Carthage's water conservation measures have not stabilized the level of the city's lake reservoir.
Second Ward Alderman Gary Smith says the measures have reduced water consumption since they were enacted last month.
He says, “Before it (got) to be critical, we started saving, trying to have conservation. It's been real good. The usage is down significantly.”
The city banned businesses watering their lawns. The city also asked residents to voluntarily reduce their water consumption. Smith says consumption has been cut from 250,000 gallons per day to 210,000.
However, the level in the city's lake has continued to drop. That level was five feet below normal when the conservation measures went into effect. Since then, the level has fallen another three feet to eight feet below its normal level
Carthage has turned to another strategy to slow the trend.
Smith says, “We regularly buy 20,000 gallons a day from Hamilton. And we've doubled that right now trying to stretch the water that we have in the lake.”
He says the city relies on rainfall run-off to replenish the lake. Several months of steady rain will be needed to bring the level back to its normal level.