LOS ANGELES — Residents who want to re-use their shower, bath and laundry water in their gardens or lawns would no longer need to pay permit fees to install select gray water recycling systems under a plan proposed April 15 by two Los Angeles City Council members.
The city typically charges about $500 for permits to install “simple” recycling systems that discharge up to 250 gallons of “gray water” per day for irrigation. The proposal by councilmen Mike Bonin and Paul Krekorian would eliminate the fee, but the waiver would not apply to systems that discharge larger amounts of water or to systems that treat the water, which the city does not allow.
The city has only issued 13 permits for gray-water recycling systems, but the councilmen said they want to make it easier for residents who might want to consider the equipment as the city faces “an unprecedented and unrelenting drought.”
“Our motion will cut through the red tape — making it cheaper and easier for people to install simple water recycling systems in their homes, to not only help people conserve water, but to show them that government is on your side — not on your back,” Bonin said.
Krekorian, who proposed a separate measure this week to require new construction projects to include gray water recycling systems, said getting rid of the fee “will encourage more home water recycling and move us toward our state and city water reduction goals.”
The City Council’s Energy and Environment Committee is expected to take up the gray water recycling motions in the coming weeks.