Friedman Proposes Sales Tax Holiday for Water Efficient Products

Friday, February 16, 2018

For Immediate Release:

February 16, 2018

 

Contact: Allison Ruff

Allison.ruff@asm.ca.gov

(916) 319 - 2043

 

AB 3170 exempts water efficient products from sales tax to promote water conservation across the state.

Sacramento – Today, Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Glendale) introduced Assembly Bill 3170 to encourage Californians to make water saving improvements in their homes and businesses. The legislation exempts water conservation products including WaterSense products, smart irrigation timers, drip equipment, mulch, and more, from sales and use taxes during the last weekend in March every year.

State and local agencies have spent hundreds of millions of dollars on turf removal rebate programs, which also require a significant financial investment by the home or business owner, making them unavailable to a large portion of Californians. Assemblymember Friedman hopes that providing a sales tax holiday on all water efficient products will make water savings more reachable for all Californians.

“In order to make water conservation a way of life for all Californians, we need more incentives available to the average resident,” said Assemblymember Laura Friedman, member of the Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee.  “By granting Californians an exemption from sales tax one weekend a year, we minimize the financial impact to the state and local governments, while giving residents another reason to purchase and install water conserving products in their homes.”

Based on information from the United States Environmental Protection Agency, a WaterSense labeled irrigation controller can save an average home nearly 8,800 gallons of water annually. Inside the home, replacing inefficient faucets and aerators with WaterSense labeled products can save one household 700 gallons a year.

"This is a great way to encourage and incentivize water users to adopt new technologies and tools for use at home which can lead to greater and more sustainable long-term water conservation," said Chris Zanobini, President of the California Association of Nurseries and Garden Centers.

The California statewide snow pack was 21% of normal in February. If 2018 remains dry, the state and local agencies could soon be grappling with how to significantly reduce water use.

"If we are to make real headway in our efforts to promote water conservation, this is the kind of incentive that should be available for homeowners, especially those who want to make a real difference by wisely managing our water resources,” said Mary Ann Dickinson, Executive Director of the California Water Efficiency Partnership.

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Laura Friedman represents the 43rd Assembly District which encompasses the cities of Burbank, Glendale, and La Cañada Flintridge, as well as the communities of La Crescenta and Montrose, and the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Atwater Village, Beachwood Canyon, Los Feliz, East Hollywood, Franklin Hills, and Silver Lake.