EFFORTS to boost supply have had a minor win, with the state government giving the go-ahead to lift the safety buffer on the Macquarie River Pipeline.
Technical services director Ian Greenham told councillors on Tuesday night strategies to keep residents' water consumption down were working "very, very well" and storage was sitting on 29 per cent.
"Providing we manage that well, that will last us a good 12 months, that's without rain," he said.
"There's perhaps some relief in winter of next year, according to the long-range forecasts."
Mr Greenham said the council had released about 1.5 gigalitres of water from Spring Creek Reservoir to Suma Park Reservoir for household use, but Spring Creek would be maintained at 35 per cent to keep rowing conditions favourable for Kinross students using the dam for training.
"That's the equivalent of about 600 Olympic swimming pools," he said.
He said a second proposal to reduce environmental flows into Summer Hill Creek when storage was between 25 per cent and 50 per cent was still under consideration.
However, he said the government had allowed the council to drop the safety buffer when pumping from the Macquarie River in September.
Currently the trigger point is 108 megalitres a day through the river, but the buffer had increased it to 119 megalitres lowering the number of days the council could pump.
"Once the Office of Water were happy the gauging station was calibrated and was accurately measuring water flows, it was in our conditions of consent that buffer could be removed," Mr Greenham said.
A second application to lower the trigger point to 70 megalitres is still being dealt with.
With elderly residents in particular asking councillors about what level five restrictions meant, councillor Jason Hamling asked for a public forum, similar to the one recently held on roads and footpaths.
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