LOS ANGELES — Celebrities like Dwyane Wade, Sylvester Stallone and Kourtney Kardashian are among the people accused of wasting water and violating usage restrictions currently in place in California.
Kim and Kourtney Kardashian, Stallone, Gabrielle Union, Wade and Kevin Hart are among the 2,000 customers who were issued “notices of exceedance” by the Las Virgenes Municipal District, the Los Angeles Times reported. The notice indicates the customer has used more than 150% of their allotted water budget at least four times since the agency declared a drought emergency last year.
“The reason this is important is that those individuals have a platform that they could use, like social media — some of them have millions following them,” Michael McNutt, the Las Virgenes Municipal Water District’s communications manager, told NBC News. “What I want them to do is work with me, work with my district, in order to put out public service announcements and educate the community on how dire this drought is. I want those celebrities to lead by example, then use that knowledge for themselves.”
The Las Virgenes Municipal Water District services Agoura Hills, Calabasas, Hidden Hills and Westlake Village, NPR reported.
The district said that customers who do not reduce their usage are subject to penalties, including a charge of up to $10 per extra unit of water, or having a “flow restriction device” installed in their homes, NBC News reported.
“For the celebrities or musicians or athletes who all live in the area, monetary penalties are going to be meaningless to them because it doesn’t matter,” McNutt told NPR. “They have plenty of money and if they want to, they could spend $5,000 a month on a water bill.”
Wade and Union, who are married, were told that their $18-million property exceeded its budget in May by 489,000 gallons and again in June by 90,000 gallons, the Los Angeles Times reported. In a statement to the newspaper, the couple attributed the excess water use to a problem with their pool, and said that they have “taken drastic steps to reduce water usage in accordance with the new city guidelines and have since we moved into our home.”
McNutt told NPR that the Kardashian family has been particularly wasteful, with Kim’s property exceeding the June allotment by 232,000 gallons, while Kourtney exceeded hers by 101,000 gallons.
A representative for Sylvester Stallone told the Los Angeles Times that the reason their property has been as much as 533% over budget was because of the hundreds of fruit and pine trees on the property that require watering.
None of the celebrities who received notices will be getting a water flow restriction device installed at their home. The district told NBC News that the celebrities have all signed a “Water Use Commitment Form,” which allows customers to request a water survey and get tips from specialists on how to reduce their water usage.
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