- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 24, 2002

ANNAPOLIS (AP) Gov. Parris N. Glendening is expected to announce a series of substantial measures early next week to address what is shaping up to be the most devastating drought in decades, his spokesman said yesterday.
"We're experiencing our worst drought since the 1930s in the bulk of the state," Glendening spokesman Charles Porcari said.
The measures, which are expected to affect both personal consumption and businesses, will apply to the Eastern Shore and the central part of the state the Baltimore area, Frederick, Howard, Carroll, Harford and Cecil counties, and part of Montgomery County.
The central region is now under Level One emergency, while the Eastern Shore is under a drought warning.
The new Level Two restrictions are expected to include prohibitions on watering lawns, filling ornamental fountains and reflecting pools, and spraying or power washing paved areas, decks and buildings. Serving water at restaurants also will be prohibited unless requested by patrons, officials said.
The restrictions, which have been effect in Frederick since June, are likely to include a 10 percent reduction in water use.
During the drought of 1999, water restrictions managed to drop water use by 15 percent to 20 percent in some parts of the state. Maryland is enduring a rainfall deficit of 16.7 inches during the past 12 months more than twice the 1999 deficit of 8.3 inches.
Last week, Mr. Glendening asked the federal government to provide aid to farmers, whose crops have withered away because of the drought and extreme heat. Corn crop losses are estimated to be as high as 80 percent in some parts of the state. Soybean losses are as high as 60 percent.
Reservoir levels are extremely low. The city of Frederick is considering trucking in water and installing a temporary dam to divert water from the Monocacy River to the city's water-treatment plant. Baltimore's reservoirs, typically at about 95 percent of their capacity at this time of year, are at about 49 percent.

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