House approves California's emergency drought bill

House approves California's emergency drought bill »Play Video
House Speaker John Boehner is joined by Central Valley political leaders in calling for emergency drought legislation, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Kern County, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX photo/Jonathan Gonzalez)

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — An emergency drought bill for California was approved Wednesday in the House of Representatives.

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley Emergency Water Delivery Act is sponsored by California's Republican congressional delegation and would allow farmers to increase pumping from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta and create a House-Senate committee to tackle water problems.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield, Rep. Devin Nunes of Tulare and Rep. David Valadao of Hanford led the effort.

"Today, the House acted on a solution to the man-made water crisis in California that has Californians suffering during the worst drought to hit our state in over a century," McCarthy said in a news release. "It is unacceptable that vital water supplies are being forced out to the ocean instead of going to our cities. The issue demands immediate attention and today's vote represents House Republicans' commitment to putting California families over fish."

The House voted 229-191 to approve the bill, which now goes to the Senate for consideration.

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Information from The Associated Press was used for this report.