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DWP Controversy As LA Fountains Continue Running During Drought

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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is defending the continued operation of city fountains using recirculated water in the wake of Governor Jerry Brown’s order to increase the state’s drought actions.

Brown, who declared a state of emergency in January, last week called on all state and local agencies to reduce water usage as California suffered through an extreme drought.

The executive order included a recommendation to homeowners and cities alike to “turn off fountains and other decorative water features unless recycled or grey water is available.”

But as CBS2’s Randy Paige reports, fountains at the Hollywood Bowl, Griffith Park and downtown L.A. continue to operate, despite the vast majority of the city’s fountains using tap water that is replenished as it evaporates – prompting suggestions of hypocrisy.

DWP Director of Water Operations Martin Adams says to the contrary, the agency has taken a leading role for consolidation in the state.

“The question: ‘Is it really a violation?’ This is a strong recommendation from the governor,” Adams said. “In this case, we’re going to look at what the fountain is for. Is it a public benefit? Is it in a park setting where a number of people would make use of this?”

Adams also applauded city residents for doing their part by limiting landscape watering to three days a week and converting to drought-resistant plants.

He did not elaborate on any plans to shut down public fountains.

For more information about Brown’s executive order and how to prepare for water shortages, visit the state’s official drought website.

To read about ways you can reduce your water usage, visit the website for the governor’s water conservation public awareness campaign, SaveOurH20.org.

RELATED STORIES:

Gov. Brown Issues Order To Increase State’s Drought Actions

Gov. Brown Declares State Drought Emergency

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