Group Heads to Sacramento to Rally for Water

August 18, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Farmers, farm workers and state leaders are on the steps of the state capitol this midday demanding change in the California's water policy.Around 5 a.m. Tuesday morning farm workers boarded buses in Firebaugh to make the trip to Sacramento to attend today's rally.

Firebaugh and other Fresno communities on the west-side have seen unemployment reach as high as 40 percent due to the state's ongoing drought and federal water restrictions. Some residents on the Valley's west-side say they've seen good jobs disappear as the drought continues. "It's been pretty hard. I know a lot of people that have been hurting financially. I know some people that had jobs...secure jobs...that have been laid off due to the water shortage," said Firebaugh resident Erica Montalvo.

Governor Schwarzenegger will deliver remarks at Tuesday's rally which starts at noon in Sacramento. He has also sent a letter Tuesday morning, to democratic leaders in the state legislature urging passage of comprehensive water reform legislation this session.

Tuesday's rally in Sacramento is one in a series in which farm workers and farmers have demanded change to get the water flowing again. Back in April, water advocates marched 30 miles for four days to the San Luis Reservoir in Merced County. A march that garnered national attention

Once at the reservoir, they held a rally with Governor Schwarzenegger to demand an immediate reprieve from environmental pumping restrictions.

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