For Immediate Release: Saturday, June 20, 2015
For more information, contact: Robin Gary, Senior Public Information and Education Coordinator, (512) 282-8441 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Hays County Trinity Aquifer Annexation Now Official
Yesterday marked the effective date of HB3405, which brings the previously unregulated Trinity Aquifer portion of Hays County under management of a groundwater conservation district–the preferred method of groundwater management in Texas. The bill was filed without signature from the governor, but with an effective date of June 19, 2015. The Hays County Trinity Aquifer annexation is now official.
Now that HB3405 has become law, the Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District (District) has the authority to manage all non-Edwards groundwater withdrawals (primarily Trinity Aquifer wells) in central, southern, and eastern Hays County. The Edwards Aquifer Authority shares jurisdiction in the same area, however, their authority is limited by statute only to Edwards Aquifer wells and requests for drill-through permits for wells that penetrate the overlying Edwards Aquifer.
Several town hall meetings and neighborhood question and answer sessions are planned to inform residents about the new bill, policy changes, and resources and requirements for well owners in the annexed area. The District is collaborating with Hays County Commissioner Will Conley and Representative Jason Isaac to host the first Town Hall meeting. The goal will be to have the meeting webcast and archived for those residents that cannot attend. Details will be announced as they are finalized.
The District is working on streamlining the registration and permitting processes. Guidance and reference documents will be available through the HB3405 Annexation spotlight as soon as they are finalized. All wells will need to be registered; a subset of wells (those other than domestic and livestock use) will need to be permitted. Wells that require permits should complete a permit application by September 19, 2015 to take advantage of the benefits of Temporary Permits offered during the transition period and ensure compliance with the new law. An online registration form where all well owners can submit their well information and request permitting details (if applicable) is linked on the Annexation spotlight.
- HB 3405 Spotlight page (details about the bill, map annexed area, FAQ)
- Trinity Well Drilling Spotlight page (summary of monitoring and scientific studies)
- Well Registration quick link (not required, but convenient to know driller, drill date, well depth, and pump size available before starting)
BSEACD is a groundwater conservation district charged by the Texas Legislature to preserve, conserve, and protect the aquifers and groundwater resources within its jurisdiction, which includes parts of three central Texas counties. It is governed by a Board of five elected directors and staffed with hydrogeologists, groundwater regulatory compliance specialists, environmental educators, geospatial systems specialists, and administrative support personnel.