Update! January 24th -- Our warning letter to the Texas Water Development Board NOT to hold a closed meeting in violation of the Texas Open Meetings Act worked. This two day water extravaganza is today and tomorrow. Read all about our sweet little victory here.
The people of Texas have a vital interest in water. Yet, the Texas Water Development Board is, in essence, holding a secret meeting—what they call a "unique opportunity" available only to their invited presenters and those who pay $525 to attend--to set their course on water allocation issues.
Attorney and Texas open government expert Bill Aleshire, issued a warning letter to TWDB on behalf of the League of Independent Voters (LIV) late Sunday afternoon. LIV is demanding the TWDB follow the Texas Open Meetings Act by allowing the public into this public event at no charge. Contact us if you'd like to attend this event on Tuesday or Wednesday AND..
Most important! Plan to join us on a statewide conference call this coming Wednesday night at 8 pm. Call instructions below:
Call your Dial-In Number: (515) 739-1544
Enter your Access Code: 276555
Without further ado the "I Oppose the San Antone Hose" video is here! Watch and share it to stop the California water model coming to Texas.
Sign the petition to Stop Vista Ridge and Make Growth Pay for Itself!
Find who represents you in Texas here.
Join LIV and get on our regular conference call list, invite us to your community and we hope to see you at events we have planned for the 2017 Legislative Session -- you need to get our emails, folks!
Read the latest news. At the moment, we're focused on defeating the San Antone hose. That's the $3.4 billion, 142-mile Vista Ridge water pipeline from Burleson County that the San Antonio City Council majority delivered to the central Texas real estate lobby In November 2014. On November 19, 2015, the San Antonio Council voted for water rate hikes that included a 50%+ increase mostly to pay for some of the most expensive water in Texas -- Vista Ridge -- draining the critical slow-recharge Simsboro aquifer formation. . (Read the details on our Vista Ridge page).
Water is THE pivotal issue in the current gold rush in Texas that is driving unaffordability and a dangerous stress on our natural resources. Austin real estate developer, Brian Rodgers, tried to reason with the "growth lobby" to take their foot off the pedal. Check out our "Costs of Growth" page here and join the League of Independent Voters.
In the last legislative session (2015) we sicced the dogs on Gridzilla, the water grabbing monster. That was a plan to (NO on HB 3298/SB 1907), in the 2015 legislative session. We also protected our petition rights (NO on HB 2595). But we must ready our movement for the 2017 legislative session as "water and land grabs" continue unabated across Texas. State agencies -- from the Railroad Commission, to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, to the Texas Water Development Board -- need major reforms. We'll be discussing those reforms at our annual meeting in January 2016. Check out our events page for events near you, and join the League to support this all-volunteer outfit that is fighting for YOU! Here's our brochure (we're happy to mail one to you) and here's our join page.
Below is more on the last session (2015). "Gridzilla", the water sucking monster on her way from California threatens the new 2017 legislative session. Keep an eye on news from LIV by becoming a member.
More on the 2015 legislative session -- "Gridzilla", House Bill 3298 (SB 1907 in the Senate), introduced by Rep. Lyle Larson (R-San Antonio) was a $2 million study for the development of a market and conveyance network for water in the Texas. Larson and others in state and local government want to move masses of water to the "triangle" -- DFW, Austin and San Antonio -- to build in areas without local water supply. The grid was not helping those communities already in dry areas who need help. The grid is strikingly similar to the California water "model" -- moving water to aid developers building in dry areas. The California water crisis has already shown water conveyance before water conservation is a disastrous policy. It should not go without mentioning that California's crisis is now exacerbated by the scandalous practice of injection fracking fluids into aquifers! ProPublica reported this in July 2014.
Gridzila passed the House in the 2015 session, but not without significant opposition from 32 House members who voted NO to Gridzilla-- a range of urban and rural legislators. It hit major road blocks in the Senate. The League participated in a coalition with farmers, landowners and environmentalists -- from tea party to greens -- to slay Gridzilla. This kicked off a debate in this session, barely covered in the media.
Most important, we hope you will become a dues paying member to support this all-volunteer outfit that is working to unite voters across the partisan divide -- to fight for our land, water and to clean up and open up Texas politics.
You can reach us via email or phone (512.213.4511) for more. Thank you Texas!
Got questions? Contact us at 512-213-4511 or firstname.lastname@example.org
**** The following was posted in January 2015, at the start of the Texas Legislative Session. Go to our news section for reports and updates on how we did. ****
The League of Independent Voters is uniting Texans across the partisan divide behind our key goal in the 2015 Legislative Session. That is our work to protect our most precious resource -- groundwater. A virtual gold rush on groundwater in Texas is fueling unbridled in-migration population growth to Texas while the costs for water (and all kinds of infrastructure needed to serve this growth) are offloaded on to the backs of current residents. Take our simple actions and join the conversation about our solution -- Conservation First, Convey Later. (Be sure to visit our "Cost of Growth" section for more on the growth shell game in Texas.)
