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Council members said the rate increase and outdoor watering ban would likely be on their agenda this week.
Finding just the right piece of land for the well project proved to be trickier than the council imagined.
Barbara Carthel said she noticed the pressure drop."It did scare us," said Councilman Shad Schlueter, who is also the interim city administrator.
"We needed to wake up."' You better damn well get water' Lockney's emergency council meeting last week started with a prayer."God, I do pray for rain and I pray that you would bless us with that," Councilman Matt Williams implored.
All the major cities in West Texas - Lubbock, Midland, Odessa, San Angelo and Abilene - are under some kind of water restrictions. About 25 percent of the 4,600 public water systems in Texas have implemented some form of restrictions to curb use and conserve water.
"It's going to take rain to solve this problem."The rain Williams prayed for last week in Lockney might not be coming any time soon, though. ' The last days of pumping' Lake Mackenzie is half the reservoir it once was. The water line lies several feet beneath the intake port used to draw water out of the lake.It was a floating lake pump that had electrical issues last week, prompting the frantic response from Lockney city leaders."When it goes down, we go out of business," Dean Johnson, Mackenzie Municipal Water Authority general manager, said of the pump. The cities are not taking near the amount of water that they used to."The Mackenzie Municipal Water Authority provides water to four municipalities - Floydada, Lockney, Silverton and Tulia, which stopped drawing water so the other cities could.Lake Mackenzie is the only water supply for Silverton, which is about 85 miles northeast of Lubbock and is in danger of running out of water in 90 days."We're way down," Johnson said.The last time Lubbock was under Stage 2 restrictions was in 2012, before completing the Lake Alan Henry pipeline.Implementing the tougher restrictions will help get the city through the peak demand time and will likely only last through the summer, said Aubrey Spear, director of Lubbock City Water Resources.One in four of those are within 75 miles of Lubbock.The cities near Lubbock facing possible water shortages are: Amherst; Crosbyton; Dickens; Lockney; Post; and Spur."I don't know of a city in West Texas that doesn't have the same problem that we have," said Margot Hardin, Crosbyton city administrator.Lockney is one of 48 Texas cities and public water systems with 180 days or fewer left of water, according to a list published weekly by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.Securing water is a growing issue for cities throughout the state, especially since the drought settled in three years ago.The city typically pumps about 200 gallons a minute.On Monday morning, April 7, with the authority's water pump down, the city was pumping about 38 gallons a minute.