Lawmakers in drought-hit California finally agree on water plan

A tire rests on the dry bed of Lake Mendocino, a key Mendocino County reservoir, in UkiahCalifornia Governor Jerry Brown approved on Wednesday a $7.6 billion plan to improve water supplies in the drought-striken state that will be put before voters in November, ending a year of political wrangling over the measure. California is in the throes of a devastating multi-year drought that is expected to cost its economy $2.2 billion in lost crops, jobs and other damages. On the last possible day to approve the ballot measure, Democrats and Republicans fought over what projects to include, with Republicans arguing for more funding for reservoirs and Democrats saying that damming rivers and flooding canyons to build them is damaging to the environment. “With this water bond, legislators from both parties have affirmed their faith in California’s future,” Brown said.

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