Two good items on local water planning.

Droughtmath is being brilliant again and calling out another sleeper issue. So far as I’ve understood them, the RHNAs are a real problem waiting for their day in the press. I say this as someone who was bitching about Prop 218 back in 2009 and who suggested the governor deal with Prop 218 back in January of 2014. I know a pending problem when I see one, often.

Addressing the RHNA issue is more squarely within the Brown administration’s purview than most of the drought problems he faces. Whomever he’s got working on city General Plan guidelines at OPR could sit down with whomever writes RHNAs for Housing and Community Development, and it wouldn’t hurt to have ACWA there as well. Those are all his own people (or very skilled lobbyists who are always happy to assist). They’ve got to get this worked out if they want city General Plans or district UWMPs to reflect reality.

Speaking of UWMPs and reflecting reality, I thought this suit by NRDC is great. The State doesn’t want to do any real enforcement or require penalties for not managing water well. They are not interested in wielding a stick, so they make our carrots contingent on having and following an urban water management plan. You want some of that sweet bond money? Turn in your UWMP and start following the plan. Except that the plan rarely gets followed and no one ever checks to see that it is before handing out grant money. NRDC is suing to change that, as well they should.

A third, not well developed, thought about Prop 218:

I was explaining to a friend that Prop 218 says that districts can’t charge more than the costs of providing services to their constituents. My friend replied “then districts should take on a very expensive second service” (to bill for the conservation tiers). The obvious one, of course, is converting to solar power, either for powering their own operations or possibly for selling to the public.

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