Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Swiftmud eases water restrictions

The region's once-a-week watering restrictions are no more, as of Thursday.

The restrictions, a legacy of the Tampa Bay region's long water shortage, expire today.

Because the winter brought above-average rainfall, the Southwest Florida Water Management District board voted Tuesday not to renew the watering limits.

Residents can now water their lawns twice a week. Ronald Oakley, the board's chairman, commended the region's residents for abiding by the restrictions for so long.

However, he added, "we want to remind them that just because they may be able to water two days per week, doesn't mean they need to. We can't afford to be wasteful."

The board first declared a water shortage in January 2007. At one point in spring 2009, the shortage had reached such a critical stage that the board imposed the toughest restrictions in its history.

At that point the Hillsborough and Alafia rivers, which help provide water for the region, had dropped to just 2 percent of their normal flow, and the C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir, which can hold 15 billion gallons, had been drained dry.

Tampa Bay Water was pumping more water out of the ground than it was supposed to, and wound up incurring a $48,000 fine.

So the board commonly known as Swiftmud cut the once-a-day lawn watering to certain hours.

It banned residential car and pressure-washing. Ornamental fountains had to be switched off. Local governments stepped up enforcement, passing out hundreds of citations.

Since then, though, the board has eased back on the restrictions. Local aquifer and river levels have bounced back and the reservoir is once again filled.

While the Swiftmud region includes Hernando, Pasco, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties, the new twice-a-week rules don't apply everywhere.

Unincorporated Pasco County, for instance, is expected to remain on one-day-per-week restrictions.

Hillsborough County water rules

For residents of unincorporated Hillsborough who get their water from the county, these are the new watering days: Addresses ending in 0, 1, 2 or 3 can water on Mondays and Thursdays; Addresses ending in 4, 5 or 6 can water on Tuesdays and Fridays; Addresses ending in 7, 8 or 9, locations with no address, and locations with shared addresses can water on Wednesdays and Saturdays. All watering must be done before 8 a.m. or after 6 p.m. Those who have reclaimed water are exempt from the restrictions.

Swiftmud eases water restrictions 06/29/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 11:38pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. A meatless burger that tastes like meat? Ciccio Restaurants will serve the Impossible Burger.

    Food & Dining

    TAMPA — The most red-hot hamburger in the nation right now contains no meat.

    Luis Flores, executive chef at Ciccio Restaurant Group, prepares an Impossible Burger at Epicurean Hotel's Food Theatre. Impossible Burger is a plant-based burger that will launch on Sept. 27, 2017 in all the Ciccio Restaurant Group locations, except for Fresh Kitchen. "This burger caters to the carnivorous, not just the vegetarians" said Jeff Gigante, co-founder at Ciccio Restaurant Group. ALESSANDRA DA PRA  |   Times
  2. Plan your weekend: Sept. 22-24: Buffyfest, Arcade Fire, Howl-O-Scream, Wanderlust 108 and 'Rent'

    Events

    Plan your weekend

    Pop show

    Florida Björkestra's Buffyfest: Pop culture meets pop music when the Florida Björkestra, a 20-piece alternative-classical ensemble that tributes ground-breaking pop artists, on Saturday will play with eight vocalists for "Once More with …

    The 20th anniversary tour of RENT, shown in 2016, comes to the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts Sept. 19-24, 2017. Photo by Carol Rosegg.
  3. Chris Archer, 25,000 Cubs fans and Tampa Bay's painful truth

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The biggest ovation inside Tropicana Field on Tuesday night was not for Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who was returning for the first time since managing the Rays.

    "W" flags fly in the stands after the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Rays Tuesday at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  4. A rendering of the Bucs' indoor practice facility.
  5. Poorly assembled 'Lego Ninjago Movie' waters down Lego movie franchise

    Movies

    Well, that didn't take long.

    After only three movies, the Lego franchise is already a shadow of its original self, less irreverent and go-for-broke bricky. The watering down of an ingenious formula comes with The Lego Ninjago Movie, the sort we expected all along from plastic construction toys.

    A scene from "The Lego Ninjago Movie." (Warner Bros.)