Newsom intervenes in dispute over San Francisco’s water rights

In one of his first acts after securing the gubernatorial election, newly-minted Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom waded into a years-long dispute in California that could affect San Francisco’s water rights.
Newsom and outgoing Gov.
Jerry Brown sent a joint letter to the State Water Resources Control Board Tuesday night asking it to delay voting on a water plan to give the parties more time to negotiate a voluntary settlement.
“Voluntary agreements are preferable to a lengthily administrative process and the inevitable ensuing lawsuits,” the governors wrote.
Some commissioners expressed skepticism about incurring yet another delay, although in the end none voted against the continuance.
However, that resolution was vetoed Friday by Mayor London Breed, who said it would be “deeply irresponsible for San Francisco to take a position that would jeopardize our water supply.” The mayor on Wednesday said she supported the move to delay a vote.
“I think we’re getting to that point.” The State Water Board’s next meeting is set for Dec. 11.
“I believe that the resolution passed by the Board of Supervisors could significantly impair San Francisco’s ability to protect our interests on the critical issue of water supply management,” she said in a written statement.
“It is , and new analysis by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission supports this conclusion,” she said.
Harlan L. Kelly, Jr., SFPUC general manager, thanked the board for the delay in a written statement and said they were committed to meeting the board’s deadline.

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