A delegation of Valley Water employees recently returned from Washington D.C., where the group advocated for Santa Clara County’s priorities with the Presidential Administration and Congress.
Led by CEO Norma Camacho, the delegation spent Nov. 12-14 advocating for Valley Water’s funding and legislative interests on several of the Board of Directors’ high-priority projects and initiatives. During their time in D.C., the delegation conducted 22 meetings with Administration officials and agency staff, members of Congress, and key committee staff.
One of the top priorities discussed was the Pacheco Reservoir Expansion Project, a collaboration between Valley Water, the San Benito County Water District and the Pacheco Pass Water District. This proposed project would significantly expand Pacheco Reservoir in Southern Santa Clara County to ensure a more reliable supply of safe, clean drinking water.
Once completed, Pacheco Reservoir’s operational capacity would increase from 5,500 acre-feet to up to 140,000 acre-feet, enough to supply 1.4 million people with safe, clean water for one year in an emergency. The expanded reservoir will also reduce the frequency and severity of water shortages during droughts, preserve groundwater and protect infrastructure, and enhance, protect and restore our environment.
Other top priorities discussed by the Valley Water delegation included the Anderson Dam Seismic Retrofit Project, the South San Francisco Bay Shoreline Project, and the Upper Guadalupe River, Upper Llagas Creek, Coyote Creek, and Upper Penitencia Creek Flood Protection projects, among others.
Valley Water makes two annual trips to Washington, D.C. to advocate for priority projects and programs that benefit Santa Clara County residents. These trips are significant opportunities for the board and leadership to meet with federal appointed and elected officials, as well as agency and administrative staff, and advocate for the important water projects that benefit the people and environment of our county.
These trips also provide opportunities for federal officials to hear from board members and staff about the importance of continued federal support for Valley Water’s critical flood protection, water supply, and environmental stewardship efforts.