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California Website Lets Residents Snitch On Water Wasters

SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) — California is launching a website that lets residents tattle on water wasters, from neighbors with leaky sprinklers to waiters who serve water without asking.

California has multiple restrictions on water use, including banning washing cars with hoses that don't shut off and restricting lawn-watering within two days of rainfall. But enforcement varies widely across the parched state.

Residents can send details and photos of water waste at Complaints are then sent to local government agencies based on the address of the offense.

The website is also optimized for your smartphone and along with location, allows to add a photo. The state then makes sure the report goes to the right local water agency.

save water
California's new Save Water website to report water wasters (CBS)

The site went online Thursday as the latest conservation initiative. More than 300 agencies have signed up to see the details of water waste tips. Many local agencies already had their own reporting sites.

"Our water use complaint calls have gone up exponentially from the last two years," Terrance Davis of the Sacramento Department of Utilities told CBS affiliate KOVR in July. The city said from January to June, it received more than 8,000 complaints.

Tipsters wary of being outed as the neighborhood snitch can remain anonymous.

"Obviously we can't see everything, can't be everywhere so having people in the community helping us out--residents, neighbors--reporting those types of things is a great tool for us too," Davis said.

The State Water Resources Control Board Water announced California cut its water use by 27 percent in June, passing the conservation target set by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Data shows 265 out of 411 local water agencies hit or nearly reached their reduction goals.

TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten. The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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