Farmers Need to Serve on Water District Boards

Farmers Need to Serve on Water District Boards

July 7, 2020


It's a Good Idea That Farmers Serve on Boards of Water Districts

By Patrick Cavanaugh, with the AgInformation Network

William Bourdeau is executive vice president of Harris Farms in Southwest Fresno County. Harris Farms is a diversified operation, farming, almonds, pistachios and vegetable crops. Bourdeau is very busy, but he does take the time to serve on different water district boards.

“I'm the vice chairman of the board of the San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority, and a director for Westlands Water District,” said Bourdeau.

Bourdeau explains the major water systems in California. “The Central Valley project is federal and in the State Water Project, is a state project. And you know we're supposed to be working together in coordination,” said Bourdeau. But he said all the water districts and farmers need to do a better job at that.

“There was an effort underway to do just that. It was called the voluntary agreements. I'm fairly certain it's stalled, but I hope we all come together and make decisions that are in the best interest of everyone,” he said.

“And I do think having a vibrant domestic food supply capability that requires reliable water supply is critically important to our survival,” explained Bourdeau.

And he has something to say about the COVID-19 virus situation. “Well, I hope that the situation we find ourselves in right now, people realize and recognize the importance of having a vibrant domestic food supply capability, particularly during a pandemic, but just in general, it's a foundational element to any successful society,” noted Bourdeau.