delta-Mendota Canal and major portions of the California Aqueduct, all of which have degraded and are losing water as a result of subsidence – the actual shrinking of land.

The Senator is also a co-author of the Water Innovation Act of 2021, which will create the Office of Water Innovation at the California Water Commission-furthering new technologies and other approaches within the water sector. The Senator has also introduced Senate Bill 464, which will expand the eligibility for state funded food benefits to undocumented immigrants, ensuring all residents can access food assistance. Senator Hurtado’s SB 108, which will declare it to be state policy that all people have access to sufficient, healthy food.


About Senator Melissa Hurtado

Senator Melissa Hurtado represents a new generation of Latina leaders as the youngest woman ever elected to the California State Senate and a product of immigrant parents. Senator Hurtado represents the 14th Senate District and focuses on rural community issues that often go unheard — access to clean air and water, food insecurity and poverty, inequities in environmental policies, agriculture and access to health care. In July 2020, she was appointed to the national Biden Latino Leadership Committee alongside former Labor Secretary and current Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis – the only two California Latinas on the Committee.

For more information, visit Senator Hurtado’s Website here or find her on Twitter at @Senator_Hurtado