WASHINGTON, DC, April 13, 2010 -- The Department of the Interior announced today that the Bureau of Reclamation will provide $20.7 million for the Delta-Mendota Canal/California Aqueduct Intertie project under the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)."Reclamation's ARRA projects are meeting future water supply needs, improving infrastructure reliability and safety, safeguarding our environment while creating jobs in the West," Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar said. "The intertie connecting the Delta-Mendota Canal and the California Aqueduct will facilitate more efficient movement of water. This will help alleviate some of the difficulties caused by the three-year drought."
The intertie is designed to connect the Delta-Mendota Canal and the California Aqueduct via a new pipeline and pumping plant to help improve Delta-Mendota Canal conveyance limitations, allow for maintenance and repair activities, and provide the flexibility to respond to Central Valley Project and State Water Project emergency water operations. The project is scheduled to be online to deliver water in fall of 2011. This is a CALFED project which was identified in the August 2000 CALFED Bay-Delta Program Programmatic Record of Decision.
The CALFED Bay-Delta Program is a 30-year program (2000-2030) including 25 federal and state agencies with responsibility in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. The Program is based on four major resource management objectives that guide its actions to achieving a Delta that has a healthy ecosystem and can supply Californians with a reliable water supply. Those objectives are levee system integrity, water quality, water supply reliability, and ecosystem restoration. Reclamation plays a key role as the federal lead agency for implementation of water supply reliability actions in coordination with our state CALFED partner agencies.
The total ARRA investment by the Bureau of Reclamation nationwide is nearly $1 billion, including money funding projects to repair America's water infrastructure and help address the country's long-term water challenges. Originally the Bureau of Reclamation identified 189 projects that were approved for ARRA funding. Some of these projects were bid at below the government estimate, thereby making ARRA funds available for additional activities.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act passed in 2009 gave $3 billion to the Department of the Interior.
The ARRA funds represent an important component of the President's plan to jumpstart the economy and put a down payment on addressing long-neglected challenges so the country can thrive in the 21st century. Under the ARRA, Interior is making an investment in conserving America's timeless treasures - our stunning natural landscapes, our monuments to liberty, the icons of our culture and heritage - while helping American families and their communities prosper again. Interior is also focusing on renewable energy projects, the needs of American Indians, employing youth and promoting community service.
"With its investments of Recovery Act funds, the Department of the Interior and its bureaus are putting people to work today to make improvements that will benefit the environment and the region for many years to come," Secretary Salazar said.
Secretary Salazar has pledged unprecedented levels of transparency and accountability in the implementation of the Department's economic recovery projects. The public will be able to follow the progress of each project on www.recovery.gov and on www.interior.gov/recovery. Secretary Salazar has appointed a Senior Advisor for Economic Recovery, Chris Henderson, and an Interior Economic Recovery Task Force to work closely with Interior's Inspector General and ensure the recovery program is meeting the high standards for accountability, responsibility, and transparency set by President Obama.