Drought Contingency Plan

Article 1. Drought Contingency Code

Section 17-1. Appendix.

(a) That the City of White Deer, Texas Drought Contingency Plan attached hereto as Exhibit “A” and made part hereof for all purposes be and the same is hereby, adopted as the official policy of the City.

 

Section 17-2. Declaration of Policy, Purpose, and Intent.

(a) In order to conserve the available water supply and protect the integrity of water supply facilities, with particular regard for domestic water use, sanitation and fire protection, and to protect and preserve public health, welfare, and safety and minimize the adverse impacts of water supply shortage or other water supply emergency conditions, the City of White Deer hereby adopts the following regulations and restrictions on the delivery and consumption of water.

(b) Water uses regulated or prohibited under this Drought Contingency Plan (the Plan) are considered to be non-essential and continuation of such uses during times of water shortage or other emergency water supply condition are deemed to constitute a waste of water which subjects the offender(s) to penalties as defined in Section 17-12 of this Plan.

 

Section 17-3. Public Involvement.

(a) Opportunity for the public to provide input into the preparation of the Plan was provided by the City of White Deer by means of providing public notice of a Special Meeting during which citizen input into the plan was heard.

 

Section 17-4. Public Education.

(a) The City of White Deer will periodically provide the public with information about the Plan, including information about the conditions under which each stage of the Plan is to be initiated or terminated and the drought response measures to be implemented in each stage. This information will be provided by means of press releases, utility customer mailings, and/or handouts.

 

Section 17-5. Coordination with Regional Water Planning Groups.

(a) The service area of the City of White Deer is located within the Panhandle Ground Water Conservation District and the Panhandle Water Planning Group (Region A). The City of White Deer has provided a copy of this Plan to both of these entities.

 

Section 17-6. Authorization.

(a) The City of White Deer Mayor or designee is hereby authorized and directed to implement the applicable provisions of this Plan upon determination that such implementation is necessary to protect public health, safety, and welfare. The Mayor shall have the authority to initiate or terminate drought or other water supply emergency response measures as described in the Plan.

 

Section 17-7. Application.

(a) The provisions of the Plan shall apply to all persons, customers, and property utilizing water provided by the City of White Deer. The terms “person” and “customer” as used in the Plan include individuals, corporations, partnerships, associations, and all other legal entities.

 

Section 17-8. Definitions.

(a) Aesthetic water use: water use for ornamental or decorative purposes such as fountains, reflecting pool, and water gardens.

(b) Commercial and institutional water use: water use which is integral to the operations of commercial and non-profit establishments and governmental entities such as retail establishments, hotels and motels, restaurants, and office buildings.

(c) Conservation: those practices, techniques, and technologies that reduce the consumption of water, reduce water loss or waste of water, improve the efficiency in the use of water or increase the recycling and reuse of water so that a supply is conserved and made available for future or alternative uses.

(d) Customer: any person, company, or organization using water supplied by the City of White Deer.

(e) Domestic water use: water use for personal needs or for household or sanitary purposes such as drinking, bathing, heating, cooking, sanitation, or for cleaning a residence, business, industry, or institution.

(f) Even number address: street addresses, box numbers, or rural postal route numbers ending in 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8 and locations without addresses.

(g) Odd number address: street addresses, box numbers, or rural postal route numbers ending in 1, 3, 5, 7, or 9.

(h) Industrial water use: the use of water in processes designed to convert materials of lower value into forms having greater usability and value.

(i) Landscape irrigation use: water used for the irrigation and maintenance of landscaped areas, whether publicly or privately owned, including residential and commercial lawns, gardens, golf courses, parks, and right-of-ways and medians.

