The Hesperia City Council will meet for the first time this year to discuss several agenda items, including the second reading of a water conservation and shortage plan.
For the fifth month in a row, since Gov. Gavin Newsom asked residents to cut water use voluntarily, the target has been missed, largely due to lagging conservation by those living in Southern California.
California Water Code authorizes the Hesperia Water District to restrict water use during droughts. Restrictions would prohibit the unreasonable use or waste of district water. A reduction in water use will lead to fewer water sales revenue for the district. Staff will continue to revise the code as needed periodically.
With the news that California’s drought isn’t over, state water officials approved new rules in December 2021 prohibiting wasteful water practices such as washing cars without a hose shutoff nozzle.
On Jan. 4, the California State Water Resources Control Board adopted an emergency regulation prohibiting specific wasteful water use practices.
This mandate will be in place for one year but could end or be extended at the discretion of the water board, which prohibits the use of water for the following actions:
The application of potable water to outdoor landscapes in a manner that causes more than incidental runoff.
Washing vehicles without an automatic shutoff nozzle on the hose.
Washing impervious areas.
Street cleaning or construction site prep.
Decorative fountains, lakes, or ponds.
Irrigating turf and ornamental landscapes within 48 hours of a quarter of an inch of rain.
Irrigating turf on public medians.
Breaking a mandatory water-saving rule could result in a fine of up to $500 a day.
The City Council will also conduct a third public hearing as they receive a presentation from consultant National Demographics Corporation as they discuss the city’s redistricting process to create new voting district boundaries.
The council will receive and review three draft redistricting maps provided by NDC and any others that the public may have submitted for review.
Every 10 years, local governments use new census data to redistrict. The process in Hesperia adjusts city council voting districts so that each district has substantially the same number of voting-aged residents and reflects how local populations have changed.
The legal deadline for the city to adopt new district maps is April 17. Tuesday’s meeting is the third of four public hearings required for the redistricting process to gain public input.
On Jan. 10, city staff loaded interactive draft mapping tools to the city’s website for the public to review during the redistricting process. Paper map kits can also be printed from the city's website or picked up at City Hall.
On June 6, 2017, the City Council approved an ordinance establishing a by-district election system including five districts, each having one council seat representative and serving a four-year term with a rotating appointed mayor.
The districts and recent elections
By-district elections were implemented staggered with the first by-district election held in 2018 for district No.2, No. 3 and No. 4. In 2020, by-district elections were held for district No. 1 for No. 5.
District representatives include No. 1 Councilwoman Rebekah Swanson, No. 2, Mayor Pro Tem Bill Holland, No. 3 Councilman Cameron Gregg, No.4 Mayor Brigit Bennington, and No. 5 Councilman Larry Bird.
District 1 covers western Hesperia on both sides of Interstate 15, stretching north from the top of the Cajon Pass to Bear Valley Road.
The borders for District 2 are Bear Valley Road, Main Street, and Balsam and I avenues. At the same time, District 3 covers eastern Hesperia and stretches from Bear Valley Road to Hesperia Lake and the Mojave River to I Avenue.
District 4 generally lies between the California Aqueduct and I Avenue, Main Street, and Ranchero Road.
District 5 covers the majority of southern Hesperia, stretching from Topaz Avenue to the Mojave River, and Lime Street to Summit Valley.
During the 2020 election, incumbents Swanson and Bird held onto their seats. Bennington was appointed to her seat in 2019 and ran unopposed in 2020.
Gregg was first elected in 2018, and Holland is serving his third term after first winning his seat in 2010.
The Hesperia City Council meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in council chambers at Hesperia City Hall, 9700 Seventh Avenue. Visitors are asked to wear masks during meetings and inside city facilities.
The meeting will also be streamed live online at cityofhesperia.us.
Public comments can be made in person or by telephone by calling ahead and recording a message with the City Clerk’s office at 760-947-1007.
Daily Press reporter Rene Ray De La Cruz may be reached at 760-951-6227 or RDeLaCruz@VVDailyPress.com. Follow him on Instagram @RenegadeReporter and Twitter @DP_ReneDeLaCruz
This article originally appeared on Victorville Daily Press: Hesperia Council to discuss water conservation and district maps