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  • HTGCD is currently in 20% curtailment. JWGMZ is currently in 30% curtailment.,
Important New HTGCD Meeting Date!
now scheduled on 1st Thursday
but check the calendar.
News

News

 

Kinder Morgan – Permian Highway Pipeline

July 15, 2020 (pinned)

Hays County well owners,

The Kinder Morgan Pipeline Company is constructing a large natural gas pipeline from west to east through central Hays County that will convey 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Permian Basin to the Houston area.

The new pipeline will be buried 15-feet below grade which requires disturbing a wide swath of natural landscape across the county. The pipeline will pass directly over terrain that is highly porous and vulnerable to surface contamination. District geologists have spent 20-years surveying faults and recharge features that can act as direct conduits into the same Trinity Aquifer from which you may get your drinking water.

The Texas Railroad Commission is the regulatory agency in charge of Oil and Gas transmission. The Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District has no authority to regulate pipeline routing or construction, however we are mandated to protect the resource that most of Hays County relies on for clean drinking water. In the interest of public safety, the District has developed an information packet that local well owners may refer in the event of a construction, transmission, or operations accidents.

The Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District has 738 registered water wells that fall within 5-miles of the pipeline’s path. We consider those wells to be the most vulnerable to contamination in the event of a construction accident or transmission rupture. Most pipelines operate safely and without incident, but due to a March 2020 Kinder Morgan pipeline accident that occurred in Blanco County, we must take the threat of accidents seriously.

Threats to wells from pipeline construction include silt contamination from right-of-way clearing, pipeline boring, trenching, and/or and construction machinery fuel or hydraulic oil spills. Transmission threats include accidental punctures, pipeline joint failures, and operational accidents that may leak and contaminate land and drinking water sources. If the pipeline catches fire or explodes, fire suppression chemicals may be used to extinguish the flames. Those chemicals could infiltrate our highly porous geology and contribute to groundwater contamination.

Please report pipeline accidents to the Hays County Sheriff’s Department, the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District and Kinder Morgan (see numbers below). Please report well contamination to the District at (512) 858-9253. We will notify neighboring registered well owners and ask them to report changes in the quality or quantity of their well water.

If you have an unregistered well, please fill out an online registration form on the Forms page of the District website Forms. And, if you are unsure if your contact information is current, please email the District and we will update you in our well database — free of charge. Remember, property owners with registered wells are more likely to benefit from legal standing in a court of law.

 

Below is a list of emergency numbers, testing laboratories, and here is a link to the Kinder Morgan FAQ Sheet.

Important Telephone Numbers

PLEASE Call Before You Dig!: 811

Hays County Emergency Services (Fire, Sheriff, Ambulance): 911

Hays County Groundwater Conservation District: (512) 858-9253
Anytime your well has a rapid change in water quality, we will inspect your well, take a water sample and test for contaminants.

Hays County Natural Resources: (512) 393-2156

Kinder Morgan Pipeline hotline: (866) 762-8442
If you believe that a pipeline leak has occurred, please call this Kinder Morgan Pipeline hotline immediately.

 

Well Testing Laboratory Contact Information

Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District – HTGCD: Philip Webster
Dripping Springs
512/858.9253
The District will test the water quality of your well if it shows signs of contamination. If your well water is cloudy or its taste or odor changes suddenly, please call our testing service and we will come inspect your well and take a water sample for testing.

In the event that well owners desire baseline water quality testing, the following Laboratories are equipped to handle an array of water quality tests; and with the exception of the GBRA have dedicated staff to do on-site sample gathering. All financial costs for baseline test sampling will be the responsibility of individual well owners.

Edwards Aquifer Research and Data Center – EARDC: Joe Guerro
220 E Sessom Dr, San Marcos, TX 78666
JG@txstate.edu
512/787.1582

Lower Colorado River Authority – LCRA: Jason Woods
LCRA Environmental Laboratory Services
3505 Montopolis Drive, Austin, TX 78744
512/730.5339

Guadalupe Blanco River Authority – GBRA: Jennifer Sanchez
GBRA Laboratory Analyses
933 East Court Street, Seguin, TX 78155
Office: 830-379-5822
Email: lab@gbra.org

Zara Environmental: Jeff Watson
1707 West FM 1626
Manchaca, TX 78652
Office: 512-291-4555

Buff Zone PHP
Figure. The approximate location of the Permian Highway Pipeline. Shaded area represents a 5-mile buffer around the pipeline with known registered wells as blue points.

Jacobs Well Groundwater Management Zone to Help Protect Cypress Creek Watershed Well Owners During Drought

March 7, 2020 (pinned)
In response to community requests for additional protections in Wimberley Valley’s Cypress Creek Watershed, The Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors passed new rules to protect water resources and springflow during drought.“I believe the intent of the Jacob’s Well Groundwater Management Zone is not only to protect the flow of Cypress Creek, but also to protect the resources and property of the citizens that reside in the Wimberley Valley.“ Hays County Commissioner Precinct 3, Lon Shell

The Board created the Jacob’s Well Groundwater Management Zone based on findings from a multi-agency scientific study headed up by Edwards Aquifer Authority and the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment hydrogeologists.

Those findings support a year-long stakeholder process designed to get consensus support from all user group representatives. Stakeholder participants from Hays County Precinct 3, local Water Supply Corporations, developers, Blue Hole, the Villages of Wimberley, Woodcreek and Wimberley, and local small business owners reached accord on large volume commercial pumping limitations during drought.

New rules will require cutbacks in pumping in the 39mi2 Groundwater Management Zone when Jacob’s Well flow falls below 6-cubic feet per second. Pumping cutbacks will increase as flow diminishes.