(j) Non-essential water use: water uses that are not essential nor required for the protection of public health, safety, and welfare, including:

(k) Irrigation of landscape areas: including parks, athletic fields, and golf courses, except otherwise provided under this Plan;

  1. Use of water to wash any motor vehicle, motorbike, boat, trailer, airplane or other vehicle; (c) Use of water to wash down any sidewalks, walkways, driveways, parking lots, tennis courts, or other hard-surfaced areas:
  2. Use of water to wash down buildings or structures for purposes other than immediate fire protection.
  3. Flushing gutters or permitting water to run or accumulate in any gutter or street;
  4. Use of water to fill, refill, or add to any indoor or outdoor swimming pools or Jacuzzi-type pools;
  5. Use of water in fountain or pond for aesthetic or scenic purposes except where necessary to support aquatic life;
  6. Failure to repair a controllable leak(s) within a reasonable period after having been given notice directing the repair of such leak(s); and
  7. Use of water from hydrants for construction purposes or any other purposes other than fire fighting.
  8. Use of water for watering livestock for any reason.

 

Section 17-9. Triggering Criteria for Initiation and Termination of Drought Response Stages.

(a) The Mayor or designee shall monitor water supply and/or demand conditions on a daily, or as necessary, basis and shall determine when conditions warrant initiation or termination of each stage of the Plan. Public notification of the initiation or termination of drought response stages shall be by means of publication in the local newspaper, local access channel, direct mail to each customer, and/or signs posted in public places, etc. The triggering criteria described below are based on an analysis of the City of White Deer Water System consisting of 4 underground water wells and one pump station with 2 – 1,000 gallon pumps.

  1. Stage 1- Mild Water Shortage Conditions
  2. Requirements for initiation – Customers shall be requested to voluntarily conserve water and adhere to the prescribed restriction on certain water uses, defined in Section 17-10 – Definitions, when dry weather conditions normally occur before and during the normal landscape growing season, annually beginning on May 1 through September 30.
  3. Requirements for termination – Stage I of the Plan will be initiated on May I and rescinded on September 30 annually.
  4. Stage 2- Moderate Water Shortage Conditions
  5. Requirements for initiation – Customers shall be required to comply with the requirements and restrictions on certain non-essential water uses provided in Section 17-10 of this Plan when total daily water demand equals or exceeds 550 thousand gallons for 3 consecutive days, or equals or exceeds 625 thousand gallons on a single day.
  6. Requirements for termination – Stage 2 of the Plan may be rescinded when all of the conditions listed as triggering events have ceased to exist for a period of 3 consecutive days. Upon termination of Stage 2, Stage 1 becomes operative.
  7. Stage 3 – Severe Water Shortage Conditions
  8. Requirements for initiation – Customers shall be required to comply with the requirements and restrictions on certain non-essential water uses for Stage 3 of this Plan when total daily water demand equals or exceeds 575 thousand gallons for 3 consecutive days, or equals or exceeds 650 thousand gallons on a single day.
  9. Requirements for termination – Stage 3 of the Plan may be rescinded when all of the conditions listed as triggering events have ceased to exist for a period of 3 consecutive days. Upon termination of Stage 3, Stage 2 becomes operative.

 

  1. Stage 4 – Critical Water Shortage Conditions
  2. Requirements for initiation – Customers shall be required to comply with the requirements and restrictions on certain non-essential water uses for Stage 4 of this Plan when the Mayor or designee determines that a water supply emergency exists based on:

1) Major water line breaks, pump failure, or system failures occur, which cause unprecedented loss of capacity to provide water service; or

2) Natural or man-made contamination of the water supply source or system.

  1. Requirements for termination – Stage 4 of the Plan may be rescinded when all of the conditions listed as triggering events have ceased to exist for a period of 3 consecutive days.

 

Section 17-10. Drought Response Stages.

(a) The Mayor or designee, shall monitor water supply and/or demand conditions on a daily basis and, in accordance with the triggering criteria set forth in Section 17-9 of the Plan, shall determine that a mild, moderate, severe, or critical condition exists and shall implement the following actions upon publication of notice in a newspaper of general circulation.

  1. Stage 1 – Mild Water Shortage Condition-
  2. Achieve a voluntary 15 percent (15%) reduction in total water use.

1) Supply management measures:

  1. a) The City of White Deer shall provide public education materials and news releases for the local newspaper to encourage water conservation practices. The City shall continue to monitor and repair all water leaks as soon as possible as well as reduce the amount of water main flushing and unnecessary water use. Water well pump station meters shall be checked and/or recalibrated annually for increased accuracy.

