The federal government has asked the governors of seven Western states that draw water from the Colorado River to finally draft a drought contingency plan. This follows an earlier order to do so, but California and Arizona have been unable to complete the task.
While many Californians think that their state could solve the affordable housing crisis by just ramping up construction, others blame a lack of rent control, not enough funding for affordable homes and too strict environmental controls.
California’s rural communities, which often rely on wells and increasingly must contend with contaminated water, are now at the forefront of the incoming governor’s budget.
Job growth and population gains in California’s mostly rural Central Valley surpassed the same measures in the state’s more populous Bay Area and Southern region, which some analysts say could be encouraging trends for the coming year.
The Colorado River, which serves seven states in the American Southwest, will likely have a shortage of water by 2020 and the federal government has ordered the states to plan for drought conditions.