Governor Brown Water Conservation Mandate Update On April 1, 2015, Governor Brown issued an Executive Order that directs the State Water Board to impose restrictions to achieve a statewide 25% reduction in urban water use through February 28, 2016.
What is the City Doing in Response? The State Water Board is preparing emergency regulations that will carry out the directions in the Governors recently released Executive Order. They have indicated that they will release those regulations in mid-April. In addition, the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) is meeting in mid-April and determining the level of mandatory cutbacks for the water agencies they supply with water, which includes the City of Thousand Oaks.
Staff will provide an update to Council at the April 14 City Council meeting. Staff will also be returning to Council on May 26 to adopt additional City-specific water conservation measures after we have had an opportunity to review the Water Boards emergency regulations and MWD has adopted their policy.
Current City Conservation Measures The City has permanent water conservation measures in place as well as pre-defined water conservation tiers depending on the severity of the drought. You can find the ordinance at www.toaks.org/savewater in the conservation section.
How is the 25% water usage reduction measured? The mandates fall on the water agencies to reduce water usage by 25 percent statewide, not on individual residences. The reductions are also measured against prior years. Therefore, the City will receive the benefit of our homeowners that have made substantial cutbacks over the last year, including replacing their lawn with drought tolerant landscaping.
Will the City issue fines? The City has a policy that starts with door hanger notifications and letters seeking voluntary compliance prior to seeking punitive measures, such as fines.
Can I fill my pool? If the City Council enacts Level 2 Water Conservation Measures than re-filling of more than one foot or initial filling with potable water is prohibited.
Water Conservation Rebates
The City participates in the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California’s regional incentive program. This rebate program is available to all City residents and businesses, regardless of their local water purveyor.
Newly Added – Turf removal rebates: Receive up to $3.00/sq. ft. on residential turf removal projects or $2.00 /sq.ft. on commercial turf removal projects. Click here for residential program overview, and use the “Estimate Your Turf Rebate” link to see how much you could qualify for.
Other rebate programs include: Indoors: High efficiency toilets and clothes washers Outdoors: Weather-based irrigation controllers, rotating sprinkler nozzles, rain barrels and soil moisture sensor systems
The City of Thousand Oaks asks you to conserve water usage inside and outside your home.
Southern Californians need to recognize that they live in an arid region and that growing demands for water require all water users to efficiently use this resource. Record dry weather can dramatically decrease runoff from the Sierra Nevada snowpack which is where our water originates. As well, environmental concerns in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta restrict the ability to transport water.
For additional information about Thousand Oaks water quality and how to read your water meter, click here.
For specific questions about the Ordinance or water conservation programs click here or contact the City of Thousand Oaks Public Works Department at (805) 449-2400.
Water Survey Program
As part of the City's effort to help customers save water, a program has been developed to provide free water conservation surveys for City of Thousand Oaks water customers. Please call the Municipal Service center at 805-449-2499 to make an appointment.
Native Plants vs. Drought Tolerant plants While drought tolerant plants are good in a general water-saving way, when they're not native they typically don't benefit our native fauna (including pollinators like bees and butterflies) in any way. For example, while a succulent and cactus garden saves water, it provides very low habitat value in our Mediterranean environment. A garden planted with appropriate native plants would. Non-native drought tolerant plants are sometimes also good at escaping cultivation and colonizing open-space areas, particularly if planted in an interface area.
For waterwise and dry gardening practices visit these sites:
FREE wood chips for pick-up in front of Grant R. Brimhall Library
Free Mulch:The Public Works Department's Landscape Division provides free mulch on an ongoing basis to City residents. When available, chipped wood trimmings from City landscape projects are deposited in an enclosure located in the parking lot median between the Thousand Oaks Library and the Goebel Senior Center at 1385 East Janss Road. Bring your own shovels and bags and help yourself.
Public Water Conservation Gardens (interactive map)