Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

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February 3, 2013

TPWD officials inform public and solicit local input at new park meet

(Continued)

Frazier informed citizens that during February he will have an opinion poll in the city office, where they pay their water bill. He said, “Anytime you go in there, please sign under 'For,' 'Against' or 'Undecided.' I want you to take plenty of time and think it over and sign that opinion poll.”

TPWD Regional Director Rodney Franklin said whoever owns the land up to Tucker Lake “affects what we can and cannot do around the lake.”

He added that plans will likely include building trails, cabins and shelters and having lake recreation, like fishing, non-motorized boating and possibly swimming, in which case they would need to build a beach area.

“We are in the business of natural resources protection and the protection of water resources,” Franklin added regarding the management of land around Tucker. “We have experts in water quality at our fingertips.

“Protection of the water resources is something we take seriously,” he added.

Franklin said he hopes the discussion on land around Tucker Lake is a “back-and-forth communication between us and the [Strawn city] council. As we talk these things through, we want to make sure your interests are protected.

“There is definitely an economic impact to having a state park in your community,” Franklin added.

Also representing TPWD at the meeting were Palo Pinto Mountains State Park Superintendent John Ferguson, Park Planner Chris Beckcom and Special Assistant to the Director Kevin Good.

Collectively, these men informed Thursday's crowd that the next steps for the park will focus on planning. Once they have figures based on the plan and related costs, they will seek funding in the 84th Legislature, in 2015.

“Funding dollars are at a premium,” said Franklin, adding that the park project “will be that much stronger if we can put facilities around the lake area. If we have no worries building around the lake, people are more apt to give money.”

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