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Reboot: The Texas Land Trends Data Explorer

Reboot: The Texas Land Trends Data Explorer

In Texas, rural lands define our state’s identity. Whether it be for the agricultural products produced, natural resources and wildlife habitat maintained, or expanses of wide-open spaces left untouched for their intrinsic beauty, our state’s undeveloped acreage plays a crucial role in continuing our proud rural land legacy. Rural land-use changes often go unnoticed to the majority of the state population (over 80%), who reside in concentrated urban areas. Implications of change on rural lands, however, are far-reaching—affecting the state’s…

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Design Of Portion Of Dry Comal Creek Hike And Bike Trail Underway In New Braunfels

Design of portion of Dry Comal Creek Hike and Bike Trail underway in New Braunfels

New Braunfels City Council approved an agreement with San Antonio-based civil engineering firm Bain Medina Bain, Inc. during the June 14 council meeting for the final design of a portion of the Dry Comal Creek Hike and Bike Trail. The agreement allows for an expenditure of up to $375,000 and was recommended by the New Braunfels Economic Development Corporation. Bain Medina Bain will complete plans, specifications and estimates for a 1-mile portion of the trail that will begin at Walnut…

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Hays County OKs Cape’s Dam Agreement

Hays County OKs Cape’s Dam Agreement

The Hays County Commissioners Court approved an interlocal agreement and memorandum of understanding with the City of San Marcos regarding the Cape’s Dam Complex. The approved MOU provides a framework for collaboration and cost-sharing in regard to the proposed rehabilitation of the Cape’s Dam Complex. Read more from Nick Castillo with San Marcos Daily Record here. 

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Austin Plans New Tactic Against Dog-killing Algae: Starve It Out

Austin plans new tactic against dog-killing algae: Starve it out

Up until a few years ago, Austinites didn’t much worry about poisonous blue-green algae sickening them and killing their dogs. Then in 2018, flooding upstream of Austin sent massive amounts of runoff down the Colorado River and into area lakes. That runoff contained agricultural and residential fertilizers, septic waste and other things that injected a supercharged dose of phosphorus into the water. Read more from Mose Buchele with Texas Public Radio here. 

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Solutions To Blanco Wastewater Discharge Seeing New Light

Solutions to Blanco wastewater discharge seeing new light

The impact of the election May 1 on Blanco citizens and their Wimberley Valley neighbors downstream along the Blanco River was immediately apparent at the city’s May 11 council meeting under new mayor Rachel Lumpee, joined by new council member Connie Barron. A council previously struggling to address its first municipal utility district (MUD) achieved a number of water and wastewater planning objectives for Blanco that will directly benefit Hays County. The Blanco City Council adopted a MUD policy that…

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Marble Falls Rock Crushing Plant Canceled; Lawsuit Settled

Marble Falls rock crushing plant canceled; lawsuit settled

A lawsuit between Marble Falls-area plaintiffs and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Asphalt Inc. (now doing business as Lone Star Paving) was put to rest May 23 once all involved parties signed off on a settlement agreement. The lawsuit, filed in 2017 over a proposed rock crushing plant, hit a dead end after landowners sold the property where the plant would be built. “The sale of the property has mooted the primary basis of the lawsuit in as…

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After The Storm: Legislative Solutions To Texas’ Water Infrastructure Emergency

After the storm: Legislative solutions to Texas’ water infrastructure emergency

My Austin apartment has always been drafty, hard to heat when it's cold out, and hard to cool in the summer. But on February 17th, our third day without power, when I ventured into the kitchen for some bread my roommate and I could eat for breakfast, I found ice in our sink and a knot formed in my gut. We were without power, without heat, and, as we soon learned, without clean water as well -- we didn’t even…

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Hays County POSAC Seeking New Project Submissions

Hays County POSAC seeking new project submissions

The Hays County Parks and Open Space Advisory Commission (POSAC), which was created in 2020 and recently restarted, is seeking additional project submissions that would be funded by Proposition A, a Parks & Open Space Bond, approved by voters in the November General Election. Prior to the passing of the bond, POSAC members announced a call for projects which resulted in an initial set of 15 recommended projects to the Hays County Commissioners Court. “The role of POSAC was to establish…

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Texas Groundwater Supplies Are Shrinking, And That’s A Threat To Us All

Texas groundwater supplies are shrinking, and that’s a threat to us all

My great-grandfather founded our family’s Hill Country ranch in 1887. For nearly 100 years, spring water flowed through the seeps and creeks of our land, year-round, and almost without exception. The water began to dry up a little more than 30 years ago as more people dug wells into the Middle Trinity Aquifer. Read more from David K. Langford, former chief executive of the Texas Wildlife Association, in his op-ed with Dallas Morning News here.

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Pristine Streams In Texas Need Protection. It’s Up To The State Senate To Act.

Pristine streams in Texas need protection. It’s up to the state Senate to act.

The first time I paddled the Nueces River I was blown away by the water — crystal clear, aqua colored, almost tropical. I could easily see the bottom of the river many feet below me and fish as they darted under my kayak. Fed by springs that percolate up from groundwater beneath the Edwards Plateau, the Nueces is among the last remaining uniquely pure waterways in Texas. Read more from HCA Board President, Vanessa Puig-Williams, with Environmental Defense Fund here. 

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