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Watch when you water

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June 22, 2006

Albany - - Don't turn on that water until you take a look at the clock. All of us are under a statewide watering ban from 10 am until 4 p.m. every day.

Every week, you can catch 78 year old Jay Elwood keeping up his yard. He likes planting trees and flowers.

"I water my azelas because I just put new ones out there and you see they're dying on me. I haven't put enough water on them or something."

And if hasn't done it in the past, he's going to have to watch how he does it now. A new state-wide ban says you can not water between 10 am and 4 pm on any day.

"The first offense is you would be warned. The second offense is a 200 dollar fine and the 3rd offense ultimately will be the meter being removed," says Teresa Stanton with Water Gas and Light.

Stanton says the city has had restrictions for a while, but now they have to step them up. Violaters who have gotten away in the past, may want to think twice.  The police are watching. And they're the ones who can write you up or take away your meter.

Elwood says he won't risk it. Growing up on a farm, he knows the importance of conservation.

"I've had that experience of being short of water when I was a kid. We had to haul water for the cows and we had to be very conseravative, that's why I am today in part."

So he'll keep working in his yard, he takes pride in that. He also takes pride in being a law-abiding citizen.

 "I hate to put more water onto it than I can getby without."

 Even if it means his sprinklers will remain off during the day...he's hoping it won't cost him his flowers.

"But maybe that's the price I gotta pay."

WG&L representatives say they get several calls a week from people saying they see their neighbors breaking the restrictions. They say, when you see this happening, just call the police. Again, that's who will be enforcing this ban.

If your street address ends in an even number, you can water Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.

If your address ends in an odd number, you can water on Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday.

No one can water on Friday.

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