In February 2013, Rep. Tom McClintock of California introduced HR 934 a bill to remove from federal protection a short segment of the wild Merced River to allow for possible expansion of McClure reservoir by the Merced irrigation district (MID). The proposed reservoir expansion would drown a short segment of the wild Merced, a river that provides outstanding opportunities for outdoor recreation and important fish and wildlife habitat in the mother load region of California
MID proposes to expand the McClure reservoir by raising the spillways of New Exchequer dam 10 feet. This means that the expanded reservoir, when full would be only 1 foot below the crest of the dam, creating a dangerous potential for catastrophic failure of the dam under flood conditions. MID has not provided a dam safety analysis of its proposal or submitted its proposal for review by state dam safety officials.