Rancho Santa Fe residents face harsh water restrictions - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Rancho Santa Fe residents face harsh water restrictions

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Rancho Santa Fe is known for its upscale lawns, downtown landscape and groves. It is also known to have the highest water users in California.

At meeting called by the Santa Fe Water Irrigation District on Thursday, a 45-percent cutback and stiff penalties were considered.

Water officials said the pressure is on, and with less water could, it could cost them three million dollars if they don't pass it to the customer.

New statewide restrictions mandate Rancho Santa Fe to cut is water use by 36-percent.

"They say let it die. All those rich people in Rancho Santa Fe, taking advantage of water. Those greedy people are also producing an inordinate amount of oxygen, but our real danger here no one is talking about is fire," said Tim Hamilton.

During the Santa Fe Water Irrigation District meeting, members considered three options:

1. Cut back water 45 to 50-percent for single homes and irrigations.

2. Surcharge ranging anywhere from a 73-cent to a $1.37 increase.

3. Penalties that could add up, $3.40 to $6.79 per unit if you go over the allocated water.

The board will meet again on May 21st to vote on water allocation and penalties.

Under Proposition 218, districts have to give residents a 45 day notice before approving a surcharge.

The surcharge would be voted on in July after the governor's June deadline to implement water restrictions.

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