‘Gone brown’: Magna implements mandatory watering restrictions

Utah Drought

MAGNA, Utah (ABC4) – Utah remains in severe drought condition, which has caused many local water districts to limit irrigation. On Monday, new watering restrictions went into effect in Magna.

The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence; at least it’s not for Korynn Harper’s neighbors.

“The backyard is a desert,” she told ABC4 News. “We’re not watering the backyard. There’s no grass out there.”

The Harpers do have grass in their front yard, but as of this week, they’re only allowed to water it on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays because their address ends in an even number. Odd number addresses can water on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays with no irrigation allowed on Mondays. The Magna Water District, which gets most of its secondary water from Utah Lake via a canal, recommends limiting pop-up sprinklers to 20 minutes and rotating sprinklers to 40.

“We call it mandatory water conservation,” Magna Water District General Manager Clint Dilley said, adding that violating the watering dates could mean a $25 fine for the first violation, $50 for the second. If the District’s 10,000 customers don’t reduce their usage, they could find themselves under more severe emergency restrictions.

“That may be temporary rate increases, so we might make the cost of the water more expensive to discourage use,” Dilley said. “We may say ‘Hey, we can’t have any more grass lawn installations for a time period.’ We may say ‘Hey you can only water two days a week for this amount of time.'”

Those additional rules and costs could have more of this township looking like Korynn’s backyard.

“A lot of lawns in Magna have actually gone brown,” she said. “I think people are just letting it go because if you don’t already have an automatic sprinkler system, it’s really hard to adhere to the specific days of the week, depending on your house number, only certain times of the day…So it’s really hard to follow the rules without an automatic sprinkler system. I know a lot of homes in Magna are older and don’t have that.”

To learn more about the restrictions, go to: https://www.magnawater.com/news-detail?item_id=20359

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