Land Use Planning and Water Efficiency
WATER RESOURCES REVIEW COMMITTEE
11:09 AM -- Land Use Planning and Water Efficiency
Kevin Reidy, Water Conservation Technical Specialist, CWCB discussed land use and water efficiency as it relates to the Colorado Water Plan. Mr. Reidy talked about the potential municipal and industrial water gap (M&I gap) caused by an increase in population by the year 2050. Mr. Reidy's presentation was distributed to the committee prior to the meeting (Attachment C).
Matt Mulica, Policy Facilitator, Keystone Center, introduced himself to the committee and distributed a summary of the Colorado Water and Growth Dialogue and Draft Findings (Attachment D). The Colorado Water and Growth Dialogue intends to explore and demonstrate how the integration of water and land use planning should be utilized to reduce water demand from the development associated with the projected population increase, according to Mr. Mulica.
Drew Beckwith, Water Policy Manager, Western Resource Advocates, introduced himself to the committee and continued the discussion of integrating water efficiency into land use management. Mr. Beckwith discussed current building projects that are incorporating water into comprehensive plans for the building and the community. He explained that Western Resource Advocates is providing resources for builders that seek to include water planning in their development plans. Mr. Beckwith responded to questions from the committee about incorporating existing water infrastructure into their plans. Committee discussion ensued regarding the community needs of land use planning and the aging water infrastructure in the state.
Lyle Whitney, Water Conservation Supervisor, Aurora Water, introduced himself to the committee and gave a brief description of the efforts Aurora Water has made to integrate water planning into land use planning in the city. Mr. Whitney discussed land code changes that Aurora has made, which include a decrease in high water turf on residential landscapes. He also described Aurora's Z-zone tap fee, which eliminates water allocation in developments for outdoor irrigation of lawns and other landscaping. Mr. Whitney discussed other incentives Aurora Water offers in order to decrease water use. Mr. Whitney responded to questions from the committee regarding these incentives and the infrastructure of Aurora Water. Mr. Reidy discussed water infrastructure of water utilities in response to questions from the committee.
Joe Stibrich, Water Resources Policy Manager, Aurora Water, discussed the potential water loss that comes from aged infrastructure in response to questions from the committee.
Mr. Whitney continued with his presentation and further discussed changes that Aurora Water is making to its requirements to create incentives for water conservation. Mr. Whitney discussed some of the benefits Aurora has seen in the process of integrating water management into land use planning.
Anne Miller, Senior Planner, Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA), joined Mr. Reidy to continue the discussion of incorporating water saving actions into land-use planning, as directed by the Colorado Water Plan. Ms. Miller gave an update on how DOLA is implementing Senate Bill 15-008, which required the CWCB, in consultation with DOLA, to develop training programs for local government water and land use planners on best management practices for water demand management and conservation. The legislation also required the CWCB to provide training on a recurring basis free of charge and make recommendations on how to better integrate water demand management and conservation into land use planning. Ms. Miller distributed a flier for a webinar series entitled "Breaking Down Silos: Integrating Water into Land Use Planning" (Attachment E) to display the educational outreach program. Ms. Miller described a program in order to train water planners and water providers on the subject of incorporating water efficiency into land use planning. Mr. Reidy responded to questions from the committee.
The committee recessed.