Stop Centennial Dam Update

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NID 2020 Budget Released – Centennial Spending Continues

Cartoon by artist Jen Rain, featuring the three pillars of Stop Centennial Dam – Environmental Law, Fiscal Responsibility, and Public Trust.

Last week, NID held the quarterly Centennial Dam update at the regularly scheduled Engineering Meeting Tuesday October 15, 2019. During the meeting, staff reported on different elements of the Centennial Project, such as AB 52 consultation, but concluded that overall “not much was happening.” In fact, NID staff requested that updates on Centennial be cut back to only twice a year due to “lack of activity.”

Less than 48 hours later, NID scheduled a last-minute Administrative Practices Committee meeting Thursday October 17, where they approved a contract extension to spend another $43,000 to continue working on Centennial.

Then late Friday afternoon on October 18, NID released the draft 2020 Budget. The Budget proposes spending $500,000 on Centennial each year through 2024. The Board will review and approve the Budget this coming Wednesday at the NID Board Meeting.

Since April 2018, SYRCL and allies have requested NID stop spending on Centennial where legally possible. This has clearly not happened and their proposed 2020 budget is fiscally irresponsible.

SYRCL is disappointed by this continued lack of transparency and fiscal responsibility, which further erodes public trust. While NID has decreased the proposed Centennial budget from $1.75 million, NID still proposes to spend its limited resources and keep this boondoggle of a project a high priority for the District for the next five years.

In light of the PG&E bankruptcy, costly infrastructure projects, water rates increases and recent budget cuts, SYRCL urges NID to stop spending on this fiscally irresponsible project. For the District, for our community, and for the Yuba and Bear River watersheds.

This is a commonsense decision for NID and our community. To review SYRCL’s reasons for cutting spending on Centennial, check out our request from Fall 2018.

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