Press Release: Sites Reservoir Receives $80 Million in Federal Funding
Sites Reservoir Receives $80 Million in Federal Funding
Sacramento, Calif. – In a demonstration of continued Congressional support for the Project, Congress recently provided Sites Reservoir with $80 million in federal funds. The funding was included in a short-term government funding bill that was signed into law late last week.
“We thank our federal representatives and Project partners, such as the Bureau of Reclamation, for their continued support of Sites Reservoir, especially as the drought situation in California becomes more severe,” said Fritz Durst, Chairman of the Sites Project Authority. “This critical funding helps us to continue advancing Sites Reservoir as a drought resilient water storage solution for the people of California.”
Sites Reservoir will increase California’s existing water supply by providing 1.5 million acre-feet of additional storage capacity to the state during times of drought to benefit the environment, agriculture and communities.
“Flexible water storage is needed now more than ever,” said Jeff Davis, Chairman of the Sites Reservoir Committee. “Sites has a unique collaboration between local, state and federal partners for an affordable, permittable and buildable water storage project for California.”
The allocation of these funds, along with other critical funding for storage projects in the West, is tied to the Secretary of Interior’s determinations, which for Sites occurred in December 2020. The Secretary found that Sites Reservoir is technically and financially feasible and should be prioritized for federal investment.
“The $80 million will be directly applied to paying the federal share of planning and engineering costs of Sites Reservoir which ensures a dedicated portion of the Project benefits to the federal government’s interests in meeting the future water needs of the environment, farms and cities across California,” said Durst.
Sites Reservoir is an off -stream facility that does not dam a major river system and would not block fish migration or spawning. Sites Reservoir captures and stores stormwater flows from the Sacramento River —after all other water rights and regulatory requirements are met—for release primarily in dry and critical years for environmental use and for California communities, farms and businesses when it is so desperately needed. One of Sites Reservoir’s greatest strengths is in its broad statewide representation including cities, counties, water and irrigation districts throughout the Sacramento Valley, San Joaquin Valley, Bay Area and Southern California.
Sites is an off-stream reservoir proposed north of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, where it would provide unique water supply and environmental benefits during dry and critical water years, and especially during extended drought periods. Additional information can be found at www.sitesproject.org or on Facebook and Twitter at @SitesProject.