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City of Calistoga issues mandate for water customers to conserve

City of Calistoga issues mandate for water customers to conserve


The City of Calistoga has declared a Stage II Water emergency and starting May 1, residents and businesses will be required to conserve water.

The move is a response to a recent reduction in the State’s water allocation. Citing back-to back dry years and limited precipitation in the northern part of the State, on March 23, the California Department of Water Resources reduced the State Water Project allocations for Napa County from 15% to 5%. The reduction represents a loss of approximately 25% of Calistoga’s annual demand.

The City’s enforcement of the mandate will include an educational component before any citations will be issued. The last time the City moved to Stage II was in 2015, and no citations were issued at that time as “the community is very engaged and willing to help,” said City Manager Mike Kirn at Tuesday’s City Council Meeting.

Conservation measures largely include irrigation restrictions. A summary of the key conservation measures are as follows:

  • All water customers must use outdoor irrigation with potable water only during the early morning hours, with an odd/even address watering schedule: odd addresses water Tuesday and Friday and even water Monday and Thursday.
  • No outdoor irrigation on Wednesday, Saturday, or Sunday with potable water, and irrigation may not spray onto paved areas and sidewalks..
  • No non-commercial washing of privately owned vehicles or equipment except from a bucket and hose equipped with an automatic shutoff nozzle. No washing sidewalks, buildings, driveways, patios, or other paved areas with potable water.
  • Run full loads through dishwasher and wash full loads of laundry.
  • No initial filling or draining of swimming pools with potable water. Pools can be topped off to prevent damage to pumps and equipment.
  • The use of portable water in fountains or other decorative water features is not permitted, except where the water is part of a recirculating system.
  • Hotels and motels must prominently display a notice of option to reuse towels and linens changes only upon a guest’s request.
  • In restaurants, tap water can be provided to customers only upon request.
  • Further restrictions apply to newly permitted pools and spas and newly constructed homes.

You can reach Cynthia Sweeney at 942-4035 or

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The Weekly Calistogan Editor

Cynthia Sweeney has been editor of The Weekly Calistogan since July, 2018. Previously, she was a reporter for the St. Helena Star, and North Bay Business Journal. She also spent a significant amount of time freelancing in Hawaii.

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