California's strategy to cut water use by 25 percent is a work in progress.
On Saturday, regulators charged with implementing Gov. Jerry Brown's sweeping mandate for statewide water savings issued a revised plan based on more than 250 comments they received, many asking for changes in the preliminary framework issued in early April.
The new plan, drawn up by the State Water Resources Control Board, doubles the number of "tiers," or conservation levels that local water agencies will be required to attain in the coming year. Cities will now have thresholds ranging from 8 to 36 percent, separated by smaller increments. Officials say the new structure will "lessen the disparities" between agencies.
Though the new draft reassigns some local agencies to lower conservation targets, the highest number -- 94 agencies, or nearly a quarter -- are assigned the most stringent requirement of 36 percent water savings -- for now. Only 23 agencies, including the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, are in the most permissive 8 percent tier.
In addition to revising the tier structure, new provisions include softer treatment for some special cases: