News and notes from county Supervisor Dianne Jacob
Public safety: Several major public safety improvements are under way across our district, including a new fire station opening this spring in Boulevard, on Ribbonwood Road near Interstate 8.
Other projects include a new fire station in Pine Valley and a new Sheriff’s Department station at Parkside and River streets in Lakeside. The county is remodeling a building at that location to replace a smaller Sheriff’s facility nearby.
Since 2003, the county has invested about $320 million in fire protection improvements across the region. The threat of wildfire is always with us, but our region has never been better prepared.
New library: Construction will start this spring on a new library in the heart of Alpine. A groundbreaking ceremony will be held at 11 a.m. March 6 at 1830 Alpine Blvd. Since I joined the Board of Supervisors, eight county-run libraries in East County have undergone major remodeling, while a dozen others have been constructed.
Fighting crime: I recently joined Sheriff Bill Gore, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis and other law enforcement leaders in announcing the creation of a special task force to tackle the scourge of human trafficking.
We need to double down in our efforts to end this horrendous crime.
Helping our youth: Students, teachers, community leaders and others recently celebrated the opening of a new track and field complex at Oak Grove Middle School in Jamul. The county contributed a $200,000 Neighborhood Reinvestment grant to help pay for the project.
For more information on these projects and for other District 2 news, go to www.diannejacob.com or follow me on Facebook and Twitter. If I can assist with a county issue, please call my office at 619-531-5522 or email email@example.com.
—Dianne Jacob represents La Mesa on the San Diego County Board of Supervisors.
Editorial: Small changes add up to big water savings
By The San Diego County Water Authority
Check out these tips on ways to save water and help fight the drought.
Save more by reducing water-related energy use
Activities such as pumping water to homes, heating water for showers and washing clothes, and treating wastewater account for approximately 20 percent of the state’s energy use.
Given the statewide drought conditions, it’s worth reviewing ways to save both water and power.
• Take shorter showers. Every minute trimmed from your typical shower time saves about 2.5 gallons — plus it saves the energy needed to heat more water.
• Wash only full loads of dishes, choose shorter wash cycles and activate the booster heater on dishwashers that have that feature.
• Try cold water for laundry. With most washers, clothes will get just as clean in cold water as they do with hot water while using less energy.
Calculate your home water use
An online water-use calculator, developed by the San Diego County Water Authority and its partners, helps homeowners analyze their water use and reduce water waste.
It takes just a few minutes on the computer for homeowners to follow prompts through a model home and answer questions about their appliances and water-use habits. The calculator then estimates each home’s annual water consumption and compares it to average and water-efficient homes in their ZIP code. It also provides tips and resources for trimming water use — for instance, by adding aerators to faucets.
Limit losses by stopping water leaks quickly
Eight percent of the water used in a typical single-family California home is wasted due to leaks, according to a 2011 study. Look for leaks once a month to catch them quickly.
One easy way to identify leakage is to check the water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used at the property. If the meter doesn’t read exactly the same, there’s probably a leak. Water meters also typically have a small “leak detector” that spins when water is being used. It is especially useful for quickly detecting small indoor leaks once all water sources are turned off.
Use a bucket or broom in place of the hose
For cleaning driveways, sidewalks or patios, use a broom or air blower instead of a hose to minimize unnecessary water use. This not only eliminates water use, but also protects streams and the ocean by reducing runoff that may be tainted by pollutants.
If water is required for cleaning for health and safety reasons, fill a bucket with water rather than letting the hose run. If a hose is necessary, make sure to attach a nozzle with an automatic shut-off valve.
For some applications, consider a water broom, which uses air and water pressure to clean, thus saving water. A standard hose uses five to 20 gallons per minute (gpm), while a water broom can use as little as 2.8 gpm.
Find more ways to save water, save energy and save money at WaterSmartSD.org.