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Violating Water Restrictions Will Result in Citations

By: Erika Kurre Email
By: Erika Kurre Email

In the past eight weeks, the city of Dothan Utilities Department has issued 105 citations to residents for violations to the Water Conservation Plan. Last year, there were only 160 citations total.

It's a problem that's blamed on drought conditions.

The less rain to water people's lawns, the more they rely on sprinklers and city water, but the city's water system is no better off.

"It varies from day to day. The longer we stay in a drought situation, the amount of water we pump increases as the drought goes on," says Superintendent Randy Morris of Dothan Water Operations.

The city is on a water conservation plan, which lasts from April 1st to October 1st.

Residents may notice in their utility bill this month that they will get an extra paper, which outlines the city's water conservation plan. It also shows what stage we're in right now and what you can and cannot do to avoid being fined.

"The majority of residents are compliant, I believe. The ones who are issued citations; there may be reasons why. They may not watch the news or get the paper or beware of it, but it's still a requirement," says Morris.

This is the worst drought Morris can remember this early on in the year since 2000.

Because of it, at last count this weekend, the city pumped 21-million gallons of water Saturday and 20-million gallons Sunday and with no rain in the forecast, the situation could only get worse.

Most people may not know this, but it's actually the utilities department that issues the citations.

The police department is not involved unless requested.

Penalties for violations of the Water Conservation Plan range from a written warning to water service disconnection and a $1,000 dollar reconnection fee.


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