Drought Response Levels
In the event of drought circumstances, the state has a three-tier drought contingency plan with different response levels.
Level one has been implemented, and level two responses are being worked on by some water permitting agencies throughout the state, according to Brown.
The state’s drought contingency plan is: Drought Response Level 1 Launce public information campaigns be implemented, including public notice regarding drought conditions, and drought specific publicservice messages Drought Response Level 2 Limit general outdoor watering, including for planting, growing, managing or maintaining ground cover, trees, shrubs or other plants to two days a week on an odd-even schedule between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 a.m.
Also, the following prohibited: washing hard surfaces such as streets, gutters, sidewalks and driveways, is except when necessary for public health and safety;
using water for ornamental purposes such as fountains, reflecting pools and waterfalls;
use of fire hydrants, except for the purposes of firefighting, public health, safety or flushing; washing vehicles;
non-commercial washing, or pressure washing, of buildings or structures; charity, or non-commercial fundraiser, car washes.
Drought Response Level 3 General outdoor watering not permitted and only the following categories of outdoor water use allowed:
watering for personal food gardens between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 a.m., unless done with soaker hoses;
hand-watering with a hose between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 a.m.;
irrigation of athletic fields or public turf grass recreational areas between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 a.m.;
irrigation of golf courses between the hour of 4 p.m. and 10 a.m.;
use of reclaimed waste water by a designated user;
installation, maintenance or calibration of irrigation system is allowed provided it is done by professional landscapers or golf court superintendents.
The state of Georgia will determine when enacting the different drought response levels are required.
Brown said he doesn’t know when or if an escalation in levels is necessary, but it is being discussed at the state level, who is assessing information from each water provider.
“Hopefully by the next few weeks we’ll be getting data back,” Brown said.