On May 31, 2018, former Governor Brown signed two companion bills – SB 606 (Hertzberg) and AB 1668 (Friedman) –  to put California on the path to greater water use efficiency in light of climate change and the reality that water utilities are facing a “new normal.” Together, the bills create a new structure for water suppliers to develop water efficiency strategies tailored to their circumstances and needs by relying on the expertise and authority of local decision makers. WaterNow’s previous blog unpacks some of the complexities of this new framework.

To further dive into what the efficiency legislation does and doesn’t do, and how it evolved over the course of the legislative process, WaterNow conducted a webcast series and held an in-person workshop. This briefing series concluded in December 2018, with nearly 200 water leaders at 149 different agencies throughout California participated.

In addition, WaterNow has developed an in-depth member-only guide that: (1) summarizes the elements of the new water efficiency rules and regulatory structure, (2) highlights new or revised deadlines for SWRCB, DWR, and urban water suppliers, (3) identifies forthcoming public review and comment opportunities, and (4) provides links to other available resources on the legislation and ways urban water suppliers can begin meeting their water budgets.

WaterNow also compiled a complete database of the California Water Code sections added or amended by SB 606 and AB 1668, which summarizes each new or amended statutory section.

More efficient use of all water resources realized through widespread deployment of localized water infrastructure is environmentally friendly and can help cities and water suppliers avoid the need to build costly conventional, centralized infrastructure. This Member Guide is just one part of WaterNow Alliance’s Tap into Resilience campaign—a new initiative aimed at providing water leaders across the nation with the tools they need to scale utility investment in sustainable, decentralized water management strategies.

WaterNow members can now access the Member Guide and Water Code database through the member portal.

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