Cal Water files for Stage 2 Water Shortage with CPUC

Palmdale downgrades water conservation requirements

Palmdale Water District (PWD) has downgraded its conservation guidelines from mandatory to voluntary, effectively eliminating patrolling for off-day watering and related fines.

At the recommendation of staff, the Board of Directors unanimously voted to revert to the voluntary phase of its Stage 2 Water Shortage Contingency Plan (WSCP), which also includes a 12% conservation request rather than the 20% during the mandatory phase. Customers are now encouraged to limit irrigation to any three days of the week and avoid the hottest hours of the day.

Also, the 40-cent per unit drought surcharge added to the cost of water used in Tiers 3-5, the non-essential usage tiers, will end on April 1.

“This has been a long drought, and we appreciate the efforts of our customers who responded to our call for conservation,” said PWD Resource and Analytics Director Peter Thompson Jr. “Our water supply looks good this year, but conservation is still very important.”

Despite the improved water supply, PWD must continue with the voluntary phase of its WSCP until the state rescinds its Stage 2 mandate. In addition, the Water Waste Policy remains in effect and includes no outdoor watering 48 hours after measurable rain and requirements for fixing leaks within one week of discovery.

Based on the standard goal to save 5,000 acre-feet of water for 2024 and each following year, PWD’s water supply would be short 12% this year if the State Water Project (SWP) does not increase the 35% allocation issued at the end of February. SWP will issue a final allocation by June.

“We can finally relax a bit, but this is not the last drought we’re going to see in California,” Thompson said. “So, valuing and conserving our water is something we all need to continue to embrace.”

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