Cambrian Resident

May 01, 2015

Cambrian Resident

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Silicon Valley Community Newspapers $1.00 Volume 8, Issue 29 May 1, 2015 www.community-newspapers.com 177 $1.00 BY LEETA-ROSE BALLESTER San Jose residents are being asked to help fight the drought by slashing water consumption 30 percent, but not all will be able to tell if they're measuring up because they live in apartments or other buildings with shared water meters. And unless submeters are installed in individual units, either the buildings' owners can expect to pay large wa- ter bills or occupants who try to conserve will get stuck paying as much as those who don't. Enter the Santa Clara Valley Water District, which is offering rebates of up to $150 per submeter installed in apartments, mobile homes and condominiums. District officials point to a survey that showed submeters in such complexes led to 25 percent reductions in water use. It's a lot easier for residents of single-family homes to track their water use. They receive bills that show how much they used in the last month compared to the same period the previous year. The bills include a bar graph that marks how much water they consumed in past months so they can measure the effectiveness of future water-saving steps. But most apartments and condominiums contain only one meter per building, and their occupants are gener- ally charged a flat fee in rent or homeowners associa- tion fees to cover water use. Other complexes divvy up the master meter count by unit, square footage or occupancy. David Bao, who resides in a homeowners association community in the Rose Garden area, says that although his outdoor water consumption is lower than that of a typical single-family home, he is taking the San Jose Wa- ter Company and Santa Clara Valley Water District's recommendations to cut back by 30 percent to heart. San Jose's April 21 emergency drought declaration has the same 30 percent target for residents. "We definitely recognize how serious the issue is for the area and are trying to do our own little part in sav- ing," he said. "We've been taking shorter showers, not using the dishwasher and only using our washing machine every other week," he said. "We're also doing little things like WATER CONSERVATION DIFFICULT TO MEASURE IN MULTI-FAMILY HOUSING WITH SHARED METERS City wants residents to cut back by 30 percent Latest Toy Craze: Kendama's the name and old-fashioned fun is the game........................ page 5 Spring Break: Dozens of students get their first wilderness experience at YMCA camp ........... page 7 A NEWSPAPER Photographs by JACQUELINE RAMSEYER From left, Kathy Pottol, chairwoman of the Calero/Lean Rose Project, Kathy Argabright, president of the San Jose Garden Club, and Patty Christa, plant sale committee chair, are seen in front of some of the roses located on the Lean Avenue overpass near Calero Avenue. The group is holding their big plant sale on Saturday, May 2 at 1812 Lincoln Avenue, San Jose from 9am-2pm. Plants grown with TLC at San Jose Garden Club's annual sale on May 2 sale on May 2 page 10 page 10 Flora Fans Flora Fans Conserve, page 8

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