2) Voluntary Water Use Restrictions:

  1. a) Water customers are requested to voluntarily limit the irrigation of landscaped areas and to irrigate landscapes only between the hours of midnight and 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. and midnight to reduce the effects of evaporation.
  2. b) All operations of the City of White Deer, including golf courses and all City parks shall adhere to water use restrictions stated in Stage 1 section (a) above.
  3. c) Water customers, residential and commercial, are requested to practice water conservation and to minimize or discontinue water use for non-essential purposes.
  4. Stage 2 – Moderate Water Shortage Conditions
  5. Goal: Achieve a 25 percent (25%) reduction in total water use.

1) Supply management measures:

  1. a) The City of White Deer shall implement water use restrictions and a water rate surcharge for excessive water use listed on the official fee schedule. The City shall reduce water usage at all parks and publicly owned property.

 

2) Mandatory Water Use Restrictions: Under threat of penalty for violation, the following water use restrictions shall apply to all persons:

  1. a) Water customers are requested to voluntarily limit the irrigation of landscaped areas to Sundays and Thursdays for customers with a street address ending in an even number (0,2,4,6 or 8) and Saturdays and Wednesdays for water customers with a street address ending in an odd number (1,3,5,7 or 9), and to irrigate landscapes only between the hours of midnight and 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. to midnight on designated watering days.
  2. b) Use of water to wash any motor vehicle, motorbike, boat, trailer, airplane or other vehicle is prohibited except between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 10:00 a.m. and between 8:00 p.m. and 12:00 midnight on the designated days. Such washing, when allowed, shall be done with a hand-held bucket or a hand-held hose equipped with a positive shutoff nozzle for quick rinses. Vehicle washing may be done at any time on the immediate premises of a commercial car wash or commercial service station. Further, such washing may be exempted from these regulations if the health, safety, and welfare of the public is contingent upon frequent vehicle cleansing, such as garbage trucks and vehicles used to transport food and perishables.
  3. c) Use of water to fill, refill, or add to any indoor or outdoor swimming pools, wading pools, or Jacuzzi-type pools is prohibited except between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 10:00 a.m. and between 8:00 p.m. and 12:00 midnight.
  4. d) Operation of any ornamental fountain or pond for aesthetic or scenic purposes is prohibited except where necessary to support aquatic life or where such fountains or ponds are equipped with a recirculation system.
  5. e) Use of water from hydrants shall be limited to fire fighting, related activities, or other activities necessary to maintain public health, safety, and welfare, except that use of water from designated fire hydrants for construction purposes may be allowed under special permit from the City of White Deer.
  6. f) All restaurants are prohibited from serving water to its patrons except when requested.
  7. g) The following uses of water are defined as non-essential and are prohibited.
  8. Wash down of any sidewalks, walkways, driveways, parking lots, tennis courts, or other hard-surface areas;
  9. Use of water to wash down buildings or structure for purposes other than immediate fire protection;

III. Use of water for dust control;

  1. Flushing gutters or permitting water to run or accumulate in any gutter or street; and,Failure to repair a controllable leak(s) within a reasonable period after having been given notice directing the repair of such leak(s).

 

  1. Stage 3 – Severe Water Shortage Conditions
  2. Goal: Achieve a 35 percent (35%) reduction in total water use. Supply management measures:

1) The City of White Deer shall implement more stringent water use restrictions and a water rate surcharge for excessive water use. The City shall further reduce water usage at all parks and publicly owned property.

2) Mandatory Water Use Restrictions: All requirements of Stage 2 shall remain in effect during Stage 3 except:

  1. a) Irrigation of landscaped areas shall be limited to Sundays and Thursdays for customers with a street address ending in an even number (0,2,4,6, or 8), and Saturdays and Wednesdays for water customers with a street address ending in an odd number (1,3,5,7 or 9), and to irrigate landscapes only between the hours of midnight and 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. to midnight on designated watering days. All irrigation shall be by means of hand-held hoses, hand-held buckets, drip irrigation, or permanently installed automatic sprinkler system only. The use of hose-end sprinklers is prohibited at all times.
  2. b) The use of water for construction purposes from designated fire hydrants under special permit is to be discontinued.
  3. Stage 4 – Critical Water Shortage Conditions
  4. Goal: Restoration of water supply to normal and safe operational condition as quickly as possible. Supply management measures:

1) Initiate emergency response procedures. Provide sufficient safe water to essential service locations first, such as hospitals, clinics, etc.. Then, second, supply adequate water service to urban neighborhoods only – no water service to areas outside City limits until service is back in full service for all City limits customers. Contact authorities about system failure.

