San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

June 18th, 2009
City to enter Stage 2 drought restrictions

STAFF REPORT

Two days after tabling a proposal to allow an additional weekend watering day at the option of its citizens, the City of San Marcos announced Thursday that Stage 2 drought restrictions are going into effect on Friday.

The Stage 2 declaration is in response to the Edwards Aquifer Authority’s (EAA) call for additional restrictions. Stage 2 is implemented when the ten-day average index well level falls below 650 feet above mean sea level (msl).  The aquifer level fell to 645.8 feet above msl on Thursday, with a ten day average of 649.6 feet above msl. The historical average for June is 663.7 feet above msl.

Stage restrictions may also be triggered by low springflows at Comal or San Marcos Springs. On Wednesday, the San Marcos springs were flowing at 80 cubic feet per second (cfs). The historical average spring flow for June is 192 cfs. The San Marcos springs form the headwaters of the San Marcos River.

The city implemented Stage 1 of its drought response plan on April 28, responding to low flows at San Marcos Springs.

The city last went into Stage 2 restrictions in September 2006. Under EAA rules, aquifer users such as municipalities are required to reduce their usage by 30 percent during Stage 2.

The city receives 75 percent of its water supply from surface water from Canyon Lake and 25 percent from the aquifer.

“I think our citizens know the aquifer is a valuable resource and we need to do everything we can to protect it,” said Tom Taggart, the city’s director of public services.  “At times like this we all need to step up our efforts just a bit.”

Earlier this month, the San Marcos City Council passed the first reading of an ordinance that would have allowed residents the option of watering on a weekend day if they missed their designated weekday under State 1 restrictions. The option passed 5-2, with Councilmembers John Thomaides and Gaylord Bose in opposition.

The measure could have been passed into law on a second reading Tuesday night, but the council decided to table it.

City of San Marcos Stage 2 restrictions include the following:

·         Waste of water is prohibited.

·         Irrigation with sprinklers and automatic sprinkler irrigation systems is allowed only one day per week on the designated weekday between the hours of 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to midnight. The designated weekday is as follows:

* Monday for addresses ending in 0 or 1.
* Tuesday for addresses ending in 2 or 3.
* Wednesday for addresses ending in 4 or 5.
* Thursday for addresses ending in 6 or 7.
* Friday for addresses ending in 8 or 9.

·         Hand watering is allowed on any day and at any time.

·         Irrigation with a soaker hose or drip irrigation system is allowed only one day per week on the designated weekday between the hours of 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to midnight.

·         Irrigation of golf courses and athletic fields with sprinklers is allowed only one day per week on the designated weekday between the hours of midnight to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to midnight.

·         Charity car washes are prohibited except at a certified commercial car wash.

·         At-home car washing is allowed only on the designated weekday between the hours of 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to midnight and must be done using a hand-held bucket or hand-held hose equipped with a positive shutoff device.

·         Swimming pools located outdoors must have at least 25 percent of the water surface area covered when not in use.

·         Filling of new swimming pools is prohibited.

·         Operation of outdoor decorative water features is prohibited.

·         Washing of impervious surfaces is prohibited.

·         Foundation watering is allowed only one day per week on the designated weekday between the hours of midnight to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to midnight.

·         Restaurants are allowed to serve water only upon specific request by the customer.

·         All other non-essential water use is prohibited.

For more information, contact Jan Klein, the city’s conservation coordinator, at (512) 393-8310.

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0 thoughts on “City to enter Stage 2 drought restrictions

  1. “Never have the San Marcos Springs so desperately needed your help!
    Save Water – Save the Springs! DON’T SQUEEZE TEXAS DRY”

    Sincerely,
    Ron Coley

  2. I hope everyone understands that this means no sprinklers on Saturday or Sunday, no power washing the driveway, etc. I saw an awful lot of that going on this weekend.

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