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Each year the City of North Bend’s Water Conservation Ordinance (WCO) Stage 1 goes into effect on August 15th. The WCO applies to all homes and businesses within the North Bend City limits and City water customers located outside the City limits.
The WCO was enacted by the North Bend City Council in June 2020 as an effort to be good stewards of the environment, conserve a precious and finite natural resource and protect the Snoqualmie River. This is the second year it will be in effect.
There are three stages of the WCO. Stage 1 automatically becomes effective each year on August 15th. Stages 2 and 3 are triggered by levels of the Chester Morse Reservoir Masonry Pool located in the Cedar River Watershed near Rattlesnake Lake. When and if the City moves to subsequent stages of the WCO, a declaration will be made by the Public Works Director and residents will be notified via the City website and social media channels.
Given the current drought conditions facing most areas of Washington State, water conservation is more critical than ever this year. The region has gone nearly two months without measurable rain – after already experiencing a very dry spring.
“We thank our residents for their voluntary conservation efforts. As climate change impacts the western United States with droughts, proactive steps we take as a community today will have a positive, direct impact on our surrounding Snoqualmie Valley environment for years to come. We are pleased our residents recognize that it is beneficial to act now, before we face a dire situation like that occurring in California, Nevada and Arizona,” said Mayor Rob McFarland. “North Bend is setting a water conservation example for the rest of our region.”
Please read the full Water Conservation Ordinance HERE. See answers to frequently asked questions about the WCO below.
When Stage 1 is in effect can I irrigate my yard, orchard, garden, or other ornamental landscaping? Yes, irrigation is allowed from 6PM to 10AM every day - when less evaporation occurs - which is beneficial to your landscaping and can reduce your water bill.
When can I irrigate during Stages 2 and 3? If the City moves to Stage 2 you can irrigate three days per week from 6PM to 10AM. Residents with odd numbered street addresses can water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Those with even numbered street addresses can water on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. There is no watering on Mondays during Stage 2. If Stage 3 is triggered, you can water one day per week from 6PM to 10AM. Residents with odd numbered street addresses can water on Tuesdays and those with even numbered street addresses may water on Wednesdays.
What are the rules for hand/manual watering? Hand/manual watering is allowed any time. During Stage 2 it follows the same odd/even house number schedule, but may be done anytime during the day.
What about drip irrigation systems? If you install or already have a drip irrigation system and that is the sole source of watering, you are exempt from the WCO.
Can my kids use a kiddie pool, slip-n-slide and run through the sprinkler? Yes. Short-term recreational water usage is allowed under the WCO. We recommend kiddie pools with a filter and pump system, along with a cover, to help conserve water, keep the pool clean and retain heat.
What are examples of wasteful use of water under the WCO? Wasteful water usage occurs when water significantly runs off a resident's property, like with over irrigation, free flowing hoses, pool and pond draining and refilling (except as necessary for health, maintenance, or structural considerations), and washing concrete surfaces. Additionally, under Stages 2 & 3, restaurants are asked not to provide water unless requested by patrons.
Is the City monitoring customer water usage and issuing fines for WCO violations? No. The intent of the WCO is conservation education and awareness. Police officers are not watching for mid-day watering. The goal is voluntary compliance. Penalties and citations would be issued only if initial contact and verbal violation warnings are ignored. The WCO directs the City to first have verbal or written contact with the party violating the ordinance. If violations continue, then the WCO directs the City to implement Step 2 and provide written notification, issuance of a notice to correct violation, and enforce a penalty of up to $50 per day. Continued violations can result in Step 3, which provides for an administrative penalty of up to $200 per day.
For Questions, Contact: Danna McCall, Communications Manager | firstname.lastname@example.org | 425.888.7629