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Pleasanton mandates 15% water reduction as community faces worsening drought

Original post made on Oct 7, 2021

Pleasanton residents and businesses are now required to cut their potable water usage by 15% compared to last year, after the City Council unanimously declared a local drought emergency, along with imposing the use reduction mandate.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, October 6, 2021, 11:16 AM

Comments (28)

Posted by PLSN Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2021 at 9:31 am

PLSN Resident is a registered user.

What happened to the non-potable water we use to irrigate (most?) city parks? Is there any reason to restrict usage of that?!?


Posted by zz
a resident of Mohr Elementary School
on Oct 7, 2021 at 10:00 am

zz is a registered user.

Why using last year’s number as the reference? I believe a lot of families have built up good habits over the past several years. The policy is not fair for those that are already doing aggressive saving voluntarily …


Posted by Jane
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2021 at 10:23 am

Jane is a registered user.

Most of my neighbours water their yards too often and during the day. If only there was a way to tell them anonymously that you can water less if you water between 4-6am in the morning. It is an easy change to make.


Posted by jroland925
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 7, 2021 at 10:33 am

jroland925 is a registered user.

Is there a Pleasanton mobile app or online link where we can provide notice of excess watering or leaks? I was driving down Hopyard Road last night at 9:30pm, and the sprinklers in the median strip were going with water running all over the street. The city is not setting a very good example....


Posted by Jane
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2021 at 10:46 am

Jane is a registered user.

Moblie Citizen App
Here is a link:
Web Link


Posted by Dave Ott
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 7, 2021 at 11:46 am

Dave Ott is a registered user.

Many of us have already reduced our water consumption over this past year, so with this current plan we are now being mandated to reduce another 15% based on an already reduced base rate. This is very unfair. And speaking of unfair, the last time we were forced to conserve water a few years ago the citizens of Pleasanton did such a wonderful job that we were rewarded with a water price increase because the Zone 7 water district was not profitable enough due to our water conservation. We were penalized twice! Dead lawns, flowers, bushes and trees and higher costs for water. The lawn eventually came back to life, but last time I lost several bushes and trees that died and had to be replaced and the replacement cost came from my pocket. If our state and local leaders would create a long term strategy for water supply and reduce the water that Nor Cal provides to So Cal, we would be much better off. I am opposed to this mandatory reduction.


Posted by Craig
a resident of Val Vista
on Oct 8, 2021 at 10:49 am

Craig is a registered user.

Like most of the people living here in the Tri Valley we have already taken water saving measures years ago, making a 15% reduction in water use nearly impossible. During the last drought we were asked to keep our water usage to 55 gallons a day per person. Also why aren't we talking about using waste water to water our lawns again? The water plant still has the plumbing in place for the water program to start up again. California has a surplus of government aid money right now, lets ask Governor Newsom to start that program up again.


Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 8, 2021 at 5:17 pm

Pleasanton Parent is a registered user.

Newsom needs that money to bribe people to get vaccinated.

Yall had the chance to send him a message but you support his behavior


Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 8, 2021 at 9:09 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

The wastewater program wasn't instituted by the governor, but by Dublin San Ramon Services District. It was DSRSD that discontinued it.
It is hoped that by 2022 a new program by the Tri Valley cities of Dublin, Livermore, Pleasanton and San Ramon will be up and running. The cities are working on it and will announce it as soon as details have been worked out.
Regarding the 15%, those who have already cut their usage to below a prescribed number of units (expected to be 30 units) will be exempted, as was done last time.
And it won't be going in effect until most likely February of 2022, at least here in Pleasanton. The major concern is another dry winter, low reservoirs that supply the State Water Project, and the very real possibility of getting none of the allocation of that supply moving into 2022-23.
Watch the last city council meeting and listen to both Daniel Repp and Kathleen Yurchak in their presentations to the council explaining it all. You can find it on youtube or TV 29, Community Television.


Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 9, 2021 at 6:27 pm

Tom is a registered user.

Why am I surprised to see the city council has recognized we have a water shortage now? Kathy Narum says "better late than never? Mayor Kala Brown was surprised to see the report that Lake Oroville is at its lowest ever? Now they have decided to alert us that it's time to conserve water. It has been obvious since this past winter's low rainfall that we were in a water shortage situation to anyone paying attention. My wife and I have replaced all the sprinklers with a drip system to give us a good reduction in our backyard. We have cut back on everything, showers, use of all water to conserve where we can. Now they come up with an arbitrary 15% reduction, based on what? It does also seem apparent that we have been let down by our state politicians. Where are we working to expand water storage? My information is, it's been over 40 years since we have developed any additional water storage?


Posted by Michael Austin
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 9, 2021 at 7:04 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

It has been common knowledge as far as I am concerned that we have water problems here for last five years and longer.

Keep voting in the same one party rule in this state and we will not have any water in another five years or sooner.

We reduced our water consumption 50% four years ago during the last drought, we lost nearly all of our fruit trees. There were monetary penalties at that time.

We replaced every water device in our home. There is no other reduction possible. The new 15% reduction order is not relevant for our property.


Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 9, 2021 at 7:44 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

Congratulations on doing more than your fair share during the last drought, Michael Austin. I must assume you continued those good practices moving forward, in which case you'll not be required to more than you have done. Many of us grew complacent in the ensuing years following 2016, and when asked to reduce this time voluntarily, didn't take it seriously, so again the reduction is being mandated.
So far as I know, although they seem to have a lot of power, there is no politician, Republican or Democrat, who has the ability to create water. When a dam bursts, as did Oroville in 2017, water supplies are severely impacted, to say nothing about those unfortunate people whose homes were flooded and many belongings lost.
Four years later, a few billion dollars here or there, and at least a fairly secure fix, the lake is at the lowest levels in recorded history.
Again, it wasn't the Republicans or the Democrats who caused it. Mother Nature is a fickle character, and we are to some degree or another at her mercy. Aided by climate changes, she may deal us yet another blow before it's over with.
Best advice is to encourage your friends and neighbors to join in your efforts, keep up with the news, as I know you already do, and thanks for being one of the good guys in an effort that requires all of us pulling out all the stops to assure we have adequate supplies next year if, as predicted, we have another dry winter. It doesn't look like rain is expected in the next 2 weeks, anyhow.


Posted by PLSN Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 9, 2021 at 7:56 pm

PLSN Resident is a registered user.

If one wants to blame political parties, look at whichever one supports all the farmers because they take a very large share of the water in this state to grow things like Almonds that use up 1800 gallons of water per pound of nuts when most fruits are just a few gallons. That’s NUTS! (Pun intended) And they complain they want even MORE of the water….


Posted by Michael Austin
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 9, 2021 at 8:11 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

Yes, that is true.

However, those Almonds account for a large share of California's GDP, which in 2019 was $3.2 Trillion.

On the other side of the water usage. California's farmers are now pumping water that is 20,000 years old. No one Knows how much water is in the ground. No one knows when the water in the ground will be depleted.


Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 10, 2021 at 10:32 am

Tom is a registered user.

I want to treat this comment as an exchange of opinions, not going to name anyone. I think they ask us to be respectful in our responses. I agree it's "mother nature" that has affected our rainfall, not the politicians. However, being a civilized people we are, perhaps a well-thought-out plan to ensure we have enough water storage to supply the vast population in our state. This would include our farming industry, yes a big part of our economy not to mention food supply. My opinion would be that this is the responsibility of our state politicians. As another comment made earlier this water shortage has been an ongoing problem for years. Not suggesting that we shouldn't continue to be aware of and conserve water when we can. As I mentioned in an earlier comment we have done a lot this year to work towards water conservation at our place.


Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 10, 2021 at 12:19 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

In some defense of city council and Zone 7, they have been working toward storage issues right along. You'd know that if you watched Zone 7 Board Meetings on either TV 30 or Youtube (for city council). Storage isn't an immediate fix. It isn't a cheap fix, either, but an absolutely necessary one. The agencies know that, and have several projects on the radar and in the works. One is the Chain of Lakes, there is Sites reservoir, Los Vaqueros, all of which are in various stages of planning and construction. But they won't be online tomorrow.
Do try tuning into the Board Meetings if you really want to know what's going on. As far as the city "just now" talking about it, they are unable to take any action until an emergency is declared by the upper levels of authority, namely Zone 7. The Zone 7 board did make that declaration at their last meeting, opening the way for each city's council in the Tri-Valley to take action. And of course Zone 7 couldn't act until the State did.
So, Tom, they're doing their jobs. It's just that the wheels of government turn slowly and methodically, in order to keep things working in a proper fashion. And we were given a warning when the voluntary 15% reduction was announced earlier. Trouble is, we didn't meet that goal, so now it will become mandatory.


Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 10, 2021 at 12:57 pm

Tom is a registered user.

Thanks for the information on the planning and construction of more water storage. I wasn't aware but glad to hear the information. I also didn't know the city had to wait for Zone 7 to declare an emergency. I was blaming the city, not understanding the process. I am just frustrated that I see this problem as ongoing for some time and was surprised to read of action being suggested so far into the year? I suppose now if I understand the process it's Zone 7 board that is slow to respond to our circumstances? Absolutely seems as though we have closed the doors after the horses left. I did find the City Council meeting online and plan on viewing and staying in touch.


Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 10, 2021 at 2:50 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

Zone 7 monitors groundwater very closely. It appeared, until Delta Water Resources, under State Water Project (water is complex, Tom) determined that Lake Oroville was woefully low as a result of less rainfall and the loss of some reserve water in the spillage of 2017, there would be no problem meeting demand into at least next year. Be aware we get between 75% NS 80% of our water from the State Water Project (SWP), the remaining roughly 20% pumped from groundwater storage.
Be mindful as well that because of contaminants PFAS and PFOS detected in some wells, Pleasanton's well#8 has been taken offline. So we are operating short 1 pumping area until a fix is put into place. Monitored by both Zone 7 and Pleasanton. Further, SWP is warning there may be none of our allocation delivered in 2022, depending on what happens upstream. We currently are getting 5%, supplementing with water transferred from assorted storage locations, e.g. Kern County, Mojave (I know, sounds weird, right?), and Los Vaqueros once the distribution lines are in place. In order to assure we have water next year, we all need to protect what we've got by conserving that 15% now so we'll have enough in future.
Does that help? Or (pardon the pun) does it muddy the waters?
Find Zone 7 Board meetings on demand: Web Link


Posted by Joe V
a resident of Birdland
on Oct 11, 2021 at 10:12 am

Joe V is a registered user.

