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$400M Proposed Plan Aimed To Restore Salton Sea


Last updated 1/15/2018 at 1pm

A $400 million proposed project to build a barrier to protect the Salton Sea area is the latest initiative aimed to restore the lake and preserve its receding shoreline.

The "North Lake Vision," proposed by Fourth District Supervisor V. Manuel Perez, involves the creation of an "enhanced infrastructure finance district" that would issue bonds for the North Lake projects, to be repaid through property, sales and hotel taxes. Perez's office said revenues from all proposed tax sources would total approximately $1 billion.

The in-lake barrier constructed around the Salton Sea, according to the proposed plan, would preserve a shoreline that has been shrinking at an exponential rate and create a 4,200-acre lake on the north end of the sea.

The proposal also includes restoring and expanding the Whitewater River where it flows into the lake. The 10-mile river would be available for recreational use.

The project still requires approval from the Riverside County Board of Supervisors, as well as approval of a bond measure from voters within the proposed district.

Other Salton Sea initiatives include – the Salton Sea Management Program, an interagency plan for reducing the effects of toxic dust exposed by the lake's receding shoreline and restoring habitat for local birds, which have lost a reliable source of fish to eat due to the water's increasing salinity.

More funding could come if voters approve a $4 billion ballot measure this June for parks and water projects, and includes $200 million for Salton Sea projects.

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