Railroad Commission Reform?
Should we be screaming from the rooftops that the RRC is "quietly" making recommendations to close the infamous "T-4 loophole"? Remember, we've been telling you -- for years -- that all the pipeline companies have to do to get the power to seize your land through eminent domain, is check a box on a T-4 form at the RRC that they are “common carriers”. No questions asked.
What we’d like to scream is more like, “what took ya so long?”, since the Texas Supreme Court, no less, said the T-4 was a problem – in the Denbury Green decision rendered in 2011!
Maybe we shouldn't look a gift-horse in the mouth. Here are the proposed changes, which we applaud. (There are others needed on eminent domain reform, but that's not really the RRC's purview).
Can we be honest? While the RRC recommendations are mostly very positive, no one believes the agency anymore. So, even if they do pass these rules, will they really enforce them? If they mean to enforce them, where is the request for additional funding to do so?
Can we stop pretending? Did you catch outgoing RRC Chairman, Barry Smitherman's attempt to undermine the rights of Denton citizens to local control? Is it not the people's right, under the Texas Constitution, to determine what goes on within their city limits, especially in light of failure of the RRC and the Denton City Council to do so at the clear request of Denton citizens? Smitherman, the dutiful industry lapdog, embarrasses himself in this letter -- click here.
The truth is that we Texans are at the mercy of the hogs in oil and gas gone wild. They are happy as pigs in slop with no regulation. And most every state official is going along with this. You certainly don’t hear candidates in either party running for the highest offices -- Governor and Lt. Governor -- breathing a word about this, do you? Please, y’all, prove us wrong!
Join us on Saturday's call.
Simpson takes the independent political cake...again!
Remember, Rep. David Simpson (R-Longview) was the ONLY Texas House member who stood up for our water against Proposition 6 last November. Now he's raised the bar on the discussion about the border crisis. Though the League has no position on this issue, we deeply appreciate politicians (and, for that matter, newspapers), who take a stand for what they think is right regardless of the stampede going in the opposite direction. Read this in the Longview paper!
Mark Your Calendars!
Lee County: Thursday, August 7, at 7 pm, the League is holding a meeting at the Giddings Library. We’ll be talking about…you guessed it…how to continue the battle to win protection of groundwater from pumping at levels that harm aquifers. Come get a “Stop the Water Grab” yard sign. Details here for you to share!
Fayette County: Sunday, August 17th, 2-5 pm, there’s a free film showing of Gasland II at the Bugle Boy in La Grange. League Board member and a leader in the fight for eminent domain and fracking reform, former DISH Mayor, Calvin Tillman, who is featured in the film, will be on hand for comments following this event. Details here – reserve a FREE seat now!
Open League Board Meeting: We will have a strategy and planning session on Sunday, August 17th. If you’re interested in attending, let us know -- members only, please! We’ve planned it so you can also make it to the Bugle Boy in time.
Is it not yet clear why we all need to take a step back from the parties and tell them no one owns our votes? Get along, little dogies -- join the League, if you haven’t yet, pay some dues, or send us a donation AND/OR volunteer some time to us!
We appreciate y’all, especially Charlotte, who donated substantial hours to our administrative needs this week!
This entire message is posted here on our blog -- share your comments at the end. We love hearing your thoughts.
PS As for the King lobby -- big real estate – they continue to invite the world to Texas regardless of our water problems. You would think they might consider working to moderate the Queen hogs in oil and gas to protect our water from contamination. But that’s not how two-legged hogs act, do they? They just push and shove because they want it all.