Sioux Falls homeowners are getting a first look at their August water bills. With the hot, dry weather, sprinklers have been running nonstop, and now the complaints are pouring in to city hall.
That got us wondering just how much money people were spending to keep their lawns alive before the new restrictions took effect this week.
KELOLAND News asked the city to put together a list of the ten highest residential water bills in town. The totals will surprise you.
Keeping your lawn green is taking a lot of green out of your pocketbooks this summer, some more than others.
"I would say if you're doing any level of watering, you would see an average bill in the $40 to $50 range at least," Business Operations Manager with Public Works Dean Borchardt said.
But there are some who have been H2O hogs.
The top five water bills for one month range from $1,800 to almost $2,500 or 231,000 gallons.
"As you look at the amount of gallons they use, 230,000 plus gallons, that's an extraordinary amount of gallons to use in a one-month time period," Borchardt said.
Borchardt, who has been with public works for four years, says he's never seen bills this high. To put it in perspective, that $2,500 water bill is more than 231,000 gallons, enough to fill the Terrace Park swimming pool almost one and a half times.
The city has a tiered-billing system meaning the more water you use, the higher rate you'll pay. And judging by the numbers, some of you are paying an awful lot.
"Water usage at this level is a personal choice. We don't require or limit the amount you can purchase, but the more you use, the more you'll pay," Borchardt said.
Borchardt says of the top ten users, six are establishing new lawns, but they have to have a permit to water everyday and the permit is only good for 14 days. Once it expires, the homeowner has to follow watering restrictions just like the rest of us, which is now once a week.
TOP 10 AUGUST 2012 SINGLE FAMILY WATER BILLS
|Ranking||Gallons Used||Total Bill|