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Schwarzenegger: Feds should be worried about California levees
ap on San Diego Union - Tribune ^ | 4/25/06 | Juliet Williams - ap

Posted on 04/25/2006 3:46:49 PM PDT by NormsRevenge

SACRAMENTO – Federal officials still are not taking seriously the threat of a failure in California's aging levee system and are risking another New Orleans-style disaster by failing to provide funding for repairs, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Tuesday.

During a visit to California last week, President Bush turned down the governor's request for a pre-emptive federal disaster declaration. Instead, he issued a rare directive letting the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers help with badly needed levee repairs.

Schwarzenegger also met privately with Bush, but he said Tuesday that the message isn't resonating with the administration. He did not mention the president by name.

“The federal government still is not getting the message,” the Republican governor told business leaders during the annual California Chamber of Commerce breakfast.

“They are spending $100 billion in New Orleans right now because they were not acting fast enough. And here is the time for them to redeem themselves, to go and say, 'We made a mistake before; let's not ever make that mistake again.' And again they are missing the boat.”

Bush officials have said the kind of declaration Schwarzenegger was seeking would require that a disaster already occurred. Pre-emptive disaster declarations have never been issued except when a catastrophe was imminent.

Bush's directive allows the Corps of Engineers to accept $23 million in California money for repairs on 29 sections of the levee that state officials have identified as critically weak.

Schwarzenegger said he is tired of talk.

“Again they are waiting and they are dialoguing and they are talking. They say 'Well, the permits are going to come. Well, we are going to get more money ... '

“All that dialogue we are hearing, but no true action.”

The governor vowed to keep up the pressure, saying the levees are “one big storm, one earthquake away from a major disaster.” He said levee ruptures could flood farmland, all of Sacramento, and other Central Valley towns and suburbs, while cutting off Southern California's water supply. Cleanup costs could match what the government is spending in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, he said.

Schwarzenegger has said the state will begin strengthening the levees in June, regardless of whether it receives federal help.


TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: california; levees; schwarzenegger; worried
Besides another major storm or earthquake,, an early heat wave could also have serious effects with the massive snowpack in the Sierras as a result of the rainfall this winter.

We're looking at temps closing in on 80 or more later this week.

1 posted on 04/25/2006 3:46:51 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge

Arnie better back those cats and payloaders up and start
hauling rock...STAT


2 posted on 04/25/2006 3:48:29 PM PDT by joesnuffy
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To: NormsRevenge
Federal officials still are not taking seriously the threat of a failure in California's aging levee system and are risking another New Orleans-style disaster

Image and video hosting by TinyPic
3 posted on 04/25/2006 3:49:05 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Never a minigun handy when you need one.)
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To: NormsRevenge

Arnie does have a point. When the levees go in California, and they will go, the Federal Government will end up paying for it, as little as we may like it.

We have a choice of paying a few billion now, or a few hundred billion later. I would rather us do option A.


4 posted on 04/25/2006 3:50:42 PM PDT by dogbyte12
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To: joesnuffy

Dear Arnie,

Please pass this emerging requirement up to Difi, Bela Pelosi, and Boxer. They have many years tenure in congress and can probably answer why this need has not been funded over the years.


5 posted on 04/25/2006 3:51:25 PM PDT by Wristpin ("The Yankees announce plan to buy every player in Baseball....")
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To: NormsRevenge
Many of these governors and state officials are just foaming at the mouth to get their hands on several billion dollars of levee money.

Clinton poured well over $2 billion into the New Orleans' levee board, and it disappeared in a spate of local projects, none of which had anything to do with the levees (one "project" was marketing the Harrah's land-based casino in downtown New Orleans). And, in spite of all the money, the federal government got the blame for the failure of the levees anyway.

Bush is right to direct money to the Corps of Engineers. Keep it out of the hands of state officials.

Arnold's a good guy, but there's too much temptation when there are billions involved.

6 posted on 04/25/2006 3:52:51 PM PDT by sinkspur (Things are about to happen that will answer all your questions and solve all your problems.)
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To: dogbyte12

You make sense but comparing it to New Orleans is a bit over the top. It won't be remotely like NO unless it happens in Death Valley and well you know....


7 posted on 04/25/2006 3:52:52 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Never a minigun handy when you need one.)
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To: joesnuffy

A number of levees are already having work done on them.

