Recover Lake Houston

WE NEED YOUR HELP!

We’ve got two tasks for our Recover Lake Houston team. Both are extremely important and will impact the Lake Houston Area. 

 

  1. Voice opposition to the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District’s Groundwater Management Plan which removes groundwater pumpage restrictions and increases the risk of future flooding in the Lake Houston Area.
    • Show UP: Attend the Lone Star GCD Town Hall Session at 8:30 AM, Wednesday, April 24 at East Montgomery County Improvement District located at 21575 US-59 STE 200, New Caney, TX 7735
    • Send Input to: Samantha Stied Relter, Interim General Manger of the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District, 655 Conroe Park North Drive, Conroe, Texas 77303; Email: lsgcd@consolidated.net; Phone: 936-441-343
  2. Download the letter BELOW, sign it, and mail it to FEMA Acting Administrator Gaynor
    • This letter requests FEMA to authorize a Mission Assignment to remove the remaining debris from the San Jacinto River, including the large blockage in the West Fork while the Army Corps still has their dredges in the river

SEE MORE INFORMATION BELOW

TASK 1

WE WANT YOU

To attend the Lone Star GCD Town Hall Session

 

8:30 AM | Wednesday, April 24 | East Montgomery County Improvement District

21575 US-59
New Caney, TX 7735

Insist that the Lone Star GCD immediately adopt a management plan and rules that protect our region from further water-level declines, subsidence, and flooding.

The Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce, Lake Houston Economic Development Partnership and Lake Houston Long Term Recovery Task Force have become increasingly concerned with recent actions of the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District (LSGCD) to disregard serious consequences resulting from over-pumping the aquifers. These consequences include land surface subsidence which leads to numerous problems, most alarming the increased risk of flooding.

More Information

The Lone Star GCD’s boundaries are the same as Montgomery County. In November 2018, the LSGCD board was converted by special legislation from a nine-member appointed board to a seven-member elected board. The newly-elected board recently announced its intention to void all groundwater pumpage restrictions in Montgomery County, which would lead to increased water-level declines, subsidence, and flooding in both Montgomery and Harris counties.

The Texas Water Code, Chapter 36, requires groundwater districts like the LSGCD to “provide for the conservation, preservation, protection, recharging, and prevention of waste of groundwater, and of groundwater reservoirs or their subdivisions, and to control subsidence caused by withdrawal of water from those groundwater reservoirs or their subdivisions.”

Recent modeling has shown that even a modest increase in pumpage in Montgomery County will cause significant water-level declines in north Harris and southern Montgomery counties, the areas currently experiencing the worst subsidence.  (See figures below)

The Lake Houston Area Chamber, EDP and Long Term Recovery Task Force are joining Harris County Subsidence District, North Harris County Regional Water Authority, Woodlands Joint Powers Agency, City of Oakridge North and Southern Montgomery County MUD in opposition to the Groundwater Management Plan adopted by the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District (LSGCD) on March 12, 2019 and submitted to the Texas Water Development Board for final approval. We are further requesting the Texas Water Development Board reject their Groundwater Management Plan.

Dockline Magazine: Why Responsible Groundwater Management in Montgomery County Matters

Talking Points

GROUNDWATER MANAGEMENT CONTROVERSY IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY AND HOW IT NEGATIVELY IMPACTS MONTGOMERY AND SURROUNDING COUNTIES 

Consequences of our region’s over-reliance on groundwater

  • Since the 1950’s, cities and utilities in the Greater Houston region have been reducing their use of groundwater and shifting to alternate water supplies (mainly surface water) because of the serious consequences that were resulting from over-pumping the aquifers.  Those consequences include:
    • Increased O&M costs and decreased reliability of water supply wells due to falling water levels
    • Land surface subsidence (leading to numerous problems, including increased flooding)

Our region’s investment in future water supplies

  • The City of Houston and other Harris County utilities made the bulk of the initial investment in alternative water supplies, followed by utilities in Fort Bend and Montgomery counties.
    • Began with the construction of Lake Houston, Lake Conroe, and Lake Livingston along with billions of dollars in infrastructure to treat and distribute water to the areas of the worst subsidence.  (Estimated investment – $10 billion from 1950 through 2000)
    • Most recent joint project involves the completion of Luce Bayou interbasin transfer project, expansion of the COH Northeast Water Purification Plant, and miles of large-diameter transmission lines and pump stations to distribute surface water across north Harris County.  (Estimated investment – $4.75 billion in recent SWIFT Fund loans)
    • Montgomery County utilities (via a joint project with SJRA) recently borrowed $0.5 billion to begin distributing surface water in response to groundwater regulations by the Lone Star GCD.

