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Zephyrhills puts limits on outdoor watering

By CARY DAVIS

© St. Petersburg Times, published March 29, 2000


ZEPHYRHILLS -- Following the lead of the Pasco County Commission, the Zephyrhills City Council voted unanimously Monday night to limit outdoor watering to one day per week.

Under the tightened restrictions, residents with even-numbered addresses or those including the letters A through M will only be allowed to water their lawns on Tuesdays. City residents with odd-numbered addresses and those including the letters N through Z can water on Sundays.

All watering must be done before 9 a.m or after 5 p.m. on watering day.

County commissioners passed a similar emergency ordinance for unincorporated areas last week.

The City Council also followed the county's lead in banning residential car washing, but not without opposition.

Council member Cathi Compton made a motion to allow residents to wash their cars and trucks one day per week, provided they attach cut-off nozzles to their hoses. Compton proposed the exemption, she said after the meeting, because several residents had complained that a buildup of dirt and love bugs would damage the paint on their cars.

Compton told a Times reporter that she would not have proposed the exemption if she thought allowing car washing would adversely affect the city's water supply. Utilities Director Louie Sellars, after reporting that the city's wells were 12 to 16 feet below normal levels, told council members that he had no problem with residents washing their cars.

"I thought that one day a week would be reasonable," Compton said.

Compton's proposal failed by a 3-2 vote, with council member Clyde Bracknell also voting to allow car washing.

The city's ordinance does not affect commercial carwashes.

First-time offenders will be warned and asked to comply with the new ordinance. Second and subsequent violations will carry fines of between $35 and $500.

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