By JOSH FRIEDMAN
The Grover Beach City Council voted on Monday to mandate that all residents reduce their water usage by 20 percent, with violators potentially facing fines.
In May, the council voted to declare a stage 2 water shortage and require residents to use 10 percent less water than they used in the previous year. However, Grover Beach has since only reduced its water consumption by 5.2 percent, according to the city.
While declaring a Stage 3 water shortage on Monday, the council voted to impose fines on residents who do not comply with reduction amounts. The first violation will result in a warning letter, while the second will trigger a $100 penalty. Subsequent violations will lead to larger fines.
“As this historic statewide drought persists, water conservation is more important than ever,” Grover Beach Mayor Jeff Lee said in a statement. “We understand that these restrictions may be challenging for residents and businesses, but it is critical that we all do our part to limit water waste as much as possible and protect our finite water supply.”
Over the past three years, Lopez Lake and the Santa Maria Groundwater Basin, the city’s primary water sources, have dropped to alarmingly low levels. In attempt to provide a supplemental water supply, Grover Beach has partnered with Pismo Beach and Arroyo Grande to develop Central Coast Blue, a water treatment facility that will be located in Grover Beach.
The project will bring a sufficient supply of recycled water to the region, provide reliability during times of severe drought and minimize the risk of seawater intrusion into the groundwater supply. Central Coast Blue is expected to come online in late 2025.
“As we continue to work diligently on ways to supplement our water supply, we urge all Grover Beach community members to do what they can to reduce their water consumption and take advantage of the rebate programs available,” said Grover Beach City Manager Matthew Bronson. “The City is taking a proactive role to ensure sufficient water for our community and additional conservation efforts will help us meet this goal.”