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Water Shortage Warnings

July 22, 1987

All of a sudden we are being deluged with warnings about the terrible things we can expect if we as homeowners do not start reducing water usage. During the last water shortage people generally cut back on water usage, almost with a vengeance. Short showers, fewer flushes, crummy cars and wilted flora was standard.

And our water bills (in Malibu anyway) skyrocketed on the grounds that water district 29 couldn't pay its high overhead without increasing the water usage rates, and finally charging all of us a standby charge.

And then, to add insult to injury, toward the end of the shortage The Times published information to the effect that of all water used in California homeowners only accounted for 10%; industry and agriculture--85%, and other, mostly parks and the like, 5%.

My point is this, before we start pounding the hapless homeowner again, lets require the the Department of Water and Power, the Metropolitan Water District and similar agencies to quantify the problem and tell the whole story, including what the big useres are being asked or required to contribute in terms of conservation and higher water bills, if such should result.

It certainly does not seem cost effective to spend all of the conservation public relations money on making a dent in a lousy 10% of the problem.

BILL LIVERMAN

Malibu

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