Courtesy Graphicology

With record rainfall occurring in California, pool and spa builders there no longer have to worry about drought restrictions.

At least four atmospheric river events have slammed the state so far this year, dumping rain in inch counts many times the annual average. Before the last storm hit, only about one third of the California remained in a state of drought — and only moderate, at that.

As a result, all drought restrictions involving pools and spas — or threats of them — have been dropped there, said Scott Cohen, chairman of the California Pool and Spa Association.

“We are able to pull pool permits in communities that previously shut them down because of drought concerns,” he says.

While the state will always have to contend with the threat of drought and resulting restrictions, the industry in the Golden State now is turning its attention to opposing decarbonization laws that prohibit the installation of gas lines on new homes. Beginning April 1, for instance, Los Angeles will not issue home permit for those that use gas service.

“Our focus is managing the legislation that comes out of California, on minimizing its impact on California builders,” Cohen said. “We don’t have a way to heat pools otherwise.”

While the issue is specific to The Golden State for now, Cohen sees potential ramifications across the country. “Some of the decisions that are made in California set the trends for the rest of the country,” he said.

New legislation to impose a tax on products containing cyanuric acid is also garnering industry attention.

Senate Bill 676, by Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica), would authorize counties to tax trichlor up to 30 cents per tablet, if voted on by the electorate. Retailers would be required to collect the tax from customers and remit it to the county.

The tax ordinances would have to be renewed through a vote every five years, or they would expire.

The legislation has been converted to a two-year timeline, to allow CPSA and other industry stakeholders to provide more feedback. The bill has been referred to its first committee, the Committee on Governance and Finance.

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