Recent Lone Star GCD actions undermine decades of investment in water supplies and flood prevention

  • The Lone Star GCD board went from appointed to elected in November of 2018.  The newly-elected board recently announced its intention to void all groundwater pumpage restrictions in Montgomery County, which would lead to increased water-level declines, subsidence, and flooding in both Montgomery and Harris counties.
    • Recent modeling has shown that even a modest increase in pumpage in Montgomery County will cause significant water-level declines in north Harris and southern Montgomery counties, the areas currently experiencing the worst subsidence.  (See figures below)
    • Lone Star’s groundwater regulations have been in place since 2006.  Harris County’s groundwater regulations have been in place since the late 1970’s.  The new board has been in place less than six months. 
    • Lone Star’s actions threaten to undermine decades of investments made by utilities in the Greater Houston region in developing new water supplies.  These investments were made to prevent subsidence and flooding while ensuring adequate, reliable water supplies for the region’s rapidly-growing population and economy. 

What can you do?

  • Let the Lone Star GCD board know that you support the sound management practices that have been in place for our aquifers for the past 40-plus years – practices that maximized our use of groundwater resources while preventing the serious consequences of over-reliance on groundwater as a single source of supply.
  • Insist that the Lone Star GCD immediately adopt a management plan and rules that protect our region from further water-level declines, subsidence, and flooding.

 

Letters of Groundwater Management Plan Rejection Requests

The Lake Houston Area Chamber is joining Harris County Subsidence District, North Harris County Regional Water Authority, Woodlands Joint Powers Agency, City of Oakridge North and Southern Montgomery County MUD in opposition to the Groundwater management Plan adopted by the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District (LSGCD) on March 12, 2019. We are requesting the Texas Water Development Board reject their Groundwater Management Plan.

View the Letters

TASK 2

Appeal to FEMA to authorize continued debris removal in the
San Jacinto River

Please join us in this letter writing campaign to FEMA requesting they authorize a Mission Assignment to dredge the remaining debris from the San Jacinto River before the conclusion of emergency dredging currently taking place.

Please print out this letter, sign it and mail it to

The Honorable Pete T. Gaynor
Acting Administrator
Federal Emergency Management Agency
500 C Street, South West
Washington, D.C. 20472

News Updates

Get Involved

Spread our campaigns on social media using  #RecoverLakeHouston

Join our Facebook Group: Recover Lake Houston 

Follow us on Twitter: @RecoverLakeHou

SIGN UP to get updates on the “Recover Lake Houston” movement (your email will not be shared or used for purposes other than Recover Lake Houston updates)

Subscribe to the Recover Lake Houston Newsletter

Fill out the contact form, select the Recover Lake Houston Updates group, and submit.

Archived News

December 6, 2018: The Temporary Lowering of Lake Houston has Begun

September 6, 2018: Kingwood voters were ‘political force’ on flood bond

August 26, 2018: Lake Houston area gets recovery boost after $2.5 billion bond passes

July 29, 2018: Support Proposition A because there’s no Plan B

July 25, 2018: Thursday is final day to register to vote on Harris County flood bond

July 22, 2018: County finds support for Flood Bond plan, voters decide on August 25

July 22, 2018: Flood-weary residents offer project ideas for $2.5b bond proposal

July 12, 2018: Dam gates, dredging are major topics at county flood bond meeting in Kingwood

July 12, 2018: Dredging specifically identified on the Harris County Flood Bond program as a potential partnership project

July 11, 2018: When it comes to DDG, we need all three

July 10, 2018: Bond referendum over DDG (dredging, detention, and gates) continues to be a pressing issue for all of Harris County

