California state assembly passed bill 1 year after Oroville Dam Spillway Crisis

It was one year ago today some-200-thousand northern California residents were ordered to evacuate their homes.

Posted: Feb. 12, 2018 4:47 PM
Updated: Feb. 13, 2018 5:13 AM

It was one year ago today some-200-thousand northern California residents were ordered to evacuate their homes.

On the year anniversary of those evacuations, the California state assembly members passed a bill which they hope will prevent similar situations in the future through pro-active inspections.

Action News Now reporter James Villalobos was live from the state capitol in Sacramento with more on this newly passed bill.

Many families will never forget the fear they experienced one year ago today when they only had hours to pack their bags and leave their homes.

It’s a fear many don’t want to experience again, and that’s why assembly member James Gallagher introduced the bill 12-70 dams and reservoirs: inspections and reporting which passed unanimously today.

Under this new bill, the department of water resources will be required to inspect all dams and reservoirs once per fiscal year.

Owners of dams would also be required to operate critical outlet and spillway control features annually, and do so every 3 years to the DWR.

During a press conference after the vote, Assemblyman James Gallagher said this isn’t just important to Oroville and those living downstream.

He said, “We give a dam, and by the time we're done, the entire state is going to give a dam, because this is too important for us to miss. It’s important for all of us."

Finally another part of this bill is that it would require inspection reports of the dam to be public records and available to the public through the California public records act.

Now this bill is headed to Governor Jerry Brown's desk which he is expected to sign.

Since there is an urgency clause, all of the requirements will go into effect immediately after signed.

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