HCWSA seeking customer help in conserving water

With the buckets of rainfall hitting the area recently, it is hard to imagine that conservation of water is of any importance to Henry County. However, the need is still critical due to the fast growth of the county.

Nov 7th, 2003


McDonough, Ga., Nov. 7, 2003 -- With the buckets of rainfall hitting the area recently, and the recent federal court ruling approving progress in the Tussahaw Reservoir construction, it is hard to imagine that conservation of water is of any importance to Henry County. However, the need is still critical due to the fast growth of the county.

Using models for water conservation systems proposed by researchers such as those of the Georgia Conservancy, the HCWSA is pursuing many conservation objectives throughout its system as a more effective water conservation plan begins to evolve. But the Authority needs the help of customers if water conservation is really going to make a difference, says Lindy Farmer, general manager of the HCWSA.

"When you look outside and see storms pounding against the pavement, you think that water is in infinite supply," remarks Farmer. "This is a common misconception that we are trying to educate the public against. Conservation is not a passing trend; rather, it is a permanent change in the way our customers use water."

Despite heavy rainfall, the voluntary watering restrictions put in place following the periods of drought in recent years are still in effect and strongly endorsed by the HCWSA. Odd addresses should water on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays, while even addresses should likewise water on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. There are no restrictions on what time customers can water on their allotted day, but they are asked not to water on Fridays.

The Authority's conservation plan is in line with the strategy developed by the Georgia Conservancy, which is intended to help state authorities best conserve their water resources.

The multi- faceted strategy being implemented by the HCWSA includes the following priorities:

(1) The Authority has implemented seasonal conservation incentive rates for customers, to encourage water wise practices, especially during the summer.
(2) The HCWSA continues to request voluntary outdoor water restrictions from consumers as well.
(3) The Authority has fast-tracked several capital improvements that address aging water lines and distribution system leaks.
(4) The Authority has enacted a new policy that will suspend service for customers with excessive leaks, if their properties fail to comply with Georgia's minimum standards plumbing codes.
(5) A new HCWSA policy also provides for more severe actions against anyone tampering with Authority property, including illegal theft of water from hydrants or from bypassing meters.
(6) The Authority is investigating the costs and subsequent benefits of leak detection technology.

Water conservation can significantly contribute to providing additional capacity to meet the future drinking water needs of Henry County, concludes Farmer. "So it behooves all of us to be water wise as consumers, and for the Authority to step up the implementation of our water conservation initiatives."

For more information, please visit the HCWSA web site (www.hcwsa.com) or contact the customer service department (770-957-6659) for more information.

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