Your source for CAWG and industry news
March 2 , 2017
CALENDAR

March 15
CAWG Day in the Capitol, Sacramento

March 15
CAWG Foundation Gala, Sacramento

March 16
CAWG Board of Directors meeting, Sacramento

April 26-27
National Grape & Wine Policy Conference, Washington, D.C.

May 17-18
CAWG Board of Directors meeting, Sacramento

July 17
CAWG PAC Golf Tournament, Napa

July 17
CAWG Awards of Excellence Program and Dinner, Napa

July 18
CAWG Summer Conference, Napa

July 19
CAWG Board of Directors meeting, Napa

 
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These important events are less than two weeks away.
Please register as soon as possible so that we have a head count. Numbers matter -- and we need a strong turnout of CAWG members to visit with legislators about our industry issues. Feel free to bring a friend!


THE FRONT PAGE 
Trump Signs Executive Order to Rescind and Revise WOTUS

President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed an executive order (EO) that paves the way for the elimination of the controversial waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule. Specifically, the EO directs the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers to review the final rule and "publish for notice and comment a proposed rule rescinding or revising the rule, as appropriate and consistent with law." In remarks before signing the order, Trump referred to WOTUS as "one of the worst examples of federal regulation, and it has truly run amok, and is one of the rules most strongly opposed by farmers, ranchers and agricultural workers all across our land. It's prohibiting them from being allowed to do what they're supposed to be doing."
 
> EXECUTIVE ORDER : Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing "Waters of the United States"
 
 


CAWG Meets with Member of House Ag Committee

CAWG logo no words
CAWG President John Aguirre and Scheid Vineyards President and CEO Scott Scheid met with U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill) on Feb. 23 at the Scheid tasting room in Carmel. Davis came to California last week to support Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Calif.) at a political fundraiser. Davis chairs the House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Biotechnology, Horticulture and Research, which focuses on legislation relating to specialty crops, organic agriculture, pest and disease management, research and biotechnology. Aguirre and Scheid briefed Davis on issues and challenges confronting California winegrape growers. Davis will be a key leader on reauthorization of the farm bill.


INDUSTRY ARTICLES

The new federal overtime rules are still on hold and their future fate is uncertain.
CalChamber, March 1
 
Dow Chemical Co. and DuPont Co. are on track to win European Union approval for their $74 billion tie-up.
Bloomberg, Feb. 28
Sonoma County Winegrowers eyes 2019 to become the U.S.'s first completely sustainable wine region.
Growing Produce, Feb. 26
 
Op ed by George Radanovich, Joel Nelsen and Tom Nassif on recent appointment of Isadore Hall.
Sacramento Bee, Feb. 23
 
Some less-known varieties have significant potential; mechanical pruning may reduce rot
Feb. 21, Wines & Vines
 
Capitalizing on growing thirst nationwide for the higher-end wine the North Coast is known for is intensifying demand for sources of capital.
North Bay Business Journal, Feb. 21
 
What is NAFTA, and what would happen to U.S. trade without it? (article and video)
Washington Post, Feb. 15


WATER NEWS
Gov. Brown Moves to Bolster Dam Safety and Repair Transportation and Water Infrastructure

Due to the detrimental effects of extreme rainstorms, Gov. Jerry Brown announced on Feb. 24 a series of immediate and longer-term actions to strengthen dam safety, improve flood protection and fix California's aging transportation and water infrastructure.
 
WATER: Brown unveiled a four-point plan to bolster dam safety and flood protection.

1. Invest $437 million in near-term flood control and emergency response actions by redirecting $50 million from the general fund and requesting a $387 million Proposition 1 appropriation from the Legislature as soon as possible. (None of the money from Proposition 1 was designated for storage.)
2. Require emergency action plans and flood inundation maps for all dams.
3. Enhance California's existing dam inspection program.
4. Seek prompt regulatory action and increased funding   from the federal government to improve dam safety.
 
> FACT SHEET : Four-point plan

> FACT SHEET : Ongoing storm and flood management
 
TRANSPORTATION: The state also faces a broad array of transportation infrastructure challenges. These include improving highways, roads, levees and bridges. Additional information is provided in a  press release .  

