Garamendi Urges EPA not to Acquiesce to Deceptive Funding Request for Twin Tunnels Project
WASHINGTON, DC- Today, Congressman John Garamendi (D-Fairfield, Davis, Yuba City), a senior member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Water Resources Subcommittee, sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency urging it to reject a request by the Delta Conveyance Finance Authority (DCFA), the financial agency for the disastrous twin tunnels project, for a $9.8 billion loan under the Water Infrastructure, Finance, and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loan program. The Letter of Interest whereby DCFA requested the funding is riddled with misrepresentations and inaccuracies that overstate the project’s benefits, minimize its massive drawbacks, and ignore significant obstacles that hamper the project’s viability.
“The Twin Tunnels project is an environmental and fiscal boondoggle, but the Letter of Interest the project’s backers sent to the EPA states that the patient is in perfect health,” said Garamendi. “Fortunately, communities in the Delta know the truth, and my letter to the EPA sets the record straight.”
The letter from Mr. Garamendi documents several concerns with the DCFA’s claims:
- The Letter of Interest claims, with no support, that the project would create 100,000 jobs, when all available evidence indicates the real number is less than 10% of that figure.
- The Letter of Interest conveys the impression that the environmental review and permitting process for the projects are likely to give it a green light, which is untrue.
- The project proposes to divert water currently permitted to the Bureau of Reclamation, while ignoring the Bureau of Reclamation’s objections, which threaten operational viability.
- The project has already bilked the taxpayers for $84 million, despite requirements that the funds come from state and federal water contractors.
A copy of the letter, along with supporting documentation, is available here.