RIVERTON - Residents in Riverton may have less than a week to enjoy their green lawns and gardens without inflated costs.
The city's Mayor, Bill Applegarth, estimates that 98 percent of residents use secondary water on their lawns and gardens. However, current water levels at Utah Lake are so low that Applegarth says state engineers may be forced to shut off secondary water systems.
"There's a legal contract between Utah County and Salt Lake County," Mayor Applegarth said. "When it falls below a certain level, they cannot send anymore water. Right now, we are right at that threshold."
To keep the city on the right side of that line, Applegarth said the Riverton City Council imposed a voluntary water restriction last Tuesday. Residents living West of 2700 West can water on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Those living East of 2700 West can water on Monday, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
Sundays will be a day when water won't be used.
Still, Applegarth isn't convinced that will be enough. This Tuesday, city council members will meet again to discuss a complete and mandatory restriction.
"It's a very, very high probability that that is what they'll have to do," Applegarth added.
"That surprises me," said Bryan Sant, a Riverton resident who was looking for home improvement materials at Home Depot.
Using culinary water instead of secondary water on yards and gardens could drive up residents' water bills by 500 percent, the Mayor estimates. However, Sant said he won't be using culinary water, even if that means his grass turns brown.
"I will do my best," Sant said. "But I don't like my neighbors that much to try and impress them."