Meeting in Mount Pleasant, the Group named Shirley Shumake of Bowie County to succeed George Frost, also of Bowie County, Doug Wadley of Bowie County to succeed Mendy Rabicoff of Gregg County, Nancy Clemons of Cass County to succeed Jim Thompson, also of Cass County, and Jim Edson of Hunt County to succeed James C. Cook, also of Hunt County.
Elected to new terms of service on the Group were incumbents Sharron Nabors of Lamar County, Bob Staton of Smith County, Don Patterson of Hopkins County, and Darwin Douthit of Van Zandt County.
Shawn Napier, engineer for the City of Paris, requested the Planning Group to modify the Red River’s Water Availability Model (WAM) in the Group’s new water planning, which is now being prepared.
Walt Sears, administrator of the Northeast Texas Group (also known as Region D), explained that the Water Availability Model is a simulation of what amounts of water will be available in a river basin in the future.
“In some cases, you could have water rights that may not be availabile 365 days a year,” said Sears.
A WAM is a work in progress, he said, “ and helps to determine what we have now, how much water we will need, and what actions we’ll have to take in the future,” he explained.
While Paris officials said they are not asking for WAM changes on Pat Mayes Lake, near the city, but they suggested changes in expected output of Lake Creek, also in the Red River basin, from 1,000 acre feet a year to 7,290 acre feet.
Temple McKinnon of the Texas Water Development Board, said the state is comfortable with the Paris request to modify the WAM.
The Regional Planning Group will vote on Paris request during its October 15 meeting in Mount Pleasant.
A delegation from Van Zandt County appeared before the Group to protest the construction of a new lake in the Canton area. They said the lake is “excessively expensive” and will cover up lands owned by Van Zandt County residents.
Stan Hayes, an engineering consultant for the Group, reviewed proposed water management strategies being developed by the consulting team, including water quality stability and costs of the water when it is delivered to users.
The studies, he said, will also focus on environmental factors, the impacts on fish and wildlife, the costs of interbasin water transfers, the reuse of waste water, and the acquisition of water sources.
Richard LeTourneau of Gregg County, chairman of the Northeast Texas Group, announced that an open public meeting by the Study Commission on Water Needs of Region C (the Dallas area) will be held at Texarkana College on September 24, starting at 1 p.m. with a focus on a proposed schedule of
work by Espy Consultants, Inc.
The Study Commission was created by the Texas Legislature to implement legislative charges in Senate Bill 3.
Ms. McKinnon also provided the Northeast Group with an overview of impacts caused by the current drought in Central Texas. “Lake Travis,” she said, “is at one of the lowest level since the lake was built.”
The Northeast Texas Group serves all or parts of Bowie, Camp, Cass, Delta, Franklin, Gregg, Harrison, Hopkins, Hunt, Lamar, Marion, Morris, Red River, Rains, Smith, Titus, Upshur, Van Zandt and Wood counties.