Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

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October 29, 2013

Commissioners say ‘NO’

Court opposes BRA’s selling additional PK water

(Continued)

"They just gave a carte blanche: 'We want to sell this additional water,' without any indication of what it would be going for," Nicklas said.

"We're very concerned about where the water is going. Are they going to sell it to West Texas to drink? Are they going to sell it down south for other businesses? If it's to support businesses downstream from us, then they need to consider the businesses at Possum Kingdom as well as the business of operating our county in their decisions."

The dire state of the lake because of the extended drought has made the decision to restrict additional water sales all the more paramount.

BRA Public Information Officer Judi Pierce said that even recent rains in the area have not been sufficient enough to bring the lake up at all.

Last month, she told the Index that PK Lake is suffering from "literally the worst amount of inflows we've ever seen in recorded history." A month later, she reiterated that the same holds true.

"At this point, the drought conditions are for a number of reasons: No. 1, those inflows, No. 2 evaporation, and No. 3 water use," she said. "Quite honestly, the releases that have been made within the last year from Possum Kingdom have been extremely low. Basically the minimum.

"The BRA wants very much to keep the lake as full as possible, but without any inflow, that's simply not possible. Of course, we have to continue providing water to the contracts that we have. We certainly couldn't cut them off just because the lake levels have dropped. We have to continue to provide water to those people that have a need for it."

Nicklas said the project to build the Turkey Peak Reservoir in the coming years next to Lake Palo Pinto will provide an economic boost and do a lot to alleviate the county's need for water, but it won't help Possum Kingdom's grim predicament.

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