The City of Minneapolis' watering restrictions, in effect for more than a month now, aren't ending anytime soon.
The city said Wednesday that water flow in the Mississippi River is still "well below normal rates," even with the recent precipitation. Because of that, the odd-even, daytime sprinkling restrictions will remain in place "until further notice."
St. Paul Regional Water Services recently had to implement similar restrictions for residents of 11 east metro cities, including St. Paul, due to low water flow levels.
Related [Aug. 18]: How much rainfall will it take to get out of this damaging drought?
What are the rules in Minneapolis, as of July 21?
- Sprinkling lawns is not allowed from noon to 6 p.m., period
- Residents can sprinkle lawns outside of those times, following an odd/even schedule (odd addresses on odd days of the month, even addresses on even days)
A first violation will result in a written warning. After that, the city will tack a $25 penalty on to the property's utility bill for each additional violation.
Anyone with a yard can still water bushes and flowers with a hand-held hose as needed; can water a vegetable garden or recently laid sod on any day, though not from noon to 6 p.m.; and can water trees with a dripping hose, bucket or watering bag as needed.
The city credited the ongoing water conservation measures, along with the recent rains, with keeping further restrictions at bay. However, if the Mississippi River flow rate drops below 1,500 cubic feet per second for five straight days, the city would enter the "restrictive" drought phase — meaning stricter measures would follow.