Couple Could Be Fined $500 if They Water Lawn, $500 if They Don't
CA cities don't like brown lawns, despite state mandate to conserve water
By Jenn Gidman, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 18, 2014 11:17 AM CDT
Michael Korte and his wife, Laura Whitney, pose outside their home in Glendora, Calif., on July 17, 2014.   (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

(Newser) – In this week’s “Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don’t” file: A Southern California couple received a letter from Glendora city officials threatening to fine them $500 if they don’t get their sun-scorched brown lawn green again, reports AP. Which Laura Whitney and Michael Korte would gladly do, except for one thing: They could also be fined $500 if they water their lawn too much; they're currently only watering twice a week. With more than 80% of California in an extreme drought, according to the Los Angeles Times, the state water board voted this week to implement emergency conservation plans and gave the OK to fine water wasters up to $500 a day. As the board’s chairwoman noted, "A brown lawn should be a badge of honor because it shows you care about your community."

Someone tell that to the city of Glendora: “Despite the water conservation efforts, we wish to remind you that limited watering is still required to keep landscaping looking healthy and green,” reads the letter it sent to Whitney and Korte, who were also told they have 60 days to remedy the eyesore. Gov. Jerry Brown pushed an executive order through in April that says homeowners associations can’t penalize people for not watering lawns during conservation periods, but, as AP notes, it doesn’t keep local governments from doing so. In the meantime, residents are stuck trying to interpret the right thing to do. “It's almost crazy because one agency is telling you one thing and another is forcing you to do the opposite,” says an Anaheim resident who also got violation notices for not keeping her yard green.

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Jul 25, 2014 10:29 AM CDT
$500 fine for watering your yard. $500 fine for not watering your yard. Well, since I'm paying fines regardless, how much is the fine for beating a bureaucratic drone unconscious with a large stick? (I initially typed "senseless" but they have little to no sense to start with) I'm thinking I might want to add a couple of those to my bill. I'm hoping they're not too expensive, I'd like a lot of those if I can afford them.
Jul 21, 2014 1:23 PM CDT
So ObamaLosers, how's that hopeNchange workin out for ya? Maybe some more nanny state laws will make you feel better. No? Maybe San Fran Nan can come by with some undocumented democrat voters and move them into your house as permanent yard care specialists. Feel the burn Obots, own the fail.
The Old Chip
Jul 21, 2014 1:17 PM CDT
THREE MILLION ILLEGAL aliens, already costing the taxpayers some $13 BILLION, live in drought stricken California. I wonder how much they are conserving? It should be 100%! Using a low average daily, per person water use of 80 gallons; makes an ocean of 240 MILLION gallons per day used by ILLEGALs that shouldn't be here. For comparison, the entire city of Anaheim CA. (Population 346,000) has a daily water use of about 60 million gallons. Water usage the equivalent to four cities the size of Anaheim used by criminals that have no right be here. Out great regime does what? Encourages and condones the invasion of tens of thousands MORE ILLEGAL aliens. REMEMBER in NOVEMBER