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City of Lincoln
Mayor's Office

2013 Media Releases


Date:
May 16, 2013
For More Information Contact:
Diane Gonzolas, Citizen Information Center, 402-441-7831
Miki Esposito, Public Works and Utilities, 402-441-7548

Mayor Not Recommending Watering Restrictions

Residents encouraged to follow good conservation practices

After record drought conditions last summer, Mayor Chris Beutler today announced that the City's water supply is 96 percent full, and he will not ask residents to follow the voluntary designated-day watering schedule at this time. Lincoln's water comes from well fields along the Platte River. Officials with the Lincoln Water System (LWS) say precipitation is near normal levels, the aquifer is almost full and flows in the Platte are just slightly below normal. LWS will review river flows and water usage the first week of June to determine if additional conservation measures are needed at that time.

"Last July and August were the driest since 1887, prompting the City to issue mandatory outdoor watering restrictions for the first time since 2002," Mayor Beutler said. "We all learned from that experience and have taken action to improve our water management plan, reduce confusion and encourage conservation. We are in good shape now, but we all know how uncertain our summer weather can be. We will continue to monitor our supply and usage very carefully over the next few months, and we ask residents to stay informed and be prepared to follow restrictions if they become necessary."

The City Council Monday approved the use of higher water rates during voluntary and mandatory water restrictions as well as the decriminalization of water violations. A revised water management plan also includes new designated watering days for apartment complexes and commercial properties and changes for those using private wells. A summary of the changes follows this release.

Mayor Beutler encouraged residents to begin using water conservation practices now. He suggested those with automatic sprinkler systems adjust them to the designated-day schedule before restrictions take effect. While customers have three designated days to water, lawn professionals say one or two days a week is adequate, and over watering can lead to shallow roots and lawn diseases. Other ways to decrease outdoor watering include the following:

More information is available by visiting water.lincoln.ne.gov or calling the Water Management Hotline at 402-441-1212.

SUMMARY OF CHANGES IN CITY WATER PLAN

The City Council approved the following changes Monday, May 13:

The Mayor has approved the following revisions to the Water Management Plan:

Owners of private wells are encouraged but not required to follow the designated day watering schedule and other restrictions. If the Mayor implements mandatory water use restrictions, private well owners will be required to post a sign on each property served by the well. The City will supply the signs at no charge. For homes and businesses, owners must post the signs in a window so they are visible from the street. For areas not directly associated with a structure, yard signs will be available to pick up at the LWS Operations Center, 2021 N. 27th Street, from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.


Mayor's Office
Media Releases