With California in a severe drought, the State Water Resources Control Board ruled last week that some cases of water waste could be treated as criminal infractions. … The Sacramento Bee asked Sacramento utilities director Dave Brent how the city was dealing with the state’s latest ruling.
In a little-noticed provision of the regulations adopted Tuesday, the State Water Resources Control Board declared that public agencies – in addition to individuals and businesses – can be prosecuted for a criminal infraction and fined $500 per day for certain categories of water waste.
From the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA):
The recent mandatory water restrictions put in place by the state were the topic of an interview on July 16 by Judy Woodruff during the PBS News Hour of Timothy Quinn, ACWA Executive Director, and Craig Miller of KQED. Much of the focus of the interview was on just how serious the drought is and why the regulations are necessary right now.
From The Sacramento Bee, in a commentary by Linda S. Adams and Karen L. Hathaway:
As early as next month, the State Water Resources Control Board could take up the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board’s recommendation for the maximum level of copper particulates allowed in Marina del Rey, one of the largest man-made harbors in the world.
On the same day the state approved mandatory outdoor watering restrictions with the threat of $500 fines, the Southern California couple received a letter from their city threatening a $500 penalty for not watering their brown lawn.
The State Water Board acted Tuesday to set minimum standards for water conservation, with the ability of local water providers to issue fines for blatant water use. But local water providers said residents are doing their part, overall.
California water officials on Tuesday approved a $500 fine to be imposed on water wasters and other measure to improve water conservation during the drought. Here are some answers to questions about Tuesday’s action:
From the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) Voices on Water Blog, in a post by ACWA Executive Director Tim Quinn:
The State Water Resources Control Board took the unprecedented step yesterday [July 15] of ordering mandatory conservation measures to address California’s deepening drought. Less than 24 hours later, pop star Lady Gaga released a public service announcement urging Californians to save water.
On Tuesday, amid evidence that existing conservation measures are not working, the State Water Resources Control Board took the unprecedented step of declaring certain types of water waste a criminal infraction similar to a speeding violation.
With rainfall this year at historically low levels and reservoirs quickly dwindling, California officials on Tuesday approved the most drastic measures yet to reduce water consumption during the state’s increasingly serious drought, including fines of up to $500 per day under some circumstances for watering a garden, washing a car or hosing down a sidewalk.
The State Water Resources Control Board today adopted emergency regulations that allow local water agencies to levy fines up to $500 a day for people who waste water outdoors. Board Chair Felicia Marcus says collecting money isn’t the goal.
On the same day state water regulators approved daily fines up to $500 for wasting water, scientists released a report saying the drought will put a $2.2 billion dent this year in California’s economy.