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City of Beverly Hills Emergency Drought Conservation FAQ's

To view the FAQ as a PDF click here.

  • The City is in a Water Conservation Stage C. What does that mean?
  • Why is Beverly Hills staying at two-days-a-week watering?
  • Do the Stage C restrictions apply to commercial as well as residential customers?
  • Watering Regulations and Tips
  • Does the two-day-a-week watering apply to hand-watering my landscape?
  • Other Conservation Regulations
  • How can I help out with the Drought?
  • What about my Pool?
  • Where do we report water waste?
  • Will we need to change our watering requirements like LADWP?
  • What will happen if my plants die due to a lack of watering?
  • Will a lack of vegetation on hillsides cause my plants to die?
  • Are there special requirements for customers in fire-threat areas who are required to remain compliant with brush clearance and other required fire prevention measures?
  • Can business still water their grass?
  • Are there fines or penalties for not complying with City Code?
  • How will the restrictions be enforced?
  • Will Code Enforcement cite me for a brown or dry looking lawn?
  • How long are these new measures expected to be in place?
  • Why are City Parks watering more than 2 days a week?
  • Why is the City using water to clean the streets?
  • Why is the City using water from hydrants to clean the sewer system?
  • Who is the main government agency overseeing the drought regulations and where can I find more information?
  • What programs are available to save water and reduce our costs at the same time?
  • DROUGHT FACTS PROVIDED BY METROPOLITIAN WATER DISTRICT (MWD)

Beverly Hills has been in a Conservation Stage C since 2017. From 2017 to June, 2022 customers could water 2 days per week from October to May and 3 days per week from June to September. Also, there was 20% citywide water reduction target which the City achieved.

As of June 22, 2022, outdoor watering is only TWO days per week. And, there is now a 30% citywide water reduction target.

The State has mandated all California cities only allow two days per week watering.

Yes, all the same provisions apply to commercial customers, regardless of their size.

  1. Stage C limits outdoor watering with automatic sprinklers to two days a week
    • Mon & Fri = North of Santa Monica Blvd
    • Tues & Sat = South of Santa Monica Blvd
  2. Water approximately 8 minutes for overhead sprinklers and approximately 15 to 20 minutes for drip. Getting the water deep into the soil is key.
  3. Have your gardener check every sprinkler head monthly to ensure they are not broken, clogged or watering the sidewalk.
  4. Place a back-up battery (typically a 9-volt) in the back of your controller in case the electricity every goes out.

Hand watering is allowed for supplemental watering to trees and shrubs any day before 9:00 a.m. or after 6:00 p.m. if the hose is equipped with a self-closing water shut-off device. There is no specific time limit for this type of watering. Still customers are reminded that any water use resulting in excess or continuous water flow or runoff onto adjoining sidewalks, driveways, streets and gutters is always prohibited.

  1. Do not let sprinkler water run off onto the sidewalk or into the street
  2. Do not use a hose to wash down cement or sidewalk ever
  3. Do not use a hose to water plants during the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
  4. Rinsing down areas for health and safety purposes is allowed
  5. Code enforcement regulations will not apply to yellow or brown grass
  • Follow the City’s watering schedule and stay tuned for changes in watering restrictions
  • Keep an eye out for water leaks. One toilet can run up to 200 gallons an hour
  • Rebates for turf removal and water saving devices www.SoCalWaterSmart.com
  • Water-saving tips at BHSaves.org and Bewaterwise.com
  • City offers free water and landscape audits
  • City offers free showerheads, sink aerators, hose nozzles, buckets and soil moisture probes
  • Sign up for the City’s FREE Water Tracking program at http://water.beverlyhills.org/
  • For more questions, contact the City’s Water Conservation Administrator Debby Dunn Ddunn@BeverlyHills.org, 310-285-2492.
  • You can fill your pool when it gets low from basic evaporation. This can be done during the day when the pool man is doing the weekly cleaning.
  • Restrain from draining and refilling your pool during this time. If the City moves to Stage D, fees will be charged for draining and refilling a pool. Permits and draining a pool to the street must always be approved by City. For more details, call PW Customer Service at 310-285-2467.
  • Consider using a pool cover to decrease water loss from evaporation.

AskPW@beverlyhills.org, 310-285-2467 or contact the City’s Water Conservation Administrator at Ddunn@beverlyhills.org

Beverly Hills and LADWP get their water from MWD. LADWP receives their water from the State Water Project. Beverly Hills does not so we have different rules to abide by. Beverly Hills will follow all mandated rules and changes made by MWD and the State of California.

Most plants have deep roots and should survive on two-day-a-week watering. Evaporation happens at the top of the soil, so water deep. The deeper you water, the deeper the roots will grow.

To get the water deep into the soil on slopes, water in cycles (aka: Cycle & Soak). Deep watering less frequently encourages stronger, healthier plants with deeper roots. To avoid run-off, water in cycles (example: instead of watering for 10 minutes straight, water for 5 minutes, and an hour later water for another 5 minutes). Depending on the slope, you may need to split the time into three cycles.

