The Public Eye

Reports from the Bee's investigative team

August 16, 2010
If you report a water sprinkler violation, the city says it will fix it

The problem: Earlier this month, the city of Sacramento's sprinklers on Addison Way near Meadowview Road in south Sacramento were stuck on for a reported five days, pooling in a nearby retention basin. A resident of the area contacted the office of Councilwoman Bonnie Pannell on the fourth day, a Sunday.

The solution: Pannell's district director notified the city Department of Utilities, which shut off the water by 11:30 a.m., the next day. The city conducted tests and discovered broken irrigation and a broken valve.

By 3 p.m., the valve was replaced, said Jessica Hess, spokeswoman for the Utilities Department. She said the problem was unusual in that no one called to complain before the weekend. A Bee reader, however, reported mid-afternoon watering at the site.

The city encourages Sacramento residents to report any water problem, no matter the source. Residents may do so anonymously by calling 311 or by e-mail at, Hess said.

By city ordinance, summer watering hours are limited to before 10 a.m. or after 7 p.m. Addresses with odd numbers may be watered only on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Residents and business owners with even-numbered addresses may water on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

No watering is allowed on Mondays.

-Loretta Kalb

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