SAN FRANCISCO -- San Francisco voters soundly rejected a measure that might have led to removal of the 89-year-old Hetch Hetchy Reservoir from Yosemite National Park.
Proposition F on Tuesday's ballot got a "no" from 182,268 voters, or 77.4 percent of the total.
The defeat eases concerns at the Modesto and Turlock irrigation districts, which operate Don Pedro Reservoir downstream on the Tuolumne River from Hetch Hetchy.
The districts questioned the idea of reworking Don Pedro operations as one possible way of making up for the lost storage.
The measure would have directed San Francisco officials to draft a detailed plan that includes replacing the Hetch Hetchy storage with other reservoirs, water conservation, recycling or other options. Voters would have considered the plan in 2016.
Opponents of the measure agreed that Hetch Hetchy probably should not have been built in a national park in the 1920s.
But they said the removal could cost as much as $10 billion and would eliminate an especially clean supply of water for 2.6 million customers in four Bay Area counties.
Supporters of the measure said the costs were overstated and the state would benefit from increased tourism in the restored Hetch Hetchy Valley, which environmental icon John Muir considered as beautiful as Yosemite Valley.
The debate roughly coincided with MID's proposal to sell some of its water to San Francisco.
The district dropped the idea in September after protest by Modesto-area residents who feared dry-year shortages.