Around 60% of Coloradans live under a homeowner association. If you’re one of them, you know how difficult it is to get HOA approval for water-saving landscaping choices. Senate Bill 178 would allow homeowners to remove grass lawns, forcing HOAs to accept the alternative landscaping.
The bill, approved by both houses and awaiting Gov. Polis’ signature, would require HOAs to pre-approve at least three water-saving landscaping designs that homeowners of detached, single-family homes could choose to implement. It would also prohibit HOAs from banning vegetable gardens in front and side yards.
The bills’ sponsors are focused on water saving. According to CSU, outdoor water use accounts for more than half of residential water use. Unless you’re farming your backyard, that’s up to 120 million gallons a day mostly going to keep your lawn alive. And despite our recent precipitation, the Colorado River Basin is still under drought stress. Just a few weeks ago the Federal government took steps to cut water from the 7 states and tribes that rely on that water (public comment is open on that plan through May 30, 2023).
Almost two dozens organizations support this bill, including the Colorado River Water Conservation District, Colorado Water Congress and the governments or water districts of Boulder County, Douglas County, Clifton, Grand Valley and the Ute tribe.
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