OMWD Encouraged by Governor Brown’s Repeal of Drought-Related State of Emergency

Encinitas, CA—On April 7, Governor Brown rescinded California’s drought-related state of emergency for most counties in light of improved hydrological conditions. Though putting an end to the declared emergency in our region, Governor Brown still calls for all Californians to “make conservation a way of life.”

The news was welcomed by Olivenhain Municipal Water District, which had certified to California’s State Water Resources Control Board in 2016 that it had sufficient water supply to meet demands even if it experienced three consecutive years of drought conditions. Since that time, California experienced its wettest winter on record such that only 8 percent of the state continues to contend with drought conditions.

“I want to thank our customers for their patience, understanding, and efforts to conserve water not only during the declared emergency, but also well into the future through actions including efficiency upgrades and landscape renovations,” said OMWD Board President Larry Watt. “Last year in July, OMWD moved out of a level 2 water supply condition and lifted mandatory conservation requirements for our customers. Since then, our customers have chosen to voluntarily conserve and have reduced their usage 36% per month on average for this year.”

With the drought emergency officially ended, OMWD encourages legislators and the SWRCB to ensure that long-term water use efficiency measures being crafted to satisfy the governor’s executive order B-37-16 are appropriate to current hydrological conditions. Existing proposals would limit indoor per-capita water use for each Californian to only 55 gallons per day regardless of water supply and limit the use of recycled water—such proposals would unnecessarily impact California’s homes and businesses even when no drought conditions exist.