2) Mandatory Water Use Restrictions. All requirements of Stage 2 and 3 shall remain in effect during Stage 4 except:

  1. a) Irrigation of landscaped areas is absolutely prohibited.
  2. b) Use of water to wash any motor vehicle, motorbike, boat, trailer, airplane or other vehicle is absolutely prohibited.
  3. c) The filling, refilling or adding of water to swimming pools, wading pools and Jacuzzi-type pools is prohibited.
  4. d) Operation of any ornamental fountain or pond for aesthetic or scenic purposes is prohibited except where necessary to support aquatic life or where such fountains or ponds are equipped with a recirculation system.
  5. e) No applications for new, additional, expanded, or increased-in-size water service connections, meters, service lines, pipeline extensions, mains, or water service facilities of any kind shall be allowed or approved.

 

Section 17-11. Water Rationing.

(a) In the event that water shortage conditions threaten public health, safety, and welfare, the Mayor is hereby authorized to ration water according to the following water allocation plan: Single family Residential Customers

(b) The allocation to residential water customers residing in a single-family dwelling shall be as follows:

Persons per Household Gallons per month
 

1or2

 

3,000

3 or 4 5,000
5 or 6 7,000
7 or 8 9,000
9 or 10 10,000
11 or more 12,000

 

(c) “Household” means the residential premises served by the customer’s meter. “Person per household” includes only those persons currently physically residing at the premises and expected to reside there for the entire billing period. It shall be assumed that a particular customer’s household is comprised of two (2) persons unless the customer notifies the City of White Deer of a greater number of persons per household on a form prescribed by the Mayor or designee. The Mayor, or designee, shall give his/her best effort to see that such forms are mailed, otherwise provided, or made available to every residential customer. If, however, a customer does not receive such a form, it shall be the customer’s responsibility to go to the City of White Deer office to complete and sign the form claiming more than two (2) persons per household.

(d) New customers may claim more persons per household at the time of applying for water service on the form prescribed by the Mayor. When the number of persons per household increases so as to place the customer in a different allocation category, the customer may notify the City of White Deer on such form and the change will be implemented in the next practicable billing period. If the number of persons in a household is reduced, the customer shall notify the City of White Deer in writing within two (2) days. In prescribing the method for claiming more than two (2) persons per household, the Mayor shall adopt methods to insure the accuracy of the claim. Any person who knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence falsely reports the number of persons in a household or fails to timely notify the City of White Deer of a reduction in the number of persons in a household shall be fined a fine listed on the official fee schedule.

(e) Residential customers shall pay the surcharges listed on the official fee schedule: Surcharges shall be cumulative.

(f) Master-metered multifamily Residential Customers the allocation to a customer billed from a master meter which jointly measures water to multiple permanent residential dwelling units (e.g.., apartments) shall be allocated 6,000 gallons per month for each dwelling unit. It shall be assumed that such a customer’s meter serves two dwelling units, unless the customer notifies the City of White Deer of a greater number on a form prescribed by the Mayor. The Mayor shall give his/her best effort to see that such forms are mailed, otherwise provided, or made available to every such customer. If, however, a customer does not receive such a form, it shall be the customer’s responsibility to go to the City Hall to complete and sign the form claiming more than two (2) dwellings. A dwelling unit may be claimed under this provision whether it is occupied or not. New customers may claim more dwelling units at the time of applying for water service on the form prescribed by the Mayor. If the number of dwelling units served by a master meter is reduced, the customer shall notify the City of White Deer in writing within two (2) days. In prescribing the method for claiming more than two (2) dwelling units, the Mayor shall adopt methods to insure the accuracy of the claim. Any person who knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence falsely reports the number of dwelling units served by a master meter or fails to timely notify the City of White Deer of a reduction in the number of persons in a household, shall be fined according to the official fee schedule. Customers billed from a master meter under this provision shall pay the monthly surcharges listed on the official fee schedule: Surcharges shall be cumulative.

