California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) on Monday threatened to impose mandatory water restrictions if residents don’t use less water as drought conditions worsen.
“Every water agency across the state needs to take more aggressive actions to communicate about the drought emergency and implement conservation measures,” Newsom said in a statement.
Newsom didn’t say when he would impose the new restrictions.
Last July, Newsom asked Californians to voluntarily cut back on household water consumption by 15%.
Video via July 2021:
Gov. Gavin Newsom is asking Californians to voluntarily cut back on household water consumption by 15% compared with last year as drought conditions worsen and temperatures continue to rise across the state and the Western United Stateshttps://t.co/F3bPYbXt26 pic.twitter.com/ihGbUf71uN
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) July 8, 2021
Californians ignored Governor Newsom’s pleas to use 15% less water last summer after a year of pandemic restrictions, so now the Democrat is threatening to impose water restrictions.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom threatened Monday to impose mandatory water restrictions if residents don’t use less on their own as a drought drags on and the hotter summer months approach.
Newsom raised that possibility in a meeting with representatives from major water agencies, including those that supply Los Angeles, San Diego and the San Francisco Bay Area, his office said in a press release. The Democratic governor has avoided issuing sweeping, mandatory cuts in water use and instead favored an approach that gives local water agencies power to set rules for water use in the cities and towns they supply.
How soon Newsom could impose mandatory restrictions if conservation doesn’t improve wasn’t clear. He plans to meet with the water agencies again in two months, his office said. Spokesperson Erin Mellon said the administration would reassess conservation progress in just “a few weeks.” She didn’t offer a metric the administration would use to measure.
Earlier this month, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and LADWP announced new water restrictions amid a worsening drought.
Outdoor watering will be restricted to 2 days a week and watering sprinklers will be limited to 8 minutes per station starting June 1.
Violators will be heavily fined.
LADWP is asking residents to voluntarily use seven less gallons of water a day, or reduce showering time by 4 minutes.
Other parts of Southern California have more severe water restrictions in place.
Last month the Metropolitan Water District’s board declared a water shortage emergency and ordered SoCal residents to restrict outdoor watering to one day a week.
The restrictions will go into effect June 1.
Cities and water suppliers that get their water from the agency will face hefty fines if they don’t comply and exceed monthly water limits.