Members of Environment Texas gathered in front of the Governor’s Mansion to urge Gov. Rick Perry to sign into law two bills that address residential water conservation efforts.
"The first, Senate Bill 198, would prohibit homeowner's associations from preventing their members from installing drought-resistant landscaping or xeriscapes. We heard a number of cases of HOAs preventing people from changing their own property to be more drought tolerant," said Environment Texas Executive Director Luke Metzger.
Metzger said the second bill, House Bill 1461, forces city water utilities to notify homeowners and apartment complexes how much water they are losing because of leaking pipes.
"Some cities are losing as much as 30, 40, 50 percent of their water from leaking pipes and that’s just unacceptable in a time of drought," Metzger said.
Metzger said they applaude Perry’s decision to sign a key water bill that takes $2 billion from the Rainy Day Fund to fund the next 50 years of water projects. The bill dedicates 30 percent of the money for water conservation projects.
As part of that bill, the group is asking the governor to appoint three environmentally-conscious board members to the state’s water board.