U.S. Water News Online
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Pima County is considering some new
water-conservation rules, such as prohibiting businesses from running
misters and disallowing evaporative coolers as a primary source of
The proposed new rules are aimed at improving a December 2001
county plan that promotes water conservation but doesn't require it.
"In 2001 we said that water conservation is important and that we
should adopt ordinances. This is following up on that," said Kathleen
Chavez, county water policy manager.
Misters are most commonly used to cool outdoor seating areas in
restaurants, bars and other gathering places.
Other proposed water-conservation measures include discouraging
individual pools in areas with community pools, prohibiting
evaporative coolers as the sole source of cooling and requiring
irrigation plumbing that can be connected to reclaimed water.
Most of the measures would apply to new construction, according to
"These are just ideas and we'll need to look at them from a legal
perspective, an ordinance-compliance perspective and also from a
public-participation perspective," Chavez said.
The county Board of Supervisors will discuss the proposals and
decide if it wants to move forward with adopting them, said County
Administrator Chuck Huckelberry.
The Southern Arizona Home Builders Association plans to ask the
county to delay the item so its representatives can get some answers.
"We were hoping that as the staff drafts an ordinance we will be
part of the dialogue so that the measure is workable and
enforceable," said Lori Lustig, SAHBA government liaison.
The proposed conservation measures are "a good first start,"
Lustig said, but she thinks there needs to be a lot more discussion
to make sure the cost to home buyers is worth it.
"A lot of the ideas are good ideas, but they are more expensive
for the home builder or the home buyer after the fact," she said.
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