The average annual rainfall for Santa Rosa, California is 32 inches with this year being an exceptionally rainy summer being the second rainiest since 1983. The majority of the rainfall happens during the winter with typical summers being dry, increasing the reliance on expensive utility water. One solution that the Santa Rosa Water Utilities board has come up with is offering rebates for residents who take water conservation measures su the h as rainwater harvesting, irrigation efficiency, efficient appliance rebates and much more.
Collecting rainwater using a residential or commercial rooftop for later use is a sustainable water source, applying a water source that would otherwise be wasted runoff. The Santa Rosa Water Utilities offers $0.25 per gallon of rainwater storage in rebate to cover the materials needed for the system. The maximum rebate is based on the square footage of irrigated landscape, the types of plants used and the peak month of July water requirements of the planted areas.
To qualify for this rebate,:
- Be an account holder, have services with the City of Santa Rosa Water Utilities in their name for the property where the project will be completed.
- If the property owner is the participant in the program and not the water account holder, they must receive written consent from the water account holder using a City of Santa Rosa Tenant/Account Holder Permission Form.
- You have to agree that the rainwater storage system will be in place for as long as you are the current account holder or property owner. If hardware is replaced with anything less efficient or removed during that time, the entire rebate amount must be refunded.
- There must be a landscape that requires irrigation
Talk with the Experts at Watermark h2o Rainwater Harvesting:
To receive this rebate:
1) If not already pre-qualified, call Water-Use Efficiency staff at 707-543-3985 for eligibility verification and a potential site visit.
2) After eligibility of site is verified, you will receive your Rainwater Harvesting Eligibility Form (required to qualify for rebate).
- a) You may then proceed with rainwater storage installation.
- b) You have 120 days from the date on the eligibility form to complete the project.
- c) Existing rainwater harvesting systems without prior approval are not eligible.
3) Project Guidelines:
- a) 100 gallons is the minimum storage required to qualify for the rebate.
- i) The maximum gallons of storage eligible for rebate is based on the square footage of irrigated landscape, the plant types, and their estimated peak month (July) water requirement.
- ii) If the project does not exceed the maximum gallon amount, future additions may be rebated upon prior approval. b) Retain/obtain the receipt(s) or invoice(s) itemizing the materials used in the project area.
** c) Planning & Economic Development: Building Division involvement for possible permits, depending on project configuration:
- i) If installing 5,000 gallons of storage or more in one area, you may need to get a permit for a concrete pad for support.
- ii) If a permanent pump, pressurization, electrical power or a controller is installed (on any number of stored gallons) a permit and backflow device may be required for your potable water line(s).
iii) Per Santa Rosa City Code Title 20, Division 4, Chapter 20-42.030 (C)(3)(b)(1)(c): Rain harvesting tanks that do not exceed eight feet in height may be placed within a rear or side yard setback without limitation on location. Rain harvesting tanks that exceed eight feet in height may be allowed within a rear or side yard setback, subject to Design Review. Rain harvesting tanks of any height shall not be permitted within a front yard setback.
4) Once project is finished based on above guidelines, and within the 120-day period, call 707-543-3985 to set up a post-inspection.
5) City staff will come on-site and meet with you to verify completion and that the project follows the guidelines above.
- a) If approved, the customer will sign Certificate of Participation and Approval agreeing to terms of the rebate.
6) Rebates are processed within 4 to 8 weeks after completed project is approved.