Newhall County Water District officials passed three amendments to the State Water Resources Control Board’s water restrictions at their board meeting on Thursday.
Their resolution includes an exemption to the yard-watering schedule and places certain restrictions on the way fines are issued, district officials said.
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“We felt (the amendments) were reasonable,” said BJ Atkins, chairman of the Board of Directors at Newhall County Water. “They made sense.”
The first amendment allows ratepayers to use a garden hose to hand-water brown spots in their lawn more often than their restricted days if they are “having a challenge keeping their lawn alive” due to the watering schedule, he said.
Another amendment prohibits any fines over $500 from being exacted unless Newhall County Water’s general manager, Stephen Cole, approves it first.
“The board trusts him to be reasonable,” Atkins said. “The philosophy of this entire thing is to assist, inform and educate– those are the highest priority. We do not want to penalize ratepayers. That is not our goal. Our goal is to modify behavior in a way that saves water.”
The board also adopted the State Water Resources Control Board’s 270-day “limit” to the restrictions, which essentially means that board members can reassess their resolution at that time– which falls on May 12, 2015 –and make changes if necessary.
“Anytime between now and that 270 days, if we see something that one of our ratepayers is interpreting not as intended we’ll need to specify the language and the intent,” he said.
Aside from these amendments for Newhall County Water District ratepayers, Santa Clarita Valley residents are expected to be on the same yard-watering schedule as proposed by the State Water Resources Control Board.
Between the “summer” months of April and October, residents with odd-numbered addresses will be permitted to water their lawns three days per week on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, according to the Castaic Lake Water Agency’s website.
Residents with even-numbered addresses will also be permitted to water their lawns three days per week, but on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.
During “winter” months, which include November through March, residents are only permitted to water their lawns two days per week: Mondays and Thursdays for those with odd-numbered addresses and Tuesdays and Fridays for those with even-numbered addresses.
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