While I strongly agree that people do waste water (who hasn't left the water running while brushing their teeth), it is a drop in the bucket compared to California's major consumer and waster of water: agriculture.
Ninety percent of California's water is used by agriculture. While this may seem a necessary expense, it is not necessary that 87% of that is wasted. Millions of gallons of water, bought by farmers at substantially low subsidized prices, is left to run off fields uncollected. Water, if collected, could then be recycled.
Perhaps if farmers had to pay the actual cost of bringing water, sometimes originating thousands of miles away, to their fields, they would be more inclined to find new ways to capture and recycle this precious resource. "Necessity (and money) is often the mother of invention."
CHERYL L. WIEGAND