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The lawn wars: California residents shamed for wasting and conserving water

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Cheryl Santa Maria
Digital Reporter

Tuesday, July 22, 2014, 5:55 PM - This year's drought season has sparked some peculiar behaviour in California. One couple was fined for trying to save water, while others are publicly shaming their neighbours for wasting it.

Laura Whitney and Michael Korte of Glendora, California are facing a fine of up to $500 for the brown grass on their property.

The couple says they had stopped watering their lawn in an effort to conserve water.

That was until they received a letter from the city informing them they have 60 days to tend to their lawn before they'll be forced to pay the fine.

The warning came on the same day that mandatory water restrictions went into effect.


RELATED: Five maps that show how dire the U.S. drought situation really is


“Despite the water conservation efforts, we wish to remind you that limited watering is still required to keep landscaping looking healthy and green,” the letter reads, according to Reuters.

More than 80 percent of the state of California is experiencing extreme drought conditions -- and that has prompted a new, local craze called "drought shaming."

Residents caught wasting water can face $500 fines as well.

Some communities have set up tattle-tale hotlines and, according to local media, they're seeing a spike in drought shaming calls.

In Sacramento, authorities say they've received 10,000 such calls so far.

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