Glenda Anderson, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
..State officials said the new regulations were necessary because nearly 70 percent of the 7,910 curtailment orders already issued statewide in the past two months have been ignored.
State officials on Wednesday issued new water curtailment orders to thousands of users and adopted emergency regulations that allow them to more quickly crack down on people who ignore orders to stop diverting water from drought-stricken rivers and streams, including the upper Russian River.
“Water rights holders who fail to comply with the regulations face immediate fines or administrative actions,” state Water Resources Control Board officials said in a news release.
The action, which included the approval of fines for noncompliant users, came on the second day of board discussion about drought-driven regulations.
During the public hearing the day before, some water users voiced strong objection to the new regulations, particularly measures that allow the state to fine noncompliant users up to $500 a day without a hearing. Those cited can ask for a hearing after they’re fined.