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Springville Asks Largest Water Users to Stop Watering

Springville Asks Largest Water Users to Stop Watering

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SPRINGVILLE, Utah (AP) -- City officials have asked the largest water users here to immediately stop outdoor watering.

The big users, including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Nebo School District and the city parks and cemetery, are asked not to water until the heat wave breaks, said city manager Layne Long.

The drought is just one of the water problems facing the city.

Councilman Jim Reed said that in the past two years, the city has drilled two wells and neither has produced the anticipated water. The city will begin to drill another well within a month.

Long said city staff spent part of the weekend observing water violations. Because the city's water restrictions are designed to balance usage and give storage tanks a chance to refill, such violations could potentially drain the city's water reserves.

"We went out late at night and we could see everyone watering when they think no one is watching," he said.

Council members instructed city staff to immediately begin issuing citations for up to $299 to residents found in violation after one warning.

Richard Lund, Mormon church facilities manager for the Springville-Mapleton area, said the church will comply with the request to stop outdoor watering.

"We are going to have lawns that are going to be brown, and we are going to deal with it," he said. "The sad part is that we will lose some plants and trees."

So far, the church's properties in Springville have lost a dozen trees, most nearly 20 years old and some up to 50 years old, he said.

Insects and disease have attacked the trees, which have been weakened by a water-restricted diet because of conservation. A similar number of younger, less established trees died last year.

"Their age can't be replaced but the trees can be replaced," he said.

Steve Carter of Nebo School District said it also will comply with the request.

"One week won't kill us that bad, but if we had to go two or three weeks, it would burn our lawns up and we would lose them," he said.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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