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Overwatering During Stage 3 Restrictions Will Cost You

City officials estimate stage three emergency restrictions will hit in one to two weeks.
Stage three drought emergency water restrictions are inching ever closer for City of Wichita Falls water customers.
    And if you have a green thumb and love to see lush trees and shrubs or colorful pansy blooms, you'll have to change your watering habits or pay the price.
    Russell Schreiber, Wichita Falls public works director, says, "If someone wants to irrigate their lawns or water their trees for irrigation purposes, it's going to be more expensive."
    During stage three, you can only use automatic sprinkler systems between midnight to 5 a.m. on the one day a week you can water.
    Hose-end sprinkler systems will be allowed between 8 p.m. to midnight.
    You can still hand water any time of the day.
    If you exceed a certain amount of water allowed, you'll have to pay the surcharge.
    "For irrigation, it starts at the first gallon. For a regular residential meter, it starts after 10 CCF," Schreiber says.
    That's equivalent to 7,480 gallons or 10 units of water for those with a regular residential meter.
    The surcharge would apply to usage over 10 units.
    And it's a stepped increase so there will be more surcharges if you keep going over the set amounts .
    For residential water meters, it will be an additional $1 per CCF If consumption is between 10 CCF and 20 CCF.
    It'll cost an additional $2 per CCF between 20 CCF and 40 CCF, and an additional $4 per CCF over 40.
    You'll see all that on your water bill.
    "There will be a place where folks can see how many units of water they used," Schreiber says.
    For those with irrigation water meters, it will cost you $1 per CCF between 0 and 10, $2 per CCF between 10 and 20, $4 per CCF between 20 and 40, and $8 per CCF over 40 CCF.
    Schreiber says the surcharge will only affect large industries if they have irrigation meters.
    He says most big businesses that use Wichita Falls water are careful of how they use it.
    All the stage three restrictions will be new to residents since we have never had restrictions in place when the lakes went this low, so we will continue to update and provide you the information you need as stage three approaches.
    The combined lake level today remains about 1/2 of a percent above the 40-percent capacity level, the level that stage 3 restrictions take effect.
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