Water policy opinion clarified
Last week the Press reported that I spoke at the last Town Council meeting in favor of easing water restrictions on all outside water uses, including lawn watering.
This is incorrect. I never made any mention of lawn watering in my statement. I expressed general support for the proposed ordinance, which temporarily shortens the time window that certain restrictions are in place but leaves in place without alteration the standing prohibition on lawn watering in the summer.
I also responded to Bill Munger's appeal for relaxation of restrictions on boat washing because of the abundance of water this year. I stated that if the council was going to consider relaxing restrictions on boat washing, they should also consider house washing and car washing. Many are less concerned about washing our boats (if we own one) but would like the opportunity to power wash our houses in order to prepare for painting. Others
may have a great deal invested in an automobile and are more concerned with maintaining it.
I will say this about lawn watering: From the standpoint of consumption, it potentially represents a much greater volume of water than any of the aforementioned uses. Someone who is trying to keep a lawn green throughout the summer will have to water every day or at least several times a week. Several years ago, the council examined the highest residential users of water on the system. Some of these users with in-ground irrigation systems and large green lawns were consuming as much as 10 times what the average household used during the summer quarter. Despite the improvements that have been made in recent years to increase the available supply of water from the municipal system, I don't think it would be prudent to relax the restrictions on lawn watering.
194 Narragansett Ave. The writer is a former Town Council president.