Photo of Senator Leone.

State Senator

Carlo Leone

Representing Stamford & Darien

Leone Votes for Stronger Water Conservation Measures During State Droughts

Taking a lesson from the recent months-long drought that affected most of the state and in particular the Stamford area and southwestern Connecticut, state Senator Carlo Leone (D-Stamford) this evening voted for a bill that requires the state Water Planning Council to review all state and local rules regarding drought events, make recommendations for standardizing the various drought advisories, watches, warnings and emergencies, and recommending various water use restrictions during droughts.

The bill passed the state Senate on a bipartisan 28-8 vote and now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.

Sen. Leone said the drought in Stamford was so bad last summer that the Aquarion Water Company had to lay a 2.5-mile long pipe aboveground to provide water from one reservoir to another, and that residents could walk across reservoirs where the water would normally be five to six feet above their heads. Sen. Leone said the bill passed this evening should help ensure that the public has all the information they need to adequately deal with any drought conditions in the future.

“What is the difference between an advisory and a warning? What exactly does voluntary and mandatory mean, and who decides, and on what grounds?” Sen. Leone said. “The public needs to know these things before we get to the point of having to lay two and a half miles of above-ground water line in order to keep taps and showers running. That’s what this bill is about.”

Currently in Connecticut, there are four stages of drought alerts: advisory, watch, warning and emergency. An advisory seeks a voluntary 10% water conservation; watch, 15% voluntary; warning, 20% mandatory; and emergency, 25% mandatory.

But those categories can vary from town to town and water company by water company. The bill passed today requires the Water Planning Council to review drought advisories, synthesize such restrictions, standardize them, recommend triggers for voluntary and mandatory pubic water use restrictions, and suggest an effective public water notification system.

The report is due to the general Assembly by February 1, 2018.






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LOB Room 3300
Hartford, CT 06106-1591


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