$4 billion plan proposed for Yakima water supplies

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YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) -- The state and federal governments have released a long-awaited plan for improving the water supply in the agricultural Yakima River basin, where periodic droughts reduce streamflows for farmers, communities and threatened fish.

The plan released Friday includes proposals for one new reservoir and the expansion of at least two others. The plan also calls for enhanced water conservation and improved fish passage and habitat, among other things.

The $4 billion plan resulted from months of discussions by various stakeholders in the region, including conservation groups, farmers, local communities and the Yakama Nation. Gov. Chris Gregoire issued a statement urging Congressional and state leaders to support it.