Violators are disconnected after warning

  • Follow Metro

Augusta and Columbia County are following through on promises to enforce water conservation measures as a dry summer turns even drier.

"We've gone to issuing letters, telling people we will turn off their water if there are repeat violations," said Drew Goins, Augusta's assistant utilities director for water production.

Most people are complying with the restrictions on outdoor watering, he said, but for those who don't, action will be taken after repeated verbal and written warnings.

First offenders are given a "door knocker" warning, which could either be oral or written, he said. Then letters are mailed to repeat offenders with a warning that if their service is stopped, they will have to pay a $25 fee for reconnection.

So far, 10 violators have received those letters and could face disconnection if they are caught again.

"It's sort of like the 'three strikes and you're out' rule," Mr. Goins said.

In Columbia County, where water department officials issued written warnings to about 700 customers last month, compliance has improved, said Waterworks Director Bill Clayton.

So far, about 50 repeat violators will face $100 fines, he said.

"We hear a laundry list of reasons they are not complying, but obviously, after multiple warnings, it doesn't leave us many options," he said.

Daily water consumption levels in both counties are slightly higher than usual, but not excessive.

Mr. Goins said Augustans are using about 40 million to 45 million gallons a day from the Highland Avenue plant; 9 million to 10 million gallons a day from the Hicks Plant; and 8 million to 9 million gallons a day from groundwater wells.

In Columbia County, which relies on surface water from Thurmond Lake and the Savannah River, daily consumption has risen to about 32 million gallons, Mr. Clayton said.

As a precaution, he said, the county is opening dialogue with the Army Corps of Engineers about modifying the water intake at its Clarks Hill plant near Pollards Corner to function when the lake levels decline.

"We're trying to put a Plan B in place that would include an auxiliary pump," Mr. Clayton said. "It's something we hope we won't have to implement, but we're planning for it."

Under the current water-conservation measures, outdoor watering is allowed from midnight to 10 a.m. on an even-odd basis based on street address.

Even-numbered addresses can water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, and odd-numbered addresses can water on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

No watering is allowed on Mondays.

Reach Rob Pavey at 868-1222, ext. 119 or rob.pavey@augustachronicle.com.

CUSTOMER SERVICE


Have a question about watering restrictions or other regulations? Call:


- Augusta-Richmond County Utilities Department: (706) 842-3050 or (706) 821-1851


- Columbia County Water Department: (706) 863-6928

Comments (31) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 07/03/08 - 02:26 am
0
0
The watering restrictions are

The watering restrictions are fair and easy to follow. Non compliance should draw a fine.

Just My Opinion
6090
Points
Just My Opinion 07/03/08 - 03:40 am
0
0
I think people should get

I think people should get just one warning. If you own a home, you're obviously an adult and everyone knows about the restrictions, so ignorance is no excuse. I know a man who blatantly violates the restriction because he says he found a "loophole". He says that the state's water-restriction days are opposite those of this area's water-restriction days, so he feels justified in being able to water EVERY day! He is just being selfish, and I hope his neighbors turn his butt in!

common-sense-justice
0
Points
common-sense-justice 07/03/08 - 04:22 am
0
0
Simple answer... Drill a

Simple answer... Drill a well. Private wells are exempt.

paulwheeler
137
Points
paulwheeler 07/03/08 - 06:37 am
0
0
Wow, I really want to see

Wow, I really want to see Richmond County knock on the Augusta National's door concerning those huge water cannons on the new "parking lot/green spaces". Those things run at any time and spew out tons of water. Oh wait, I'm sure they have a "special" permit for that.

brown
0
Points
brown 07/03/08 - 07:06 am
0
0
The water for the Augusta

The water for the Augusta National seems to be coming from fire hydrants. Who is paying for that water?

Little Lamb
48011
Points
Little Lamb 07/03/08 - 07:09 am
0
0
Mr. Wheeler, I think you are

Mr. Wheeler, I think you are wrong. The large sprinklers watering the new "greenspace" parking lots across from Augusta National are turned off at 10 a.m. in compliance with the watering restrictions.

paulwheeler
137
Points
paulwheeler 07/03/08 - 07:28 am
0
0
Thank you Little Lamb, I

Thank you Little Lamb, I guess I've been confused by the sun being in the western sky when I've seen them on.

hankv
0
Points
hankv 07/03/08 - 08:21 am
0
0
For What It's Worth, I

For What It's Worth, I believe that The Augusta National does NOT use the Richmond County Water System - They have their own.

426Hemi
0
Points
426Hemi 07/03/08 - 08:40 am
0
0
Yes, they are fair and easy

Yes, they are fair and easy to follow. We received a notice while on vacation. Seems the power was interrupted, disrupting the water timer (no back-up battery) and our counties finest just happened to be in the neighborhood, after 10 am. So, I turned off the timer, and let the grass grow brown and one of our trees. Now our neighborhood yard-guards gave a notive for a "dead" tree in the yard. Great! The tree is not dead-just dropped its leaves, so now we go through the BS with these idiots, and must "prove" the tree is dead. Oh, and they want us to replace it. Fine, I'll send them the bill, and head toi court.

