Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance (MWELO)
Assembly Bill (AB) 325 of 1990 created the Water Conservation in Landscaping Act requiring the Department of Water Resources (DWR) to develop a Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance (MWELO). This Model Ordinance was adopted and went into effect January 1, 1993, requiring all local agencies to adopt a water efficient landscape ordinance, unless proven unnecessary, by 1993. In 2004, AB 2717 requested the California Urban Water Conservation Council (CUWCC) to convene a task force in order to evaluate and recommend improving the efficiency of water use in urban irrigated landscapes. The outcome was 43 recommendations, some of which included updates to the Ordinance. In 2006, AB 1881 was enacted requiring DWR to update the Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance reflecting the recommendations of the CUWCC task force and public comment. The updated MWELO went into effect January 1, 2010, was updated again by Executive Order, and has been in effect since December 1, 2015.