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Were Folsom Lake Water Supplies Handled Properly?

 
Were Folsom Lake Water Supplies Handled Properly?
Posted Wednesday, February 5th 2014 @ 8am  by KFBK News - Tim Lantz

Throughout Northern California there's worry about the drought, but did the federal government gamble with out water supply in Folsom Lake?  

Folsom Lake provides water to over a quarter-million people in Granite Bay, Citrus Heights, Fair Oaks, Orangevale and even some of Folsom.

But now it's so low that those in the San Juan Water District are wondering if there's going to be enough to go around.  

District officials who are worried about the drought, and the amount of water being released from Folsom Dam, sent a letter of concern in July to the Bureau of Reclamation, the organization that manages the water. 

It stated, among other things, that the Bureau of Reclamation, " … gambled with our water supply."

"We were very strongly, at that point, encouraging them to pay attention to what was happeing with Folsom, that this year might not be wet," San Juan Water District Manager Shauna Lorance said. 

News10 asked bureau spokesman Louie Moore about that.

"Reclamation operates for a water manager for numerous contractors," Moore said. 

And, so, he says the bureau had to release water for a variety of reasons.  

Moore said the agency recognized a drought was possible, but he said managers had no idea a high pressure system would hang over the region for 13 months and create one of the worst droughts ever recorded.

However, News10 found that from July through August of last year the bureau released as much water as is currently in Folsom Lake now.

The bureau's main concern is making sure there is enough water for the 300,000 people who depend on the lake's water storage. 

Lorance and Moore said the Bureau of Reclamation, the water district and other water users are currently working together to come up with a long-term management plan at Folsom Lake.

-- News10 contributed to this report.

PHOTOS: Mormon Island at Folsom Lake

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