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

October 6th, 2009
City lifts Stage 2 drought restrictions


The City of San Marcos lifted its Stage 2 drought restrictions Tuesday after several periods of significant rainfall that have relieved severe drought conditions. The city now moves down to Stage 1 restrictions.

San Marcos has been under Stage 2 drought restrictions since June 19 due to lack of rainfall and resulting low aquifer levels.

After several rainfalls in the last couple weeks, the Edwards Aquifer level Monday at the J-17 index well in San Antonio was recorded at 657.9 feet above mean sea level, 6.7 feet below the historic October average of 664.6 feet. Springflow at San Marcos Springs were recorded at 110 cubic feet per second, or 50 cfs below the October springflow average of 160 cfs.

More rains could quickly remove all drought restrictions. The flow at San Marcos Springs is actually faster than the level that would trigger Stage 1, which is 96 cfs. When the J-17 level reaches past 660 feet, then none of the Stage 1 triggers will be in effect.

“We have received some badly needed rain, but we’ll need more before we can say the drought is over,” said Tom Taggart, the city’s public services director.  “We encourage residents to follow water conservation practices and continue to protect a precious resource.”

San Marcos will continue with Stage 1 water restrictions, which limit sprinkler use to one day a week but allow longer hours on the designated day. Under Stage 1, soaker hoses and drip irrigation can be used at any time on any day.

Stage 1 rules include:

·         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 midnight 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.

Residents may apply for an alternate designated day, including Saturday or Sunday if the designated weekday doesn’t work for them.

·         Hand watering and irrigating with a soaker hose or drip irrigation system is allowed any day and any time.

·         At-home car washing is allowed only one day per week on the designated weekday.

·         Washing of impervious surfaces is prohibited unless required for health and safety use.

·         Foundation watering is allowed any day and at any time.

·         Restaurants are allowed to serve water only upon request.

·         All other non-essential water uses must be is limited.

Full text of the rules is available on the City of San Marcos website, For more information, contact Jan Klein, Conservation Coordinator, at (512) 393-8310.

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