Steven Greenhut on the California Drought of Common Sense

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Jack Cox

Californians seem to have remarkably good attitudes about the sacrifices they'll make as the drought heads into its fourth year. Based on polls, they even are supportive of crackdowns on excessive water use, which may explain Gov. Jerry Brown's recent call for $500 fines for those who over-water their lawns or take excessively long showers. But how tolerant will the public remain about slashing water use once they realize how state and federal officials are using the state's dwindling resources? On Tuesday, Steven Greenhut attended a packed meeting at the Oakdale Irrigation District east of Modesto, where farmers and residents questioned a plan to lower water levels at the massive New Melones Reservoir to get a handful of steelhead trout to swim in the ocean.

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