Wanna do more? Hop on one of our every other Sunday 6 pm, conference calls, invite us to your community or just give us a call at 512-213-4511. Keep reading...and get involved. P.S. We love you most for your action, including becoming a dues paying member to support our work. Use the Saddle Up link over yonder to the right ===>
We thank these Texas advocates for farmers, landowners, environment and wildlife who spoke to the Senate Agriculture, Water and Rural Affairs Committee on April 13th, in opposition to a study on the “Texas water grid” bill (HB 3298 & SB 1907). More here.
Watch this 1-minute excerpt of Rep. Lyle Larson at the April 8 hearing on why he thinks Texas needs a "study" on a statewide water grid -- to conduct large-scale movement of groundwater to the Texas triangle -- DFW, San Antonio and Austin. Join us to ditch HB 3298 and for a real solution. More here.
Just in case you missed this Wednesday's hearing of House Natural Resources Committee on Rep. Keffer's HB 3597. This was a rare show of an affected landowner who came to the Capitol on his own -- Mark Young of Sealy, Texas (Austin County), who fought against Electro-Purification and won. Young is "extremely opposed", for good reason, to HB 3597. Thank you, Mr. Young. More here.
Linda Curtis, Independent Texans, testifies before the House Natural Resources Committee, in support of Hays County citizens asking for protection of their groundwater. Curtis calls out the hypocrisy of Hays County officials trying to grab groundwater from those living over the Simsboro in Lee and Bastrop counties. More here.
Tom Glass, testifies on behalf of the League of Independent Voters to the House Elections Committee in support of ending straight ticket voting in Texas. With only 10 states left using straight ticket voting, Glass lays out why this is not good government. P.S. Both major party chairs testified against this good government reform.
Join our regular Saturday Statewide Conference Calls. We are also an "activist" organization. Therefore, we hope you will bring us to your community and help us establish a chapter of the League of Independent Voters in your community. Email us or call us for details at 512-213-4511. And be sure to sign up to get our emails too right here.
See our Events button above? We're in the midst of scheduling local meetings. Want one in your area? Contact us.
Visit our News section for more on what we've been doing or simply scroll down this page.
Urban and rural Texans living along the 142-mile Vista Ridge water pipeline have united to bust this $3.4 billion water grab by the real estate lobby in San Antonio. All 11 members of the San Antonio City Council bowed to the real estate growth lobby by approving Vista Ridge project -- a 616-page contract -- in less than two weeks! Vista Ridge page.
This picture is becoming famous as the people of Lee and Bastrop counties -- in the Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District -- have banded together to protect their most precious resource. That would be water. They are now joining forces with folks across the 142-mile pipeline down to San Antonio to say enough to the robber barons who want the world to move to Texas when we have failed to properly manage our water resources in the midst of historic drought.
The Texas water grabs are also forcing Texans to reevaluate our voting strategies. Can the newly emerging independent voters of Texas force real change from the grassroots?
Read this national article from Men's Journal writer, Paul Solotaroff, "Who Stole Our Water?"
Top Three Water Grabs in Texas are:
(Top Ten coming soon!)
#1: The Marvin Nichols Reservoir that NE Texans have successfully fought for 14 years:
But the retooling of the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) has opened the floodgates (literally) on this water, land and money wasteful project. What is also driving the problem is the refusal of Texas cities to control their growth and even the go-along-to-get-along posture of some environmental organizations. More here.
#2: The aquifer just east of the City of Austin in Lee and Bastrop counties managed by Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District:
Private water profiteers (Forestar Real Estate Group, EndOp LP), together with their friends in political office, are driving the notion that it's fine and dandy to drain aquifers for almighty growth. While developers profit, Texans lose their resources and when it's all over, residents and landowners will pay through the nose. P.S. As everyone argues over who gets the water underneath Lee and Bastrop counties, fracking has increased in the area and is threatening contamination of the water everyone wants! More on the grab here and here on fracking.
#3 Refusal of Texas municipalities to conserve first!
Taking the City of Austin as one example. The Austin Water Utility insisted on building a fourth water treatment plant (Water Treatment Plant #4). Then pushed to close down a perfectly good water treatment plant for a real estate deal! Now, this new nearly $1B plant is the biggest reason for painful water rate hikes (16% this year) into the foreseeable future. Meanwhile, it won't be needed for another 17 years and AWU still refuses to mothball this project. The result is that the more Austinites conserve the more AWU is driven to rate hikes!
Mother Nature is ieading the biggest water grab of all. It's called the Texas Drought and only she, Mother Nature, is entitled.
Want a yard sign? Join the League and let's talk about us coming to your community. If we've been there already, there's likely a sign you can pick up nearby. Just give us a call, send us an email or send out a smoke signal and we'll be there!
Check out this video from the Texas Water Wars Conference held at McKinney Roughs in Cedar Creek in March of 2011. That's Brian Rodgers, Austin developer and whistle-blower on the voracious real estate lobby that can't bring enough population growth (in-migration) to Texas. Guess what? There's not enough water, y'all!