Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressman TJ Cox (CA-21)
November 5, 2020
Today, Rep. TJ Cox (CA-21) released the following statement after the Bureau of Reclamation signed a Record of Decision (ROD) to advance construction to repair the Friant-Kern Canal. The ROD gives final approval on the required environmental reviews for the first phase of Friant-Kern Canal repairs. The first phase will fix a 33-mile segment of the Canal which has lost over half of its carrying capacity.
“Yesterday’s Record of Decision signing is a big step toward restoring water conveyance capacity of the Friant-Kern Canal, bringing more reliable water access to the Central Valley. I’ve worked over the past two years to secure federal funding to assist with this effort. Now, construction on the first phase of the canal restoration is on track to begin early next year, showing what we can get done when we work together,” said Rep. TJ Cox.
The Friant-Kern Canal runs 152 miles from Friant Dam south to the Kern River, delivering surface water supply from the San Joaquin River to the Eastside of the San Joaquin Valley. Completed in 1951, the canal provides water for irrigation of over 1 million acres of farmland and potable uses for over 250,000 rural Californians. Land subsidence impacts have reduced the canal’s carrying capacity by 60 percent.
Last year, Rep. Cox secured $2.35 million in pre-construction funding for the Friant-Kern Canal and $20 million in construction funding for canals damaged by subsidence. This year, Rep. Cox has continued to prioritize funding for this project by securing $71 million for the Friant-Kern Canal and $225 million in additional funding to repair Reclamation canals in the Fiscal Year 2021 appropriations legislation passed by the House, essential funding for this project to move forward.