Hays Trinity GCD Board President Linda Kaye Rogers says “The District recognizes that these rules are not designed to guarantee local spring flow at Jacob’s Well or at Pleasant Valley Springs — but rather to prolong healthy aquifer conditions and help protect local water wells during drought conditions.”

“There is nothing the District can do to create new water during drought.” Says District Manager Charlie Flatten. “This is a shared resource and all users have a shared interest in making sure that all water is used in a responsible fashion for essential purposes.”

Cutbacks only apply to the ten largest groundwater users in the Zone including Aqua and Wimberley WSC.  See District Management Zone webpage for details.

 

Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Suspends Drought Stage

June 5, 2020

At the June 4th Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board meeting, District Directors voted to suspend drought stage in the Jacobs Well Groundwater Management Zone (Map Here).

“Wimberley Valley water utilities and their customers are doing a remarkable job adapting to the new Management Zone drought curtailment schedules.” reports Linda Kaye Rogers, HTGCD Board President “Thank you to everyone in the Management Zone who worked to protect the water supply by conserving in the months of April and May.”

Recent rains have recharged the aquifer in the Jacobs Well Groundwater Management Zone and across the county. Jacobs Well Spring has exceeded its minimum drought stage flow fate and all permittees in the Zone may move to 0% curtailment.

April and May curtailment requirements were 30% and 20% from normal. The District waived April’s 30% curtailment in recognition that many families were sheltering in place and may require additional water. Utilities reported average usage despite more users at working from home.

“Next week’s forecast calls for 100+ degree days so, please remember to conserve water and limit outdoor uses in order to prepare for a long hot summer.” says District Manager Charlie Flatten. “The water you conserve today — is water you may need tomorrow.”

The Texas Water Development Board’s U.S. Drought Monitor page shows creeping drought conditions across the state, and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA) predicts a hotter than average summer.

Please visit the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District website for more drought information and for tips on conservation at home.

 

Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Enacts Drought Curtailment

May 8, 2020

At the May 7th Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board meeting, District Directors voted to move the Jacobs Well Groundwater Management Zone into 20% Curtailment drought status.

“Prolonging the health of our critical aquifer resources is the responsibility of the District. We are asking that well owners limit outdoor water uses in order to protect healthy indoor conditions at home.” says Linda Kaye Rogers, HTGCD Board President

Area water supply utilities have reported that water use for March and April is only slightly higher than last year at this time, indicating that a lack of rain is to blame for the low flow at Jacobs Well Spring.

The immediate rainfall forecast shows no major rain events in the near future. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicts average rainfall and higher than average temperatures through July.

“We are hearing reports of both septic system and water well pump failures” says District Manager Charlie Flatten. “In order to avoid dry wells and pump failures, please limit your water use to what you need indoors in order to stretch our limited supplies through the summer” .

Many residents in the Wimberley Valley including Wimberley Water Supply Corporation customers are already under strict conservation restrictions.

Please visit the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District website for more drought information and for tips on conservation at home.

 

Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Delays Drought Cutbacks

April 3, 2020
At the April 2 Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board meeting, District Directors voted to delay an order that would put the Jacobs Well Groundwater Management Zone (MAP here) into drought status.“With folks sheltering in place in order to protect their families from to exposure to the Covid-19 virus, the District recognizes that water usage will go up in homes” said Linda Kaye Rogers, HTGCD Board President “The District continue to monitor the situation and act in the best interest of the public.”

The District recognizes that there will be much more residential use and less commercial use. In order to prolong the health of our critical aquifer resources, the District is asking that where possible everyone limit outdoor water uses in order to protect healthy indoor conditions at home.

“Summer is coming, and drought usually follows” says District Manager Charlie Flatten. “We may all be required to shelter at home for a while, and we don’t want wells going dry during this emergency. Please limit your water use to what you need indoors in order to stretch our limited supplies through the summer”.

If we get the rainfall that has been forecast in the springshed in the coming week, we should get out of our current drought status say District Geoscientist Philip Webster.

The Texas Water Development Board recognizes that Hays County and much of south Texas is currently experiencing abnormally dry or are under drought conditions. Many residents in the Wimberley Valley are already under conservation restrictions.

Please visit the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District website for more drought information and for tips on conservation at home.

 

Drought Stage Declarations

Drought Stage Suspended for JWGMZ
A No Drought declaration for the Jacob’s Well Groundwater Management Zone was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors on June 4, 2020
20-percent Drought Declaration for JWGMZ
A 20-percent declaration for the Jacob’s Well Groundwater Management Zone was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors on May 7, 2020
Drought Stage Returns to Voluntary Conservation
A No Drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors in ORDER 176 on June 17, 2015
Alarm Stage Drought Declaration
An Alarm Stage drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors and unanimously enacted in ORDER 175 on March 1, 2015
Critical Stage Drought Declaration
A Critical Stage drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors effective June 1, 2013.
Alarm Stage Drought Declaration
An Alarm Stage drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors and unanimously enacted in ORDER 157 on September 1, 2012.
Drought Stage Returns to Voluntary Conservation
A Voluntary Conservation drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors effective April 11, 2012. For full details, please see the order.
Critical Stage Drought Declaration
A Critical Stage drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors effective August 1, 2011. For full details, please see the announcement and order.
Alarm Stage Drought Declaration
An Alarm Stage drought declaration was sanctioned by the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District Board of Directors and unanimously enacted in ORDER 149 on May 9, 2011.
The order mandates that Non-Exempt Permit holders to reduce their use of groundwater by 20% of their total yearly permit production. The order also requests that Exempt well owners reduce their use by 20%.
For full details, please see the press release and the order.