Republican members of the House Natural Resources Committee heard testimony from several California farm interests in a drought forum on Wednesday.

Bill Diedrich, president of the California Farm Water Coalition, offered a bleak portrait of the food supply issue. Every acre going unplanted this year equals the loss of 50,000 salads. Diedrich and several others called for speeding up construction of the proposed Sites Reservoir Project in Northern California along with other storage projects.

Looking for the best, most comprehensive and balanced news source in agriculture? Our Agri-Pulse editors don't miss a beat! Sign up for a free month-long subscription.

Kings County Supervisor Doug Verboon said the drop in tax revenue from lost farm sales comes at a time when unemployment, homelessness, crime and inflation “are at souring heights” and cities will have less money for tackling these issues.

Adding to that, David Guy, president of the Northern California Water Association, said the industry is already losing permanent farm jobs in the Sacramento Valley that may never return.