San Marcos declares Stage 4 drought restrictions
The city of San Marcos is entering Stage 4 drought restrictions for the first time ever, effective Sunday, Aug. 17 at noon. The Edwards Aquifer Authority declared Stage 4 Tuesday.
San Marcos has been in drought restrictions almost continuously since April of 2011, and has been in Stage 3 restrictions since April of this year. This is the first time that EAA or San Marcos have declared Stage 4 conditions.
Stage 4 is implemented when the 10-day average Edwards Aquifer index well level falls below 630 feet above mean sea level (msl). Yesterday, the 10-day average aquifer level was at 629.7 feet above mean sea level and the daily reading was 628.0 feet. The historic low of the San Antonio pool of the Edwards Aquifer was 612 feet on Aug. 17, 1956.
“The drought ordinance does not have specific measures outlined for Stage 4, but allows us to adopt whatever measures are necessary to protect our water supplies,” said Jan Klein, conservation coordinator for city of San Marcos. “Instead of a new set of restrictions, we have decided to stay with the Stage 3 rules and increase our enforcement efforts.”
The penalties for breaking Stage 4 conservation rules range from $125 per violation per day up to $1,000 per violation per day. Fines increase for repeat offenses. Under Stage 4, city officials actively patrol and log instances of drought restriction violations and send out notices to water customers who break the water conservation rules.
Under Stage 4, use of sprinklers will be limited to one day every other week on a designated weekday between 6-10 a.m. or 8 p.m.-midnight.
Designated sprinkler weeks are as follows:
• No sprinklers on Saturdays and Sundays.
• Aug. 18 – 22 – No sprinklers.
• Aug. 25 – 29 – Sprinklers allowed on designated weekday and times.
• Sept. 1 – 5 – No sprinklers.
• Sept. 8 – 12 - Sprinklers allowed on designated weekday and times.
Soaker hose and drip irrigation are allowed one day per week on the designated weekday before 10 a.m. or after 8 p.m. Hand watering is allowed on any day before 10 a.m. or after 8 p.m.
Stage 4 rules prohibit water waste, washing impervious surfaces, filling swimming pools, and using decorative water features. Foundation watering is allowed one day per week on the designated weekday before 10 a.m. or after 8 p.m., and only by soaker hose or hand-held hose.
Full text of the Stage 4 rules can be found on the city of San Marcos website at www.sanmarcostx.gov/drought.
For more information please visit the city of San Marcos website or call Jan Klein at (512) 393-8310.