426Hemi
0
Points
426Hemi 07/03/08 - 08:46 am
0
0
That should be "prove" the

That should be "prove" the tree is NOT dead, pardon me. How about relieving ourselves of all the golf courses! Not all the water is reclaimed as some fols drivel about. STOP building damn house, and kick out Blanchard and Calhoun (BLIGHT and CALAMITY) developers, and elect a local government who can stamp out this unchecked growth. We'll look like Atlanta someday. We are obviously outgrowing our resources.

areyoukidding
1
Points
areyoukidding 07/03/08 - 09:11 am
0
0
Use of a well requiring an

Use of a well requiring an EPA permit is covered under the restrictions. I well not requiring an EPA permit is not.

Freeman
0
Points
Freeman 07/03/08 - 09:40 am
0
0
Hank, If the National is

Hank, If the National is hooked up to public fire hydrants, and they use their own water, have they connected public hydrants to some well they have on the course? The other day someone said they have a contract with the city to use the water. That may be, but I have to say, they use an incredible amount of water. If it is metered, it must be done at the hydrant, or perhaps at the sprinkler heads maybe. I just don't know about the many golf courses here. Yes they have a lot invested, but shouldn't they have their own wells for those? Even so, taking the ground water reduces the water flowing back to the river source.

Freeman
0
Points
Freeman 07/03/08 - 09:43 am
0
0
Tell ya what I'm gonna do.

Tell ya what I'm gonna do. I'll just hang out over there in that green space for a few days, taking my camera with me, film a few minutes and take some stills with a deliberate time stamp and date imprinted on it and we'll see if they are acting in compliance. If not, I'll present my findings to the city and see if they do anything about it or can explain it to me convincingly. At least that way we can settle this whine about the National.

Freeman
0
Points
Freeman 07/03/08 - 09:54 am
0
0
Aug Water Util Dept cust srvc

Aug Water Util Dept cust srvc could not answer any of these questions about the new parking lots owned by the National. She even acted like she didn't have a clue what I was talking about. She tried to transfer me to someone other who might know, but alas, they are off due to the holidays. I'll check again after Monday to see what gives. In the meantime, I'll get those pix and clips.

marie21
5
Points
marie21 07/03/08 - 10:25 am
0
0
Stop complaining about the

Stop complaining about the Augusta National folks. Lets just try and obey the current water band and get through this. Pray for rain.

MyOpinion2
5
Points
MyOpinion2 07/03/08 - 10:31 am
0
0
What about those nasty trash

What about those nasty trash cans in front of everyone's house in South Augusta?! NOW it really looks like a Dump! Why is no one fineing the Waste Management Company for these unsightly trash cans? Why doesn't Augusta Have to Obey their OWN Ordinance of no trash cans left out on the road? (They have been sitting out on the road for 17 days now). Bet this would NEVER happen in Columbia County! The 4th of July Holiday is tomorrow, we have guest coming to Augusta from out of town, wonder what they will be thinking of Augusta when they leave. The Mayor should be collecting them this minute!

CoastalDawg
125
Points
CoastalDawg 07/03/08 - 10:47 am
0
0
Why is everybody complaining

Why is everybody complaining about the Augusta National's use of water? The problem is with individual homeowners who have been warned multiple times about THEIR usage outside the rules. Diversion away from the subject at hand is an old tactic; the Democrats use it regularly in almost every situation. If any of you is so interested in why the Augusta National can use water, which by the way apparently soaks into the ground and returns to the water table eventually, why not just call there and ask the groundskeeper if the club is in compliance or under what authority they are keeping the green green? That seems like a simple solution, then you have ammunition with which you can approach the city government if, in fact, there are violations. My opinion though is that they either have their own source or they have permission under some type regulation to water their grass. Report back to us AFTER you've contacted the Augusta National. A letter might accomplish the same thing if you can't get someone on the phone but chances are they they DO answer the telephone over there.

imdstuf
10
Points
imdstuf 07/03/08 - 10:56 am
0
0
Alot of businesses around

Alot of businesses around here seem to overuse water. Walmart on Bobby Jones was watering all day the other day. What is ironic is that while it keeps being draught like here year over year lately and there seem to be wild fires out west, the midwest has floods. Too bad we have no way to take all that excess water they get and delivery it here and to the wildfires out west.

voluptuously_auburn1
0
Points
voluptuously_auburn1 07/03/08 - 11:47 am
0
0
It is my understanding the

It is my understanding the plan of action is to first go after the homeowners, then businesses will be targeted next. Homeowners are the overall largest concentration of violators

griesella
0
Points
griesella 07/03/08 - 12:59 pm
0
0
My opinion. I might have

My opinion. I might have misunderstood your post, but the homeowners bring their own cans in from the street. I live in W Augusta and seldom will you see a can left on the street overnight... simply because people in this area care.
Perhaps you could lend them a hand and take them to the backyard for them. They might take the hint, then again probably not.

Freeman
0
Points
Freeman 07/03/08 - 01:08 pm
0
0
Segal, your 1:59 is accurate.

