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Misinformation regarding water-use efficiency bills

Post Date:01/09/2020 4:00 PM

In 2018, two long-term water-use efficiency conservation bills (SB 606 and AB 1668) were signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown that called for the creation of indoor and outdoor water-use targets for water agencies.  Due to misinformation being spread through news outlets, we've received some questions from concerned customers and wanted to clarify any confusion related to these bills. AB 1668 and SB 606 require the State Water Resources Control Board, in coordination with the Department of Water Resources, to establish long-term urban water use efficiency standards by June 30, 2022. The requirements will not restrict daily water use by individual customers, as has been erroneously reported by some. Instead it requires water agencies to develop agency-wide water budgets. This means that in the future, Vallecitos will need to determine how best to keep the total water use in our community below the specified water use target.

To clarify: 

o There is no statewide mandate for individuals to reduce indoor water use to 55 gallons per person or to avoid showering and doing laundry on the same day.
o The 55-gallon figure is a piece of a complex calculation to set overall water-use objectives for water agencies starting in 2023.
o Potential fines outlined in the state laws are for water agencies, not for individuals. These potential fines would not start until 2027.
o Under the law, water agencies have discretion about how to achieve state objectives given local conditions.
o Continued adoption of water-efficient technology (i.e. appliances, irrigation components and other devices) is expected to help residents meet whatever goals are eventually set.

Water-use efficiency is an important element in ensuring water supply reliability for the San Diego region.  Vallecitos' wholesaler, the San Diego County Water Authority, continues to offer resources to promote water-use efficiency as a way of life in San Diego County.

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