Water Commission Meeting Delivers Passion and Controversy
By Charmayne Hefley
As the California drought has devastated many farms and communities,  solving the drought is critical and urgent. Some advocates believe long-term water storage is the solution, and as a result, the California Water Commission (Commission) has been drawing up a proposal to enact this potential solution.

On Wednesday, Oct. 14 in Clovis, the Commission held a public meeting to discuss their Water Storage Investment Program.

Joe Del Bosque, a governor-appointed commissioner on the California Water Commission, as well as a Westside farmer struggling with the zero water allocation, summarized the meeting, "It was very lively, especially at the beginning. A lot of folks are hurting and rightly so. They have a lot of uncertainties about next year or the year after, or for who knows how many years."

"We don't know when some of these storage projects will be completed and ready to start helping us," said Del Bosque. "A lot of folks have a lot on the line here in the San Joaquin Valley, and I appreciate hearing from them and listening to their concerns."

Click  here to read the whole story.

Jobs Will Be Lost Without #moreDAMstorage
By Brian German

Greg Musson , president of GAR Tootelian, Inc., shared his thoughts at the California Water Commission meeting in Clovis on Oct. 14.

Listen to the broadcast as Brian German reports.
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Featured Articles & Broadcasts
Water Rally Calls For Action, More Voices
By Brian German 

At the recent "Take Back our Water Rally" in Mendota, hundreds gathered to call on Governor Brown to recognize the impact of not just the drought, but the bureaucratic decisions that have had devastating consequences for California farmers. Leadership at the water rally called for action and more voices in the plea for change.

Aubrey Bettencourt, executive director of California Water Alliance, shared some points she made a the rally, "My challenge to this audience was to understand there is a void of leadership. We have a governor who says he is handling this, and he is not. We have no recovery plan for how to get out of this drought. How do we get out of the crisis?  There has been no pathway to recovery, neither from the federal government, nor the state government." Finally, last month, a group of 47 legislators, both Republican and Democratic, called for a special legislative session.

Click here to read the  whole  story.

Joint Power of Authority Could Save Temperance Flat Dam
By Patrick Cavanaugh

A Joint Power of Authority (JPA) is being formed to help preserve money authorized for construction of the Temperance Flat Dam with the passage of California Proposition 1, the Water Bond in 2014. Joel Nelsen, president of California Citrus Mutual, has been engaged in getting the project off the ground.

"It is unfortunate what has happened to the Friant Water Authority leadership and the lack of suitable talent there to run with it," said Nelsen. "The situation has adversely impacted getting a Temperance Flat water storage program in front of the California Water Commission, whose nine governor-appointed members are responsible for advising the director of California Department of Water Resources, approving rules and regulations, and monitoring and reporting on the construction and operation of the State Water Project..."

Click  here to read the whole story.
UC Davis Water Policy For Food Security Global Conference 
By Laurie Greene

A Global Conference for Water Policy for Food Security was held at UC Davis in early October  to focus on global groundwater supplies. Many international speakers talked about water supplies in their own countries.

The take-home message: Water supplies are limited, but growers are being very efficient and groundwater recharge is a priority.

Josette Lewis, associate director of the World Food Center at UC Davis said, "When I joined UC Davis, it was very clear that water is something in which this campus has enormous technical expertise and has expertise to inform and engage in state water policy," she said.

Click  here to read the whole story.

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Social Media Minute

Perhaps you're intimidated by new t echnology and don't want to go near social media. Why should you face your fears and trudge ahead into social media land? Look at it this way; according to an article from  Pew Research Center , 64 percent of adults use Facebook. Of that, 30 percent get their news from Facebook. That may not sound like much, but it represents an incredible number of people. And as the millennial generation takes over, that number will significantly rise. 

Do you have a farm or ag business that's not on Facebook or any social media yet? We want YOU to be on top of your social media game! We'll be sharing tips and pointers to help you get started with or improve the  promotion of  your company through social media.   

Today we'll get you started with Facebook. Facebook is the best way to reach and inform a new and curious audience who may not understand the complexities of farming but who care about the food they eat. It can also enable you to build trust with consumers and help with crisis communication by speaking their language on a format they may turn to first. 

While it may sound intimidating, encouraging people to become aware of your brand increases the control you have over your brand, particularly over the facts shared in public conversation. So venture forth. We'll  make it easier than ever to get your company social media-savvy. 

First things first: Open your web  browser's url bar, type in  facebook.com/agincalifornia   and click enter/return to  explore what Facebook has to offer.  This delivers you to the California Ag Today Facebook page. Go ahead and browse our page. Notice the variety of media on the "Timeline" tab to the lower right of our square logo, including images, text, audio, and video. 

Need another example? Check out  facebook.com/cagrown . This is the California Grown Facebook page,   a note worthy   site  that is truly making an impact. You can see their number of followers and feed of social engagement. 

Second:   Now that you are familiar with Facebook, you'll need to create an account  for yourself at facebook.com/pages/create Facebook will walk you through the process of creating what is known as a "friend" page. The "friend" page- your own personal page- will allow you to create what is known as a "fan" page. Without the individual page you won't be able to create a "fan" page, and due to Facebook's rules and regulations your company can't simply be its own "friend" page. So go ahead and create your "friend" page to get started. Once you've done that, revisit California Ag Today and California Grown and "like" them. This will allow you to view everything they share on their pages. 

Next month we'll teach you how to create your own Facebook "fan" page for your ag business.