Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
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Klamath Ag PAC ad misleads about irrigation
Herald and News Letter to the Editor May 20, 2010 by Leo T. Bergeron, Yreka and Anthony Intiso, Montague
I’m Leo Bergeron, Past California State Grange Master and a rancher in the Montague Irrigation District in Siskiyou County.
Along with Anthony Intiso, Siskiyou Pomona Grange Master, we’ve become aware of an ad placed in your newspaper by a group called the “Klamath Ag PAC.”
Its members claimed several times in their ads that “No irrigation dams will be removed” if dam removal and the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement are enacted. This is a partial truth and unfortunately misleading to the Klamath Basin farmers who support all agriculture.
The Shasta Valley in Siskiyou County has an adjudicated senior water right held by the State of California for 60,000 acre-feet of water storage behind Iron Gate Dam for purposes including irrigation.
The Montague and Big Springs Irrigation Districts have also suffered from drought. Both irrigation districts have officially petitioned for this water we have a legal right too.
This water is not taken from the Klamath Basin irrigators since Iron Gate dam is well below the Klamath Reclamation Project.
All of us in our area supported the Klamath Basin farmers in 2001. Many of us were part of the historical Bucket Brigade March. We don’t understand why we should be punished by the KBRA while those who caused the 2001 water shut-off are rewarded with land and money.
We support the Klamath Basin farmers now. The flawed science and bureaucratic mess that is affecting the Basin farmers in a negative manner is just plain wrong.
But we do oppose misrepresentations by the “Klamath Ag PAC,” which affects all of the farmers of the Shasta Valley and pits farmers vs. farmers when we should all be united.
When the “Klamath Ag PAC” takes two-sided full-page ads, it should say the whole truth.
Leo T. Bergeron, Yreka
Anthony Intiso, Montague
Page Updated: Sunday September 19, 2010 01:42 PM Pacific
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