As most of you already know, the state of California has been faced with a mandated 25% water reduction which includes requirements and water-use restrictions. After attending our Women’s Council of Realtors meeting with California Water Service I wanted to share some of the valuable information we learned including how to appeal your budget and rebates Cal Water offers.
*Please note that California Water Service covers most of the South Bay but not all locations. Check your water bill to make sure this information applies to you and your household.
Here are some of the water use restrictions:
-Do not apply water to outdoor landscapes that causes runoff onto adjacent property, non-irrigated areas, private and public walkways, roadways, parking lots, or structures.
-Do not use a hoes to wash motor vehicles unless fitted with a shut-off nozzle or devise that causes it to cease dispensing water immediately when not in use.
– Do no apply water to driveways and sidewalks.
-Do not use water in a fountain or other decorative water feature, except where the water is part of a recirculating system.
-Do not apply water to outdoor landscapes during and within 48 hours after measurable rainfall (.10 of an inch or more).
-Do not fill or refill single family residential swimming pools or spas, except to maintain required operating levels or after structural repairs.
-Do not fill or refill any ornamental lakes or ponds except to sustain existing aquatic life.
-Observe outdoor day of week and hour restrictions in place by Cal Water or your local government.
-Once notified of a water leak that may exist on your property, fix any leak within your control within five business days
What is a water budget?
Each home is given a water budget which is an allowance of water measured in Ccfs that the household may use up to without incurring penalties or higher costs. This budget is specifically catered to each individual household based off the units of water that customer used in 2013. This amount can vary each month and can be viewed on your monthly water bill for the proceeding month or you can visit www.calwater.com to view your entire 2013 usage history. If a customer goes over their allotted budget they will incur a drought surcharge for every Ccf used. This charge will be twice the per-unit charge in the district’s highest quantity rate tier, up to $10 per Ccf. On the other hand, if you do not use your full budget allotment then your unused units of water will go into a “water bank”. Should a customer exceed their monthly budget, any banked units of water will be applied to the overage prior to any surcharges being assessed.
Water Budget Appeals
Homeowners have the ability to appeal their budget to get an increase in allowance if they meet the following criteria:
-Water use necessary for heath or safety
-Business or economic needs
-Significant long-term savings already achieved
-If your household number has changed (ex: new roommate moves in)
-Low water use in 2014
-Significant water savings achieved in 2011
For more information and forms on how to submit an appeal you can visit the site HERE
Cal Water Rebates and Resources
Cal Water offers a variety of rebates, programs, tools, and free items to help customers reduce their water use. You can visit the website HERE for more information on the following resources:
-High-efficiency toilet rebate
-High-efficiency clothes washer rebate
-Smart Irrigation Controller rebate
-Free sprinkler nozzles
-Water use efficiency evaluation program
-Turf replacement rebate
-High-efficiency toilet delivery program
-Home water use reports
Visit Cal Water’s website for more information on what’s available to you. You might be surprised at what they offer to help you in your water conservation efforts!