SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — This weekend’s forecast of rain can’t come soon enough for homeowners in KELOLAND trying to revive their brown lawns. The City of Sioux Falls has seen an uptick in people watering for multiple days in a row, in violation of the city’s lawn watering restrictions.

The City of Sioux Falls doesn’t just take the word of a citizen’s complaint when confronting someone who may be violating the odd-even lawn watering restrictions.

“Most of the time, people try to tell us that, ‘it’s not me, you must have it wrong’ until we pull up their water usage, confront them with it and they’re very quick to start following the rules,” City of Sioux Falls Water Program Coordinator Darin Freese said.

Water Program Coordinator Darin Freese can access a homeowner’s watering history from his computer at the city water treatment plant for further evidence of a violation.

“So here’s where they watered three days in a row. Now they didn’t water for two. But here, they watered for two in a row, then they were good for a couple of days and then here’s where the problem started, they watered one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine days consecutively,” Freese said.

Freese says some homeowners are under the mistaken idea that the irrigation company that sets their sprinkler timers is responsible for following the watering requirements. But that’s not true. That responsibility falls squarely on the shoulders of the homeowner, alone.

“So knowing, working with your irrigation company, find out what’s expected because their job is to keep your yard green, it’s your responsibility to follow the watering schedule,” Freese said.

Freese says his job isn’t to punish the homeowner, but rather to educate them on the importance of water conservation. Freese has yet to report a violation to the city’s code enforcement department. He says friendly persuasion is usually enough to get someone back into compliance and avoid any fines.

Freese says homeowners will also ramp up their watering after Labor Day. But he reminds everyone that watering restrictions are year-round, and not just during the summer months.

Watering is prohibited from noon to 5 p.m. regardless of your address and what day it is. 80% of that water evaporates during the afternoon hours.

If you’d like to report someone who might be violating the city’s water restrictions, call 605-373-6971.