Chapter 13.68


13.68.015    Supply shortage.

13.68.025    Water conservation and rationing.

13.68.035    Conservation and rationing program.

Prior legislation: Ords. 271 and 121-94.

13.68.015 Supply shortage.

In case of shortage of supply, the public works department reserves the right to give preference in the matter of furnishing service to customers, as in the judgment of its representatives shall be for the best interests of the city, from the standpoint of public convenience, safety, or necessity. [Ord. 37-06 § 1, 2006].

13.68.025 Water conservation and rationing.

When determined necessary by the city administrator to conserve water within the city of West Richland’s water service area during water shortage periods, the city administrator or his/her designee has the authority to declare an emergency condition and direct the public works director to implement any or all of the actions as outlined in this chapter for the defined emergency. The city administrator’s declaration shall define the emergency stage as a mild, moderate, or severe emergency. The public works department shall monitor the supply of and demand for potable water on a daily basis and report the status to the city administrator. The emergency shall remain in effect until such time as the emergency has expired and a notice of cessation by the city administrator has been given, as provided in this chapter. [Ord. 37-06 § 1, 2006].

13.68.035 Conservation and rationing program.

Upon declaration of a water shortage emergency, the public works director shall implement a water use reduction program corresponding to the emergency level declared by the city administrator. The water use reduction program shall consist of the following measures and any other measures deemed necessary to maintain the quality and availability of the city’s domestic water supply:

A. Mild Stage. The public works department shall:

1. Provide a water shortage emergency public notification in the city’s water service area. The notification must request that West Richland domestic water system users utilizing city water for irrigation conform to the following landscape-watering monthly calendar schedule:

a. Even-numbered addresses water on even-numbered days.

b. Odd-numbered addresses water on odd-numbered days.

c. Irrigation watering shall only be allowed between the hours of 4:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

d. Watering of city parks and greenbelts shall be reduced to every third day.

e. The quantity of water used shall be kept at a minimum. Potable water used for irrigation, which is found running upon the streets or walkways, shall be prima face evidence of excessive use.

2. Disseminate water conservation guidelines to all customers within the city’s water service area (except for the large water users to be dealt with separately) asking for a voluntary water use reduction of 15 percent to 25 percent below current usage.

3. Prepare a water shortage emergency status report that includes a request for a voluntary water use reduction of 15 percent to 25 percent below current usage and distribute to all large water users identified in the city’s water utility billing system. The intent of this process is to approach large water users separately from the general/lower volume water users with a written status report providing technical information on their specific water usage supporting the request for voluntary reduction.

4. Utilize media sources to communicate the water shortage emergency as deemed necessary.

5. Establish a water shortage emergency hotline to address public questions, comments and concerns.

6. Establish an information source point entitled “water shortage emergency” on the city’s official website which provides updated information on water shortage emergency stages, conditions, and requirements.

7. Ready emergency water supply interties with adjacent water systems to supplement available water supply if necessary.

B. Moderate Stage. In addition to the following measures, all measures identified in the previous mild stage shall apply. The public works department shall:

1. Appoint a water conservation representative(s) to meet with large water users identified in the city’s water utility billing system to inform them of the current water shortage condition and require a mandatory 25 percent water use reduction below the most recent nonemergency water shortage year on a month-by-month basis.

2. Implement mandatory landscape watering restrictions that include adherence to specific watering schedules up to and including prohibition of landscape watering altogether if necessary.

3. Prohibit the operation and introduction of water into an ornamental fountain.

4. Prohibit the washing of streets, sidewalks, driveways, or decks except as necessary for public health and safety.

5. Prohibit the filling of swimming pools, spas, ponds, and artificial lakes.

6. Prohibit washing of any vehicles or boats unless at a commercial car washing facility equipped with water recycling equipment.

7. Instruct all construction operations receiving water from a city fire hydrant not to use water for any purpose other than those required by regulatory agencies. A water rate surcharge of 300 percent shall be established for this type water use.

8. Require all restaurants to conspicuously post a water shortage emergency notice as approved by the public works director and refrain from serving water to customers except upon request.

9. Require operators of hotels, motels, and other commercial lodging establishments to conspicuously post a water shortage emergency notice as approved by the public works director.

10. Watering of city parks and greenbelts shall be limited to the irrigation of trees only.

C. Severe Stage. In addition to the following measures, all measures identified in the previous temperate and intermediate stages shall apply. The public works department shall:

1. Prohibit all watering of any lawn, yard, city-owned park, landscaping, recreational area or any other area containing vegetation.

2. Rescind all fire hydrant meter use permits and issue no new permits.

3. Close all city-owned swimming pools, wading pools, splash facilities, and the like.

D. Should the above measures fall short of maintaining enough water supply for the basic functions of health and sanitation, the public works director is authorized to:

1. Implement further mandatory water use reductions up to 50 percent including a corresponding inclining rate structure.

2. Implement a rolling system of outages as necessary to preserve basic health and sanitation.

E. Notice to Water Customers. Notice shall be given advising water customers that the potable city water conservation and rationing program is to be implemented. For mild stage conditions such notice shall be published at least two days in the official newspaper of the city, and shall contain a description of the programs, the effective date and time of implementation, and penalty for violation. For moderate stage conditions such notice shall be published for at least one day. For severe stage conditions notification shall be by the most expedient means possible with a follow-up published notification if the severe stage condition is expected to last more than three consecutive days. Assistance of other local media will be sought throughout the duration of the water shortage in an attempt to further advise water customers; however, such additional media assistance shall not be deemed a condition precedent to effectuating the program on the date and time specified in the notice of cessation published as required in this section.

F. Notice of cessation of the water shortage shall be given by publication in the official newspaper of the city; provided, however, that notice of cessation need only be published one time. [Ord. 21-09 § 1, 2009; Ord. 37-06 § 1, 2006].