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California League of Food Processors 13

a program to appropriately allocate these funds for the

public benefits of eligible water storage projects.

The bond calls for this funding to begin at the end of

2016. The commission plans to release draft regulations

by June 2015 and issue the final plan to the Office of

Administrative Law by the Fall of 2015 to begin the formal

rule making process.

The commission hosted three public meetings in April to

provide an opportunity for stakeholders to provide input

on how the bond funds should be spent. The meetings

were held in Chico, Fresno and Pleasant Hill.

Agricultural stakeholders told the commissioners at the

meeting in Fresno that water plays a vital role in the

region and the effects of the drought hurt more than just

those who farm. It extends to workers, businesses that

depend on farming and rural communities. Supporters

of more water storage are pushing to have a new dam

built at Temperance Flat, upstream of Millerton Lake, and

Sites Reservoir in Sacramento Valley.

How the water storage portion of the funds is ultimately

to be spent will be debated among the nine members of

the commission. Three are from the Sacramento Valley:

farmer Joe Del Bosque of Firebaugh, Dave Orth, general

manager of the Kings River Conservation District, and

Herrera of Visalia. Del Bosque is currently vice-chair of

the commission.

Water Quality Issues:

Storm Water Permit

The new Industrial General Permit (IGP) was adopted

April 1, 2014. Once effective (July 1, 2015) it will

replace the current permit. The IGP requires electronic

applications and reporting. It also contains more

stringent requirements including, mandatory BMPs,

additional monitoring and sampling requirements, and

Numeric Action Levels (NALs) and Exceedance Response

Actions (ERAs).


CLFP remains engaged with the CV-SALTS stakeholder

coalition, which continues to work on revising the Central

Valley Regional Water Board’s (Board) Basin Plans to

include a salt and nutrient management plan (SNMP).

The plan, once adopted, will set the regulatory standards

for all wastewater discharges in the Central Valley and

will have a significant impact on most farming and food

processing operations. CLFP’s main goal in engaging

on the CV-SALTS effort is to provide more regulatory

flexibility and certainty for food processors with

wastewater land application sites. Much of the effort by

the Board is focused on groundwater degradation, and

this may eventually dovetail with efforts by the state to

develop independent regional groundwatermanagement

agencies. Draft Basin Plan Amendments are expected in

late 2015, and then will be subject to public comments

and review by the Regional and State Water Boards prior

to approval.

Chrom-6 Drinking Water Standard

The Department of Public Health (DPH) recently set a new

state drinking water standard for hexavalent chromium

(Chrom-6) at 10 parts per billion. The new standard is

substantially lower than what the latest research shows

is needed to protect public health. Chrom-6 occurs

naturally in water supplies across the state at levels that

often exceed California’s new drinking water standard.

Efforts to eliminate this naturally occurring Chrom-6

could potentially cost water utilities millions of dollars

a year.

This new standard could have serious implications to food

processors with self-supplied water. Food processors

on self-supplied water systems that employ 25 or more

people that come into contact or use the water at the

plant, are considered a non-transient community water

systems and would be subject to this new drinking water

standard. Water used in food processing plants must be

derived from an adequate source (i.e from an approved

and appropriately constructed well or a public drinking

water system), and if it contacts food or food contact

surfaces, that it is of adequate sanitary quality.

CLFP staff confirmed that DPH will generally only be

considering enforcement when contaminated water is

coming into direct contact with food or used on food

contact equipment where contaminants may be left

behind that can be incorporated into the food during

processing. This could be a concern with regard to using

water that exceeds the Chrom-6 standard to clean plants

or use on or in products.

On May 29, 2014 the California Manufacturers &

Technology Association (CMTA) and the Solano County

Taxpayers Association (SCTA) jointly filed a lawsuit

against the DPH in Sacramento Superior Court over the

new state drinking water standard. The lawsuit asks the

court to order DPH to adopt a drinking water standard for

hexavalent chromium that is based on the best available

research, considers national standards and takes into

account the reasonably expected economic impacts

of this rule. The case is expected to go to trial in July

of 2015.

In addition, CLFP is monitoring pending legislation that

would authorize a deferral on compliance for public

water systems until 2020.

California's Department of Resources

Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle):

CalRecycle is proposing new regulations regarding the

land application of food processing byproducts and

compostable green waste. CalRecycle states that it is

trying to address a specific nuisance issue with municipal