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LV water agency raises rebate for ripping out lawns
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LAS VEGAS (AP) — Water officials in Las Vegas are upping the ante in efforts to get people to replace water-hogging lawns with native desert landscaping.

The Southern Nevada Water Authority on Thursday approved paying residents and business owners $3-per-square-foot to rip out thirsty grass in the drought-stricken region.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports the $1 increase represents the first big change in three years to the agency’s “Water Smart” program.

Authority chief John Entsminger says officials hope raising the rebate will reinvigorate the 19-year-old conservation program.

Officials say the idea isn’t to get rid of all lawns or sports playing fields, but to replace turf that kept as decoration with landscape that doesn’t need much water.

Program participants have to apply for rebates and allow site inspections before and after their landscape conversion.