I applaud Don Cox's water transfer letter appearing in this newspaper last month. It is refreshing to read intelligent thought on this subject matter from someone who has a legitimate interest in farmers' and landowners' water rights, as well as the interest of the community at large.
Certainly the current San Diego water transfer plan should be turned down by farmers and landowners. It is simply too risky because of their exposure to environmental and third-party liability. A new agreement, in the nature of the Palo Verde model, should be drafted. Such an agreement should make it explicitly clear that the buyer of the water assumes all liability for any litigable third-party and environmental impacts and that the Valley farmers/landowners and Imperial Irrigation District are explicitly absolved of any such liabilities.
The new agreement should also make it clear that any infrastructure costs, or any other costs or expenses, needed to make the transfer work should be borne by San Diego or the buyer.