(g) Commercial Customers monthly water usage allocation shall be established by the Mayor or his/her designee, for each nonresidential commercial customer other than an industrial customer who uses water for processing purposes. The non-residential customer’s allocation shall be approximately 85% of the customer’s usage for corresponding month’s billing period for the previous 12 months. If the customer’s billing history is shorter than 12 months, the monthly average for the period for which there is a record shall be used for any monthly period for which no history exists. If 85% percent of the customer’s monthly usage is less than 3,000 gallons, the minimum allocation shall remain 3,000 gallons. The Mayor shall give his/her best effort to see that notice on each non-residential customer’s allocation is mailed to such customer. If, however, a customer does not receive such notice, it shall be the customer’s responsibility to contact the City on White Deer to determine the allocation. Upon request of the customer or at the initiative of the Mayor, the allocation may be reduced or increased if:

  1. The designated period does not accurately reflect the customer’s normal water usage,
  2. One non-residential customer agrees to transfer part on its allocation to another non-residential customer, or
  3. Other objective evidence demonstrates that the designated allocation is inaccurate under present conditions. A customer may appeal an allocation established here under to the Mayor or City Council. Non-residential commercial customers shall pay the following surcharges:
  4. Industrial Customers shall pay the following surcharges listed on the official fee schedule: The surcharges shall be cumulative.

(h) Industrial Customers monthly water usage allocation shall be established by the Mayor, or his/her designee, for each industrial customer, which uses water for processing purposes. The industrial customer’s allocation shall be approximately 90% percent on the customer’s water usage baseline. Ninety (90) days after the initial imposition on the allocation for industrial customers, the industrial customer’s allocation shall be further reduced to 85% percent on the customer’s water usage baseline. The industrial customer’s water usage baseline will be computed on either the average water usage or the 12-month period ending prior to the date of implementation of Stage 2 in the Plan. If the industrial water customer’s billing history is shorter than 12 months, the monthly average of the period for which there is a record shall be used for any monthly period for which no billing history exists. The Mayor shall give his/her best effort to see that notice of each industrial customer’s allocation is mailed to such customer. If, however, a customer does not receive such notice, it shall be the customer’s responsibility to contact the City of White Deer to determine the allocation, and the allocation shall be fully effective notwithstanding the lack of receipt of written notice. Upon request on the customer or the initiative of the Mayor, the allocation may be reduced or increased. If:

  1. The designated period does not accurately reflect the customer’s normal water usage because the customer had shutdown a major processing unit for repair or overhaul during the period,
  2. The customer has added or is in the process of adding significant additional processing capacity,
  3. The customer has shutdown or significantly reduced the production of a major processing unit,
  4. The customer has previously implemented significant permanent water conservation measures such that the ability to further reduce usage is limited,
  5. The customer agrees to transfer part of its allocation to another industrial customer, or
  6. Other objective evidence demonstrates that the designated allocations are inaccurate under present conditions.

(i) A customer may appeal an allocation established here under to the City Council. Industrial customers shall pay the following surcharges listed on the official fee schedule:

Section 17-12. Enforcement.

(a) No person shall knowingly or intentionally allow the use of water from the City of White Deer for residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, governmental, or any other purpose in a manner contrary to any provision of this Plan, or in an amount in excess of that permitted by the drought response stage in effect at the time pursuant to action taken by the Mayor, or his/her designee, in accordance with provisions of this Plan.

(b) Any person who violates this Plan is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction shall be punished by a fine listed on the official fee schedule. Each day that one or more of the provisions in this Plan is violated shall constitute a separate offense. If a person is convicted of three or more distinct violations of this Plan, the Mayor shall, upon due notice to the customer, be authorized to discontinue water service to the premises where such violations occur. Services discontinued under such circumstances shall be restored only upon payment of a re-connection charge, listed on the official fee schedule, and any other costs incurred by the City of White Deer in discontinuing service. In addition, suitable assurance must be given to the City of White Deer that the same action shall not be repeated while the Plan is in effect. Compliance with this plan may also be sought through injunctive relief in the district court.

