Creek in Johnston Co. Drying Up

08-22-06 - A well-known creek in Johnston County is drying up, and residents say Mother Nature is not the culprit.

At one time, Mill Creek was a rapidly flowing stream, but today that's not the case. Is the lack of rain to blame or is the problem deeper than that? The Oklahoma Water Resources Board is determined to find out.

Dozens of residents rely on Mill Creek to take a bath, wash their clothes, and feed their livestock. But lately they've noticed the levels have dropped significantly, and they blame a neighboring rock quarry.

Now the water resource is investigating whether the quarry's permit will have to be cut back or discontinued in order to compensate for the drought.

The Oklahoma Water Resources Board issues permits on the honor system. They have no way of regulating how much water is pumped from the creek. It's up to the permit holder to report how much water their consuming.