Jerry Brown may given the state GOP a gift that could sink the Democrats this November.
Despite the fact the drought is officially over in the Golden State, California Governor Jerry Brown has signed two bills that will force water districts and municipalities to permanently adopt aggressive water rationing levels.
The two bills will set water-efficiency goals for water suppliers throughout the state. The governor said the measures will help California be better prepared for future droughts and the effects of climate change.
The legislation establishes an indoor, per person water-use goal of 55 gallons per day starting in 2022, an amount that will gradually be dialed down to 50 gallons per day starting by 2030. Targets for outdoor water use will be set differently for each area taking into account factors like the local precipitation and climate zone.
The legislation will require both urban and agricultural water suppliers to develop annual water budgets and have plans in place for dealing with drought.
Once again, California legislators create rules that are not based in realities. The levels set in the legislation will be difficult to achieve on a practical level.
“With a child and every day having to wash clothes, that’s, just my opinion, not feasible. But I get it and I understand that we’re trying to preserve…but 55 gallons a day?” said Tanya Allen, who has a 4-year-old daughter.
Just how many gallons do household chores take?
An 8-minute shower uses about 17 gallons of water, a load of laundry up to 40, and a bathtub can hold 80 to 100 gallons of water.
“She likes to bathe three times a day and she does laundry all day,” said Rocka Mitchell from Texas.
He and his wife Ginger are living in Sacramento for work and say it would be hard to conserve.
“I couldn’t do it. My family is way too large,” she said.
The fines to water districts that don’t meet the standards are draconian. The amount non-complaint agencies may face of $1,000 per day if they don’t meet them, and $10,000 a day during drought emergencies.
Some of the state’s major water agencies also opposed it, many on the general argument that Sacramento shouldn’t be telling local government what to do. Among the opponents were the Alameda County Water District, Kern County Water Agency, San Diego County Water Authority, and the Zone 7 Water Agency in Livermore.
“Every local water agency supports conservation and has a responsibility to make sure its water users use water efficiently,” said Tim Quinn, executive director of the Association of California Water Agencies, which opposed the bill. “This was never about whether we should be pursuing conservation. It was about how.”
Of course, those fines won’t be paid by the “districts”…it will be the citizens of those districts.
Legal Insurrection readers will recall that California had recently been struggling with a Hepatitis A outbreak, which is spread via fecal matter. This rationing could theoretically reduce hygiene options for those citizens who can’t afford “efficiency” upgrades or high water rates.
The only upside is that Jerry Brown has gift-wrapped a great issue for Republican John Cox, who survived the “jungle primary” and will be running a populist campaign against Democrat Gavin Newsom in the gubernatorial election this November. Cox is clearly targeting the Sacramento Swamp and wants to “Make California Golden Again”.
So, perhaps the water rationing is the issue that will finally sink the California DemocratsDONATE
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