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Commentary: Texas Hill Country Is On The Edge Of Night

Commentary: Texas Hill Country is on the Edge of Night

“Without leadership from our rapidly urbanizing cities, we stand to lose all of the groundwork we’ve laid to protect night skies in the Hill Country,” said Katherine Romans, Hill Country Alliance executive director. “San Antonio was on the right track in including the consideration of night skies in their plan. It is a shame to see those portions gutted for the sake of unfettered development.” Commentary: Texas Hill Country is on the Edge of Night Rivard Report Vicki Wolf and…

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Water Forward: Planning For The Next 100 Years, August 3 In Austin

Water Forward: Planning for the Next 100 Years, August 3 in Austin

The next installment of the Imagine Austin Speaker Series will focus on developing a water plan to take us through the next century. Austin Water Director, Greg Meszaros and Integrated Water Resource Plan Community Task Force Chair and HCA board member, Sharlene Leurig will share insights on the process and the importance of creating an long-term plan that will help secure Austin’s water supply for future generations. Learn more

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Commentary: Let’s Base Hays County Water Policy On Science, Not Guesswork

Commentary: Let’s base Hays County water policy on science, not guesswork

Hays County Pct. 3 Commissioner Will Conley writes that he will ask the county judge and fellow commissioners to help fund an initiative to “develop the science and monitoring that we need to make informed decisions” about groundwater pumping from the Edwards and Trinity aquifers in Hays County.  "We are blessed in our community to have several different aquifers through Hays County. Every square foot of our county has some relation with these aquifers. These aquifers provide so much to…

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Efforts To Reduce Feral Hog Numbers Show Promise

Efforts to reduce feral hog numbers show promise

While using a toxin that could help put a dent in the worldwide feral hog plague still has hurdles to clear, preliminary studies are showing promise, according to wildlife biologist John Kinsey. “This is not the end-all, be-all control measure, but it can become another tool for our (hog-control) tool box,” Kinsey told landowners last weekend at the 31st annual Texas Wildlife Association Convention. The success rate of using sodium nitrite as a feral hog toxin in pens during studies…

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Drought Conditions Slowly Returning To South Texas

Drought conditions slowly returning to South Texas

Aside from yesterday's one-one-hundredth of an inch of rain, San Antonio hasn't seen a significant amount of measurable rainfall since early June. That lack of rain is starting to take its toll on the area water supply, possibly bringing back drought conditions. It took about five months for the Edwards Aquifer to rise about 30 feet from just over 660 feet to its peak in early June, but only five weeks to lose all of that gain. But the Edwards…

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Salt Lick Owner Breaks Ground On Unique Conservation Development In Driftwood

Salt Lick owner breaks ground on unique conservation development in Driftwood

"In contrast to large master-planned communities that tout man-made amenities like golf courses and swimming pools, “these are the only amenities,” he says of the 9 miles of nature trails and scenic views from bluffs overlooking Onion Creek." Toward a Regional Plan for the Texas Hill Country, a UT report created in partnership with Hill Country Alliance, refers to the development as “a legacy project” and “a unique example of a conservation development.” Read more from

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Proposed Wastewater Expansion Raises Concerns In Dripping Springs

Proposed wastewater expansion raises concerns in Dripping Springs

The City of Dripping Springs has requested a permit to discharge treated sewage into Onion Creek. Residents, downstream municipalities, and the local aquifer protection districts are concerned by the potential contamination of this pristine creek, local drinking water, downstream aquifers, and drinking water wells. The City of Dripping Springs has requested a new permit from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) to discharge treated sewage into a tributary of Onion Creek. Currently, the city disposes of its waste water…

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How Fair Oaks Ranch Residents And CCGCD Put A Stop To A High-density Development

How Fair Oaks Ranch residents and CCGCD put a stop to a high-density development

Boerne based Hill Country Weekly gives us a great human interest story that includes the details what can happen when water and politics mix. Kendall County’s Cow Creek Groundwater Conservation District is featured as it applies its rules to help residents of Fair Oaks Ranch stop a high-density development. Sandra Senecal, Staff Writer Hill Country Weekly The mayor  and his wife: Winning at life When Garry Manitzas met Dedie (pronounced Dee Dee) 45 years ago, she was a young woman…

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Five Factors Driving Economic Growth In Small Cities

Five Factors Driving Economic Growth in Small Cities

One of the challenges of urban economic development is that most conferences and case studies profile efforts in large, internationally-known cities. While large cities tend to captivate America’s attention, there are small cities lurking in their shadows – and these places are proving to be some of America’s most beloved communities. At last month’s National Main Streets Conference, researcher David Ivan of Michigan State University shared his research on over 300 small communities in 22 states in order to ascertain…

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Proposed Groundwater Transfer Riles Kendall County Residents

Proposed groundwater transfer riles Kendall County residents

A miniature version of the Vista Ridge pipeline dispute is unfolding here over a local utility’s bid to convey groundwater to its customers from a new well proposed miles outside its service area. As with the San Antonio Water System’s plan to pipe in water 140 miles from Burleson County, some here are upset by Kendall West Utility’s plans to mine the aquifer in their area for the benefit of people several miles away on the other side of town.…

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