Independent Texans

Water Heating Up on Prop 6 – Vote NO!

The water is heating up on Prop 6 and the Governor’s special interest pals. Isn’t it fun to make Perry jump in to defend his Prop 6?

Check out this KTRH report today in Houston, where 1/3 of the voters likely to vote in this election reside:  http://www.ktrh.com/articles/houston-news-121300/texans-willing-to-spend-rainy-day-11706171/

We are calling out the troops to defeat this dangerous amendment designed to divert $2B from the Rainy Day Fund for Perry’s cronies in real estate and related industries, urban ratepayers and rural folks be damned.

Join us this Saturday at 9 am for a statewide conference call.  We have a specific plan for how we’re going to take down Prop 6, despite the very big money backing it.  It can be done, but not without YOU!

If you want to join the call, send an email to us at ljcurtis@indytexans.org or call us at 512-535-0989.

Save the Date!  We will converge upon San Antonio on Monday, October 14th at 10 am for a press conference in the downtown area.  See if you can get there please.  We will help with hooking up a ride for you, if you need assistance.

If your organization has endorsed a “Vote No on Pop 6”, please let us know by calling or emailing us.

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Nix Prop 6, We got in some licks! Bastrop/Lee/Hays Water War Escalates, East Texas Hearings!

Things are happening across Texas!  If they’re not happening where you are, we’ll help you make it happen.

Join us this Saturday, 9 a.m. on a statewide conference call if you want to help defeat Proposition 6, the “Water Heist Amendment” on the November ballot.  Just reply to this message.  We’ll send out the conference call line tomorrow or call us if you need to.

STATEWIDE NEWS

On Tuesday, Texas House Speaker Straus was with the big shots at the Dallas Chamber of Commerce touting Prop 6 to some of the state’s biggest water hogs.  The Speaker might be a little miffed at reporter, Gordon Dickson (Ft. Worth Star-Telegram), who decided to do a balanced piece on Prop 6. Yours truly got in some good licks! Check it out here:  http://www.indytexans.com/wp-content/uploads/Support-flows-opposition-simmers-for-water-funding-Local-Star-Telegram.com_.pdf

Did you know there are three pipelines carrying highly toxic substances across East Texas?  A new independent outfit — the League of Independent Voters of Texas — is working with landowners and residents to push for public hearings on eminent domain abuse, public safety and protection of water resources in connection with three pipelines (the Keystone XL, Pegasus and Seaway) carrying diluted bitumen (aka “tar sands”).  If you live in East Texas or want to help from wherever you are, sign in at the Texas Pipeline Watch website here: TexasPipelineWatch.org 

REGIONAL NEWS

The Hays County Commissioners Court, led by Hays County Judge Bert Cobb, pulled a fast one on Tuesday, getting into bed with Forestar Real Estate Group so they can — together — covet their neighbor’s water (Bastrop and Lee County). Cobb even had the temerity to proclaim that he’s for local control!  He must mean his local control over Lee and Bastrop counties’ water.  The 5-0 vote of the Commission was followed by a genuinely cowardly move to ask Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott to cover their behinds with a ruling that they’re doing this legally.  Read it here:  http://www.indytexans.com/2013/09/26/hays-county-commission-covets-thy-neighbors-water-with-a-little-bit-of-help-from-their-tricky-friends-in-bastroplee-counties/ 

Meanwhile, we hope to see you lovely Hays County folks, regardless of your party affiliation or lack thereof, at the Hays Constitutional Republican meeting next Wednesday.  Michele Gangnes and I are coming down from Bastrop. We speak just after Republican primary candidate for Governor, Tom Pauken.

Hays Constitutional Republicans Meeting, Wednesday, October 2
Wimberley VFW Post 6551
401 Jacob’s Well Road
Curtis and Gangnes speak on Prop 6 at 7:30 pm (meeting starts at 6)

BASTROP & LEE COUNTY

Landowners lost a skirmish in the water war by being denied a voice in the proceedings by the State Office of Administrative Hearings Judge, who is presiding over the hearing for Aqua Water’s challenge to the  EndOp permit application for 56K acre-feet/year from the Simsboro aquifer.  Just understand that even if Aqua and EndOp settle, which some observers are predicting, it will then go back to the Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District Board for their decision on the permit itself.  We thoroughly expect the good folks on the Lost Pines GCD to stand tall against EndOp, as they did with Forestar and LCRA. We — the people — need to continue to step up and organize to protect our water as we speak the truth about who is selling us out. We need to start naming names, Y’all.  We’re starting that real soon so pay attention!

