Norwood Public Works Director Lippert has said the water situation is questionable this year, as many people already know. On Monday, he told The Norwood Post that it didn’t look good.
“We are in extreme drought, and it’s serious,” he said. “It could change in a heartbeat, but today it’s pretty serious. It’s going to affect a lot of people in a lot of ways, from ag to those who want to move here.”
At the town board meeting two weeks ago, Lippert gave an update on the raw water status. Last Monday, the raw water system was turned on, and tap holders who have rights to water lawns and gardens are now able to do so. Raw water is projected to run for 30 days at this point, though Lippert said that may change depending on the weather.
Monsoons, which typically bring summer rains to the Wright’s Mesa area, could help the situation, though the last few years the monsoon season has not produced much precipitation, which is disappointing for raw water customers (and of course those who work as farmers and ranchers.).
Mayor Kieffer Parrino said he’s pleased about the letter that went out in May explaining the watering expectations for the year. He said the communication is improving with the new raw water irrigation system, which is only a few years old.
“We’re learning as we go,” Lippert said.
The splash pad in Norwood will be open this year when the weather warms up. Lippert said it was 32 degrees on Monday morning. He said it’s too early to activate the splash pad now, but the first of June should be OK for it. It will likely run every day during daylight hours, though he admitted it could be shut down if the town goes into water restrictions.
“We try our best to run it all the time,” he said.
Related to water, the Colorado Rural Water Association sent signs to be put up in the Norwood area. Two of the signs were installed by Bobby Starks on behalf of Farmers Water Development.
The signage is to protect the local watershed and educate locals, and visitors alike, on the value of the Gurley Ditch and it serving as the lifeblood of Norwood.
Norwood has five more signs to install in the local area. The hope is that the signs will protect the water source, which serves as the town’s municipal water source, but also is the source of agricultural shares of water — and the lawn and garden supply, too.
And, Norwood’s first water education day is June 5 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Organized by town trustee Candy Meehan, the event aims to educate the locals about the water situation currently, but also teach the history too.
Many water organizations will come together, including Farmers Water, the Norwood Water Commission, the Lone Cone Ditch Company and others.
Meehan hopes the water day is informative for the public, but also helps with being proactive, rather than reactive, regarding the water issue in Norwood.
“Our water situation is bad,” she said. “It’s important we take the opportunity to come together collectively.”
She said she hopes to bring organizations together to communicate with the community and the other boards what their positions are and how they are being directly affected.