What is the proposal of the State Water Resources Control Board staff?

As a regulatory agency, the State Water Board can only require measures within its authority. For example, the State Water Board can require water agencies to forgo diversion of flows that are needed to mitigate their impacts from diversions, but it lacks authority to require other measures under a more comprehensive approach to mitigating for impacts (such as habitat enhancement measures, funding and a science program)

State Water Board staff issued a Framework for the Bay-Delta Plan Update that encourages entering into voluntary agreements, but provides “default” flow requirements for rivers that feed the Delta of 55 percent of “unimpaired flows.” This unimpaired flow approach would require a large portion of each watershed’s total inflow to be dedicated to flow out of the Delta. This “unimpaired flow” approach would have significant adverse impacts on California communities, farms and the environment (when compared to the current Yuba Accord flows and the proposed voluntary agreement flows). Scientists at the University of California, Davis, and researchers with the Public Policy Institute of California, cautioned that the State Water Board staff’s flow proposal would not address key factors critical to the Delta’s ecosystem health, such as food and habitat availability, or predation by other species.

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1. What is the Yuba Water Agency voluntary agreement proposal?
2. Why is Yuba Water Agency voluntarily making these commitments?
3. What is the proposal of the State Water Resources Control Board staff?
4. Why is the voluntary agreement proposal better than the State Water Board staff proposal?
5. Are other Sacramento Valley agencies submitting similar proposals?
6. Will Yuba Water benefit if the State Water Board adopts the agency's proposal?
7. How does Yuba Water Agency plan to use revenue their proposal would create?
8. What is the State Water Board schedule for review of the voluntary agreement proposals?