Smart Water Project – Nonpotable Water Use by California Community Associations

Water may be the most valued and sought-after natural resource of the twenty-first century. Every day, our coastal areas discharge 12 billion gallons of wastewater into estuaries and oceans—equivalent to six percent of the country’s total daily water use. Reusing this water would directly impact the nation’s water supply and promote better conservation practices.

Climate change, drought, and population growth are creating stress in areas previously considered water-rich. People are starting to rethink how and where they live, work, and play based on availability and scarcity of water. There is no question that Americans waste water or that we need to be more attentive to conserving this vital natural resource. One place where we can make a difference is in the management of residential communities with large green space, golf courses, trails, and water features.

To help the 45,500 community associations in California, which represent 9 million homeowners, the Foundation for Community Association Research commissioned a research project to look into water use and reuse in California. This activity became known as the Smart Water Project, and we are proud to present the results of our investigation on this important topic.

Smart Water Task Force

The Foundation is grateful to the following individuals for efforts in developing the Smart Water Project report.

Legislative expert and lobbyist, Daum is the retired owner/principal of Capitol Communications Group, which advocates in California for the community association industry. He is a member of the Foundation’s board of directors and Research Committee.

Attorney and founding partner of Berding & Weil LLP, Berding has represented commercial and residential real estate clients since 1974. The firm has resolved more than 700 complex construction-defect claims in California, Florida, Arizona, and Hawaii. A former Foundation board member, Berding currently serves on the Foundation’s Research Committee.

An attorney representing condominiums and homeowner association, Nodiff is also a law professor and author of several novels, including Special Assessment, The Condo Kerfuffle, and No Spitting on the Floor. Nodiff is a CAI member and national service volunteer.

Nationally recognized leader in common interest community underwriting, risk management, and insurance, Treese has substantial experience in all phases of community association activity. He is owner/principal of Association Data Inc., which provides data and documentation services for community association clients. Treese, who is also a past president of both CAI and the Foundation, currently serves as editor of the Community Association Fact Book.

Educator, mediator, speaker, and president/founder of CADRExperts (Community Association Dispute Resolution Experts), Meyer is a past president the Foundation and former CAI trustee.

The Foundation’s 2016-2018 Research Committee chair, Danielson is a past president of the Foundation. Owner of residential and commercial development businesses in Western Pennsylvania, she is a well-known author, trend-watcher, and marketing consultant.

Project manager and principal researcher for the Smart Water Project, Valencia earned a master’s degree in community planning from University of California – Berkeley in 2016 and was awarded the Foundation’s 2015–2016 Byron Hanke Fellowship. She is author of The Sharing Equity Project: Bridging Community Associations and Affordable Housing Organizations Together.

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