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DWP board OKs new L.A. lawn-watering rules keyed to street addresses; City Council to review

July 22, 2010 |  4:05 pm
The five-member board that oversees the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power voted Thursday to approve a revised set of irrigation rules, allowing residents to water their lawns and gardens three days a week.

The panel, whose members are appointed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, unanimously backed the plan and forwarded it to the City Council for review.

Still, one DWP commissioner said he feared that the move from two days to three – and from 15 minutes a day to eight – would cause residents to use their sprinklers any day they choose.

“I anticipate a great confusion out among the members of the public,” Commissioner Jonathan Parfrey said.

Under the proposed rules:

  • Customers whose street addresses end with an odd number will be permitted to use their sprinkler systems on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
  • Customers with even numbered addressed will be allowed to water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.
The plan would allow spray-head sprinklers, which do not conserve water, to be used for eight minutes a day, DWP officials said. Standard rotor sprinklers and those with multi-stream rotary heads will be limited to 30 minutes a day – but for just 15 minutes at a time, the utility said.

Watering will continue to be restricted to hours before 9 a.m. and after 4 p.m., regardless of the day.

The revised schedule is part of an effort to help the city conserve water without putting additional pressure on the DWP’s aging system of pipes. A panel of experts concluded that the previous two-day-a-week schedule helped cause a series of blowouts in cast iron water pipes.

-- David Zahniser at Los Angeles City Hall