Letter to HTGCD Board Director Jimmy Skipton

On May 5, 2017, TESPA sent a letter requesting that HTGCD Director, Jimmy Skipton, resign from his position as Board Director with HTGCD given his recent election to the board of the Dripping Springs Water Supply Corporation.


HB 4122 Final Committee Substitute

On Thursday, April 27th, the House Natural Resources Committee passed House Bill 4122 out of Committee at a formal meeting at Chairman Larson's desk on the House floor. The introduced version of this bill allowed a landowner with 1,000 acres or more and within the jurisdiction of two or more groundwater conservation districts to petition the districts to transfer into one district if the districts agree to the transfer.

After the hearing, in which many landowners testified against the bill, a committee substitute was drafted which significantly altered these provisions-- reducing the acreage requirement from 1,000 acres to 100 acres, adding a requirement that 20% of the landowner's property must be located in the receiving district's boundaries, and removing the district's ability to refuse to accept the new territory. This new language was met with significant disagreement, and consequently, at the April 19th Natural Resources Committee hearing, the bill was not brought up for a vote.

As a result, a second committee substitute was drafted that is a significant...


TESPA Response Brief

TESPA's response to Needmore's argument that HB 3405 does not permit third parties to contest permits


House Bill 4122

Information on House Bill 4122, which is scheduled for a hearing on Wednesday, April 5th.


TESPA Fact Sheet

Important facts related to groundwater regulation in the Hill Country


TESPA's Needmore Bill Analysis

Analysis of Senate Bill 1814/House Bill 4122 and House Bill 4045, which TESPA opposes.


Protecting Water in the Texas Hill Country, By Jim Blackburn, TESPA President

Imagine the Texas Hill Country without water. No swimming holes. No beautiful valley vistas over clear, clean water. No seeps and springs.

Impossible you say? Maybe not, given the current race to mine groundwater that provides all our water supplies in the Hill Country. And if we don’t get serious about protecting our private groundwater and our public rivers, we will lose both. Mark my words.


Needmore Water LLC's Plea to the Jurisdiction and Brief on Hearings and Parties

Needmore argues that House Bill 3405 does not permit third parties, like TESPA, to contest permits, and that therefore, SOAH does not have jurisdiction to hear the contested case.


Needmore's Brief to BSEACD on Hearing and Parties

In response to TESPA's request to BSEACD to refer the contested case to SOAH, Needmore submitted this brief.


TESPA's response to Needmore's 12/19 letter to BSEACD

In a 12/19 letter to BSEACD, Needmore's attorney, Ed McCarthy, argues, among other things, that House Bill 3405 prohibits affected landowners from protesting Needmore's application to produce over 887 acre feet of groundwater a year from the Trinity Aquifer. For several reasons, TESPA disagrees with this argument and sent a letter to BSEACD explaining why Mr. McCarthy's argument is flawed.


Letter from Needmore's Attorney to BSEACD

This is a letter written by Needmore's attorney in response to BSEACD's decision to issue Needmore a permit for the full amount they requested--289,080,000 gallons of water a year with special conditions requiring Needmore to reduce production when there are impacts to near by wells.

Essentially, Mr. McCarthy has two main arguments. One, that House Bill 3405, the law that extended BSEACD’s jurisdiction to cover Needmore Ranch, requires the District to conduct a hearing BEFORE issuing the permit. This is not how the District normally does things, it is not the procedure that is in the water code, and it is not how the district interpreted the law when they adopted rules implementing it. The second main argument that Mr. McCarthy is making is that the District should not be allowed to place special conditions on the permit requiring Needmore to reduce pumping if there are impacts—as HB 3405 requires them to issue the permit for the maximum production capacity of the well. He requests a contested case hearing to dispute the district placing special conditions on the...


BSEACD's proposed permit to Needmore Ranch

In November 2016, BSEACD issued a proposed permit to Needmore Ranch for 289,080,000 million gallons of groundwater a year with special conditions requiring Needmore to reduce pumping based on measured drawdown in a monitoring well.


Needmore's Aquifer Test

Results of the aquifer test on Needmore Ranch conducted by Wetrock Groundwater Services, LLC.


Needmore's Two Part Application to BSEACD

Pursuant to House Bill 3405, Needmore submitted a two part application to BSEACD in September 2015--a Temporary Permit application and a Regular Permit application.


House Bill 3405

Extends the jurisdiction of the Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer Conservation District over unregulated portions of the Trinity Aquifer in Hays County.


Press Release Re: TESPA Formation

Announcement of TESPA's formation and reasons the non profit was formed.


Senate Bill 2075

Authored by Senator Donna Campbell, Senate Bill 2075 removed language in Needmore MUD's enabling legislation that prohibited the ranch from pumping Trinity Aquifer groundwater for use in a residential subdivision.


Rule of Capture Undermines Groundwater Regulation in Texas

In January 2015, Vanessa Puig-Williams, TESPA's Executive Director and General Counsel, wrote a blog post for the KBH Center for Energy Land and Business discussing how the rule of capture undermines attempts to effectively manage groundwater in Texas.


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