Independence Officials ask residents to cut back on water usage
INDEPENDENCE, Kan. – Due to persistent drought conditions, Engineers with the City of Independence ask residents to conserve water heading into the Fall months.
According to City Engineer, John Garris the Verdigris River which is the City’s primary source of water has been struggling to meet the City’s needs. In the upcoming fall months, the water demand will lessen and he said, the citizens should conserve as much water as possible since the forecast still shows a lack of heavy rainfall.
“Thankfully, we are entering cooler temperatures where water needs will be lower, and our overall water consumption will be lower,” Garris said. “Should natural stream flow fall below our needs, we have the resource of our contract with the State of Kansas to fall back on, and we would begin to implement conservation measures including mandatory restrictions.”
Garris stated that the City of Independence reached an agreement with the Kansas Water Commission to reserve 60 million gallons water from the Elk City Reservoir in case of emergency. The State also informed the City that they have 40 million gallons of our water right remaining.
“Though our needs are currently covered, it would be strongly advisable for citizens to voluntarily conserve water where possible because of the lingering drought. We are, as usual, being very vigilant to respond to leaks in our system as they occur.” Garris further added, “The City will be updating citizens regularly, and providing water conservation tips as well as information about the precipitation, water levels and storage. As a City, we will cease operating fountains, watering City grounds with the exception of the new trees along Oak Street near Riverside Park, and washing vehicles.”
Garris explained that the goal is to reduce the amount of water we use by 25 percent in order to help preserve the City’s remaining water.
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