2010 Georgia Code
TITLE 12 - CONSERVATION AND NATURAL RESOURCES
CHAPTER 5 - WATER RESOURCES
ARTICLE 1 - GENERAL PROVISIONS
§ 12-5-4 - Programs for voluntary water conservation and enhancing water supply
. Programs for voluntary water conservation and enhancing water supply
(a) As used in this Code section, the term "agency" or "agencies" means the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, including its Environmental Protection Division, the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority, the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, the Georgia Forestry Commission, the Georgia Department of Community Health, including its Division of Public Health, the Georgia Department of Agriculture, and the Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission individually or collectively as the text requires.
(b) On or before August 1, 2010, the agencies shall examine their practices, programs, policies, rules, and regulations to identify opportunities to provide enhanced programming and incentives for voluntary water conservation. The agencies shall, without limitation, identify and provide for rules, regulations, incentives, or opportunities to:
(1) Include water conservation measures in the comprehensive plans submitted to the Department of Community Affairs by local governments;
(2) Provide technical assistance to local governments and public water systems for water loss abatement activities;
(3) Support state-wide water campaigns and public outreach programs, such as Conserve Georgia and WaterFirst programs;
(4) Encourage residential and commercial retrofits for water efficient fixtures and equipment;
(5) Encourage residential and commercial retrofits for water efficient landscaping irrigation systems;
(6) Encourage the installation of landscapes in commercial and residential settings utilizing landscape best management practices that include soil preparation, plant selection, and water use efficiency;
(7) Encourage the use of rain water and gray water, where appropriate, in lieu of potable water;
(8) Encourage the installation of submeters on existing nonsubmetered multifamily complexes and multiunit commercial and industrial complexes;
(9) Encourage public water systems to develop and improve water loss abatement programs;
(10) Encourage public water systems to implement the industry's best management practices for controlling water loss and achieve the recommended standards;
(11) Provide incentives for residential and commercial water conservation pricing by public water systems;
(12) Provide incentives for public water systems to use full cost accounting;
(13) Encourage voluntary inclusion of water conservation guidelines in applications for new ground-water withdrawal permits and surface-water withdrawal permits; and
(14) Examine the effect that water conservation has on water rates and consider policies to mitigate the financial impact that rate increases or reductions in water use have on water utilities and water users.
(c) On or before August 1, 2010, the agencies shall examine their practices, programs, policies, rules, and regulations to identify opportunities to enhance the state's water supply. The agencies shall, without limitation, identify opportunities to:
(1) Obtain funding; and
(2) Conduct feasibility studies on reservoir dredging and water management measures that could enhance water supply when funding is available.
(d) Each agency shall coordinate with the Department of Natural Resources to:
(1) Establish administrative programs and procedures to encourage water conservation and to enhance the state's water supply consistent with the results of the reviews required under subsections (b) and (c) of this Code section;
(2) Submit an interim report of the reviews required under subsections (b) and (c) of this Code section to the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Speaker of the House on or before July 1, 2010, which shall include, at a minimum, the programmatic changes and proposed changes being implemented to encourage water conservation and to enhance the state's water supply;
(3) Submit a final report of the review required under subsections (b) and (c) of this Code section to the General Assembly by August 1, 2010, which report shall include at a minimum an outline and narrative summary of the rules, regulations, and policies that have been adopted to encourage water conservation and to enhance the state's water supply; and
(4) Submit a report to the General Assembly on or before January 1 of 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 including an outline and narrative summary of the programmatic changes encouraging water conservation and to enhance the state's water supply that were implemented during the immediately preceding calendar year, outlining the agency's goals for the next calendar year, and identifying the rules, regulations, and policies that were adopted to support those programmatic changes.
Graham Syfert - Jacksonville Lawyer