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California rebates for turf removal remain but harder to get
Jill Odom | August 19, 2016

Native plants and gravel are common accepted materials used to replace turf in removal programs.
Photo: Jeremy Levine/

Earlier this year it became clear that the Metropolitan Water District did not intend to continue funding for turf removal for turf removal rebates in Southern California, but some local rebates have remained.

Of the agencies still offering incentives for turf removal, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power tightened up the criteria needed to be eligible for the rebates on Tuesday.

Currently, applicants receive $1.75 for each square foot of lawn that is removed.

Under the new rules, projects must:

  • Not include synthetic turf or mulch.
  • Feature rainfall capture elements, such as infiltration and on-site storage, for re-use.
  • Have landscaping that is native or climate-appropriate plants that cover at least 50 percent of the converted area when mature.
  • Limit rock, gravel and decomposed granite to no more than 25 percent of the converted area.

Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Kortez pushed for the changes.

“As we continue our essential water conservation rebates, we absolutely need to maximize the bang for our bucks,” he told . “The watershed approach achieves multiple benefits and, spread widely, can help the city reduce its $8 billion stormwater compliance bill.”

The changes to the rebate requirements are also aimed at helping the city reach Mayor Eric Garcetti’s goal of cutting imported water by 50 percent.

The other cities that are still offering turf rebates of their own include Anaheim, Beverly Hills, Burbank and Long Beach.


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