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Authorities Consider Easing Restrictions Following Friday Rain

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RALEIGH,N.C. — Plenty of rain fell on the Research Trianglearea last weekend, and some local officials are considering easingwater use restrictions.

The Town of Hillsborough, which was enforcing Stage 5 mandatory water use restrictions, lifted its restrictions Monday.

Durham water conservation coordinator Vicki Westbrook said cityofficials will discuss whether to loosen restrictions onwater use. Thanks to six inches of rain, Lake Michie was filled,making up for being 14 feet below full days earlier. The Little RiverReservoir is now near full.

Raleigh will consider easing its water restrictions at Tuesday's City Council meeting.

By Sunday, Falls Lake had risen 7.5 feet. JordanLake rose more than eight feet and is now six feet above normal.That prompted lake officials to issue high water warnings forboaters.

Tuesday's forecast calls for heavy rains, but meteorologistssaid the drought is far from over.

Meteorologist Doug Schneider said there is still a precipitationdeficit, but for 2002, there is a chance to approach normal.

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