As if we didn't have enough to worry about...we can now add water to our list. Generally, I'm not one to comment on the political shortcomings of our state, but this is just too important to keep quiet.
Yesterday afternoon, The Husband attended yet another meeting of local farmers at neighboring Rued Winery. The subject was water rights and more specifically how the Golden State wants to take away the rights of private land owners to the access of water located on their property. At first glance, this would appear to be a rather dull subject and one we've all heard bantered about for years. Oh yea that, do we have to talk about that again?
But hearing firsthand about the latest crap the state is trying to pull over our eyes has me concerned. And, I already have enough worries to last me a good long while.
Let me paint a picture for you.
Basic water rights are a fundamental human rightright up there next to enjoying ice cream and driving around looking cool when you're a teenager. If you live in a municipality like the town of Healdsburg or the County of Sonoma, you get your water through the city utility commission. Your usage is monitored, and you pay a monthly fee for the service they provide which is chlorinated but clean drinking water that is readily available and on demand 24/7. In a drought situation, they might clamp down on irrigation, but generally water is available.
If you live in the country and are a property owner outside of a municipality, like most grape growers and winery folks are, your water comes directly off your own property via ground water wells. You buy your land (very expensive), you dig a well ($$$), you service your well (more $$$), you irrigate your crops, you get your drinking water, etc. (Sometimes you even have no water like when a mouse crawls into the well's breaker box and wreaks havoc. True story, it happened just last week!)