A family-owned daily newspaper serving Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming since 1949

City's water crisis over, official says

Aug 17, 2012 - By Emily Etheredge, Staff Writer

Public services director Bill Urbigkit said Riverton residents no longer have to worry about conserving water. His announcement came Tuesday at the Riverton City Council work session after a lengthy discussion on city park maintenance.

"We don't anticipate we will run out of water," Urbigkit said.

Councilman Richard Gard said he thought the city parks looked great, but there were a lot of brown residential lawns throughout the city.

"I know it is more than likely economy driven, but Riverton is a really pretty place and a nice town to live in," Gard said. "We need to encourage people to try to keep their lawns as green as possible."

Urbigkit said the brown lawns might be the result of drought concerns from the beginning of the summer.

"In some ways I feel like I pulled a Chicken Little with 'the sky is falling' by telling everyone to avoid using water," Urbigkit said. "Everyone should ignore the fear of a drought and water their lawns.

"I personally turned on my sprinkler system, so feel free to water."

Urbigkit said the demands for irrigation water usually drop off by the middle of August.

"That generally means if we were in a water conservation mode, we don't have to worry about it," Urbigkit said. "The meteorological conditions are a bit odd because it has been so hot, but the heat melted more of the snow in the glaciers so we had enough water."

Although the water supply never ran out, Urbigkit said water will always be a concern.

"We made it through this year, but I wouldn't be surprised if we were having the same concerns next year," Urbigkit said.

"We did a lot of screaming and running around to conserve water, and it all ended up working out."

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