Cambria asks residents to conserve water by up to 40%

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Posted at 5:39 PM, Jul 16, 2021

People in Cambria are being asked to cut their water usage by up to 40%.

This comes as the area is now in a Stage 4 Water Shortage Emergency.

While it's voluntary, the Cambria Community Services District is asking residents and businesses to cap water use at roughly 2,200 gallons per month.

Longtime resident Bev Praver is already using way less than that as she's no stranger to conserving water. In fact, she's made it a way of life.

"I only run the dishwasher when it's full," Praver explained. "I make sure that I use a full load of whatever I'm going to wash in the washing machine. I have a small machine but still, it should be full if I'm going to use it."

She also says she doesn't water her plants and only flushes the toilet when absolutely necessary.

But the allocated water is more concerning for others, especially restaurant owners like John Linn, the owner of Linn's Restaurant.

"I've been here for 45 years and I've been in and out of this situation again and again so I'm used to it," Linn explained. "I don't know what we'll do. If you're in the food business, you have to keep things clean."

On top of that, visitors on the east side of town use Linn's restrooms, adding to their water usage.

"What I'd like is the CCSD to give me a little bit of room since I'm really acting as the hospitality side for visitors to this community," Linn said.

Cambria gets water from two creek aquifers in San Simeon and Santa Rosa Creek. Well levels are on par with the last drought.

"It is trending below 2014 but not quite as bad as 2013," said Ray Dienzo, Cambria Community Services District Utilities Department Manager.

Although being in the Stage 4 declaration does not include any penalties or fines, the community services district will notify customers who exceed their allocations. Penalties, however, will be a reality in stages 5 and 6.

Meanwhile, the emergency also means landscaping may be irrigated just once a week and no more than 10 minutes per day.

Cambria now joins the growing list of areas with water use restrictions including Grover Beach, Pismo Beach, and Arroyo Grande.

The Cambria Community Services District is setting up a drought education task force to inform the community about the conservation efforts.