Watch CBS News

Water districts targeting wasteful residents as historically bad drought continues

Water districts targeting wasteful residents as historic drought continues
Water districts targeting wasteful residents as historic drought continues 02:20

Californians continue to get hit with water conservation restrictions while in the midst of one of the worst droughts in state history. Now, some water districts are taking another step towards limiting waste from residents who have incurred multiple violations in recent months. 

Las Virgines' Water Reduction Device CBSLA

The Las Virgenes Municipal Water District is one of many taking additional action against extra wasteful residents - planning to install water reduction devices on over 3,000 residences under their jurisdiction. 

As detailed by their website, LVMWD services more than 75,000 residents in the cities of Agoura Hills, Calabasas, Hidden Hills, Westlake Village, and unincorporated areas of western Los Angeles County.

While some homeowners like Jack Mayer are doing their part - watering less, taking shorter showers and using drip irrigation systems for their gardens - others simply aren't putting in any effort to limit water use. 

Mayer lives in Calabasas, an area traditionally known for beautiful home landscapes and sprawling lawns, but since learning of the drought he's taken different steps to improve his water conservation. 

"We're in a big drought we all have to cut back on water," he said. "People around here can afford the fine, but that doesn't help, we all need to do our share."

He understands the possible outcome should the situation continue to worsen, including having his water restricted by his local water district. 

According to LVMWD, over 10% of their customers have already been in violation for water usage in multiple months in 2022, some of which are using 150% over their budget. 

"Financial penalties for some people, it does not bother them at all, they have the means to pay for their water bills," said Mike McNutt, who works with LVMWD. 

He detailed how the water reduction devices will considerably slow water flow for some homes. 

"The water coming out of your faucet is going to come out slower, when you have a shower it's going to come out more like a trickle," he continued, noting how the low water pressure will completely prevent those homeowners from using sprinkler systems. 

As the unprecedented drought continues into its third year, other Southern California water districts are also implementing new measures to conserve as much water as possible. 

Beginning June 1, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is limiting homes to just one lawn-watering per week for their customers - over six million residents. 

A recent study out of the University of California, Los Angeles, found that the drought is the worst in over 1,200 years. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.