Claremont Insider: City Water Ordinance Ready for Review

Thursday, June 11, 2009

City Water Ordinance Ready for Review

The City of Claremont's draft water conservation ordinance will been unveiled at tonight's Community Services Commission meeting. The commission meets in the city council chambers at 225 W. 2nd St. at 7pm.

After review by the commission, the matter will go to the Claremont City Council at the July 9 meeting. (The materials for tonight's meeting say June 9, but that appears to be a typo.) If approved, the ordinance should go into effect by the end of July.

The ordinance is based on the a model provided by Metropolitan Water District. Claremont Community Services Director Scott Carroll's staff report gives the reasons for the proposed ordinance:



California is experiencing its third consecutive year of drought. The governor has proclaimed a water emergency and is calling for water conservation efforts statewide. In addition, aquatic habitat issues in Northern California, increasing population growth, decreasing supplies from the Colorado River, and climate change are all combining to magnify our current situation and create on going concerns over the long term dependability of our water supply.

In response, the MWD has allocated approximately 10% less imported water to each of its 26 member agencies in Southern California beginning on July 1, 2009. They plan to raise their water rates by 20% to make up for the revenue shortfall anticipated by the lower water sales. Water agencies that do not meet MWD s water conservation targets will also pay penalty rates of up to 500% of current rates for water exceeding their target reduction.

Both the Claremont General Plan and Claremont Sustainable City Plan include goals policies and recommended actions to increase water conservation. These actions call for working with our local water providers to provide education, incentives, and enforcement.

Here are the restrictions that would be in place permanently, regardless of drought levels:
Permanent Water Conservation Restrictions
  • No watering between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.
  • Watering duration limited to (15) minutes watering per day per station
  • No excessive water flow or runoff from outdoor watering
  • No washing down hard or paved surfaces with water
  • Obligation to fix leaks breaks or malfunctions within five business days of notice
  • Re-circulating water required for water fountains and decorative water features
  • Wash vehicles only with a bucket or hose with shut off nozzle
  • Restaurants only serve water upon request
  • Hotels must provide guests option to decline daily linen laundering
  • No installation of single pass cooling systems
  • No installation of non recirculating commercial carwash and laundry systems
  • Restaurants required to use water conserving dish washing spray valves

And here is a table of the various alert levels with the additional measures that would be imposed, depending on drought severity:

Click to Enlarge

Lastly, if you're really interested, you can read the staff report and proposed water ordinance below (click on the little block in the upper right corner to enlarge to full screen):