Less than four months after the Senate confirmed her reappointment, Vice Chair Carol Baker has resigned from the Water Commission. According to a commission spokesperson, Baker lost her home in the Glass Fire and stepped down “soon after to focus on the consequences that came with this unexpected tragedy.”
This comes after Chair Armando Quintero (above) left the commission to lead the Department of Parks and Recreation. Gov. Gavin Newsom appointed another commissioner just last month as well. Teresa Alvarado, who has a background in urban water issues in San Jose, has taken over as chair. Matthew Swanson, the agricultural member, is now vice chair.
“We're sort of a new commission now,” said Commissioner Daniel Curtin in a meeting Wednesday.
The changeup comes at a critical time for the commission, as it investigates ways the state can best finance conveyance needs under Newsom’s Water Resilience Portfolio.
Baker took heat for her 2018 decision to abstain from a vote on Proposition 1 water bond funding for the proposed Temperance Flat Reservoir. Last month, the authority overseeing the project said water contractors have not been able to commit to investing any further in the reservoir, stalling Temperance Flat indefinitely.