Edwards Aquifer Authority declares Stage 1 permit restrictions
The Edwards Aquifer Authority issued State 1 Critical Period Management permit predictions for counties within the San Antonio Pool, which includes Hays County.
State 1 Critical Period Management Plan for the San Antonio Pool requires Edwards groundwater permit holders in Atascosa, Bexar, Caldwell, Comal, Guadalupe, Hays and Medina counties to reduce their annual authorized pumping by 20%, according to EAA.
Permit reductions went into effect Wednesday after EAA officials confirmed that the 10-day average at the index well J-17 index well fell below 660 to 659.8 feet above mean sea level. EAA stated that the reductions apply to all Edwards Aquifer groundwater permit holders authorized to pump more than three acrefeet annually, including industrial and agricultural uses and water utilities authorized to pump water from the aquifer to customers.
EAA stated that residents and businesses within counties impacted by the reductions should follow their respective water provider’s directives regarding water use.
The City of San Marcos is currently under Stage 1 drought restrictions. The city moved down from Stage 2 restrictions to Stage 1 on May 23. A city spokesperson said there are no plans to change drought restrictions at this time.
Under Stage 1 restrictions, the city restricts use of sprinklers to one day per week on a designated day determined by address — addresses ending with 0 or 1 may use sprinklers on Monday; 2 or 3 on Tuesday; 4 or 5 on Wednesday; 6 or 7 on Thursday; and 8 or 9 on Friday. Irrigation using hose-end sprinklers is allowed on the designated weekday during designated usage times. Irrigation with automatic irrigation systems is allowed on the designated weekday beginning at 8 p.m. and ending the following morning at 8 a.m.
Hand watering and using soaker hoses or drip irrigation is allowed on any day and at any time.
Additionally, Stage 1 rules also limit at-home car washing, washing of impervious surfaces and foundation water to one day per week. The city stated that wasting water is prohibited.
EAA is the groundwater conservation district that manages the Edwards Aquifer, which serves approximately 2 million South Central Texans. EAA’s jurisdiction spans across eight counties including Uvalde, Medina, Bexar, and parts of Atascosa, Caldwell, Guadalupe, Comal and Hays counties.