Sen. Dianne Feinstein quietly used a $915 billion spending bill to accomplish a long-standing and, in some circles, controversial goal of easing Central Valley water sales.
With one sentence, the 1,221-page bill signed Saturday by President Barack Obama helps the Westlands Water District and privately owned Kern Water Bank, among others, buy more from irrigation districts served by the federal Central Valley Project.
With a second sentence, the bill orders a study designed to streamline water sales, including those from north of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to south of the Delta.
"The water transfer language inserted by Sen. Feinstein will add to the flexibility that we have sought, and it will certainly help us meet our water needs," Westlands General Manager Tom Birmingham said in an interview Monday.
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