California Citrus Mutual plans to contribute $150,000 to the campaign to pass Proposition 1, the state’s water bond measure on the November ballot.
If approved, it would provide $2.7 billion to build additional water storage, alleviating pressure on Millerton Reservoir and users on the Friant-Kern Canal in drought years. About 58% of U.S. fresh citrus is grown in the Friant service area, according to the Exeter-based trade group.
Those growers received zero surface water allocation this year from the Central Valley Project for the first time in its history.
“We are in a state of unprecedented crisis in terms of water supply,” California Citrus Mutual president Joel Nelsen said in a news release. “(We) worked closely with members of the legislature to create a long-term solution path for the state’s water infrastructure and sustainability needs. It is essential to the future of agriculture in California that voters approve Proposition 1 this November.”
The trade group’s board voted unanimously to support the measure with the funding.
Additionally, California Citrus Mutual committed $50,000 to the “El Agua es Asunto de Todos” — Water is Everybody’s Business — a nonprofit effort promoting awareness of the state's water crisis in the Latino community.