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Burnet groundwater district could seek priority status, more protections

Two Burnet County officials attended a Hill Country Alliance summit on growth management and water availability in Boerne in late June where they learned about new groundwater protections. HCA photo

Burnet County might have found a way to exert more authority over subdivisions and developments when it comes to groundwater.

County Commissioner Damon Beierle and Central Texas Groundwater Conservation District General Manager Mitchell Sodek were among 50 regional officials at a Hill Country Alliance summit on how natural resources can be better managed and preserved. 

Beierle said the June 21 event in Boerne inspired him to look into a priority groundwater management area designation for Burnet County.

“We are starting now to find a way to do it and see if we can get that (priority groundwater management district) designation in 2025,” he said. “It opens up a couple of chapters in the (Texas Local Government Code) that would help us make a stronger groundwater availability study.”

A priority groundwater management area is defined as one that is experiencing or expected to experience critical groundwater problems within 50 years. 

If Burnet County receives the designation, it would give the Commissioners Court access to Section 35.019 of the Texas Water Code, which allows for more stringent requirements on groundwater availability studies for proposed subdivisions and developments.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality ultimately designates management districts, but Beierle and Sodek said the support of Burnet County’s state legislators, Rep. Ellen Troxclair and Sen. Pete Flores, could move the process along.

Sodek told collaborating with leaders from other area counties experiencing similar growth and development was valuable.

“It’s useful to learn what our counterparts are doing to manage growth and water at a county level,” he said. “I think it’s always a positive to get like minds together.” moderates all comments. Comments with profanity, violent or discriminatory language, defamatory statements, or threats will not be allowed. The opinions and views expressed here are those of the person commenting and do not necessarily reflect the official position of or Victory Media Marketing.

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