'We must recognize the severity of the crisis,' Schwarzenegger states
The Associated Press, June. 4, 2008
"For the areas in
The executive order directed the state's response to unusually dry conditions that are damaging crops, harming water quality and putting areas at risk of fire across
The statewide drought declaration is the first since 1991, when Gov. Pete Wilson acted in the fifth year of a drought that lasted into 1992.
The order directs the state Department of Water Resources to speed water transfers to areas with the worst shortages. It also tells state officials to help local water districts with conservation and directs agencies to help farmers suffering losses.
The governor has warned that conditions could be even worse in 2009 if there is another dry winter.
Schwarzenegger is expected to use the drought declaration to promote his nearly $12 billion proposal to build more reservoirs and a canal to direct water around the troubled Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
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