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Posted on: August 31, 2020

Stage 2 Water Shortage Restrictions Begin September 1

 

PRESS RELEASE

Stage 2 Water Shortage Restrictions Begin September 1

Contact: Steve Hunter, Utilities Resource Manager, 970.309.5657 or steve.hunter@cityofaspen.com

Aspen, CO – August 31, 2020 – The City of Aspen Stage 2 Water Shortage Restrictions go into effect September 1 for all City utility customers.  The goal of Stage 2 is to reduce City of Aspen total water use by 15-20% over current use.  City Council enacted the Water Shortage ordinance just after the US Drought Monitor declared Pitkin County to be in “extreme drought conditions” on August 18.  In addition, local rivers are running at 40-70% of median flows.

All the City’s water supply is dependent on streams so the community’s collective actions will help preserve our shared water supply over the dry late summer and fall.  There are several restrictions that will be in place for residents, commercial users, and the City of Aspen, which include the following:

1.    Watering of any lawn, garden, landscaped area, tree, shrub or other plant shall be prohibited from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
2.    Water every other day on an "odd-even" schedule, which means watering according to address number.
3.    There shall be no washing of sidewalks, driveways, parking areas, tennis courts, patios, or other paved areas.
4.    There shall be no refilling of swimming pools with water furnished by the City.
5.    There shall be no non-commercial washing of privately owned cars, other motor vehicles, trailers or boats, except from a bucket and except that a hose equipped with a positive shut-off nozzle.
6.    No new public or private landscaping installations shall be allowed with the exception of that required as a minimum for erosion control of disturbed surfaces as determined by the City.
7.    No new water connections shall be authorized; however, existing authorizations shall be honored.
8.    Tier 3 and 4 water customers will have rate increases.


“We could easily reach our target reductions if each of our four thousand water customers focused on these new behaviors, particularly watering their landscape every other day rather than daily and watering before 9 a.m. and after 5 p.m.,” said Steve Hunter, Utilities Resource Manager for City of Aspen.  “Because the streams are running very low and its easy for everyone to see the impact of the drought, we hope our shared conservation values will resonate with people’s water usage.  The streams we see today are tomorrow’s drinking water so anything we can do to preserve our supply goes a long way, not in just reaching our reduction goals for our customers but protecting the rivers as much as possible.”

The City of Aspen has been managing its own parks and golf course watering schedules to reflect the current water shortage rules since July.

While the City of Aspen is taking an educational approach to enforcement, there are measures in place for offenders, which include:

1.    Written notification of violation and requested correction provided to Property owner or Agent;
2.    If the correction requested in the written notification of violation is not corrected, a first offense may be issued with a $500 fine;
3.    An observed blatant violation of restrictions may result in a $500 fine upon first offense;
4.    Subsequent offenses may result in additional $1500 fine(s), disconnection of water service and may be penalized in accordance with Section 1.04.080 of the Municipal Code.

To find out more on the Stage 2 Water Shortage, including flyers, water saving tips, and links to more resources go to www.cityofaspen.com/drought.

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