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Get Money Back for Being Water Smart

Mar 10, 2016 09:11AM ● Published by Bryan Scott

By Sandra Osborn | s.osborn@mycityjournals.com

South Jordan - What do gardening, home improvements and high school graduation have in common? They all happen in the spring, and they are all opportunities to get money back for being water smart.  

South Jordan City has adopted a water conservation plan with the goal to reduce water use by at least 25 percent per capita before the year 2025. 

“Water conservation is crucial. Efficient water use must be part of our daily lifestyle,” Rick Maloy, water conservation coordinator at South Jordan City, said. 

Residents use two-thirds of their water consumption in their yards; therefore, outdoors is where water conservancy can have the largest impact. 

“People can see savings on their water bill if they change their landscape,” Maloy said. “Our big push for this year is park strip conversion, so changing out grass for low-water-use plants and a drip system. Residents can reduce water usage for that area about 80 percent or more. This translates into 10-20 percent savings on their water bills.”

The city offers rebates and free workshops to further encourage residents to be water smart. The funds come from Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District and from the government. 

“We have received grant funding to extend 2015 water conservation rebates at least through July of 2016,” Maloy said. 

Residents can get up to $300 for planting drought-tolerant plants. Don’t know which plants are water-wise? The Conservation Garden Park lists over 800 water-wise plants at conservationgardenpark.org/plants/ and has interactive gardens to demonstrate and educate visitors at their grounds in West Jordan. The state also has a list on their website, www.waterwiseplants.utah.gov/. Proof of irrigation via drip system and other requirements are needed for rebate. 

The Central Utah Water Conservancy District (CUWCD) offers another set of rebates that residents can claim. CUWCD offers up to $100 for smart controllers with an accompanying weather or moisture sensor. All EPA WaterSense labeled controllers are eligible for rebate. 

Other rebates on specialized nozzles and sprinklers, as well as drip regulators, filters and kits also might be eligible for rebate at $3-$7 per item. For more information on these rebates, please visit http://cuwcd.com/rebates/index.htm.

In addition, South Jordan City offers free sprinkler workshops in the spring and in the fall. The public is encouraged to come and learn from the pros the ins and outs about sprinkling systems and ways to save water and money.

The spring free sprinkler workshop will take place Saturday, March 19 at 9:30 a.m. at the Public Works Building at 10996 South Redwood Road. 

For a small fee, residents can attend a Sprinkler System Basics and Drip System Basic Workshops at the Conservation Garden Park (CGP), also happening on March 19. The following Saturday, March 26, the CGP is offering Localscapes University — a design-intensive workshop specifically targeting landscapes for the arid Utah climate. Later in the year, the CGP is also offering Creating Waterwise Park Strips workshops. Online registration is required for all workshops at conservationgardenpark.org/events. 

Looking ahead a couple of months, the USU Free Water Check Program will begin its 17th season, beginning May 18 through the end of August. A team of Water Check irrigation system evaluators comes to residents’ homes to conduct an on-site analysis of the sprinkler system and create a customized schedule for the landscape. Residents need to call 1-877-728-3420 or visit www.slowtheflow.org/watercheck to sign up. 

The city is also offering money to residents for improving the efficiency of indoor water usage. Leaky toilets and faucets account for more than 10,000 gallons of water wasted in the average home every year, according to the EPA. 

Residents can get up to $200 for replacing two old high-flow toilets with high-efficiency ones (HET) that use 1.28 gallons per flush or less. The city also offers to pick up the old toilets for free when participating in the toilet replacement program. Proof of purchase is required. 

In addition, residents can receive up to $200 back when replacing old high-flow shower heads or faucets with a new WaterSense fixture. Limit of two indoor fixture rebates per residence. For a full list of allowable fixtures, check  www.epa.gov/watersense/products/

The South Jordan City Smart Water Scholarship Program offers a $1,000 award to a graduating high school senior with a creative project demonstrating a measurable impact on water conservation. The award is presented as part of South Jordan City’s Water Week in May. 

“This is our second year offering the scholarship. We have a small group of applicants, so the odds are pretty good. We’re looking for any good ideas for ways to save water,” Maloy said. 

The application deadline is March 31. For more information and application instructions, visit http://www.watersmartsojo.org/classroom.php.  

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