State imposes restrictions on water rights to Virgin River, tributaries

ST. GEORGE — The Virgin River and its tributaries are experiencing significantly diminished flows because of continued drought necessitating water restrictions.

Kent Jones, Utah Department of Natural Resources state engineer, wrote a letter to the public regarding the restrictions. In it he said:

Water users who fail to comply with this notice may be subject to civil and criminal penalties as outlined in statute. In future years water users may be provided verbal notice of priority distribution or water user head gates may be shut or locked with no more notice than a distribution tag secured to the controlling works.

Please be advised that Utah state law requires all water users install and maintain controlling works and a measuring device that meet state engineer approval, and to make them accessible to the state engineer or water commissioner.

Water users above the Washington Fields diversion

Jones has ordered surface water users on the Virgin River and its tributaries above the Washington Fields Diversion with a priority date of 1901 or later to immediately cease diversion and use of water rights until further notice.

Water users of the Toquerville secondary water system

The Toquerville Secondary Water System is implementing residential and agricultural water restrictions.

Effective Monday, residential water users are limited to outdoor watering a maximum of three assigned days per week between 6-9 p.m., and agricultural users are limited to watering a maximum of two assigned days per week between 6-11 a.m.

Fines of double and then triple the annual assessment will be imposed on the third and fourth violations. A fifth violation will result in shutting off the water for the duration of the season.

Contact the Washington County Water Conservancy District for additional details at 435-673-3617.

About the Washington County Water Conservancy District

Washington County Water Conservancy District, a not-for-profit public agency, was established in 1962 to manage Southern Utah’s regional water needs. The district oversees the development, stabilization, management, acquisition and conservation of water resources in Washington County in an ongoing effort to provide a safe, sustainable water supply for current and future generations.


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