SALTON SEA DROUGHT CONTINGENCY PLAN; Congressional Record Vol. 165, No. 53
(House of Representatives - March 27, 2019)

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[Page H2876]
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                              {time}  1745

  (Mr. RUIZ asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 
minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
  Mr. RUIZ. Madam Speaker, I rise today to address concerns about the 
Colorado River drought contingency plan and to sound the alarm and 
avoid a public health crisis at the Salton Sea in southern California.
  To be clear, I support the goals of the DCP, which outlines voluntary 
water use cuts across seven Western States in the event of a worsening 
drought. However, I am concerned that the current proposal to implement 
the DCP provides an expansive waiver to the Bureau of Reclamation that 
could result in the reduction of water to the Salton Sea.
  The Salton Sea is the largest inland body of water in all of 
California, and its very existence is already at risk. Ensuring the 
Salton Sea is protected as part of this agreement is critically 
important because, if the Salton Sea decline accelerates, thousands of 
lake beds will become exposed, subjecting residents of southern 
California to harmful dust that penetrates the lungs and can cause 
severe respiratory illness.
  I look forward to working with the Natural Resources Committee to 
find a solution that prevents a broad waiver of Federal laws and that 
preserves water rights and critical environmental protections for its 
surrounding residents.
  Madam Speaker, I support the goals of the DCP. However, I cannot in 
good conscience support implementation in a way that harms the Salton 
Sea or threatens the health of the people I serve.