Unfortunately, due to the desire of developers to build in likely affected areas where additional levees could rupture, we are dancing on the precipice of disasters of pretty good proportions.

If I was him, I'd be taking what is left of the 15 billion he convinced folks to borrow after taking office and use it to get as much done as soon as possible.


8 posted on 04/25/2006 3:53:30 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: NormsRevenge

California should be worried about their own levees.


9 posted on 04/25/2006 3:54:41 PM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: dogbyte12
1) Why should I, a Virginian, pay for levees in CA at all? Let CA pay for them.

2) Flooding farmland periodically is GOOD for it. Ever heard of a river delta? Bottomland? Soil deposits? LACK of flooding of farmland is what killed NOLA.

10 posted on 04/25/2006 3:56:08 PM PDT by patton (Once you steal a firetruck, there's really not much else you can do except go for a joyride.)
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To: cripplecreek
The big danger is going to be the fires. What will happen is the brush is going to grow really big with all this rain. Then it's going to bake out dry all summer. Then the Santa Anas will come and the fire season in August, September are going to be super nasty.

Which reminds me to remind all California freepers to start already with the clearing of brush away from your property. 50-75 feet of brush clearance can be the difference between going home in 2 days, or hanging out in a red cross shelter.

11 posted on 04/25/2006 3:57:11 PM PDT by dogbyte12
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To: NormsRevenge; calcowgirl
All to make a flood plain safe for cashing in on perfectly good farms in the name of idiotic development.

One act of terrorism will flood that area no matter how good a condition to which the levees may be restored. There is absolutely no way to secure that many miles of levee (((24 x 7) x 365) X K), where K represents the number of years wherein a potential threat exists.

This is a classic example of how no amount of infrastructure will EVER preclude flooding in that area.

Can you just see a Slave Party operative blowing a levee this spring in order to manufacture a new Katrina, complete with Federill dollars for massive "emergency spending"?

12 posted on 04/25/2006 3:58:35 PM PDT by Carry_Okie (There are people in power who are truly evil.)
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To: dogbyte12

Your comment about fire breaks rang a bell.. Thanks!

--

Governor signs fire-break bill

http://www.nctimes.com/articles/2006/04/25/news/sandiego/19_44_294_24_06.txt

By: North County Times -

Legislation that will clear the way for wide areas of vegetation to be cleared around so-called "critical" structures to reduce the chance that wildfire will engulf them has been signed into law by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Authored by state Sen. Dennis Hollingsworth, R-Murrieta, the amended legislation allows state or local officials to authorize property owners to clear vegetation in an arc as wide as 300 feet around hospitals, adult residential care facilities, schools, above-ground storage tanks and hazardous materials facilities.

Existing law requires property owners of all types of structures ---- including homes ---- to clear at least 30 feet of shrubs and other flammable vegetation in backcountry areas.


The legislation was drafted in response to a governor's blue-ribbon commision report that, in 2004, recommended several measures to reduce the threat of wildfire. The report followed the devastating firestorms that struck San Diego, Riverside and other Southern California counties in October 2003.


13 posted on 04/25/2006 4:04:59 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: NormsRevenge

Broken Thumb Sale in Flugelhorn category on eBay. Must supply own dyke.


14 posted on 04/25/2006 4:04:59 PM PDT by sergeantdave (Communism is 3 people voting on what's for dinner but you still get the same old rice)
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To: patton

as a Californian, i agree with you. we have a state legislature that is addicted to tax and spend. let them pull in their belts first, putting California on a diet, finally running a fiscally responsible operation. then if we need help, we'll yell. hey, don't hold your breath, by the way. they're out of control up there in Sacramento.


15 posted on 04/25/2006 4:06:11 PM PDT by avital2
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To: NormsRevenge

No, I think homeowners that built in the flood plain should be worried.


16 posted on 04/25/2006 4:06:38 PM PDT by BurbankKarl
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To: Carry_Okie

FRom the Sac Bee today..

--

Sweeping mandate for flood coverage dies in committee

EXCERPTED

http://www.sacbee.com/content/politics/story/14247435p-15065067c.html

Legislation to require virtually every Sacramento home and business owner to purchase flood insurance as a hedge against catastrophic levee failure died Monday in an Assembly committee.

The measure by Assemblyman Dave Jones, D-Sacramento, ended with a whimper when nobody seconded a motion to approve Assembly Bill 1898, thus ending the Banking and Finance Committee session without a vote.

