Local Politics

Governor's Mansion Cuts Water Use

Posted October 25, 2007 3:13 p.m. EDT
Updated October 25, 2007 3:39 p.m. EDT

— Gov. Mike Easley apparently brushes his teeth with the tap off and has come to accept a brown lawn like everyone else in North Carolina.

As Easley continues to urge North Carolina residents to curb their water consumption, he has followed his own advice and cut back water use at the Governor's Mansion.

Water bills for the Governor's Mansion for the last seven months show that both indoor and outdoor water use has dropped in recent months. The governor's residence has a separate water meter to measure its irrigation.

Sprinklers were turned off at the residence on Aug. 12, three days before Easley issued a directive to state agencies in Wake County to eliminate unnecessary water use, said Seth Effron, Easley's spokesman.

During a six-week billing cycle that ended July 18, the Governor's Mansion spent $1,166 on outdoor watering. That dropped to $804 for the two-month billing cycle that followed, the most recent records available.

Indoor use dropped by about a third between the last two billing cycles, from $154 for the month ended July 18 to $200 for the two-month cycle – or about $100 per month – ended Sept. 17, the most recent record available.

About 40 people work in the Governor's Mansion, and the residence also hosts daily tours for the public and frequent receptions and other events, Effron said.

This week, Easley asked all state residents to cut their water use in half until Halloween to give officials a better idea of what steps would be needed in the event of a water emergency.

"This is a manageable crisis. It should not be that hard to deal with it if everybody steps up," he said.