Eastern Municipal Water District

Action/Info Item

Adopt a Proposed Resolution in Support of the District’s Application for the United States Bureau of Reclamation’s Water and Energy Efficiency Grants Program for the Comprehensive Landscape Transformation Project


Category:Action/Info ItemMeeting Workflows:Board Planning Committee Workflow


  1. Exhibit A - Resolution


Eastern Municipal Water District (District) has a history of success with programs that replace non-recreational turf grass with water efficient drought-tolerant landscape.  On May 20, 2015, the Board approved appropriation of $1.3 million to fund projects that have since replaced 3.5 million square feet of non-recreational turf grass yielding estimated water savings of 190 acre feet per year (AFY), for a District cost of approximately $685 per acre foot saved.  This achievement was made possible by grants and partnerships with District customers including the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority (SAWPA), Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD), California Department of Water Resources (DWR), and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR). 


Staff has identified up to an additional 15 million square feet of non-recreational turf remaining in the District associated with large landscape, commercial, industrial and institutional accounts.


On February 20, 2019, the Board adopted a Resolution, in part, to develop a brand of water use efficient landscape in Southwest Riverside County through both the comprehensive removal of all non-recreational turf irrigated by commercial, industrial, multi-family, and dedicated landscape accounts, and offer resources to promote water efficiency in landscaping through a comprehensive program of turf replacement, education, outreach and assistance.


To further implement the Board’s February 20, 2019 Resolution, staff is proposing to apply for a USBR WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grant to fund a $1.5 million Comprehensive Landscape Transformation Project (Project) and requests that the Board adopt a Resolution (Exhibit A) in support of the District’s applicationThe Project would provide for the replacement of up to 750,000 square feet of non-recreational turf at schools and other public facilities and offer professional landscape design services and water management training at no cost.  The beneficial water savings from this Project include 41 AFY from landscape transformation and increasing the resiliency of the watershed’s water supply to benefit the condition and enjoyment of the watershed’s public landscapes, most of which are located in areas identified as disadvantage communities.


The financing for this proposed Project will include a 50/50 cost share, with $750,000 from the USBR grant and $750,000 in matching funds from the District’s Special Projects and Studies Budget over a three-year period.  The Project budget will provide a customer incentive of $2 per square foot for turf replacement.

Financial/Strat Plan/Enviro


Funding for this item is provided for in the Biennial Budget for Fiscal Years 2019-20 and 2020-21.



Water Use Efficiency: Promote efficient use of water resources through the implementation of industry-leading programs and practices combined with customer education and awareness.



This item is not a project as defined in the California Environmental Quality Act Code of Regulations, Title 14, Chapter 3, Section 15378.


Adopt a proposed Resolution in support of the District’s application for the United States Bureau of Reclamation’s Water and Energy Efficiency Grants program for the Comprehensive Landscape Transformation Project; and designate an authorized representative, on behalf of Eastern Municipal Water District.

Meeting History

Mar 14, 2019 3:30 PM  Board Planning Committee Regular Meeting
draft Draft
Mar 20, 2019 9:00 AM  Board of Directors Regular Meeting
draft Draft

Resolution 2019-027

MOVER:Philip E. Paule, Vice President
SECONDER:David J. Slawson, Board Member
YES:Ronald W. Sullivan, Philip E. Paule, David J. Slawson
ABSENT:Stephen J. Corona, Randy A. Record