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Vista Ridge is a serious danger to the Mighty Edwards!

It’s now become clear that Vista Ridge is a serious danger to the Mighty Edwards!

We warned you back in 2014 that Vista Ridge (the San Antone Hose) was a threat to TWO aquifers — the aquifers underlying counties east of Austin — the Carrizo-Wilcox (and its Simsboro formation) AND the mighty Edwards Aquifer.

Remember, we told you about how Gov. Abbott used his veto pen to turn The Hose back on SAWS’ House Bill 1806 last May, protecting the Edwards.

Now, San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg wants to put the fox (San Antonio Water System — SAWS) in charge of  chicken-house: the Edwards Aquifer Protection Program (EAAPP).  Rep. Lyle Larson, chair of the Texas House Natural Resources Committee, was quoted in the independent Rivard Report on January 17,

“We strongly disagree with redirecting funding away from securing land around San Antonio to protect our water supply in favor of funding mass transit” wrote Larson, a former city councilman and Bexar County commissioner who has become known for his work on water issues during his four terms as a legislator.

This comes just as two Senate committees will hold this VERY important water hearing:

Water Hearing, Wednesday, January 22, starting at 10 am in Austin. Details here. Watch the stream on this page.

Hearings held between our biennial Texas legislative sessions are important. This one, being held jointly by two Senate Committees, is important especially in light of how unusual it is to hold interim hearings this early.

The hearing is being held jointly by the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Economic Development and the Senate Committee on Water and Rural Affairs.


The expected mega-pumping for the Vista Ridge (San Antone Hose) water pipeline is in April with full bore pumping starting in July.  This, together with the efforts by Austin Mayor Steve Adler to thwart a continued citizen challenge to Austin’s land development policies and now a concerted move by San Antonio Mayor Nirenberg that could destabilize the Edwards Aquifer Protection Fund, makes this hearing all the more important.

This is what the Californiafication of Texas water policy looks like – mass movement of precious groundwater for real estate development in areas without local supply. Who pays? Our aquifers, rural landowners who wish not to unnecessarily separate groundwater from their land, and ratepayers forced to subsidize in-migration population growth. This is part of the picture that drives affordability downward. It is a common ploy of big real estate and their minions in public office. (Lots more here at our Costs of Growth section.)

Climate Change

Hopefully, you haven’t missed the irony as Austin Mayor Steve Adler, San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and establishment Democrats talk about all the things they promise to do in light of climate change. How about starting with doing something about which the electorate — of all persuasions — agree? We call it — do not harm!

Regardless of your ability to attend, please contact the committee members listed below before or after the hearing. You can also contact your own State Representative and State Senator.

Urge their help to protect our land, our water and small “d” democracy – the right to have any say on these big ticket matters that affect us all regardless of any divisions among us.

The non-partisan, non-profit League of Independent Voters will be presenting comments on Wednesday based on this 11-page document released last August.

In these times, there is no room for debate about risking aquifers upon which millions of people and all of life depend.

Join us on Wednesday or get on the phone.

Find your legislators here or just call the Capital Switchboard at 512.463.4630.

If you need help with details about speaking, parking or anything else, please call our main office line at 512.213.4511 or send an email to


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