Are there still single family homes in California that do not have water meters?

Published: Monday, Mar. 3, 2014 - 12:00 am

Q: Are there still single family homes in California that do not have water meters? If so, about how many? Will the unmetered homes be getting water meters in the future? – Pat Roberts, Palo Alto

A: Yes. According to the California Department of Water Resources, there are 44 water agencies in the state that are still not fully metered. Only one of these is south of the Tehachapi Mountains in Southern California (San Bernardino County Service Area 70), and none is in the Bay Area. A handful are in mountainous areas, including South Lake Tahoe and Truckee. All the rest are in the Central Valley.

The city of Sacramento probably holds the state’s largest single block of unmetered homes. About 53 percent of homes in the city are unmetered, or about 59,000 homes. Other urban areas still not fully metered, according to DWR, include Modesto, Lodi, Chico, Clovis, Galt, Madera, Merced, Turlock and West Sacramento.

Estimating the total number of unmetered homes in those 44 water agencies is difficult, because most are at least partially metered and are installing more meters all the time.

That is because state law requires all homes to be metered by 2025. The hammer behind the law is this: Any agencies that don’t meet the deadline will be unable to receive money from the state for wastewater treatment projects, water use efficiency projects or drinking water treatment projects, and they will be ineligible to receive permits for a new or expanded water supply.

Submit your question for The Sacramento Bee’s water team.


Call The Bee’s Matt Weiser at (916) 321-1264. Follow him on Twitter @matt_weiser.

Read more articles by Matt Weiser



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