State Regulations for the Watering of Decorative (Nonfunctional) Turf
To ensure all Californians take sufficient steps to save water and preserve the State’s water supply, the State Water Board adopted the emergency regulation to ban decorative grass watering in June 2022. In June 2023, the State Water Board readopted the emergency regulation to ban decorative grass watering. It will remain in effect for one year from the effective date, unless the State Water Board modifies it, readopts it, or ends it before then.
Emergency Regulation Requirements
Commercial, industrial, and institutional (CII) decorative grass should not be watered (with limited exceptions)
Give all trees just what they need: avoid overwatering
Regulation does not apply to Residential customers
Defining Functional and Nonfunctional Turf
Functional Turf, Community Space, Recreational Use Area
Ground cover turf located in a recreational use area or community space not enclosed by fencing to prevent human access
Areas for civic, ceremonial, or other community events and social gatherings
Areas for recreation, sports fields, golf courses, playgrounds, and pet exercise
Any turf that is not functional turf
Specifically includes turf in street rights-of-way, center medians, and parking lots
Assembly Bill 1572
What is it? Who does it affect? When will it be in effect?
This bill prohibits the use of drinking water for the irrigation of nonfunctional turf for CII customers (including HOA management). However, it specifies that potable water may be used to irrigate nonfunctional turf where necessary to maintain the health of trees.
This bill does not affect residential customers (even those who live within an HOA). It does affect commercial, industrial, and institutional customers (CII).
Compliance must be in effect on the following dates:
State buildings & local government agency properties - January 2027