Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The embattled Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta might find some protection for its environment from its designation as a “National Heritage Area” – California’s first.
A bill in Congress co-sponsored by California’s U.S. Senators, would establish the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta as a National Heritage Area to be managed by the Delta Protection Commission. The goal of the National Heritage Area would be to conserve and protect the Delta, its communities, its resources and its history, says Sen. Dianne Feinstein.
“The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is an important resource for California and the largest inland delta in the world — and we must treat it with the respect it deserves,” says Ms. Feinstein. “The National Heritage Area designation provides the recognition and resources that local governments need to ensure a sustainable future for the Delta.”
The bill will have no effect on water rights or water contracts and creates no new regulatory authority or burden on local government or citizens, the lawmakers say.
Instead, the legislation authorizes federal assistance to a local process already required by state law that will elevate the profile of the Delta and provide the means to conserve and protect its valued communities, resources and history.
“Designating the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta as a National Heritage Area will benefit the environment and the economy of the entire region,” says Sen. Barbara Boxer.

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