Gov. Newsom, please put back the money you just snatched from floodplains

Modesto Bee

Dos Rios Ranch Preserve near Grayson in recently flooded during high flows on the San Joaquin River — just as planned. The floodwater nourished wildlife habitat and refilled aquifers, and downstream communities were protected.

Adam Gray, who championed funding for floodplain restoration in last years budget, wrote a piece on how recent the recent California budget proposal removes a $40 million allocation approved last year for floodplain restoration in the San Joaquin Valley.

“Newsom’s budget proposal abandons some of the most important flood-control, drought-fighting measures taking place in our state…Levees alone will not protect our communities from floods expected in future storms.”

“The nonprofit River Partners has completed more than 250 floodplain restorations. The largest is Dos Rios Ranch near Modesto…. Floodplain restoration requires significant funding — land must be purchased, native plants established, levees pushed back or removed. River Partners and its funding partners invested roughly $45 million at Dos Rios, laying the foundation for California’s first new state park in 11 years. Last year, I helped secure $40 million to help create many more restoration projects to protect Valley communities in Fresno, Tulare and Merced counties and beyond. Without that funding, those communities are in jeopardy.”

Read the full article from the Modesto Bee.