No surprise: agriculture important in SLO County

August 21, 2013

strawberriesAgriculture provides an economic boost to San Luis Obispo County of $1.87 billion annually, according to a report presented to supervisors Tuesday.

The two-year-old data is the most current to be developed, suggesting today’s totals may be even higher.

Agricultural Commissioner Marty Settevendemie unveiled the report while commenting, “We wanted to assess the economic significance of agriculture in the county.”

Additional economic stimulus provided by agricultural activities pump another $578 million into the local economy, Settevendemie said.

Strawberries and wine grapes topped the list of revenue-producers, and farm production reached a high of $736.2 million.

The industry contributes $5.9 million in indirect business tax revenues — about 10 percent of the county’s total budget. More than 20,600 county jobs — one in 10 — are directly related to the agricultural business, said Settevendemie.

The region is becoming more dependent on a smaller number of crops, the report noted.

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If you protect aggriculture, you protect property rights as well as the reason many choose to live here.

If you protect corporate wineries, you can kiss the North County aquifer water good-bye.

Corporate Cities like San Luis Obispo, for starters, have already impounded 23,000 acre-feet of North County water and their permit includes another 23,000 acre-feet for a total of 46, 000 acre-feet. If the State of California were to mandate that this antiquated application/permit have a drought reliability discharge for times like this, the North County aquifer would have a much needed relief. I say start the flow and stop the talk, Corporate SLO has other options.

I don’t think so. North County is using ground water. The Nacimiento water that we pay for cannot be used in Paso until our new waste water plant is built to process it. We will still have to mix it half and half with ground water. I don’t think we will ever be able to use Nacimiento water by itself. And to be used in the county for irrigation, it would have to be piped at great expense.

Unless SLO uses water from our aquifer and could stop using it for a while, I think you are mistaken. But thanks, anyway. It’s a good idea for the future when we can process the lake water.

Citizen, yes Nacimiento water needs to be treated first so that every drop can be swallowed or whatever, it is imported water. As for water from the Salinas Reservior, Santa Margarita Lake, that is the natural water flow, riparian to the basin and should not be piped elsewhere when the riparian users are in need.

Our North County water was harnessed for the WWll effort or was the war used as an excuse for a water grab? The war machine submittied the application, built the dam, pipeline and before the dust settled SLO had their name on the Salinas River.

Time does tell……