Drought solutions discussed at Clovis forum

CLOVIS, Calif. (KFSN) -- On one of the hottest days of the year so far, local leaders, farmers and water experts gathered to talk about drought solutions. At Friday's drought forum, people came to learn more about what's being done in the search for both short-term and long-term solutions.

Thousands of Valley citrus acreage has been ripped out and taken out of production due to a lack of water. Growers expect the trend to continue but understand everyone in California must deal with the effects of four years of drought.

"We're in the same boat together. We're dealing with the same issue," California Citrus Mutual Chairman Kevin Severns said. "It's not so much a matter of if Ag or urban is using too much, it's what's being restrained, what's being held back."

Severns sat next to Clovis Public Utilities Director Luke Serpa at the drought forum. Those who came to the Clovis Veterans Memorial Auditorium were asked to sign a letter that will be sent to the governor. It supports the building of a new dam at Temperance Flat and the lifting of pumping restrictions in the delta.

"If we don't do the right things right now, we're going to wake up after the drought is over, and after the water comes back, and we're going to be asking ourselves 'where's all the new water?'" said Assemblyman Jim Patterson, R-Fresno.

The event was held to help people better understand issues dealing with the drought. Patterson also talked of the need to connect federal and state water projects to improve flexibility.
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