SACRAMENTO—February 14, 2006—CDFA Secretary A.G. Kawamura, speaking today at opening ceremonies for the World Ag Expo in Tulare, urged California farmers and other Central Valley residents to get behind Governor Schwarzenegger’s Strategic Growth Plan.
“The governor’s plan will help infrastructure for flood control and our water supply,” said Secretary Kawamura. “This project is critical. California’s infrastructure was built for 25 million people. Our current population is 37 million. By 2025, it is projected that our population will reach 46 million. We don’t even have the infrastructure to meet the needs of today, so if we don’t act now we will never be able to meet the needs of tomorrow.”
The governor’s Strategic Growth Plan will invest $35 billion for water needs and flood control, which includes California’s levee system. $ 6 billion of that investment will be made over the next 10 years.
Secretary Kawamura’s speech also touched on the governor’s budget for 2006-2007. There are appropriations to CDFA for emerging threats such as avian influenza and foot-and-mouth disease; to increase services at agricultural inspection stations on California’s borders; and for continued development of hydrogen fuel standards, which are essential as the state moves closer to Governor Schwarzenegger’s vision of a Hydrogen Highway.
“This is an excellent budget for agriculture,” said Secretary Kawamura. “Continued preparation for emerging threats is hugely important. The item in the governor’s budget will bolster our existing capacity to respond to agricultural emergencies, which could strike anyplace in the farm-to-fork continuum and involve foods ranging from animal products to fruits and vegetables.”
California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814