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Windsor launches program offering free recycled water for irrigation

Residents just have to bring their own containers.|

Windsor residents interested in saving money and conserving water during the drought can get up to 300 gallons of recycled water from the town starting next week.

The launch of a free water fill station program for residents and businesses is planned for Wednesday at Keiser Park, 700 Windsor River Road.

“The town is in an extreme drought and we see this as an opportunity for customers to reduce their use of potable water and save a gallon of Russian River water for every gallon of recycled water,” said Shannon Cotulla, director of Windsor’s Public Works Department.

“People have been asking for access to recycled water for years,” Cotulla added.

The water comes from the city’s water treatment facility and is intended for irrigation — not to be used for bathing or drinking. Following Wednesday’s launch, the fill station will be open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday-Thursday. Residents must bring their own resealable containers, clearly labeled “Recycled water: Do not drink,” Windsor Public Information Officer Rhea R. Borja said.

Town staff will use a hose to fill containers and record the amount. Keiser Park was chosen to house the fill station as it is irrigated with recycled water and has a facility able to supply the water to customers.

“So all this is costing us is $77 to add a fitting to this recyclable filling station,” Cotulla said.

The city’s request to distribute recycled water to residents was granted this year by the state, Cotulla said.

Residents will need to fill out paperwork ahead of time at Windsor Town Hall or online, certifying they won’t bathe or drink the recycled water.

“It’s basically filling out a one-page application, reviewing PowerPoint slides about the program, such as acceptable uses for the recycled water, health and safety guidelines, watering guidelines, acceptable containers, FAQs, etc.; and signing a one-page self-certification form,” Borja said.

Forms and training are available on the town’s website at townofwindsor.com/recycledwater.

“We are continuing to get the word out. We really don’t know what the demand will be in the community,” but if there is a demand for later hours, the city will try to make it happen, Cotulla said.

People are able to fill their containers as many times as they want on the days the fill station is open.

“In these significant drought conditions, we need to do everything we can to conserve our precious water resource,” Windsor Mayor Sam Salmon.

You can reach Staff Writer Kathleen Coates at kathleen.coates@pressdemocrat.com or 707-521-5209.

Kathleen Coates

Windsor and Cloverdale, The Press Democrat 

As someone who grew up in a small town, I enjoy covering what's happening in Windsor and Cloverdale, which are growing in their own unique ways.  I delve into issues by getting to know people and finding out what’s going on in the community. I also pay attention to animal welfare and other issues that affect Sonoma County.

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