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Governor Vetoes Plan to Turn San Joaquin River into State Park

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Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula’s plan to turn the San Joaquin River Parkway into a state park.


Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula
AB 3218 would have placed 5,900 acres adjacent to the river between Friant Dam and Highway 99 under the jurisdiction of the Millerton Lake State Recreation Area. It passed both the state Assembly and Senate without a single no vote.
“The bill will not lead to the author’s desired outcome,” Brown wrote in his veto message. “Regardless of whether the state entity manages the land or not, creating true public access to the San Joaquin River and the 5,900 acres adjacent to it can only be achieved if money is available and if private landowners are willing to sell. This bill, unfortunately, does not change this.”
Arambula expressed disappointment, in an email statement.
“While I am disappointed that AB 3218 was vetoed, I remain committed to doing everything I can to make the Parkway a reality.  I am glad that the cities and counties of Fresno and Madera, as well as local stakeholders, were able to come forward to support AB 3218.  After 26 years of work, the time is now for us to reinvigorate efforts that will protect and expand the San Joaquin River into a space that all of our families can enjoy,” Arambula said.

River Partners Disappointed

The veto also disappointed Sharon Weaver, executive director of the San Joaquin River Parkway & Conservation Trust.
“We’re disappointed that the Governor vetoed the bill, and look forward to working with Assemblymember Dr. Arambula to continue working toward improved management and public access on the San Joaquin River Parkway,” Weaver said.
Councilman Steve Brandau echoed her reaction. Last March, the Fresno city council voted to support part of Arambula’s plan, mainly obtaining funds for operating and maintenance.
“I’m disappointed. It seemed like a very good plan that I’m supporting,” said Brandau. “Most of us that were dealing with the San Joaquin River issues were hopeful that this would bring a source of money to provide maintenance for existing and potential trail systems.”
Brandau also serves on the San Joaquin River Conservancy Board, the state agency that oversees the parkway.

Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email