Segal, your 1:59 is accurate. My new college girls neighbors would leave the can down the hill by the street for days until I took it up the hill for them on trash pick up days a few times. I think they got the message without a word since they no longer leave it there past the day it is picked up. Although I did have a problem with the empty trojan packs in my yard the other day. I just kicked them over into their driveway for them to spot. I think they'll take the hint again and make sure they are not thrown into the can loosely.

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 07/03/08 - 02:37 pm
0
0
If your neighbors aren't

If your neighbors aren't mowing their yards, you can call Augusta Cares at 706-821-2300 and report it, but it takes a long time to go through the process. I know one yard that hasn't been mowed this year. It looks terrible and it's near the community's entrance, too, so everyone sees it coming and going. If people don't mow their yards, property values go down because buyers and sellers figure if owners don't take care of the curb appeal of the house, the inside is probably just as bad or worse.

griesella
0
Points
griesella 07/03/08 - 03:28 pm
0
0
If you live in a neighborhood

If you live in a neighborhood where people fail to get the trash can off the street and out of sight (and not wash it out before using it again) and..the people don't keep their yards up..then you are living in the wrong area. MOVE! Let the dregs of society have their own space and they can be as nasty as they please.
It is your choice.

humbleopinion
0
Points
humbleopinion 07/03/08 - 06:44 pm
0
0
Not only is the AGNC watering

Not only is the AGNC watering anytime they want, they've also removed the public roads that went through the old neighborhood.

I've not seen anything in the paper about how they were able to do that. I always thought that "public" roads belonged to the taxpayers that paid for them.

How about the Chronicle doing a story on that one.....oh wait, NOTHING negative is ever said about AGNC or else someone will lose their tickets.

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 07/03/08 - 06:49 pm
0
0
You sure are bossy in that

You sure are bossy in that post jsegal. NO, sometimes you DON'T have a choice. If all one has is a toothbrush and a suitcase full of clothes, sure one could move anytime one pleases. I moved HERE to get AWAY from the dregs of society and it took me 20 years to get in a position to do that. The neighbors homes nearby were fine when I got here, but over a year later a neighbor and her husband separated and she could no longer afford her home, then it was empty for a long time. Now that it is re-occupied, we don't know if they've moved in or are just fixing up the inside to flip it and not planning to do yardwork until they put it up for sale possibly. Another neighbor let a relative move in when he moved out, and the new fella apparently has no interest in yard work. More than 2/3's of the rest of the neighborhood homes are well-cared for, including the rest of the houses near me. They are lovely. If you don't mind moving like a gypsy every time you discover a neighbor has too many stray cats, or a son that makes too much noise coming in from work at 11pm, or a privacy fence has been hiding a health hazard of a mosquito-ridden pool, then you go girl! Not me, not now.

whatsupwiththat
1
Points
whatsupwiththat 07/03/08 - 09:51 pm
0
0
humbleopinon - As observant

humbleopinon - As observant as you are, I'm sure you've noticed THERE ARE NO OLD NEIGHBORHOODS across from the ANGC anymore - at least in the Heath Drive area. The houses have been demolished and removed. Those NEIGHBORS were paid 10 times the value of their properties to vacate the old neighborhood. The ANGC brings more money into Augusta each year than any other entity in the area.

luv2scrapbk
0
Points
luv2scrapbk 07/03/08 - 10:18 pm
0
0
1. I am not happy with

1. I am not happy with watering restrictions, but it is what it is....move on with life. 2. I am responsible for ME, not The Augusta National. Besides, don't you have better things to do with your time than to go over to film the sprinklers at The Augusta National Golf Club? GO...earn a living or otherwise contribute to society in some more productive manner. 3. What the heck do trash cans have to do with watering restrictions?

As It Is
2
Points
As It Is 07/04/08 - 04:11 am
0
0
Lets all complain about the

Lets all complain about the one great thing Augusta has which is the Augusta National. If it wern't for them hardly anyone would even know about Augusta and tgrouris would be non-exsistent. The donate over 3 million a year to the local community, create many jobs, and bring in a very large tax revenue to the community not to mention filling up every hotel with a bed tax of 13% during Masters week. If you have a question about the National, just call them instead of wasted dribble and useless gussing. Yes, they do have their own water supply, yes the are using gray water from fire hydrants and yes, they can aquire rights of way when they own all of the surronding property, which again relieves the county of maintaining a roadway on their property which would just be another whine. There are major steps taken to re-claim used water by the National and other golf courses and then re-applied through sprinkler systems.

Little Lamb
48011
Points
Little Lamb 07/04/08 - 06:51 am
0
0
Thank you, Scrap. Your post

Thank you, Scrap. Your post is a breath of fresh air and truth this morning.

JohnQPublic
5
Points
JohnQPublic 07/04/08 - 07:02 am
0
0
Take notice of the water

Take notice of the water tower on Augusta National property. They use their own water. I don't mind conserving ,but what about businesses that don't adhere to the rules? I never hear about any of them getting their water shut off.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Lincoln County deputies injured breaking up fight

Two Lincoln County deputies were treated at an Augusta Hospital after being injured breaking up a fight at a party at an American Legion building in Lincolnton.
Search Augusta jobs