WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Rainy afternoons are usually a part of summer life in South Florida, but a lack of wet days can be worrisome for the reservoirs that West Palm Beach relies on.
It's why the city has been locked in a struggle over Lake Okeechobee's water.
No one seemed happier than Armando Fana, the assistant city administrator of West Palm Beach, to see the increase in rainfall this week.
"It's been a dry summer, so it's great to see some rain come down," Fana said.
Fana said the rain will help the city's reservoirs and water supply.
"When we don't get that rain, it's a problem," Fana said.
And it's been a summer without much rain.
The U.S. drought monitor has South Florida and the Treasure Coast either in the abnormally dry range or in moderate drought. Officials said this was the third driest August on record for our area.
It's years like this that has the city pushing for more state control over Lake Okeechobee's waters, which is the city's backup supply for drinking water.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is nearing a final management plan, which has been supported strongly by environmentalists. It calls for more water from Lake Okeechobee to go south, enriching the Everglades and cutting down on algae releases into waterways.
Last month the Friends of the Everglades sent a letter to the Army Corps of Engineers, calling the new plan well-balanced management that strives to protect the public health and environment.
But West Palm Beach officials said their water needs also need to be a priority.
"Lake Okeechobee is a big supplier of our water," Fana said. "We need certainty to not have a guessing game as to what kind of water levels we will have particularly in drought situations."
Fana said the city has also been in communication with the Army Corps about getting water releases from Lake Okeechobee.
It's a tough position trying to strike a balance to restore the Everglades, cut down on algae and keep the taps runnings.
In the meantime, there is still hope South Florida’s rainy season will deliver more water in the coming weeks.