LOS ANGELES—Governor Jerry Brown released a statement on Tuesday, April 27 proposing a new maximum penalty of $10,000 to individuals wasting water. Brown also advocated for more efficient processing of water conservation proposals — a response to floating criticisms that there’s too much rigidity surrounding the current process.
The proposed $10,000 fine is a significant increase from the current $500 maximum and is apart of the governor’s mission to cut the state’s urban water use by 25 percent over the next year. If passed, this new legislation would also give local agencies the tools and enforcement power to issue these maximum fines.
Local government and water agencies rely more on education and public relations campaigns as opposed to financial penalties. Last year’s authorization of $500 fines for wasteful water use waste has not had a large impact in Los Angeles. It is suggested that this is because repeat offenders are rare.
Recent times have seen an increase in pressure on state officials to produce new legislation and environmental plans. California is in its fourth year of a possible 10-year drought which has a direct impact on politicians.
By Mary Knauf