“We have just begun to fight!”  John Paul Jones

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Convention Report, Game on for No on Prop 6!

Water Texas PAC, established by Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, refused to show up at the debate last Saturday, but did respond when they were called by the Dallas Morning News reporter, David Barer, who attended our convention.  Check it out here and feel free to leave your own comment:  http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/2013/09/water-amendment-opponents-coalesce-in-bastrop-proponents-skip-event.html/

Thank you, Max Anderson, for this short video report on the convention:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=S99exQlaFmI (Max tells us that more are coming soon!)

Lots of things are now in motion from the convention.  We invite your participation in these efforts:

*  A new indy organization has been founded — the League of Independent Voter of Texas!  This indy voter association is taking on community education and organizing projects LIKE — holding public hearings throughout the state, starting in East Texas, on eminent domain abuse, public safety and protection of water resources in connection with three pipelines carrying diluted bitumen (tar sands).  For more see TexasPipelineWatch.org, one of the convention sponsors!

This Saturday at 9 a.m., we’re holding a conference call to Build the Coalition to Defeat Prop 6 — the water “heist” amendment put on the ballot to serve up another cash cow (OUR water!) to the Perry gang.  Join us!

Conference Call to Build the Coalition to Defeat Prop 6!
THIS Saturday, September 28, 9 a.m.
Reply to this message with your name and phone number, we’ll send you all the details.

* Media Coverage.  Here is a great report on the convention from YNN:  http://austin.ynn.com/content/news/295382/grassroots-groups-raise-concerns-about-state-water-issue 

Let’s ride ’em high — those political forces of corruption, y’all!  Hope you can join the call on Saturday morning, or sign in at the Texas Pipeline Watch site to work on the hearings wherever you are.

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Independents No on 6! Calls for Full Debate in Bastrop

Independent Texans, a citizen’s political action committee seeking representation for the state’s millions of independent, non-aligned voters, released a white paper that comes out squarely against Constitutional Amendment 6 — the water amendment — on the November ballot.  The first page offers its own alternative ballot language in stark contrast to the ambiguous ballot language voters will see:

Official Ballot Language for Prop 6:  “Creating funds to assist in the financing of priority projects in the state water plan.”

Alternative Language offered by Independent Texans:  “Providing an endowment for an estimated $30 billion of cash subsidies for water borrowers, by diverting an initial $2 billion from the State’s Rainy Day Fund into the State’s already generous water lending program, to offset the cost of up to 526 state water plan projects, which will be prioritized by the Governor-appointed employees on the Texas Water Development Board and financed without constitutional debt limitations.”

The full text of “Stop the Urban v. Rural Water Wars” can be found here:  http://www.indytexans.com/wp-content/uploads/Prop-6-Final.pdf (and attached)

Linda Curtis, founder of Independent Texans, called for a “full and vigorous” debate on Proposition 6 to take place at their state convention being held in Bastrop this Saturday at the Bastrop Convention Center. Curtis said, “This is another David v. Goliath skirmish — literally. Rep. David Simpson, who is no stranger to fighting Goliath (the Speaker of the House, Joe Straus), will speak on the “opposed” side of the debate on Prop 6. Now all we need are some of the proponents.  We’ve asked the Speaker’s Water Texas PAC and H2O4Texas to provide one or more people to take the ‘in favor’ side. We’ll hold a fair and square debate in Bastrop, since most folks attending will not have heard much about this, then take a straw poll.  Media is most welcome to join us in Bastrop, home of the Texas Water Wars.”  See convention agenda here:  http://www.indytexans.com/convention/

The Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District was created by the Legislature to protect the water supply of Bastrop and Lee counties as its sole mission. In 2013, the District made a decision to protect the local aquifers, by reducing permit applications for two large-volume users, one of which was an application for 45,000 acre feet per year by real estate titan, Forestar Real Estate Group (an offshoot of Temple Inland). The District reduced Forestar’s permit to 12,000 AFY (one acre foot is equal to 326,000 gallons).  Forestar, and at least one other large-volume user (EndOp LC, owned by former Williamson County Commissioner, Frankie Limmer) whose permit is still pending, are positioning to sue the District in potential landmark cases on groundwater districts’ powers to prevent depletion of Texas aquifers.  State Representative Tim Kleinschmidt (R-Lexington) sold or leased his Lee County water rights several years ago.  They are now controlled by Forestar. Kleinschmidt has received over $250,000 from Speaker Straus for his reelection campaigns and, like all state representatives, is up for reelection in November 2014:  http://www.indytexans.com/wp-content/uploads/KleinschmidtCE.xlsx

