People “should not be forced to live on property with brown lawns, golf on brown courses or apologize for wanting their gardens to be beautiful,” Yuhas wrote on social media.
“We pay significant property taxes based on where we live,” he told the Washington Post. “And, no, we’re not all equal when it comes to water.”
After Governor Jerry Brown called for a 25% reduction in the state’s water use in April, Rancho Santa Fe snubbed their wealthy noses at the directive and actually used 9% more water than the previous month.
“I call it the war on suburbia,” Brett Barbre of Yorba City, another wealthy community facing the same rationing, told the Washington Post.
Barbre then took it even further, telling the newspaper that “They’ll have to pry it from my cold, dead hands,” referring to his gardening hose and explaining that the water restrictions are infringing on his freedoms.
Fortunately, many residents in the area are embarrassed by their neighbors and have switched to drought-friendly landscaping.
Not all of those taking advantage of a rebate program for going drought-resistant are doing so happily however.
“You could put 20 houses on my property, and they’d have families of at least four. In my house, there is only two of us,” Gay Butler of Rancho Santa Fe, who is spending $80,000 to begrudgingly redesign her landscaping, told the Post.
“They’d be using a hell of a lot more water than we’re using.”