California legislative leaders say they intend to hold hearings on controversial water bills next week, a move that should appease complaints that the process has been too secret.
A special legislative session on the subject is technically under way now, after being called Sunday by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Jim Evans, spokesman for Senate leader Darrell Steinberg, said legislative staff is drafting bill language based on discussions held so far.
"We plan on public hearings next week and hopefully a vote on the floor of each respective house next week as well," Evans said.
Management of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta remains a major focus. Lawmakers aim to create a streamlined government structure to manage the estuary, build major new plumbing to improve water deliveries and restore thousands of acres of habitat.
The estuary is a transit point for water diversions to Southern California and a nursery for several of the state's most important and imperiled fish species.
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