Recent reports from City Manager Larry Fields and Public Works Administrator David Casteel indicate that stage 3 water restrictions could be closer than previously thought for Graham.

According to data issued by Fields, current levels for Lake Graham are at about 51 percent. In order for the City of Graham to mandate stage three water restrictions, levels at Lake Graham must fall to 45 percent or less.

Casteel quoted data from his most recent water usage report at Thursday morning’s Graham City Council meeting, stating that overall usage for 2013 was slightly less than in recent previous years.

According to his report, in 2013 the City of Graham harvested a raw water intake of 1.2 billion gallons from Lakes Eddleman and Graham. Of that, 271 million gallons constituted treated water that was sold to wholesale customers, About 814 million gallons consisted of treated water sold to retail customers and 21 million gallons comprised treated water sold to the city for purposes such as fire suppression, line flushing and backwater filters.

In 2013, the City of Graham had about a 7.7 percent water loss, which included solids removed from raw water during treatment and leaks. “This number is in line with a water system our size,” Fields said.

Read the entire story in Wednesday's Graham Leader.