Effecting Key Local, Regional and Statewide Issues
CalTrout has deep roots in using advocacy to create change. From day one, we championed wild trout management and the concept of catch and release, spearheading efforts to enact programs and legislation to protect California’s trout resources.
We continue in those efforts today by engaging targeted legislative members and staff on key local, regional, and statewide issues. Retaining a political consulting firm to address State issues, CalTrout identifies key decision makers and builds enduring relationships with them, supporting their leadership on issues that advance the mission and programs of CalTrout.
CalTrout brings policy expertise, on the ground experience, community support, science, media, and advocacy experience to advance mission-critical policies programs and funding. Using an experienced team of consultants to complement our executive staff, we develop legislative initiatives, support or oppose legislation, help shape the state/federal budget, engage in stakeholder groups and work directly with key decision makers.
California’s Commitment “30 by 30”
Governor Newsom has committed to protecting 30% of California’s land and coastal waters by 2030. CalTrout supported this effort in 2020 and will double down on supporting this effort to accelerate state protections for our natural resources. This effort aims to work with landowners, conservation interests, and marginalized communities to reach this goal through innovative strategies on natural and working lands.
Natural Resources Bond
The California legislature is committed to passing the Wildfire Prevention, Safe Drinking Water, Drought Preparation, and Flood Protection Bond Act of 2022, during this legislative cycle. The Bond would be the next great investment into watershed protections and CalTrout will be advocating for our priorities over the next two years.
A University of Washington-led study has identified a chemical used in tire manufacturing that leads directly to acute mortality in coho salmon. CalTrout is working with the California legislature and the Department of Toxic Substances Control to study how this chemical affects our coho salmon and to determine how we solve this problem.
North Coast Salmon Initiative and Green Tape
CalTrout is working closely with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and other conservation partners on the North Coast Salmon Initiative to help streamline grant reform and project implementation in this region. CalTrout was able to preserve this program through the pandemic recession last year, and even saw an increase of $4.5 million dedicated to this program.
Southern Steelhead CESA Listing
CalTrout, led by the South Coast Regional Director Dr. Sandra Jacobson, will be pursuing the landmark listing of southern steelhead under the California Endangered Species Act. While the southern steelhead is listed federally, this listing will offer additional protections and restoration efforts.
State Fiscal Outlook and Budget Assumptions
Governor Newsom released his 2021-2022 proposed budget which accounts for a total of $227 billion in state spending. The proposed budget assumes a projected windfall of about $15 billion, which is a little more conservative than the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) 2021-2022 Fiscal Outlook, which provides their assessment of the state’s fiscal situation for the budget year and over a multiyear period. Overall, CalTrout will have to be strategic surrounding the allocations of funding it seeks, but California’s economic forecasts are rosier than anticipated.
CalTrout has been more and more focused on gaining federal funding for our large-scale restoration projects and were pleased to support some additions in the Omnibus federal bill package passed in December of 2020. One such section, the Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration provision, sponsored by Sen. Kamala Harris and Rep. Huffman of California and Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, creates a new program to fund improvements to fish passage and improve aquatic health by addressing large-scale aging infrastructure, prioritizing basin-scale, multi-stakeholder collaborative solutions. CalTrout supports this effort, and hopes that these resources can support the Potter Valley Project continue its momentum towards dam removal.
Paris Climate Accord
CalTrout applauds President Biden for immediately re-entering the Paris Climate Accord, which places a central focus on combatting climate change and supporting states like California on its climate-related goals.
Restoring the EPA’s focus on Science
The last four years have seen an administration blatantly removing the need for scientific review for protections of our nation’s natural resources, including its cold clean water. Biden has taken note and has directed the “EPA to review laws past during the past four years that reduce critical protections of our natural resources.”