Noted attorney Tim Kelleher has written an important analysis for growers regarding the impact expected lower rice prices this year may have on various federal programs. His summary provides specific information to help growers ensure they are enrolled in programs that best suit their situation.
In addition, Kelleher has updated the Decision Tool, which includes instructions so growers can use their own projections to determine possible payments.
Proponents of the Dam–Train announced Friday that they are temporarily suspending signature gathering and are now focused on the 2018 elections.
Functionally, this allows them to gather signatures through the end of July and take advantage of lower costs to gather the more than 500,000 valid petition signatures needed.
CRIA and NCWA will continue to press the case that this ballot measure impacts water rights and delays the construction of Sites Reservoir regardless of when it is on the ballot.
Here is a good story in the Los Angeles Times with their comments and redirected strategy.
Rice farmer and advocate Kurt Richter put together this excellent video on the problems with the proposed Dam-Train ballot measure. It includes great interviews with Assembly Member James Gallagher, Don Bransford, David Guy and Jay Ziegler from the Nature Conservancy.
Watch the Video
Work to ensure that Sites Reservoir is built received a huge boost with today’s Sacramento Bee column by Dan Walters, which included a mention that recent Sacramento River flows could have filled Sites in about 10 days. READ MORE
You may have heard about the ballot measure currently gathering signatures that seeks to take bond money from high–speed rail and re-direct it to additional water storage. While it seems positive on first read, both NCWA and CRIA are opposing the measure due to its negative impacts on water rights and the delay it would have on the construction of Sites Reservoir. READ MORE
We have completed a new report that chronicles 30 years of air quality improvements in California Rice. It captures the story of reduced rice straw burning, use of cleaner-burning engines, and improvements in energy consumption to produce rice. In all, the report tells the story of an 80-90 percent reduction in major air pollutants and a 20 percent reduction in energy use (and related emissions) in this time frame. READ MORE
Since the inception of the new California Ricelands Waterbird Foundation, we have been putting the pieces into place for this organization to receive tax-deductible donations to enhance habitat in rice fields. Last month, the Foundation finally received its formal letter from the IRS, granting it status as a 501c3 approved to receive fully tax-deductible charitable donations. READ MORE
Know an incoming college junior or senior interested in Ag policy? If so, direct them to CalRice.org for the CRC Summer Internship Program description and application. READ MORE
We extended the deadline for completing the Farm Evaluation and the Nitrogen Management Plan (NMP). The two regulatory requirements were due March 1. However, the Central Valley Water Board allows us the discretion to make adjustments as long as we meet our regulatory reporting requirements for the Farm Evaluation. The NMP is not accessible by the CRC and remains on your farm. READ MORE
Over twenty California rice industry members attended the USA Rice Government Affairs Conference in Washington, D.C. last week. In addition to Federation meetings, we met with 28 members of the California Congressional Delegation. READ MORE