Scores of Bastrop and Lee County residents and landowners testimony at recent Lost Pines GCD hearings can be watched here:  http://www.youtube.com/user/indytexansorg

 

Scores of Bastrop and Lee County residents and landowners testimony at recent Lost Pines GCD hearings can be watched here:  http://www.youtube.com/user/indytexansorg

 

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Release: Left and Right Put Squeeze on Politics As Usual at Independent Texans Convention

Independent Texans, a citizen’s political action committee founded in 2001, is holding the first political convention for Texas independents.  The group is calling together an unlikely coalition, from tea party to green party and from all political parties, for their “Building Cross-Partisan Coalitions” convention to be held in Bastrop on Saturday, September 21st at the Bastrop Convention Center. The event is co-sponsored by ChangeAustin.org, Texas TURF, Texans for Accountable Government and Texas Pipeline Watch.

Linda Curtis, founder of Independent Texans, is known as a cross-partisan coalition builder that gets results. Independent Texans helped coordinate the electoral efforts to defeat the Trans-Texas Coordinator. Curtis, through ChangeAustin.org (co-founded by real estate developer and whistle-blower, Brian Rodgers) coordinated a broad coalition that won the recent monumental change in the City of Austin’s governance to single-member districts and the first citizen’s redistricting commission in Texas.

Curtis said, “This event is really about the guts and true grit of ordinary Texans who are standing up to the stampede of officials, from city to state, who refuse to lead the fight to protect our most precious resources — land and water — and our political rights to honest representation. Can we tame growing eminent domain abuse by pipelines, especially the three carrying tar sands in East Texas? Can we build a coalition to defeat Constitutional Amendment 6 — a water slush fund? Happy trails to Bastrop to all those who care to get some answers.”

The convention line up begins with Debra Medina. Medina rocked the Republican establishment in 2010 running against Perry and Hutchison in the primary and receiving 20% of the vote. Medina, now running for Comptroller in the Republican primary, will share the stage with her friend and tea party Republican Rep. David Simpson (R-Longview).  Simpson’s first name — David — is true to his spirit, having also taken on the Republican establishment, running against Texas House Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio). On the same panel is nationally known TransCanada/Keystone XL opponent and NE Texas farmer, Julia Trigg Crawford. Tom “Smitty” Smith, longtime leader of Public Citizen, rounds out the panel in a left-right coalition uniting for eminent domain reform and pipeline safety.

Independent Texans recently sent a letter to Lt. Governor Dewhurst and Texas House Speaker Joe Straus asking them to heed the call by Debra Medina, Julia Trigg Crawford and former Texas Agriculture Commissioner, Jim Hightower, urging an Interim Study and public hearings related to the dangers posed by three pipelines carrying diluted bitumen (tar sands) in East Texas. Dewhurst’s office response was that he is “very busy.”  Straus has had no response.

See letter to Dewhurst and Straus here:  http://www.indytexans.com/wp-content/uploads/Letter-Dewhurst-Straus.pd

The water issue will be prominent at this event and a key reason why the event is being held in Bastrop.  Bastrop is becoming known as the home of the Texas water wars on plans to move groundwater from rural counties to growth corridors. A debate will take place between proponents and opponents of Constitutional Amendment 6, the water amendment on the November ballot, after which a straw poll will be taken. Additional speakers are Calvin Tillman, former mayor of DISH, Alyssa Burgin, Texas Drought Project, Malcolm Harris, Esq. of Wimberley Valley Watershed Association, Michele Gangnes, Esq. of Neighbors for Neighbors and the Lost Pines Water Defense Fund, Rita Beving of Public Citizen, Barry Klein of the Houston Property Rights Association, Steve Box of Environmental Stewardship, Phil Cook of Sierra Club, Heather Fazio, Texans for Accountable Government, and leading members of Austinites for Geographic Representation.

See the convention agenda and most bios are here:  http://www.indytexans.com/convention/

Independent Texans will release a white paper on Constitutional Amendment 6 in the coming days.

For more information, call Linda Curtis at 512-535-0989 or email her at:  ljcurtis@indytexans.org.

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Austin is Not Developers’ Monopoly Board

Sign it, if you live in Austin

Austin is Not Developers' Monopoly Board

Dear Mayor Adler and Austin City Council Members:

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Why don't you share this with your friends, please:

Make Growth Pay for Itself

No Vista Ridge/San Antone Hose

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