Los Angeles Eyeing Rainwater Ordinance

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 1 (UPI) — A proposal by the Los Angeles Department of Public Works would make builders of developments and new homes capture and reuse rainwater runoff, official said.

The ordinance, written in July by Board of Public Works Commissioner Paula Daniels, is designed to prevent approximately 104 million gallons of polluted runoff ending up in the Pacific Ocean, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday.

Under the ordinance, builders would provide permeable pavement, rainwater storage tanks, horticultural areas and curb bump-outs. The ordinance mandates builders manage 100 percent of a project’s runoff or face a $13-a-gallon runoff fee.

Holly Schroeder of the Los Angeles-Ventura chapter of the Building Industry Association says she’s happy with the concept:

“But when we now start talking about using LIDs (low impact development) as a regulatory tool, we need to make sure we devise a regulation that can be implemented successfully,” she said.

The ordinance has to clear both the Planning and Land Use Management and the Energy and the Environment committees of the City Council and come up for a full council vote before crossing the mayor’s desk, the Times said.

If it clears all those hurdles, the law could go into effect by 2011.

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