Deadline extended for reaching California drought bond deal

Tue Aug 12, 2014 1:14pm EDT

Dried grass is pictured at a vista point near Woodside, California July 22, 2014.   REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

Dried grass is pictured at a vista point near Woodside, California July 22, 2014.  

Credit: Reuters/Robert Galbraith

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(Reuters) - California officials have extended the deadline for reaching a final agreement on a package of more than $7 billion of bonds to finance drought-relief measures to be put before state voters this fall.

Legislation signed late Monday by Governor Jerry Brown gives state lawmakers an additional two days to come to terms on a compromise for a ballot measure aimed at financing water infrastructure improvements.

"Today's legislative action provides additional time to get an acceptable water bond - one that's affordable and considers the needs of all Californians," Brown said in a statement.

Lawmakers now have until Wednesday to get the final ballot language approved ahead of the Nov. 4 election.

California is in the grips of a three-year-old drought, considered among the most severe in its history, that has dried up lakes and rivers and lowered reservoir levels, prompting officials across the state to impose stringent conservation measures.

(Reporting By Dan Burns Editing by W Simon)

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