Starting Thursday, Holly Springs will be implementing tougher watering restrictions like those of its two suppliers, Harnett County and Raleigh.
Because of the drought, the Town Council voted Tuesday to allow residents to water their lawns only once a week -- from 12:01 a.m. to 10 a.m. Tuesdays for odd-number addresses and during the same period Wednesdays for even numbers.
Thirty-day exceptions will be available from the town clerk for seeding or sodding, but watering should only take place from 5 to 10 a.m. Property owners should show receipts for seed or sod. Commercial landscapers and homeowners using low-volume drip irrigation are exempt from the once-a-week limit.
Car and boat washing at home will be restricted to weekends.
A new report from Duke University says the state needs 15 to 25 inches of rain to end the drought, which is affecting all 100 counties to some degree.
The report, released Tuesday by the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, identifies long-term strategies for managing and conserving water. The state has begun to require most major water users such as cities, large industries and power companies to register and report how much surface water and groundwater they are using.
The report also recommends that the state commission a study to evaluate the water- and cost-savings that could be achieved through measures such as requiring greater efficiency for water-using appliances and fixtures or metering technologies that would allow utilities to charge separate rates for indoor water use and irrigation.