Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank
We’re deep in the heat of a Southern California summer with temperatures reaching over 100 degrees on many days. So what does the Burbank City Council do? Last Tuesday, they voted to slap stiffer restrictions on water use. Hopefully, the council will reconsider this decision when the issue comes back for a final review.
At this week’s city council meeting, Dr. David Gordon was the only council member to speak out strongly about the timing of the new restrictions and the impact on the public. Dr. Gordon voted “no.” However, the rest of the city council, Mayor Gary Bric, Vice-Mayor Anja Reinke, and Council member Dave Golonski voted “yes.” Councilman Jess Talamantes was not present.
The new restrictions would bump Burbank up to stage two of its Sustainable Water Use Ordinance. This would mean residents could turn on their yard sprinklers 15 minutes per station, only on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. There is much debate about whether this is adequate to keep lawns green, trees and other vegetation thriving. Earlier, when Burbank water rates were jacked up, some residents decided just to let their lawns go brown.
Burbank Water and Power has more on the new restrictions and the reported water supply crisis on its website.
You know, I think it’s clear to everyone that our yards need more water in the blustering heat of the summer than during the winter when the temperatures are much cooler and we get rain. So why don’t city officials and Burbank Water and Power experts cut residents some slack when they need the water the most —in the summer???
Also, I gotta wonder if the city is cutting back on watering public lawns and vegetation? You would think this would be the FIRST step in reducing the city’s water use. At city council meetings, some citizens have pointed out that certain city lawns have the appearance of being soaked with water despite the new restrictions.
In a related case, I’ve heard that a faulty sprinkler system flooded the Burbank city jail not once, but three times in the past month. Each time, 800 gallons or so of water was lost. Apparently the problem has been fixed, but geeh, it took a while. If the city is cracking down on residents to conserve water, the least it can do is lead by example in this matter.