Abundant winter rains won't stop Chandler from trying to persuade homeowners associations and residents from saving water. The city is set to send letters to homeowners associations, or HOAs, urging them not to plant ryegrass in the fall to avoid having to water the winter turf.
And if that fails, maybe new rebates offered by the city might persuade them to take water conservation measures.
"It's a reminder the state is still in a drought," said Gregg Capps, Chandler water resource manager.
The Valley has been in a drought for 14 years, but rain was plentiful last winter. For instance, the reservoirs that supply much of Chandler's water are 92 percent full, compared with 57 percent full this time last year, according to Salt River Project.
According to Chandler's drought management plan, the city promotes water conservation no matter how sufficient the supply. "Water conservation is a way of life in Chandler," the plan reads.
Capps said the city typically sees a small spike in water usage in September and October, the time when the ryegrass that replaces the Bermuda grass of the summer is planted.
The city is sending out the pleas now because this is the time of year that HOA boards set their budgets and decide whether to buy grass seed for the fall, Capps said. A similar letter will go out to residents in the fall.
The city already offers rebates to HOAs and residents for implementing various water-saving methods and equipment and is offering two new ones to HOAs, Capps said.
The city will offer $200 for every 1,000 square feet of turf removed in favor of city-approved, low-water landscaping, up to $3,000.
The city also offers rebates on special irrigation controllers that use weather data for scheduling irrigation. The rebate is $200 for each controller up to five, Capps said. "It's proven to save a lot of water," he said.