Top Water Users Are Named And Fined By Las Vegas Valley Water District
By this time, we are all familiar with the water situation here in the Las Vegas desert. Government agencies and water utilities are doing their best to encourage all of us to use water wisely. Last fall, the board of directors for Las Vegas Valley Water District (LVVWD) approved new “excessive use fees.”
Nearly 60,000 Valley Residents Receive Excessive Water Use Fees
As I have noted, these excessive use fees are designed to encourage us to use water wisely and to fix leaks. The vast majority of us will not be receiving these fines. However, nearly 60,000 Las Vegas valley residents are paying fines totaling close to $13 million dollars. Surprisingly, that’s just in the first six months of this program.
According to an article by Kelsey McFarland on KTNV.com, the Las Vegas Valley Water District sent out nearly 140,000 excessive use fees notices between January and June of this year. Per this article, LVVWD claims most of the fines are for homes or businesses with “unresolved leaks, large amounts of grass, turf that is inefficiently watered, or are customers who are not following the watering schedule.”
The Culprits Using The Most Water Are Revealed
I don’t know about you, but I was anxious to see if my name was on the list. Phew! It wasn’t. I didn’t think it would be, but you never know. For that matter, go ahead and take a look at the most recent list (2021) of top water users by clicking here. Pretty much what you’d expect, right? For example, you see most of the high-end Las Vegas Strip resorts. Of course, you also see a lot of golf courses. Additionally, you see the names of celebrities and the super-rich.
At the present time, my big question is: where does that $12.8 million dollars in excessive use fees go? I Googled that question, and the answer I got was that it goes towards more water conservation programs. Hmmm. OK. Correspondingly, I would like to know if these fines are working. Are they helping our community conserve water? I guess we’ll have to wait and see. We’re only six months into this program.
At a recent County Commission hearing, one local resident complained that even though she’s curtailed her home’s water use, her monthly bill exceeded $800 dollars. She claims most of that money was in excessive use fees. Should the fines exceed the amount of money one pays for the actual water? I don’t think so, but I’m not in charge.
Be that as it may, the Southern Nevada Water Authority sets the monthly threshold of water for each resident and business. You get fined $9 dollars for every 1,000 gallons you use over that threshold. So far, 90% of our valley’s residents do not receive excessive use fees. Let’s hope we can reduce that number even more.