Mayor Kevin Faulconer is making Pure Water, the city’s plan to turn sewage into drinkable water, a top priority. But the mayors of Coronado and Chula Vista, city council members in Poway and Lemon Grove, and officials from water agencies in San Diego’s eastern and southern suburbs are all trying to rein in the project.

Gov. Jerry Brown wants to build two 35-mile underground tunnels to keep water coming south through the Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay Delta. The San Diego County Water Authority used to pine for such a plan. But now, emboldened by its drought-proofing projects and wary of shocking ratepayers, the agency is aggressively questioning Brown’s delta tunnels.

The San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board focuses on sites where it can make the greatest difference and protect the largest groups of people. In recent years, the board has prioritized large sources of pollution, such as the San Diego Bay shipyards, sewer overflows, the Tijuana River and watershed-wide stormwater runoff rather than small sites that present less risk.