This article was written by Paige Austin and first appeared on Patch Gov. Jerry Brown Friday signed legislation aimed at prohibiting local governments from banning water-conscious landscaping at private residences while preserving the ability of cities and counties to set aesthetic and environmental standards.
AB 1164 -- which takes effect immediately -- seeks to protect homeowners who install water-efficient landscaping, and encourages others looking to reduce urban water use to do the same, according to Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D- Glendale, who authored the bill.
“Californians are doing their best to protect our state’s precious water resources when they spend their own hard-earned money to invest in water- efficient technologies,” Gatto said. “Intruding on a homeowner’s private property and fining them for doing the right thing sends the wrong message and is counterproductive to our water-saving efforts.”
Homeowners attempting to install drought-tolerant landscaping have come up against a number of barriers throughout the state, from bans on artificial turf to requirements that a landscape be completely covered in live-plant material, Gatto said.
The installation of drought-tolerant landscaping necessitates the use of a variety of materials -- including mulch, hardscape, and live plants...