Chapter 16.02


16.02.010    Purpose.

16.02.020    Application of regulations.

16.02.030    Definitions.

16.02.040    Regulations.

16.02.050    Disconnection.

16.02.060    Reconnection.

16.02.070    Appeal.

16.02.080    Violation.

16.02.090    Enforcement.

16.02.010 PURPOSE.

The purpose of this chapter is to ensure that the water supply of the city of Santa Cruz is put to maximum beneficial use and that waste or unreasonable use or unreasonable method of use of water be prevented.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).


The provisions of this chapter shall apply to all persons using water, both in and outside the city and within city water service areas, and regardless of whether any person using water shall have a contract for water service with the city. Notwithstanding other code provisions inconsistent with this chapter, the provisions of this chapter shall supersede and prevail until termination of this chapter.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).

16.02.030 DEFINITIONS.

For the purpose of this chapter, the following words shall have the meanings set forth below:

(a)    “Director” is the director of the water department of the city of Santa Cruz, or his or her designated representative.

(b)    “Drip irrigation” shall mean low-flow point specific irrigation systems that apply water directly to plant root zones through emitters, low volume micro-spray devices that are components of a drip irrigation system, and soaker hoses.

(c)    “Person” shall mean any individual, firm, partnership, association, corporation, or political entity.

(d)    “Water” shall mean any water obtained from the water department of the city of Santa Cruz.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).

16.02.040 REGULATIONS.

It is unlawful for any person to use water for any of the following:

(a)    Fire Hydrants. Use of water from any fire hydrant unless specifically authorized by permit from the city, except by regularly constituted fire protection agencies for fire suppression purposes, or for other authorized uses, including distribution system flushing, fire flow testing, and filling of approved vehicles for sewer system flushing, storm drain maintenance, and street sweeping purposes.

(b)    Watering/Irrigation. The watering of grass, lawn, groundcover, shrubbery, open ground, crops and trees, including agricultural irrigation, in a manner or to an extent which allows excess water to run to waste.

(c)    Plumbing Leaks. The escape of water through leaks, breaks, or malfunction within the water user’s plumbing or distribution system for any period of time within which such break or leak should reasonably have been discovered and corrected. It shall be presumed that a period of twenty-four hours after the water user discovers such break, leak or malfunction, or receives notice from the city of such condition, whichever occurs first, is a reasonable time within which to correct such condition or to make arrangements for correction.

(d)    Washing of Exterior Surfaces. The washing of sidewalks, walkways, driveways, parking lots, patios, or other exterior surfaces unless the hose is equipped with an automatic shutoff nozzle.

(e)    Cleaning of Structures and Vehicles. The cleaning of building exteriors, mobile homes, cars, boats, and recreational vehicles unless the hose is equipped with an automatic shutoff nozzle.

(f)    Fountains. The operation of an ornamental fountain, unless such water is recycled in the fountain.

(g)    Cooling. The use of water in new ice-making machines and any other new mechanical equipment that utilizes a single pass cooling system to remove and discharge heat to the sanitary sewer. Water used for all cooling purposes shall be recycled.

(h)    Commercial Car Washes. The washing of vehicles at a commercial car wash unless the facility utilizes water recycling equipment, or operates on a timer for a limited time period and shuts off automatically at the expiration of the time period.

(i)    Construction. The use of potable water for dust control or soil compaction purposes in construction activities where there is a reasonably available source of reclaimed water appropriate for such use.

(j)    Clothes Washing. Water for new non-recirculating industrial clothes wash systems.

(k)    The indiscriminate running of water or washing with water not otherwise prohibited in this section, which is wasteful, and without reasonable purpose.

(l)    Any other nonessential uses of water, as determined and publicly announced by the director, in response to below average water supply conditions that could result in carryover storage in Loch Lomond Reservoir being drawn down to levels that would trigger the declaration of a water supply emergency in the event of a subsequent dry year, including, but not limited to:

1.    Use of potable water to irrigate turf, lawns, gardens, or ornamental landscaping between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. unless by drip irrigation, or by hand watering with a quick acting positive shut off nozzle. (Exceptions may be made by the director for professional gardeners where there is no ability to not water between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.).

2.    Serving drinking water to any customer, unless expressly requested, by a restaurant, hotel, cafe, cafeteria, or other public place where food is sold, served, or offered for sale.

The water director shall provide notification to city council and the public before any such restrictions are put into effect.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).


Any person in violation of the provisions of this chapter who failed to take corrective action within fifteen days of receiving the first notification of the violation shall be subject to disconnection of water service. Upon disconnection of water service a written notice shall be served upon the violator, or conspicuously posted at the entrance of the violator’s premises, and shall state the time, place and general description of the violation and the method by which reconnection can be accomplished.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).


Where water service is disconnected, as authorized above, it shall be immediately reconnected upon correction of the condition or activity and the payment of the reconnection charge in an amount specified by resolution of the city council.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).

16.02.070 APPEAL.

Any person who feels that the activity or condition, which resulted in the disconnection of water service pursuant to this chapter, did not constitute a violation of this chapter may appeal the disconnection to the city council in the manner specified in Chapter 1.16 of the Santa Cruz Municipal Code. If the city council finds that the activity or conduct did not constitute a violation of this chapter, the reconnection charge will be refunded.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).

16.02.080 VIOLATION.

Any person violating this chapter shall be deemed guilty of an infraction. Any person violating this chapter shall be subject to criminal, civil, and/or administrative enforcement action as provided in Title 4 of the Santa Cruz Municipal Code. Each and every day a violation of this chapter exists constitutes a separate and distinct offense for which enforcement action may be taken.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).

16.02.090 ENFORCEMENT.

All peace officers and persons authorized by law to issue citations within the water service area shall, in conjunction with duties imposed by the law, diligently enforce the provisions of this chapter. Pursuant to the provisions of Section 836.5 of the State Penal Code, the following officers and employees of the city of Santa Cruz are hereby designated and authorized to issue citations for enforcement of this chapter:

Director of the water department;

Deputy director/Operations manager;

Water quality manager;

Customer service manager;

Utility supervisor;

Production superintendent;

Water conservation coordinator;

Utility service representative;

Water department employees designated by the director.

(Ord. 2003-13 § 2 (part), 2003).