Hull, IA preparing to ration water again for the summer
Hull's two water two can hold about 700,000 gallons of water.
HULL, Iowa (KTIV) -
Hull's water levels are normal now, but things looked different last summer during the drought.
"We were scrambling. We didn't know what our solution was going to be," said Aaron Kooiker, city administrator for Hull.
Add to that the Agropur cheese factory which uses hundreds of thousands of gallons each day and a growing residential population in Hull. Then, you have a strain on the town's water supply. So, it had to cut back last summer.
"I think they realized that we were one water main break away from not having enough water in this town," said Lonni Westphal, Hull's water director.
Without Lewis & Clark to rely on, Hull turned to Rock Rapids, and the 450,000 gallons it provides. Another 450,000 could come from a water system in Boyden. But that won't be done until 2014. Kooiker expects the move to cost the city about $1-2 million.
"It's going to be the cost for running the pipeline from their water treatment plant, which is in Boyden to their water tower, which is about five miles north of town and then to us," said Kooiker.
The upfront costs will be reflected in residential water bills.
"Once the pipeline is in, we won't have to pay that again. This is actually a joint venture with Lyon and Sioux. They're paying a portion of it, and we're paying a portion of it," said Kooiker.
City officials say Hull uses about 380,000 gallons of water per day during the winter, but things change when the weather warms up.
"In the summer, that probably changes to about 800,000 just from lawn watering and pools and stuff like that," said Westphal.
So, city leaders say there will be rationing again this summer, with watering allowed only on certain days.
"If that doesn't work, we will probably have to go to a full water emergency ban then," said Westphal.
An emergency line from Lewis and Clark, that's already in place, could ease that burden.
"Sioux Center is able to provide us with water. We take 80,000 gallons of water from them a day, but we could, if need be, take up to 250,000 per day," said Kooiker.
But if the rains return, everything could change.
"If we would get rain, like in most summers, then we would probably have no restrictions at all," said Westphal.
Hull's two water towers in town combine to hold about 700,000 gallons of water.
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