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City of Buda to enforce water restrictions starting Monday

CBS Austin

Another dry year has put the City of Buda into a drought, now residents are paying the price with restricted water usage outdoors starting Monday.

"Basically City of Buda customers must abide by a twice per week water irrigation schedule," said David Marino, spokesperson for the City of Buda. “That includes outdoor irrigation, which includes automatic hand hose and sprinkler systems.”

So far this year, the town has gotten just shy of a foot of rain, and half of that came from a single day in March. The dry conditions and growing demand is why city leaders are now requiring people to cut back.

"We're just trying to make sure that we're proactive and we're ensuring we have the water we need to last throughout the next couple months, because again, we're expecting a dryer than average summer," Marino said.

Beginning Monday, residents will only be allowed to water with sprinkler systems twice a week, with usage strictly prohibited between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Odd numbered residences will only be allowed to use sprinklers on Wednesday and Saturday; Even numbered residences on Thursday and Sunday.

Commercial businesses and multi-family housing complexes are limited to watering with sprinklers on Tuesdays and Fridays.

However, city officials are encouraging residences and businesses to only water once a week.

Kenneth Atkisson says he stopped watering his yard two years ago during a previous drought "just to conserve water, plus we do happen to have a bigger yard, a 1/3 of an acre,” he said.

Now he’s only watering his plants every other day, and when he does, it’s only by hose. So, the restrictions won’t impact him much, but he is glad they are in place.

"It's more important that we have drinking water than green grass," Atkisson said.

The City of Buda says lifting the water restrictions will depend on how much rain the town gets in the next couple of months. Violators could be fined between $100 and $500.

Additional Stage 1 water allowances and restrictions are included below:

· Outdoor watering with handheld bucket, handheld hose with a positive shutoff device, soaker hose and/or drip irrigation systems are permitted at any time on any day.

· Irrigation of vegetable gardens with a handheld bucket, handheld hose, soaker hose or drip irrigation system is allowed on any day and at any time.

· Irrigation of protected trees by a soaker hose, automatic bubbler, tree watering bag, or similar device placed within the tree's dripline is allowed on any day and at any time.

· Commercial nurseries are subject to the time restrictions when using automated irrigation systems, but may operate on any day. Use of handheld bucket, handheld hose with a positive shutoff device, soaker hose and/or drip irrigation systems are permitted at any time on any day.

· Date and time restrictions for irrigation do not apply during repair or testing of a new or existing irrigation system if the person performing the testing is present. The irrigation system shall only be operated as long as is necessary to diagnose and complete repairs.

Vehicle Washing

· Charity carwashes are allowed, but must be done using a handheld bucket or a handheld hose equipped with a positive shutoff device. Charity carwashes shall not create water waste as defined herein.

· Noncommercial vehicle washing is allowed on any day and at any time, but must be done using a handheld bucket or a handheld hose equipped with a positive shutoff device.

· Commercial Vehicle Washing is allowed on any day and at any time.

Swimming Pools

· Swimming Pools are allowed to operate and be filled as normal. It is recommended that swimming pools be covered while not in use to minimize evaporative losses.

· Operation of non-recirculating aesthetic water features is prohibited at all times.

In addition, foundation watering is allowed on any day and at any time. However, it should not result in pooling or runoff onto impervious surfaces, adjacent property, draining facilities (natural or manmade), sidewalks or streets.

Other nonessential water uses are allowed but all reasonable measures shall be taken to limit the use.

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