[BAY FEATURE]Bay Area Drought Watch

BAY FEATURE

Coverage of California's looming water problem

Santa Clara Valley Water District May Spend $500K on Water Cops

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Santa Clara Valley Water District Board is looking to spend half a million dollars on hiring water police to help new conservation regulations approved by the state. Kris Sanchez reports. (Published Tuesday, Jul 22, 2014)

    The Santa Clara Valley Water District Board is looking to spend  half a million dollars on hiring water police to help new conservation regulations approved by the state.

    District trustees are looking to bring in around up to 10 water cops who would respond to calls from the public reporting water waste. The water cops will not be able to issue fines when responding to calls, officials said.

    South Bay Water District to Hire Water Cops

    [BAY] South Bay Water District to Hire Water Cops
    The Santa Clara Valley Water District Board is looking to spend half a million dollars on hiring water police to help new conservation regulations approved by the state. Marianne Favro reports. (Published Monday, Jul 21, 2014)

    "What they can do is refer an issue or property to the water provider or city who does have the ability to issue a fine," said Marty Grimes, spokesman for the Santa Clara Valley Water District.

    San Jose-resident Jesus Santoyo said he welcomes the district hiring water cops.

    "I think it's a good idea to hold them accountable," Santoyo said of water wasters. "It's not right that some people are wasting water when the rest of us are doing our part to save."

    New numbers from February to May show water users in the district conserved 12 percent, which is below the 20 percent goal issued by the district earlier this year.

    The severe drought's impact on the South Bay is evident with groundwater recharge pond off Almaden Expressway in San Jose all dried up -- the first time in 30 years it has been empty.

    In addition, the Guadalupe groundwater recharge pond at the intersection of Highway 85 and Highway 87 is empty, along with several others in the area.

    "The main reason the ponds are empty is that we don't have imported water and our reservoirs are almost empty," Grimes said. "And they were both sources for these ponds."

    The district is also working to make conservation easy by offering free buckets to catch shower water while you wait for it to warm up.