The cumulative effects of Utah's four-year drought are manifesting themselves in the form of loan requests to the Utah Board of Water Resources.
Larry Anderson, director of the Utah Division of Water Resources, said loan applications from cities, towns and water companies so far in 1990 have exceeded the total number of applications received in 1988 and 1989 combined.The board has approved 10 proj-ects for review by division staff. The projects, which include three from Summit County, two from Washington County and single requests from Sanpete, Davis, Salt Lake, Garfield and San Juan counties, will be evaluated to determine if they meet policy guidelines that qualify for loan assistance from the board.
"Today you're seeing the real evidence of what the drought has done," Anderson told the board. "Weaknesses in water systems tend to show up during long droughts.
The rise in applications is also affecting the board's ability to provide assistance. After committing some $1.74 million to five projects last week, the board told representatives for five other projects approved for funding that they would have to wait for more funds to become available before the money can be committed.
"What we're telling you is if you want the money soon you're going to have to help us with the Legislature," board member Wayne Winegar said. "If we're going to get more money it will have to come from a new appropriation."
The board loans money out of a revolving fund that was established by a state appropriation. Money accumulated from repayment on existing loans is used to fund new loans.