"I think we've missed a very important opportunity to make sure people are protected so that when a flood comes, they'll have something to fall back on," Jones said.

AB 1898 was opposed by the insurance and lending industries.


"We do not think it's the appropriate role of state government to mandate flood insurance - or any insurance," said Michael Paiva of the Personal Insurance Federation of California.


17 posted on 04/25/2006 4:07:01 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: avital2
We have used a really bad model for flood control in this country - we try to control the rivers/waters. This is doomed to failure, and is directly responsible for the gulf coast disaster.

Instead, we should adopt the German model - build cities/towns on hilltops, and protect them. Let the rest flood.

It has worked for thousands of years...

18 posted on 04/25/2006 4:15:35 PM PDT by patton (Once you steal a firetruck, there's really not much else you can do except go for a joyride.)
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To: NormsRevenge

More levee help -

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Finger For Sale By Owner for free at RealtyTrac.
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Talking Middle Finger Lighter 99 cent SALE on eBay...
cgi.ebay.com/Talking-Middle-Finger-Lighter-99-cent-SALE_


19 posted on 04/25/2006 4:16:23 PM PDT by sergeantdave (Communism is 3 people voting on what's for dinner but you still get the same old rice)
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To: dogbyte12
Arnie does have a point. ...the Federal Government will end up paying for it, as little as we may like it.... We have a choice of paying now, or later. I would rather.

Spoken like a true member of the New Majority.

For the rest of us (conservatives) only one entity has any responsibility for the losses. Those who took the risk. There is some responsibility for state and local government if they approved the building permits without requiring adequate flood insurance but their role is limited.

The feds were involved in New Orleans for national, strategic reasons. Western Fresno, Merced, Stanislaus and San Joaquin Counties lack that strategic significance.The trailer houses that dot the flood plain beneath the levees can be moved.

20 posted on 04/25/2006 4:16:56 PM PDT by Amerigomag
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To: BurbankKarl

I agree, and I know a few folks that are likely a bit concerned... including a freeper or two in the valley.


21 posted on 04/25/2006 4:17:33 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: NormsRevenge

Don't worry about it Bush,Cal.Has lots of money.


22 posted on 04/25/2006 4:21:43 PM PDT by jocko12
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To: NormsRevenge
If y'all get flooded, just grow more rice where the houses used to be. JK.

Seriously, I don't wish natural disasters on anyone (except maybe France and Vermont). Here's hoping that the worst doesn't occur.

23 posted on 04/25/2006 4:22:15 PM PDT by EricT. (CA conservatives only serve to inflate the number of electoral votes won by the Dems.)
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To: cripplecreek
Federal officials still are not taking seriously t

How can anyone take anything seriously when it involves California? Well maybe that fella in Fresno.

24 posted on 04/25/2006 4:28:18 PM PDT by chesty_puller (USMC 70-73 3MAF VN 70-71)
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To: NormsRevenge
Image hosted by potobucket.com loozianna stole their money Rnold... what's your excuse for not keeping them up???
25 posted on 04/25/2006 4:52:46 PM PDT by Chode (1967 UN Outer Space Treaty is bad for America and bad for humanity - DUMP IT. American Hedonist )
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To: cripplecreek
Well it's expected that half of Sacramento could be put underwater. That's pretty serious I'd think. I think this is part of Arnold reelection strategy to appeal to the left (Bush isn't helping us), middle (concern for CA residents) and right (preemptive action & CA not getting its fair share).

I have no idea how serious the situation is but these levee projects are not just a state issue and may have been built by the Feds or Army Corp of Engineers. I have no problem with Arnold wanting to prevent a problem to avoid wasting money down the road.

Since CA gets just 79 cents back for every federal tax dollar paid, we should demand every thing we can.

26 posted on 04/25/2006 4:57:39 PM PDT by newzjunkey (Don't use illegals: HIREPATRIOTS.COM)
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To: NormsRevenge

Let us drill, then we can talk about your water problem.


27 posted on 04/25/2006 5:00:52 PM PDT by Gator113
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To: NormsRevenge
In my best Cheech Marin accent: "Drove my (67) Chevy (Impala low-rider with lights in the undercarriage and a 5000W subwoofer) to the levee but the levee was dry ..."
28 posted on 04/25/2006 5:08:18 PM PDT by manwiththehands ("'Rule of law'? We don't need no stinkin' rule of law! We want AMNESTY, muchacho!")
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