Water Commissioners Declared Stage 2 Water Supply Shortage, Tighten Restrictions

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The Long Beach Board of Water Commissioners declared a Stage 2 Water Supply Shortage Monday that will put into effect a two-day per week landscape watering schedule year-round. The Board’s action moves the Conservation and Water Supply Shortage Plan up from the first-ever Stage 1 Shortage declared in November of last year.

“We experienced record low snowpack this last winter, and that was on top of three years of drought,” said Harry Saltzgaver, President of the Board of Water Commissioners. “It is time, past time, that we permanently change the way we use what water we have. This drought isn’t going to disappear with one rainstorm.”

“The new State Water Resources Control Board regulations requires Long Beach to significantly reduce water use to reach Governor Brown’s latest drought declaration,” said Kevin Wattier, General Manager of the Long Beach Water Department. “Prohibiting landscape watering to only two days per week year-round will help us achieve this necessary requirement.”

Long Beach has been using smart meters to enforce the water restrictions and to help customers find new ways to conserve water. Most residents and businesses with smart meters have cut water usage by 60 percent or higher through fixing undetected leaks or adjusting their irrigation timers.
Saltzgaver noted that the Board of Water Commissioners is not looking at raising water rates, but that is a possibility in the future if there are losses in revenue that need to be offset.

Long Beach Water will continue to monitor water waste reports, and residents can report water violations via www.lbwater.org, the hotline number (562-570-2455) or through the department’s Report a Water Waster mobile app.

Water restrictions in effect:

  • Residents and businesses can only irrigate landscape on Tuesdays and Saturdays
  • Residents and businesses can only irrigate landscape 10 minutes per station per watering day, or 20 minutes if using water-efficient rotating nozzles
  • Residents and businesses can only irrigate landscape before 9am or after 4pm
  • Residents cannot fill swimming pools and spas with potable water
  • Restaurants cannot serve water to customers without the customer requesting it
  • Residents and businesses cannot irrigate the landscape beyond saturation, causing significant runoff
  • Residents and businesses cannot hose down hardscape with a hose, unless using a pressurized cleaning device
  • Residents cannot wash a vehicle with a hose unless it has a water shut-off nozzle or device attached to the hose
  • Residents and businesses cannot allow the wasting of water due to breaks, leaks or other malfunctions in the plumbing or distribution system
  • Hotels and motels must post signs to notify patrons they can choose not to have linens and towels washed daily

Long Beach Water is an urban, Southern California retail water supply agency, and the standard in water conservation and environmental stewardship.

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