Water Stress and a Changing San Joaquin Valley - Report and Event/Webcast

The Public Policy Institute of California has published a new report about how the San Joaquin Valley is facing growing water stress and a number of related environmental and public health problems. The report includes an overview of the evolution of irrigated agriculture in the valley and its role in the regional economy. It reviews some major resource challenges, including water scarcity and the need to bring groundwater basins into balance under SGMA. It also highlights approaches to balance water supply and demand, improve water and air quality, and reinvigorate the natural  environment.

EVENT AND WEBCAST: On March 7 in Clovis, the PPIC Water Policy Center and the   California Water Institute at Fresno State   will hold a free, half-day public event and webcast featuring panels of local leaders and experts to discuss the report and key water issues facing the region.  

Snowpack Way Above Average

The Sierra Nevada snowpack continues to build. The Department of Water Resources (DWR) announced on March 1 electronic readings from 98 stations scattered throughout the Sierra Nevada. Statewide, the snowpack holds 45.5 inches of snow water equivalent, or 185 percent of the March 1 average (24.6 inches). DWR also conducted its third manual snow survey off Highway 50 near Sierra-at-Tahoe and found a snow water equivalence of 43.4 inches, up from 28 inches in February and 6 inches in January. 

Water Articles and Resources

California farmers whose orchards, vineyards or farmland flooded will work to patch and reinforce levees, and hope water can recede with minimal crop damage. But some farmers expect to suffer losses.
Ag Alert, March 1
 
CAWG board member Brad Goehring is interviewed in this article about Trump's executive order regarding WOTUS.
Stockton Record, Feb. 28
 
Current numbers show that nearly 75 percent of the state is not in a drought, compared to 0.43 percent one year ago.
 
 
 

CAWG EVENTS
Call for Nominations: Grower of the Year and Leader of the Year

CAWG's Awards of Excellence Program spotlights exceptional people who have benefitted the broader community of winegrape growers through exemplary leadership and outstanding commitment to the well-being of the winegrowing industry, California communities and the environment. Nomination forms are available on the  CAWG website



RESOURCES
Ascension Insurance, Inc. is hosting this March 7 seminar, featuring speakers from the Department of Insurance fraud division and the Fresno district attorney's office. They will present information to employers on what to look for regarding fraud - from employees to medical providers to attorneys and other providers. They will discuss what is and what is not fraud. RSVP to   cgomez@ascensionins.com .


DPR Pesticide Guide and Worker Safety Regulation Changes

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation has published "A Guide to Pesticide Regulation in California - 2017 update."  > VIEW GUIDE
 
As of Jan. 2, new pesticide worker safety requirements are in effect for employers and employees working in agricultural production. California regulations have been updated to be consistent with the new federal Worker Protection Standard.

IN MEMORIAM
Duane Jungeblut

We are saddened by the passing of Duane Jungeblut of Lodi, who was a member of the ad hoc committee which helped form CAWG, a charter director and a lifetime member. We are grateful for the leadership he brought to CAWG, the Lodi District Grape Growers Association and the winegrape industry. We extend our heartfelt sympathies to Duane's family and friends.
 

UPCOMING INDUSTRY EVENTS
2017 National Grape & Wine Policy Conference

Voice Your Value: Positioning the Wine Industry to a New Administration

The 2017 National Grape & Wine Policy Conference is slated for April 26-27 at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. The conference will feature expert speakers and an evening congressional reception. Participants will also visit with legislators and staff on Capitol Hill. 
 


CSWA Webinars

Sustainable winegrowing and certification webinars will be held on March 7, March 22, April 18 and May 16. C ertified sustainable update webinars will be held on March 14 and May 9. Click here for the workshop calendar.


Wine & Vine Workforce Management Conference

Industry and legal experts will discuss a range of human resource and safety issues. FLCs, growers, HR, safety and supervisory personnel will gain insight on how to manage their workforce in these critical times of increasing regulations and decreasing workers.
 

WHEN: March 15
WHERE: Hampton Inn & Suites, Napa