David Zetland is a water economist that is doing some work in the IIC (Imperial Valley Irrigation) and has an astonishing (for me) insight:
IID is trying to set quantity (5.25AF/acre) AND price ($17/AF) at the same time. It's basic economics that you can't set both without getting a surplus or shortage.Israel has been doing for decades exactly that, establishing water quotas and fixing the price, and sure it does not work. Israel water sector is in a permanent state of conflict between the Water Authority (personified by Noga Blitz, now after a heart attack) and the farmers. The water sector has been oscillating for the last 40 years between excess unused water discharged to the sea, and severe undersupply (as in recent years). Never right.