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Voice: He'll fallow his land, Gray, if you'll get some land fallowed elsewhere

May 09, 2002

This is an open letter to Gov. Gray Davis, the federal Department of the Interior and the California Board of Water Resources:

I have just discovered that the governor of California, through his subordinates, has ordered the Imperial Irrigation District to fallow land.

Through my investigations I have discovered that between San Diego County and Los Angeles County they irrigate as many acres for recreation as we do to produce agriculture. They have as many golf courses, water parks, amusement parks and cemeteries as we have in Imperial County under fruitful production.

I have a challenge to the governor and the other entities I have mentioned. If we are going to conserve water here in Imperial County by fallowing land, you should do your part and dry up 40 acres in Los Angeles or San Diego County and I will propose to dry up 40 acres in Imperial County.

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Now, having said that, you, Mr. Governor have no right or any legal precedent to demand that we fallow any land concerning federal water. You, sir, have not that right. This water is presided over by the federal government and as much as you would like to, you have no right to even request, let alone demand what we do with our water.

Now going back to your golf courses, water parks, amusement parks and cemeteries. Even a few years back when California was in a terrible water shortage, it was ordered by some communities that everyone had to install low-flow toilets, and if they irrigated their front lawn or washed their car, they would be subjected to jail or huge fines. But during this time of crises, nothing was heard from the governor's office about irrigation of golf courses, water parks and amusement parks. To my knowledge, not one spear of grass on a golf course or cemetery ever turned brown. The sprinklers ran forever. Not one amusement park dried a lake; not one water park was restricted from using the water.

So finally, Mr. Governor, if you want to conserve water as you so state, take my challenge to dry up 40 acres in San Diego or Los Angeles County and I will support your fallowing of 40 acres in Imperial County. It seems to me that you and your cohorts have only one thing in mind and that's to steal the water from Imperial County to sustain the growth, i.e. golf courses, water parks, etc. in the two southern counties of San Diego and Los Angeles, no matter who pays the price.

And if we finally do lose all the water, and this county reverts back to a desert, and the Imperial Irrigation District goes bankrupt and quits, I hope a higher power than you, Mr. Governor, will sentence you to live out your life in this desert without water or power.

RICK MEALEY

Imperial

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