Friday, June 17, 2016
Contact Kaylee Weatherly
phone (562) 570-2314
LONG BEACH BOARD OF WATER COMMISSIONERS APPROVES WATER EFFICIENCY COOPERATION MOU BETWEEN WATER AND PARKS, RECREATION AND MARINE DEPARTMENTS
MOU allows flexible watering schedule at City parks
LONG BEACH, CA – The Long Beach Board of Water Commissioners approved a Water Efficiency Cooperation Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Long Beach Water Department and the Parks, Recreation, and Marine (PRM) Department yesterday that maintains the current volume of water allocation while authorizing a flexible irrigation schedule in the days allowed for watering the City parks. The MOU does not increase the overall net water allowance for PRM, however, it authorizes the department to water on days other than the regular watering schedule (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays during the hot summer months).
The MOU notes that the weekends are the days the public visits and uses the parks the most. Watering on Saturdays disturbs the public’s continued enjoyment and use of the parks. In addition, PRM cannot irrigate until after the parks close at 10:00 p.m., and all watering must be completed by the time the parks reopen at 6:00 a.m. This, along with the current watering schedule caused a strain upon PRM’s antiquated irrigation system, resulting in 54 pipeline breaks in recent months.
“This MOU is not allowing Parks to have more water; it’s providing greater flexibility in our irrigation schedule to water our 164 parks efficiently and protects our great quality of life in our award-winning parks system,” said Marie Knight, Director of Parks, Recreation and Marine Department. “We are finding ways to incorporate long-term water use efficiency into our parks such as updating the infrastructure with newer irrigation technology, planting drought tolerant landscapes in strategic spaces and eventually, adding more reclaimed water to our system.”
In order to not increase their overall net water allowance, PRM will be reducing watering in some areas of the parks that are not highly used so as to concentrate more watering on higher priority areas such as playing fields, recreation and picnic areas.
“I want to commend the leadership of both departments for collaboratively working together to strengthen our community’s water resources and sustainability,” said Frank Martinez, President of the Board of Water Commissioners. “Our ultimate goal is to be good stewards of the public trust.”
“Given the outstanding and expensive irrigation infrastructure repairs needed in City parks, this partnership really benefits the residents of Long Beach who enjoy our community park space,” shared Chris Garner, General Manager of the Long Beach Water Department. “Not only will this coordination result in more efficient water usage in the parks and lakes, this should also reduce water irrigation system maintenance costs and, hopefully, reduce the cost of water supply for PRM by decreasing water waste and increasing the use of less-expensive reclaimed water.”
Long Beach Water is the standard in water conservation and environmental stewardship. ###