Utah County Commission declares state of emergency over drought

It will remain in effect through the end of the year unless terminated by a majority vote.

(George Frey | Special to The Tribune) A wildfire burns on Traverse Mountain above Lehi on June 28th, 2020.

The Utah County Commission on Wednesday unanimously approved a state of emergency declaration due to drought conditions.

Commission Chair Bill Lee said in a news release that the declaration will allow the continued education of the public in regard to water usage and preventing fires.

“Multiple mayors throughout Utah County have asked for such a declaration, and I am eager to stand with them in helping our communities to mitigate the negative consequences of the drought,” Lee said in the release. “I urge all Utah County residents to do their part to conserve water and help protect the health and safety of our residents by exercising common sense in preventing costly wildfires during these potentially dangerous times.”

According to the declaration, the state of emergency “shall remain in effect until the earlier of Dec. 31, 2021, or until the day on which the Utah County Commission terminates the state of emergency by majority vote.”

In March, Gov. Spencer Cox declared a statewide drought emergency, asking all Utahns to conserve water, and the Legislature last month extended that state of emergency through the end of October.

Utah County ranks second among the state’s counties in population.