Local News

Jul 3, 2014 6:27 PM by Janine Reyes

Lake Corpus Christi Levels Dropping

CORPUS CHRISTI -- If you plan to spend the July 4th weekend out on Lake Corpus Christi, plan to see less water than in weeks past.

Water levels are the lowest they've been in 6 months, in part, because of an agreement for mandatory water release.

The Salt Water Barrier Dam near Labonte Park is flowing fast these days, it's all water heading to the Nueces River.

But that water is leaving Lake Corpus Christi.

"It's going down, we're losing it," Sam Fugate told us. His family owns what is lake front property - for now.

"We've had this house here over 40 years and this is where our family meets, we spend a lot do time here together, and when there's no water there's no point in coming," Fugate explained.

About a year ago, the lake was nearly non-existent, water levels hovered around 20%. A month ago, it was at 81.4 percent, a week ago, levels hit 72.3 perecent and today it's at 68.5 percent and dropping.

Family members with property near the lake say just last month, water flowed all the way up to the steps on their property, we stood in that same area to get video of the lake today. They are concerned if they keep losing water at this rate, there will be nothing left.

"The shallower it gets the harder it is to run the boats and the less water there is for the kids to swim in, it's concerning," said Fugate.

The family boat sat on dry land part of last year. Fugate says it got so bad, families living around the lake bought 4-wheelers to enjoy their get away homes last year. "It's doable, we can still have some fun, but if it keeps up, we're are going to be 4-wheeling," Fugate explained.

The city says based on the agreement with the state adopted in 1995 and admitted in 2001, they'll continue to release water. The cut off is when the level reaches 30 percent.

For Fugate, that number is way too low. "We're losing all out water here and I'm sure it hurts Mathis' economy like crazy," Fugate said, "we really wish the city would turn around and say hey, stop, we've got enough."

When lake levels reach 40 percent, the city will mandate some water restrictions. They anticipate that happening in the coming weeks, but say you can always do your part by conserving now and that typically means watering your yard just once a week.

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