Legislature Approves Sen. Dodd’s Plan to Improve Water Management

Monday, September 9, 2019

SACRAMENTO – The Legislature has approved a proposal from Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, that would help the state manage its water, protecting the precious resource for people and the environment.

“Stream gages provide important information in this era of droughts and flooding, driven in part by climate change,” Sen. Dodd said. “This bill is an important step toward managing our water for the long run. You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”

California has one of the nation’s most complex water systems, moving millions of gallons across the state from north to south and east to west. The state’s 39 million residents and $47 billion farming industry – along with diverse wildlife from the Sierra to the sea – rely on that water. Yet there is little data about how much water is coursing through streams at any given time. Only 54 percent of the state’s 3,600 stream gages have been active in recent times. And even fewer provide rich, real-time reporting needed to manage this precious resource.

Senate Bill 19 would help address those shortcomings, ensuring California has the information it needs to effectively oversee the water supply. The bill won overwhelming support in both legislative chambers and heads next to Gov. Gavin Newsom for a signature.

“SB 19 is an important breakthrough in establishing a state role in deploying stream gages to better understand and measure stream flows,” said Jay Ziegler, policy director at The Nature Conservancy. “This legislation builds upon Sen. Dodd’s leadership in advancing open and transparent water data and is critically important toward reaching sustainable water management in California.”


Senator Bill Dodd represents California’s 3rd Senate District, which includes all or portions of Solano, Napa, Sonoma, Yolo, Sacramento, and Contra Costa counties. You can learn more about Senator Dodd at www.sen.ca.gov/dodd.