(c) Any person, including a person classified as a water customer of the City of White Deer, in apparent control of the property where a violation occurs or originates shall be presumed to be the violator, and proof that the violation occurred on the person’s property shall constitute a rebuttal presumption that the person in apparent control of the property committed the violation, but any such person shall have the right to show that he/she did not commit the violation. Parents shall be presumed to be responsible for violations of their minor children and proof that a violation, committed by a child, occurred on property within the parents’ control shall constitute a rebuttal presumption that the parent committed the violation, but any such parent may be excused if he/she proves that he/she had previously directed the child not to use the water as it was used in violation of this Plan and that the parent could not have reasonably known of the violation.

(d) Any employee of the City of White Deer, police officer, or other utility employee designated by the Mayor, may issue a citation to a person he/she reasonably believes to be in violation of his Code. The citation shall be prepared in duplicate and shall contain the name and address of the alleged violator, if known, the offense charged, and shall direct him/her to appear in municipal court on the date shown on the citation for which the date shall not be less than 3 days nor more than 5 days from the date the citation was issued. The alleged violator shall be served a copy of the citation. Service of the citation shall be complete upon delivery of the citation to the alleged violator, to an agent or employee of a violator, or to a person over 14 years of age who is a member of the violator’s immediate family or is a resident of the violator’s residence. The alleged violator shall appear in municipal court to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty for the violation of this Plan. If the alleged violator fails to appear in municipal court, a warrant for his/her arrest may be issued. A summons to appear may be issued in lieu of an arrest warrant. These cases shall be expedited and given preferential setting in municipal court before all other cases.

 

Section 17-13. Variances.

(a) The Mayor, or designee, may, in writing, grant temporary variance for existing water uses otherwise prohibited under this Plan if it is determined that failure to grant such variance would cause an emergency condition adversely affecting the health, sanitation, or fire protection for the public or the person requesting such variance and if one or more of the following conditions are met:

  1. Compliance with this Plan cannot be technically accomplished during the duration of the water supply shortage or other condition for which the Plan is in effect.
  2. Alternative methods can be implemented which will achieve the same level of reduction in water use. Persons requesting an exemption from the provisions of this Code shall file a petition for variance with City of White Deer within 5 days after the Plan or a particular drought response stage has been invoked. All petitions for variances shall be reviewed by the Mayor, or designee, and shall include the following:
  3. Name and address of the petitioner(s).
  4. Purpose of water use.

 

  1. Specific provision(s) of the Plan from which the petitioner is requesting relief.
  2. Detailed statement as to how the specific provision of the Plan adversely affects the petitioner or what damage or harm will occur to the petitioner or others if petitioner complies with this Code.
  3. Description of the relief requested.
  4. Period of time for which the variance is sought.
  5. Alternative water use restrictions or other measures the petitioner is taking or proposes to take to meet the intent of this Plan and the compliance date.
  6. Other pertinent information.
  7. Variances granted by the City of White Deer shall be subject to the following conditions, unless waived or modified by the Mayor or designee:
  8. Variances granted shall include a timetable for compliance
  9. Variances granted shall expire when the Plan is no longer in effect, unless the petitioner has failed to meet specific requirements.
  10. No variance shall be retroactive or otherwise justify any violation of this Plan occurring prior to the issuance of the variance.

 

Section 17-14. Severability.

(a) It is hereby declared to be the intention of the-City Council of the City of White Deer that the sections, paragraphs, sentences, clauses, and phrases of this Code are severable and, if any phrase, clause, sentence, paragraph, or section of this Plan shall be declared unconstitutional by the valid judgment or decree of any court of competent jurisdiction, such unconstitutionality shall not affect any of the remaining phrases, clauses, sentences, paragraphs, and sections of this Plan, since the same would not have been enacted by the City Council without the incorporation into this Plan of any such unconstitutional phrase, clause, sentence, paragraph, or section. (Ordinance of 14-79, § 2000.)