This is an out of touch local mandate that should have been previously researched and addressed differently.
Many consciously cut back on watering the past two years, others even before that, while some paid no attention to the situation.
How about taking a look at water usage by household?
Don't now claim that it can't be done that way! If you do, it's incompetency! You've had years to look into the water shortage situation, so when cutbacks became mandatory, you could be fair to all households.
Instead, you are treating everyone like they never gave the water shortage a thought!




Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 11, 2021 at 12:38 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

Joe V, since you apparently have the solutions, perhaps you should run for a seat on Zone 7.
By the way, you haven't paid attention yourself to what the mandate does to handle fairness to those who already cut back. Look a little closer before condemning the mandated reductions.


Posted by Hotslide
a resident of Oak Tree Acres
on Oct 11, 2021 at 1:22 pm

Hotslide is a registered user.

So what we need is the state to mandate we build thousands of more housing units and determine what censorship is necessary for anyone stupid enough to bring up the aspect of building anymore reservoirs like other states do. There is some kind of water use balance though as the achieving monied class takes flight. This state could not be run any worse, water management is right in there with forest management as far as ineptness is concerned. Remember the spotted owl fiasco that chased the lumber companies from the state? My guess it would take 20 years to get a new reservoir, unless someone comes up with an endangered spotted newt. We're lost.


Posted by buklau
a resident of Avila
on Oct 11, 2021 at 4:19 pm

buklau is a registered user.

Water is the most precious resource on Earth. During the Texas freeze there was no water and water was soldout during much of that Spring 2020 covid panic.
We're spending 40 hours of our lives working to often buy things we don't need, or to pay off mortgage interest....while we don't even have a big surplus of water (believe it or not our Teslas don't hydrate us); we better HOPE there's no water or supply chain issues moving forward.


Posted by Kevin
a resident of Castlewood
on Oct 14, 2021 at 10:38 am

Kevin is a registered user.

I installed Flume to monitor water usage. It has been great! I detected several leaks quickly. Without Flume, I would have found out about the leaks when I get my water bill, waiting huge amount of water and money. It is easy to install - no plumbing changes required - it goes around the water meter.

Highly recommend it and you get $100 from EBMUD in rebate.

Web Link




Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 15, 2021 at 2:25 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

Just to be clear, Kevin, Castlewood and Pleasanton don't have the same sources. Neither has EBMUD. So if you got a rebate from EBMUD, you somehow gamed the system, thus cheating an EBMUD customer out of a rebate that would rightfully be his. I wouldn't be bragging on social media about it.


Posted by Kevin
a resident of Castlewood
on Oct 16, 2021 at 11:20 am

Kevin is a registered user.

I did not get a refund for the reason you rightly pointed out. My post says YOU will get $100. Not sure how zone 7 deals with flow meters.


Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 16, 2021 at 12:09 pm

keeknlinda is a registered user.

This whole discussion has to do with Pleasanton water users. EBMUD is a non-issue for those of us who live in Pleasanton and Castlewood, so whatever arrangement they have with Flume has nothing to do with us.

The meters are not put in place by Zone 7 but by the City of Pleasanton, whose distribution lines are served by Zone 7's distribution lines via turnouts (valves) that connect Zone 7 treated water to the city lines.

Pleasanton has it's own SEW water portal for each of us to monitor our water usage. There are currently some bugs in the system regarding notifying us of potential leaks, but you can go to your account online and discover for yourself whether there is leakage.

So the "YOU" is not any of us following this post. There are some rebates for water conservation devices available through Zone 7, details can be found on their website. They work in conjunction with the City of Pleasanton on such matters, so the mention of EBMUD is inaccurate, irrelevant, and immaterial, bordering on irresponsible. The latter because the public is already feeling unfairly put upon to be required to conserve an additional 15% when many have already cut to the bare minimum. Dangling something like a $100 rebate they're not eligible for in front of them just makes it worse.


Posted by Kevin
a resident of Castlewood
on Oct 16, 2021 at 6:32 pm

Kevin is a registered user.

Ok, forget the $100 rebate. My fault. The friend who recommended Flume lives in area that EBMUD serves and told me about the stupid rebate that you keep bringing up.

This device sends me real time email to let me know of a leak. I don’t need to go to a website to check if I have a leak. It also lets me know how much water I am using outside of my house for pool and landscape vs. inside. I have saved hundreds of gallons of water. I am just trying to help.


Posted by keeknlinda
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 17, 2021 at 12:04 am

keeknlinda is a registered user.

The city of Pleasanton went to a great deal of time, trouble, and expense to install so-called "smart meters" about 4 or 5 years ago. They do what Flume does. Seems silly to duplicate the effort.


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