Folsom, Calif. – Folsom City Manager Kerry Miller today declared a Stage 2 Water Alert that imposes mandatory water use restrictions for homes and businesses effective Sept. 5. The alert follows the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s 25 percent cut in water deliveries to a number of agencies, including Folsom, and comes as the region faces its most serious drought conditions since 1991.
Restrictions for Folsom homes and businesses include alternate day landscape watering, limited hours for automatic sprinkler use and avoidance of run-off onto streets and gutters. Residents are asked to cut overall water use by 20 percent.
Miller said the City’s total annual water use is about 30,000 acre feet. While 27,000 acre feet of that water comes from a secure Lake Folsom supply, an additional supply under the Bureau’s management could soon be cut, resulting in a water supply that is up to 3,000 acre feet less than the City’s projected annual use.
‘In order to make up the difference we must achieve a citywide water use reduction of approximately 20 percent,’ said Miller. ‘We have already slashed water usage by 20 percent for Landscape and Lighting districts, local parks and City property and we’re continuing to monitor and correct any overflow problems in those areas.’
On Sept. 9 the City Council will consider an ordinance which would provide greater enforcement options. ‘We are hoping that residents will recognize the seriousness of the drought and comply voluntarily,’ said Miller.
The City recently initiated a conservation campaign themed ‘Reduce Water Use’ to raise awareness. Folsom also offers free home visits from conservation experts who can help individuals determine how to conserve effectively.
‘Unfortunately, the current circumstances require that we move beyond recommendations and impose some requirements,’ said Miller. ‘Our entire region is facing extremely serious drought conditions.’
In June, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a statewide drought the first such declaration since 1991. According to the Department of Water Resources, the period of March through June 2008 is the driest on record in the Northern Sierra. Only 3.4 inches of rainfall was received, merely 25 percent of average, resulting in significantly low reservoir levels.
Residents can schedule a free Water Wise house call or report water waste problems by calling 355-7252. To report a water service problem or water break emergency after business hours or on weekends and holidays, call 985-4848.
Stage 2 Water Alert Restrictions:
- - Limit landscape watering to three days each week. Residents with even street numbers water on Wednesday, Friday and Sundays. Those with odd number addresses water on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays.
- No watering is allowed on Mondays. (These restrictions apply to manual and automatic watering.)Use automatic sprinkler systems only between 10 p.m. and 10 a.m.
- Avoid excessive watering that runs off onto sidewalks, streets or gutters.
- Restaurants will serve water only upon request.
- The City of Folsom receives all its water supply from the American River at Folsom Lake. An acre foot of water equals about 326,000 gallons, or enough water to cover an acre of land about the size of a football field, one foot deep.
- An average California household uses between one-half and one-acre foot of water per year for indoor and outdoor use.
- The average homeowner overwaters by 100 percent.