Water Agency Director Paul Kelley Appointed to California Water Commission


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    PRESS RELEASE - May 14, 2010 - For Immediate Release

    CONTACT: Brad Sherwood 707.547.1927, Cell Phone: 707.570.7448

    (Santa Rosa, CA)  Sonoma County Water Agency Director and County Supervisor Paul Kelley today was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to the California Water Commission.  The Commission assists the California Water Resources Department, advising the Director on a multitude of issues. The nine member panel is appointed by the governor and subject to the confirmation of the California State Senate. 

    The Commission will play a significant role in managing $3 billion to be spent on water projects if voters approve an $11.1 billion water bond in November.  The commission was created when voters approved the State Water Project passed by voters in 1959.

    "I am honored to have been selected to serve on the California Water Commission," said Kelley.  "I will utilize my 15 years of experience and leadership as a director of the Sonoma County Water Agency to serve our great state to secure and enhance our precious water resources."  

    Director Kelley has been a member of the Sonoma County Water Agency's Board of Directors for 15 years and is currently serving as president of the Association of California Water Agencies.  He has a diverse background in water and environmental issues.  He has created and served on national and local coalitions which have secured federal and state funding for pacific coastal salmon restoration projects, renewable energy and water conservation programs and the implementation of the Russian River Biological Opinion.  Director Kelley initiated the Sonoma County Water Agency's Carbon Free Water by 2015 program and the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program.  Both programs support the governor's AB 32 policies. 

    The Sonoma County Water Agency is a wholesale water supplier to cities and water districts that serve drinking water to 600,000 people in portions of Sonoma and Marin counties.  The Water Agency manages flood protection projects and operates eight sanitation districts.  The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors acts as the Water Agency's Board of Directors.

    The California Water Code offers the following summary of the California Water Commission's key duties:

    “The California Water Commission shall confer with, advise, and make recommendations to the director (department of water resources) with respect to any matters and subjects under his jurisdiction. All rules and regulations of the department, other than those relating exclusively to the internal administration and management of the department, shall be first presented by the director to the commission and shall become effective only upon approval thereof by the commission.

    The California Water Commission shall have the power to name all facilities of the State Water Resources Development System owned by the state.

    Where the appropriations committees of the Congress are hearing requests for appropriations for flood control projects being planned or constructed in California under the jurisdiction of the United States Army Corps of Engineers, or reclamation projects being planned or constructed in California by the Bureau of Reclamation, United States Department of the Interior, the California Water Commission shall present its views.

    In matters concerning the coordination of planning, construction, and operation of federal water development and flood control projects in the State of California with state and local projects, the California Water Commission shall advise the department, and the Governor, and to this end may confer with the appropriate executive agencies of the United States.”

    For more information, please call the Governor’s Press Office at 916. 445.4571.


    Sonoma County Water Agency provides water supply, flood protection and sanitation services for portions of Sonoma and Marin counties. Visit us on the Web at www.sonomacountywater.org.


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