Watering Days to be Based on Street Address, Rebates Increased, and Phases of Ordinance Simplified

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power Board of Water and Power Commissioners today approved a revised proposal to change the City of Los Angeles’ Water Conservation Ordinance. The proposed changes, which were approved by the Board and will now be forwarded to the City Council for review, will simplify the law’s water conservation phases and change the schedules for permissible outdoor watering with sprinklers.

The proposed changes will consolidate two phases in the current Ordinance, bringing the total number of phases down from six to five. Phases of the Ordinance correspond with severity of water shortage, with each increase in phase containing stricter conservation measures.

The proposed changes will also shift the days on which watering with sprinklers is allowed for odd and even-numbered addresses under Phases I, II and III of the proposed new ordinance.

“These changes respond to a direct request from the City Council and are intended to provide greater flexibility to our customers while they continue saving water,” said Lee Kanon Alpert, President of the Board of Water and Power Commissioners. “The Commission has requested and staff has agreed to keep us regularly informed on how the changes are being implemented and whether our conservation targets are being met.”

Presently, Los Angeles is in Phase III of the current Ordinance, restricting LADWP customers to outdoor watering with sprinklers twice-weekly. The proposed new Ordinance would allow watering three times per week on specific days based on street address, and with specific time limits based on type of watering nozzle.

Under the proposed new Phase II restrictions, customers whose street addresses end with an odd number – 1, 3, 5, 7 or 9 – will be permitted to use their sprinkler systems on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, before 9 a.m.and after 4 p.m. Customers whose addresses end in even numbers – 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8 – will be permitted to do so on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Addresses ending in fractions will be treated as whole numbers and observe the same day restrictions as others on their same side of the street, (ie: 4321 ½ would be regarded as 4321, an odd-numbered address.)

Sprinkler time limits under the new Phase II restrictions will be based on the type of nozzle used in the system. Spray head sprinklers and bubblers, which are non-conserving models, will be limited to 8 minutes per cycle and one cycle per day per watering station. Standard rotors and multi-stream rotary heads will be limited to 15 minutes per cycle and up to two cycles per day per watering station. The typical single-family home has non-conserving spray head sprinklers.

In an effort to better assist our customers, LADWP will increase the rebate on water-conserving sprinkler nozzles to $8/nozzle, which covers the purchase price. Please visit www.LADWP.com/rwr for more details.

All other components of the Ordinance, including the prohibited uses of water, will remain the same. Watering with sprinklers will continue to be restricted to hours before 9:00 a.m. and after 4:00 p.m., regardless of the watering day. Hand-watering, using garden hoses fitted with shut-off nozzle devices, remains permissible any day of the week before 9:00 a.m. and after 4:00 p.m.

On May 18, the Board approved proposed changes to the Ordinance that recommended shifting watering days based on street address as a means of minimizing pressure fluctuations in the water distribution system. On July 6, the Los Angeles City Council referred the matter back to the Department with motions to merge Phases II and III of the current Ordinance and include three designated watering days per week for even- and odd-numbered street addresses under a revised Phase II in the new Ordinance. The policy changes approved by the Board today respond to the City Council’s requests.

The proposed changes will go into effect upon approval by City Council and concurrence by the Mayor.