Mayor Chris Beutler today asked for the public's help to reduce water consumption in the City by about 20 percent. Water usage Tuesday topped 80 million gallons for the first time this summer, and yesterday's usage was 76 million gallons. The Mayor said that in order to ensure that the City has adequate water for drinking, fire protection and other essential uses for the rest of the summer, residents need to reduce water usage to no more than 65 million gallons per day.
"We are asking for voluntary compliance at this time," Beutler said. "No one wants to mandate water restrictions. The City has not issued mandatory water restrictions since 2002. But keep in mind that in July 2002, temperatures were not this high. We had received some rainfall. And the lowest river flow in July 2002 was about 650 cubic feet per second. River flow yesterday was below 300."
Beutler said the 65 million gallon goal can be reached if everyone observes the voluntary designated day outdoor watering schedule:
The Mayor said experts caution against watering every day, and he reminded residents that City water rates are structured to encourage conservation - the more you use, the higher rate you are charged. The price is $1.34 per unit for the first eight units (about 6,000 gallons). The price increases to $1.91 per unit for the next 15 units (11,250 gallons). It increases again to $2.96 per unit for every 750 gallons above 15 units.
In addition to following the designated day system, the Mayor's Water Conservation Task Force recommends the following: