Vibrant, green lawns in Ceres are now under heavy scrutiny by the state.
“We really believe the community of Ceres can do a better job of turning the outdoor water off. That’s really the key here,” George Kostyrko, a spokesman for the State Water Resources Control Board, said.
According to the State Water Resources Control Board, the city has only saved 1 percent in April 2015 when compared with April 2013.
Ceres claims their residents have cut back on water use and that the numbers the state is requiring need some explanation.
“It would be nice if the water board, or a representative from the water board, at least came into my office to try and understand what we’ve done so far,” Jeremy Daman, the deputy director for Ceres’s Public Works Department said.
Daman said since 2007, when the city first began its water conservation efforts, residents have cut back on their water use by 50-percent. “Residents of Ceres have done a good job it’s hard to get more,” Daman said.
They’ve also limited outdoor watering days to just two days a week, banned outdoor watering on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays, plus increased rebate incentives.
“Most people are policing themselves now, calling us and asking to come out and help set their sprinkler timers and change the days down to two days a week,” Ellen Edmondson, a water distribution services worker with Public Works said.
The state explained that the city must conserve more and increase water conservation by 28 percent in June.
“We’re there, it’s just we got to get to the next step,” Daman said.
He said it will take more work and cooperation from all residents to meet the goal.
Daman added, the city is set to adopt new resolutions that will increase fines and penalties.
Although to date, they’ve only handed out 20 tickets in 2015 and they want to stress education over citations.