The trigger for SAWS' Stage 3 water restrictions is when the Edwards Aquifer falls below 640 feet. This morning, smack in the middle of our hot, hot August, we were at 637.8 feet and still parked at Stage 2 restrictions, the most onerous of which is the one that lets you hose your lawn just once a week.
This week, the Edwards Aquifer Authority announced that it was imposing Stage 3 pumping restrictions in the aquifer's San Antonio pool, meaning permit holders have to cut how much they pump by 35 percent of the annually authorized amount. That affects Bexar and Medina counties, and parts of Atascosa, Caldwell, Comal, Guadalupe, and Hays counties.
It's worse for communities drinking and irrigating out of the Uvalde pool. The EAA has them on Stage 4 restrictions.
Other cities around the region also have moved on to Stage 3 restrictions, including New Braunfels, San Marcos, and Austin.
San Antonio, on the other hand, has never declared Stage 3.