Federal investment in Sites Reservoir was reinforced this week with an additional $30 million in funding allocated from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (passed in 2021). With the allocation of these funds, Sites has now received roughly $134 million in federal funding from the Bureau of Reclamation for construction of the Sites Reservoir Project. “Sites Reservoir creates new resiliency for California in the face of climate change,” said Fritz Durst, chairman of the Sites Project Authority. “Through Sites, we are building smarter infrastructure that will provide water supplies for people, farms and the environment when it’s needed most.”
Sites will provide significant public benefits, including environmental, flood control and recreational benefits. The investment from the project’s federal partners will enhance what the project will deliver for the environment and would be additive to environmental benefits provided by the State’s Proposition 1 dollars. Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Camille Calimlim Touton, commented “Our investment in these projects will increase water storage capacity and lay conveyance pipeline to deliver reliable and safe drinking water and build resiliency for communities most impacted by drought.”
Sites Reservoir is an off-stream facility that does not dam a major river system and would not block fish migration or spawning. Sites captures and stores stormwater flows from the Sacramento River – after all other water rights and regulatory requirements are met – for release primarily in dry and critical years for environmental use and for California communities, farms, and businesses when it is so desperately needed. One of Sites Reservoir’s greatest strengths is in its broad statewide representation including cities, counties, water and irrigation districts throughout the Sacramento Valley, San Joaquin Valley, Bay Area, and Southern California. The Sites Reservoir Project is locally led by the Sites Project Authority which is made up Sacramento Valley water districts, cities and counties.