Water Board Hearings
Recently proposed regulations by the California Water Resources Control Board target swimming pools. If enacted, these regulations would significantly impact the swimming pool and spa building industry in California.
CPSA hosted a Townhall on this topic on October 10, 2023. Please click here to view a recording.
Listen to this message from CPSA Chairman Scott Cohen on how you can have your voice heard and protect our industry:
Below is a synopsis of the public hearing held in early October 2023:
Last week the California Water Board held the first public hearing to gain input on its proposed regulations to Make Water Conservation a California Way of Life. The proposed regulations seek to restrict the amount of water water districts may provide based on a formula for determining each district's needs based on limits imposed on indoor and outdoor water use of the district’s customer base. Moreover, those limits would be ratcheted down in 2030 and again in 2035. Water districts that exceed these limits could face severe penalties of up to $10,000 per day.
CPSA was front and center at the hearing, representing the California swimming pool and spa industry as well as PHTA and IHTA. The association believes the proposed regulations treat swimming pools unfairly and in a manner that threatens the future of the swimming pool industry as well as the 1.3 million California homeowners that have residential swimming pools.
These type of regulations have never been attempted previously and are extremely controversial from the standpoint of over 400 California water districts and the swimming pool industry. The hearing lasted over 10 hours. The Board heard from in excess of 110 individuals who registered to provide comments on the proposal.
On behalf of CPSA, lobbyist John Norwood indicated that the industry was strongly opposed to the proposed regulations. He pointed out that the regulations do not recognize the fact that swimming pools collectively reduce the amount of water water districts need to provide because the hardscape associated with the pool project removes those areas from irrigation forever more. In addition, Mr. Norwood chided the board for its failure to follow statutes governing the development of proposed regulations. Those statutes require the board to seek stakeholder input, consider the proposed regulation's impact on affected industries, small businesses associated with affected stakeholders, employment in those industries, and overall economic effect. Statutes governing the development of regulations also require the board to consider alternatives that would lessen the economic impact on affected stakeholders.
This was only the first of what is expected to be multiple hearing on these regulations. CPSA will be filing written comments on the proposed regulation by October 17, 2023, and expects expedited outreach from the board to meet their obligations under California law.