July 9, 2018: County Hosting San Jacinto Watershed Meeting Tomorrow at Kingwood Park High School

July 6, 2018: Texas needs a sand plan for preventing floods

July 2, 2018: Mining along river may worsen floods

July 1, 2018: Dredging of San Jacinto’s west fork to begin soon

June 27, 2018: New Location: San Jacinto River Watershed Community Meeting

June 15, 2018: City of Houston and SJRA receive approval from TCEQ to seasonally lower Lake Conroe

May 18, 2018: Kevin Roberts, Texas State Representative of Dist. 126 sends letter to SJRA President in support of the seasonal lowering of Lake Conroe.

May 1, 2018: San Jacinto River Authority creates a flood management division at April 26 meeting – Community Impact Newspaper Conroe|Montgomery

April 30, 2018: Post-Harvey: What has happened since Gov. Abbott visited Kingwood? – the Tribune

April 27, 2018: SJRA proposes lowering Lake Conroe up to 2 feet, on a seasonal basis – The Courier of Montgomery Co. 

April 27, 2018: Grant program to distribute more than $220K to Lake Houston area businesses affected by Harvey – Houston Chronicle 

April 27, 2018: Chamber officials lobby for Lake Houston Area during visit with legislators at Capitol Hill – Houston Chronicle

April 24, 2018: In Harvey’s Wake: Business slowly returns to normal in Kingwood – Patch 

April 17, 2018: Gov. Abbott: Dredging of the San Jacinto could begin next month – Houston Chronicle 

April 5, 2018: Letter of support from Congressman Ted Poe to William Long, Administrator of FEMA

April 4, 2018: Lt.Gov Patrick’s Lake Houston visit wraps-up Plea to See campaign – Houston Chronicle

April 3, 2018: SJRA takes on regional flood management, hires director at $180k a year – Houston Chronicle

March 29, 2018: Neighborhoods near Humble, Liberty could see homes flood again – Houston Chronicle 

March 29, 2018: Homeowners nervous about flooding as San Jacinto River creeps higher – KTRK-TV

March 29. 2018: Flood Warning: Homes at risk as San Jacinto River rises out of its banks – KHOU

March 27, 2018:  Temporary Reduction of Lake Houston – Councilman Dave Martin Press Release 

March 22, 2018: George P Bush becomes second elected official to visit Lake Houston – Houston Chronicle 

March 15, 2018:  New Flood Prevention Efforts in Kingwood, TX – Governor Abbott Press Release 

March 14, 2018: Abbott to discuss Harvey Recovery at Kingwood Community Meeting – Houston Chronicle 

March 7, 2018: Campaign invites officials to see  Lake Houston’s continued post-Harvey needs – Houston Chronicle

March 7, 2018: Dredging San Jacinto for flood protection a “priority” – Houston Chronicle

March 2, 2018: Dave Martin Schedules Kingwood/Lake Houston Area Town Hall Meeting – Press Release

February 26, 2018:  Significant Progress Made in Response to Immediate Needs of the Lake Houston Area – Dave Martin Press Release

February 5, 2018Lake Houston Residents Appointed to SJRA Board of Directors – Houston Chronicle

February 5, 2018: Governor Abbot Appoints Three to the San Jacinto River Authority Board of Directors – Governor Abbott Press Release

January 9, 2018: Preparing Lake Houston area for the next Harvey – Community Impact

December 19, 2017: Q&A: SJRA General Manager Jace Houston talks Harvey – Community Impact

December 18, 2017: Natural Resource Chair Lyle Larson Letter to Jace Houston

December 18, 2017: Natural Resource Chair Lyle Larson Letter to Gov. Greg Abbott

December 15, 2017: Dave Martin Encourages Lake Houston Area Residents to Participate in the Recover Lake Houston Plea For Three – Press Release 

December 14, 2017: City of Humble passes resolution to support Plea For 3 Lake Houston

December 9, 2017: Lake Houston recovery campaign relies on community involvement – Houston Chronicle 

Facebook Live Chamber Chat with guest, Houston City Council Member Dave Martin