The drought continues to put a strain on drinking water in the Valley. In Tulare County, groundwater levels are dropping. It has rural towns preparing for shortages. Meanwhile, in bigger towns like Tulare, city officials say water usage is up and groundwater pumps are working harder. The city manager says it's costing the city hundreds of thousands of dollars in energy costs. To make up for it, the city is contemplating a surcharge that would add a dollar to every water bill in town. City officials in Visalia are taking a different approach. The city is in conservation mode. Next week, water restrictions will take effect, regulating watering days and excessive use. The mayor says it's an effort to save water for the city and smaller, neighboring towns.
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