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Be aware of outdoor water use restrictions during hot, dry weather

Northville Water Tower 
The City of Northville regulates outdoor water usage year-round but it tends to be more of an issue during hot, dry weather when lawns are flagging and flowers, shrubbery and trees need additional water to stay vibrant.

The City’s Department of Public Works reminds homeowners that automatic sprinkler systems should be set to run between midnight and 5 a.m., when water usage is at low levels, and no more frequently than every other day. During peak water usage hours of 5 a.m. to 11 a.m., residents should not be watering their yards or landscape with a hose. Residents can water their outdoor areas from 11 a.m. to midnight with a hose.

The ordinance also states that household numbers that end with an even number can water on even days of the month, while odd numbered households can water on odd days of the month.

  • Automatic outdoor irrigation systems should be set to run between the hours of midnight and 5 a.m. on odd or even days based on the last number in the address of your home.
  • Manual watering with a hose can be done between 11 a.m. and midnight on odd or even days based on the last number in the address of your home.
  • The police are required to issue tickets to residents who violate this ordinance. It’s $50 for the first offense and $100 for repeat offenses.
“These water restrictions have been in place since 2013,” said Jim Gallogly, director of the Department of Public Works. “The ordinance is effective all year long, but it becomes most critical during hot summer months when outdoor water use is high.”

The City of Northville’s water is supplied by the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA). Charges are based, in part, on how much water a community uses and when it uses its water.

“Without mandatory watering restrictions, most people water early in the morning and then again during the evening,” Gallogly said. “With most people watering their lawns in the summer during peak times, it becomes difficult for GLWA to keep up with water demand, which can be vastly more than normal. There have been times in years past, when restrictions weren’t in place, that residents could not get the amount of water they needed during those peak water usage times.”

People who violate the policy and don’t comply with the ordinance after an initial warning will be issued a ticket for $50; repeat offenses will cost $100.

Hose with running water 
The ordinance was adopted because the City incurred an additional $130,000 in water usage fees when it went over the contracted usage amount in 2012 and water restrictions were not in place. That’s a large amount to absorb in the budget, and future charges like that, should they occur, will be reflected in residents’ water bills. Given that scenario, most people are willing to follow the ordinance.



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