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Mandatory water restrictions to be lifted Sept. 12

Sept. 11, 2012

For more information, please contact:

Jon Callahan, Public Affairs Specialist, Utilities Department, City of Bloomington, 349.3940
Adam Wason, Communications Director, City of Bloomington, 349.2489

Mandatory water restrictions to be lifted Sept. 12

BLOOMINGTON, IN - Lower water demands, cooler temperatures and increased rainfall have enabled City officials to dismiss the Emergency Water Restriction Order for all Bloomington Utilities water customers. Effective Wednesday the mandatory restrictions return to voluntary guidelines.

"Customer participation and weather helped to accomplish the goal of shaving peak demands at the Monroe Water Treatment Plant," said Patrick Murphy, the City's Utilities Director. "Since the restrictions were instituted, the average daily demand has decreased 18 to 20 percent."

Although the month-long ban was successful, Murphy said voluntary, water use restrictions are still needed to ensure the Monroe Water Treatment Plant continues to operate below capacity, especially if dry weather reemerges over the next few weeks. He noted that the City is still operating under a statewide, water shortage warning issued by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and Indiana Department of Homeland Security. The State has asked all public water systems to implement voluntary reduction methods that reduce water use by 10 to 15 percent.

Mayor Mark Kruzan praised residents' concerted efforts to alleviate peak water demands.

"The cooperation demonstrated by the utility's wholesale customers, our local education institutions, businesses large and small, and the public at large is another example of why this community is a great place to live and work," said Kruzan. "The objective throughout this process was to decrease overall water consumption - lessening the stress on the equipment at the water treatment plant - and we achieved that goal. The important secondary outcome taking place has been the increased awareness and the public education regarding water conservation."

Residents and businesses are encouraged voluntarily to limit watering of established lawns and trees to once a week. New sod and seed should only be watered as necessary. Although not required, it is recommended that all watering occur before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m.

The Utilities Department's capital projects that will expand the treatment capacity of the Monroe Water Treatment Plant from 24 to 30 million gallons a day, including the construction of a second major water distribution main for redundancy and a new water storage tank and booster station, are underway and scheduled for completion in summer 2013.