Court Could Give Control of All Groundwater to the State

San Luis Obispo County has put a moratorium on new uses for groundwater. If you expand a home, hotel or farm, the water used must come from a current user. Democrat Senator Pavley has a bill to give the management of all the groundwater in the State to Sacramento. In textbooks that is called fascism—you still have private ownership—but government controls the use of the product or service.

Now a judge may have superseded the legislature and ruled that government MUST regulate groundwater, “to protect a river”. That is the end of private farming since farmers would have no incentive to maintain, expand or build new wells, since government will control the use of the water. If this decision is upheld, California will quickly see the end of all farms, new building (homes and commercial). Only government desired and approved plans will be allowed—since it will own all the water in the State.

“Attorneys on both sides say it’s the first time a California court has ruled the “public trust doctrine” applies to groundwater. The doctrine says the State of California holds all waterways for the benefit of the people.

The lawsuit claimed groundwater pumping in the Scott River Basin is partly responsible for decreased river flows – limiting the public’s use of the river and harming fish habitat.”

ManInWater

 

Regulation Judge Makes Precedent-Setting Sacramento Ruling On Groundwater

Ed Joyce, capradio, 7/16/14

A Sacramento Superior Court judge issued a ruling Tuesday requiring regulation of groundwater pumping to protect a river in Siskiyou County.

Attorneys on both sides say it’s the first time a California court has ruled the “public trust doctrine” applies to groundwater. The doctrine says the State of California holds all waterways for the benefit of the people.

The lawsuit claimed groundwater pumping in the Scott River Basin is partly responsible for decreased river flows – limiting the public’s use of the river and harming fish habitat.

Jim Wheaton with the Environmental Law Foundation was lead attorney for the plaintiffs. He said the ruling is “a monumental decision.”

“Because California is famously the only western state that has no regulation of groundwater pumping at all. And so this decision for the first time is going to say that well at least where that groundwater pumping affects surface waters, you’ve got to regulate it and control it so you don’t do harm,” said Wheaton.

The lawsuit named the California State Water Resources Board and Siskiyou County.

Attorney Rod Walston represents Siskiyou County. He said under current state policy, groundwater regulation is a local responsibility.

Walston said the ruling by Superior Court Judge Allen Sumner fundamentally changes that system.

“By requiring, not allowing or permitting, but rather requiring counties to regulate groundwater by application of public trust principle,” said Walston.” He said the trial court ruling will likely be appealed and the final decision may be made by the California Supreme Court.

The ruling comes as California is in the third year of a drought which has brought calls for an organized groundwater management system.

July 15 Siskiyou County Groundwater Ruling

 

About Stephen Frank

Stephen Frank is the publisher and editor of California Political News and Views. He speaks all over California and appears as a guest on several radio shows each week. He has also served as a guest host on radio talk shows. He is a fulltime political consultant.

Comments

  1. California and the progressive liberal democrats seem to think the answer to everything is either a outright ban or government regulation. Well, they have “finally” convinced me. It is time to either “ban completely” or severely regulate the progressive liberal democrat in California because they have the mental and reasoning capacity of an amoeba.

  2. Mineral rights next????

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