LADWP Board Revises Water Conservation Ordinance to Provide Option of Two-Day Watering Restrictions
New Provisions Improve City’s Ability to Respond to Drought Conditions and Comply with State Emergency Water Conservation Regulations
|LOS ANGELES — Responding to the increased severity of the drought, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) Board of Water and Power Commissioners today approved changes to the City’s Emergency Water Conservation Ordinance that provide more options for restricting outdoor water use. The proposed changes, which will be forwarded to the Energy and Environment Committee and then the full City Council for review, would allow the City to increase watering restrictions from three days to two days per week, when necessary.
The Emergency Water Conservation Ordinance amendments are intended to improve the City’s ability to respond to the ongoing drought conditions, to comply with Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Executive Directive No. 5, and recently adopted State conservation requirements. The Mayor’s directive called for a 20 percent reduction in per capita water use by 2017 and asked residents to voluntarily decrease outdoor watering to two days per week.
“The City has taken an active role in implementing water conservation measures for years. When the City implemented the Emergency Water Conservation Plan Ordinance in 2010, Angelenos answered the call to save water and alleviate the impacts of the drought,” said Councilmember Felipe Fuentes, Chair of the City’s Energy and Environment Committee. He added, “The Board of Water and Power Commissioners’ decision to allow the City the option of moving from three days to two days per week will challenge Angelenos once again, but if enacted, I know we will answer the call and once again be a leader in water conservation. Working together we can continue saving water while keeping our quality of life intact.”
“Angelenos have a strong conservation record and are heeding the call to save even more water. This is an intermediate step that fills a gap in the current ordinance,” Board President Mel Levine said. Levine emphasized that the proposed amendments – allowing for a mandatory two days per week watering schedule and additional restrictions – are not being invoked at this time but will be placed on the books should the Mayor and City Council deem it necessary to move to the next phase.
The City began implementing irrigation restrictions in 2009 and is currently in Phase 2 of the Emergency Water Conservation Ordinance, which limits outdoor watering to three days per week. But the current ordinance has no provision for a mandatory two days per week watering schedule. The current Phase 3 is much more severe—limiting watering to only one day per week.
“Today we are seeking to fill the gap by revising Phase 3 of the ordinance to allow for the more moderate two day per week watering schedule,” said LADWP General Manager Marcie Edwards.
The amended ordinance changes the levels of conservation requirements from five phases to six phases, increasing the restrictions at each level. The creation of a new Phase 3 keeps the same watering times and other restrictions as Phase 2 and adds the following:
Under the amended ordinance, Phase 4 will include the following restrictions:
Phase 5 includes:
Board is authorized to implement additional prohibited uses based on the water supply situation.