California Proposes New Regulations Impacting Pools


The California Water Resources Control Board conducted a hearing in Sacramento on October 4 in which it proposed regulations that could have a negative effect on swimming pools over the coming decades.

The proposed water regulations seek to reduce water use by limiting the amount of water that water suppliers can deliver to their customers annually.

The California Pool & Spa Association (CPSA) is leading the fight against these potentially damaging regulations. The Association has sent a letter criticizing proposed regulations to the State Board, and is asking members of the industry to follow suit and make their voices heard as their jobs will be impacted if the proposal becomes law.

According to a statement from the CPSA:

“If enacted, the new law would force water suppliers to reduce water consumption by 20%. Those limits are ratcheted down again in 2030 and again in 2035. 

“As written, the regulation is erroneous by treating swimming pools and spas the same as plant-based landscaping. The problem with that approach is that it does not factor in the huge reduction in current water deliveries because of the installation of pools and the associated hardscape and fixtures installed to enhance the pool project. Those areas of the project are taken out of irrigation forever saving an estimated 120,000-acre feet of water annually. That number grows every year with the installation of new swimming pools. The Water Board’s own background paper indicates that the elimination of turf will be the number one factor in reaching water conservation goals. The installation of swimming pools and spas do just that, eliminate turf!

“The Water Board also failed to look at the economic impact of their proposed regulation on the entire pool industry, including small businesses associated with it, and the potential adverse effect on employment within the industry, as mandated by law.

“The Water Board must now respond to all written comments submitted relative to the proposed regulations. CPSA takes an active role in this process and will work to educate the Board relative to its proposed alternative approach. Additional hearings on these regulations will be held over the coming months.”

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