The Tuolumne Utilities District board is sending a message to skeptics in the county and around the state - the current drought and water shortage are real.
All five TUD board members passed a resolution urging water agencies throughout the state to step up their water conservation efforts. This does not place any further limits on Tuolumne County residents, who already face some of the toughest restrictions in the state.
"It's just reaffirming this community understands that we're in a very serious state of emergency," said board member Ruanne Mikkelsen.
TUD is asking customers to cut their water usage in half and penalizing those who don't reduce their usage by at least 25 percent. The district has also banned all lawn watering and limited outside watering to certain days.
Lyons and Pinecrest reservoirs, which are owned andoperated by Pacific Gas and Electric Co., are the two main holding tanks for TUD's annual water supply.
Both reservoirs are currently full and overflowing, but federal regulations require TUD to preserve water in Pinecrest through summer for recreational purposes.
For the complete story, see the May 14, 2014, edition of The Union Democrat.