The City of Beverly Hills Fire Department requirements for residents in high fire-risk areas is focused on brushfire clearance prevention related to removing dried brush. While vegetation needs to continue to be maintained in accordance with the brush clearance requirements, there are no brush clearance requirements related to irrigation.

In addition to watering with sprinklers two days a week, hand watering with a self-closing nozzle is allowed any day of the week under the ordinance, except during the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.

Owners and managers of commercial, industrial, and institutional properties must not use potable water for irrigating non-functional turf.

The first notice will be a written warning. Failure to comply may lead to a citation under Municipal Code 1-3-101. A.   1st violation = $100 administrative fine; 2nd violation = $200 administrative fine; 3rd violation = $500 administrative fine for each additional violation of the same provision of this code within a twelve 12 period. For any violation of this code for which there is no specific administrative fine established, the fine imposed shall be that set forth in a resolution adopted by the city council. Under Stage C mandatory requirements a fine may be up to $1,000 and/or 6 months in county jail.

Beverly Hills City staff conduct field patrols of neighborhoods for compliance with the ordinance. They also respond to water waste complaints reported to the City and provide information and education to customers in violation of the watering restrictions. Code Enforcement staff will issue citations if violations continue not to be addressed.

To report water waste, visit https://www.beverlyhills.org/reportwaterwaste/ or email AskPW@beverlyhills.org

No, Code Enforcement will not cite for brown lawns, however lawns are still required to be kept trimmed, clean and free of trash, weeds and areas of exposed patches of dirt (this includes parkways, between the street and sidewalk). All other landscape vegetation must still be maintained per Beverly Hills municipal code standards.

It depends on how much and how quickly customers can reduce their water use and whether the drought persists. The more water we save, the longer these limited supplies will last. The City will continue to keep you updated on State changes.

The City’s Parks are only watering ornamental landscapes 2 days a week. Ball fields and recreational areas are watered a little more to keep the areas functional, slip free and safe for playing. In an effort to use water efficiently, the Parks Department is using an environmentally safe polymer that holds the moisture longer in the soil.

The City’s cleaning of sidewalks in areas with high foot traffic and restaurants is for health and safety purposes. In addition, the City’s power washing system catches and recycles the water so it is not wasted and will not go down our storm drains.

In order to clean City sewer lines and prevent Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSO), city staff uses water to hydro jet and remove roots and debris from the City’s sewer system. Prevention of sewage issues are crucial in maintaining Public Health and Safety.

The State Water Board oversees California’s Water Conservation Emergency Regulations. For more details, visit https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/conservation_portal/regs/emergency_regulation.html.

www.BHSaves.org - Water Saving tips and leak information

www.SoCalWaterSmart.com - MWD - Rebates and water saving tips

AskPW@Beverlyhills.org - Questions re: water use, free water and landscape audits, and water waste reporting

Record-breaking Conditions

  • We are seeing conditions unlike anything we’ve ever seen before and this drought is a challenge unlike anything Metropolitan Water District (MWD) (the water provider to 26 Southern California Water Agencies who supply water for 26,000 million southern California residents) has ever faced.
  • The past three years are projected to be the driest three-year period in state history. And over these three years, we’ve had the lowest ever deliveries from the State Water Project, typically the source of about 30 percent of Southern California’s supply.

 

Immediate Challenges in Some Communities

  • We do not have enough water in some parts of Southern California this year to meet normal demands.
  • One-third of our region – 6 million Southern Californians in parts of Los Angeles, Ventura and San Bernardino counties – face the most immediate challenge because of their reliance on the limited supplies from Northern California via the State Water Project.
  • Metropolitan has declared a water shortage emergency in these areas and approved an Emergency Water Conservation Program that restricts outdoor watering to one day a week, or equivalent, for our member agencies that receive water from the State Water Project. For the equivalent option, member agencies may choose to conform to certain volumetric limits.
  • The affected water agencies are: Calleguas Municipal Water District, Inland Empire Utilities Agency, Las Virgenes Municipal Water District, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Three Valleys Municipal Water District, and Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District.
  • Beverly Hills, as well as other areas like Santa Monica, is not affected by this since the water Beverly Hills receives comes from the Colorado River.• Right now, we must preserve the available water we have for the greatest public benefit. And green grass is not the greatest public benefit. Finding Solutions to This Challenge, Together from MWD • We have been working hard, in partnership with our member agencies, to give agencies in the State Water Project-dependent area access to Colorado River water. • We’re also looking everywhere we can for additional water that may be available on the market and that can be delivered through the State Water Project system. • We’re doing this in the immediate term – to address the current situation – and taking even more actions for the long-term to prevent this crisis from happening again.

 

  • • We’ve reengineered our system to push Colorado River supplies into new areas, including building new pumps and changing the normal direction of water flow.
  •  
  • • If we don’t see the progress we need, or if supply conditions worsen, Metropolitan could ban all outdoor watering as soon as Sept. 1.
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  • 455 North Rexford Dr
    Beverly Hills, CA 90210
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  • (310) 285-1000
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  • Friday 8:00AM-5:00PM

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