Homeowner associations can no longer slap fines on residents with dry, brown lawns during droughts.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed AB2100 on Monday.
The legislation enshrines into law the governor's order in April prohibiting homeowner associations from penalizing residents who conserve water in a declared drought.
Democratic Assemblywoman Nora Campos of San Jose introduced the bill after a San Lorenzo man was threatened with up to $1000 in fines for not watering his lawn.
It came even after the governor declared a drought emergency in January.
Another bill moving through the Legislature prevents homeowner associations from punishing owners for installing drought-resistant landscaping.
The bill does not extend to local governments.
Some agencies have been warning residents for not watering their lawns even as the state authorizes penalties for overwatering lawns.