Webb Melder, Guest Editorialist to The Golden Hammer
There are some basic facts about why water prices in Montgomery County are so high.
Number One. United States District Judge Vanessa Gilmore has ordered an anti-monopoly lawsuit against the San Jacinto River Authority (SJRA), to proceed in the United States District Court in Houston. Judge Gilmore noted that has SJRA admitted that its actions purposefully sought to replace competition with government regulation. Judge Gilmore further noted that SJRA’s actions were a conspiracy to monopolize.
Number Two. When SJRA General Manager Jace Houston talks about subsidence, he fails to mention several important facts. SJRA is the sole provided of all water to The Woodlands from both groundwater and surface water. SJRA owns all of the groundwater wells in The Woodlands. If there are truly concerns about subsidence and possible fault movement due to groundwater pumping, they should turn off ALL their wells and stop pumping groundwater. No one else pumps groundwater in The Woodlands except SJRA.
Number Three. Those voicing concerns over the cost of re-tooling or drilling new deeper wells in The Woodlands should be voicing their concerns directly to SJRA, the owner of the wells.
Number Four. When Houston talks about subsidence, he often uses the term “evidence.” Out of respect for listeners or readers, Houston needs to produce and document any evidence to which he refers.
Number Five. SJRA held a director’s position on the previously appointed Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District Board (LSGCD), which was charged with regulating groundwater, for almost 18 years. The Woodlands Joint Powers Agency, now called the Woodlands Water Agency, also held a director’s position on LSGCD for the same time period. SJRA supplies all the water to The Woodlands. How many subsidence studies were done during the 18 years both of them were on the previous LSGCD Board? NONE.
Number Six. The groundwater regulations which the appointed LSGCD Board adopted were declared illegal by Senior District Judge Lamar McCorkle in a Montgomery County District Court.