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IID raises concerns during federal hearing on Colorado River drought

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General Manager provides witness testimony

IMPERIAL, Calif. (KYMA, KECY) - The Imperial Irrigation District (IID) announces its participation in the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resource’s two-part virtual hearing on the Colorado River drought.

General Manager Henry Martinez provided witness testimony Wednesday.

“The linkage between the Colorado River and the Salton Sea is irrefutable and the challenges facing it are ones both the upper and lower basins must recognize as a community of aligned interests,” Martinez shared. “The Salton Sea is, as you also know, the linchpin and proving grounds of the nation’s largest agricultural-to-urban conserved water transfer program, the QSA.”

IID officials say his testimony helped outline how vital the Colorado River is to the Imperial Valley in supporting its agricultural industry and rural existence.

Currently shrinking at an increasing rate, the Colorado River is the main source of water for 40 million Americans in the Desert Southwest. It's also Imperial Valley’s only water source.

Martinez's solution would require water agencies, surrounding states, tribes, Mexico and other stakeholders to form a new partnership and collectively address the imbalance on the river.

According to the IID, long-term Colorado River operational guidelines are planned for 2026.

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