UPDATE Thurs., May 22, 10:10 PDT: While it hasn't yet been officially documented yet, local APSP officials say they have been told permits will be issued for pools if evidence is shown that water will be trucked in from another source other than Lake Travis. Local media stated as much last night. Local APSP officials believe trucking companies can provide proof that water will be brought in from another source, but are still looking into the matter as it is so new. They also await official language marking the change.
While there has been plenty of attention paid to the drought in California, another state has been having a dry year and is beginning to feel the heat - Texas.
Yesterday, the city of Lakeway, near Austin, put a halt on pool construction within city limits, threatening fines of up to $2,000 per day for violators. The ban went into immediate effect and will last "as long as the drought exists," the city said in a press release.
"Staff will continue to review and approve swimming pool construction plans, but pool permits will not be issued until the city's water supply returns to normal conditions and the emergency order is lifted," officials said in a press release.
Industry officials currently are in communication with the local press to get the message out about the true water usage of pools.
As another water-saving measure, the city also has put a hold on its landscape requirements for new construction. Normally, sod or trees are required to be included in newly constructed projects. Once normal conditions return, property owners will receive notice and a deadline for planting the landscaping. In the meantime, those in construction must find other means to stabilize the disturbed areas to prevent erosion and silting.
As in California, Texas' drought seems to be breaking records. Inflows at the Highland Lakes are at their lowest of any five-year period in history, creating a more severe condition than the renowned drought of the 1950s, according to the Lower Colorado River Authority. Local reservoirs are clocked in at 35-percent capacity. The Lone Star State is expected to remain in drought until at least 2020, said Texas State Climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon.
"The City of Lakeway is taking a strong stance on conserving our water supply," said Lakeway City Manager Steve Jones. "As the declaration of a new drought of record is imminent, non-essential uses of limited potable water must be curbed."
In July, the Lakeway Municipal Utility District is expected to impose Stage 3 drought restrictions, under which homeowners will only be able to water their lawns and landscaping once a week.