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Referendums would allow the state to borrow up to $15 billion
As California is in the midst of a three-year drought that has left key reservoirs at 35% of their capacity, state legislators are proposing referendums to allow the state to borrow up to $15 billion to expand and improve the state's water supply, The Los Angeles Times reported.
"This is the session to aggressively solve California's water challenges," state Senate President Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) said Feb. 26.
In the past, debate about the issue has been slowed by ongoing disagreement between growers, who favor more dams and reservoirs, and opposing environmentalists, who are concerned about the new infrastructure's effect on the environment.
Some growers are so angered by opposition to water projects that they are calling for the state to be split, allowing more rural communities to form their own government, the paper reported.