Wednesday November 29, 2023

SJV Water

A string of emails appears to show that one state agency stood in the way of stream channel maintenance for more than five years, which may have led to flooding that caused severe damage in Merced County, according to a recent lawsuit. 

The emails begin in 2018 and go back and forth for years between several Merced agencies  – seeking a permit agreement to clear stream beds of the Black Rascal, Bear and Miles creeks – and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW.) 

The emails show repeated warnings by CDFW that maintenance work could not be done without a permit agreement. Then, after 2023 floods destroyed homes, businesses and farmland, at least one email suggests staffers at CDFW sought to shift blame for the delayed channel work onto local agencies.

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