Bob Calaway: San Joaquin Valley food outweighs a fast trip

December 23, 2013 

Central and Southern San Joaquin Valley farmers grossed $25 billion in 2012. Passenger rail service needed $1.4 billion in subsidies from Congress in 2012.

The high-speed rail proposed in our Valley will turn into a government-subsidized program within a couple of years if not before. The food produced in our Valley is significantly more important to the people of California and other states then a fast ride. Yet, the water supply for crops is being depleted each year. A couple of years ago farmers on the west side of Merced County did not plant tomatoes or cotton because of a lack of water!

Imagine if the funds for the high-speed rail could be used for increasing water capacity and storage. I feel the high-speed rail should be set aside until the water shortage capacity is resolved.

Water for agriculture needs to be the highest priority of the state and local governments and people of California.

BOB CALAWAY

Atwater

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