Saturday, October 31, 2009

Trick or Treat

Durango went to Gateway Park for Halloween.

Incoming from... Be sure and read the FAQ's and the updates on Carter Avenue.

Friday, October 30, 2009

No comment...

Read the latest Carter Avenue update in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram daily newspaper.

Wendy says...

Please send help! Read about it in the Fort Business Business Press.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Welcome to Cowtown

Just when we think the FW Weekly can't top themselves and the Fort Worth City Council can't embarrass themselves any more, they do.

Don't miss the FW Weekly Blotch, and the comments from the actual residents of the city. You know, those that the mayor and council are accountable to.

The thin-skinned hypocrisy and borderline absurdity exhibited by Mayor Mike Moncrief at yesterday’s Fort Worth City Council meeting was extraordinary even for this ethically challenged city leader.

“This council shouldn’t have to sit up here and defend ourselves or try to have to defend ourselves,” Moncrief said.

For years, Moncrief has made a living – a very good living – on the profits of the oil and gas industry. He decided to leave the U.S. Senate and seek election as Fort Worth’s mayor at the outset of the Barnett Shale drilling boom and, with the help of other council members, has ensured the industry enjoys weak ordinances and lax oversight.

In a just world, every council member would have a noisy, dusty, ugly drill site sitting a few hundred feet from their homes. They would lose big chunks of their yards through eminent domain and have pipelines buried there. They should listen to the pounding of a drilling rig all night long for weeks on end and face a steady stream of huge 80,000 pound water trucks barreling through their neighborhoods. They should breathe invisible toxins and wonder what kind of physical problems they or their children will face in the future. They should see their homes’ property values plummet and know what it’s like to be upside down on a mortgage payment.

Weekly Praise

If you haven't read the FW Weekly yet, do so. Now.

You can't afford not to.

When the Fort Worth City Council last month granted a variance to Chesapeake Energy allowing it to drill gas wells that will be closer to homes and parkland than city ordinance generally allows, it didn't seem like that big of a change. After all, since 2008 the council has granted almost every exception to the setback rules requested by the drilling industry. But for critics of Fort Worth's approach to gas drilling regulation, the variance - for a multiple-well site just west of downtown and near the condos and townhomes of the So7 development - marked a new and troubling weakening of protections for citizens.

Alice Cranz, whose home is less than 300 feet from where Chesapeake now has permission to drill, said she can't believe "that the city council ignores their own rules. They've never met a well they didn't want and don't care whose property it ruins."

Hogan pointed out that the wells planned for the site represent a lot of money for the city and Fort Worth school district. "You've got to remember that two of the largest mineral owners for that site are the Fort Worth ISD and the City of Fort Worth," he said. "So in this case the city was looking out for its own pockets and said the heck with the homeowners."

Play Ball

Seems we aren't the only one thinking some of our elected officials are out of touch with our residents and their city. Remember what the Tarrant Regional Water Districts priorities are suppose to be, maybe they need a reminder.

Letter to the Editor in today's Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Field of priorities — not

I guess Jim Lane, Tarrant Regional Water District board member and former Fort Worth councilman, must be a little behind on current events. Some City of Fort Worth employees lost their jobs, and those who remain, except for police and firefighters, have taken a pay cut to make up for a budget shortfall. Surely no reasonable person who knows this would suggest that Fort Worth should buy a baseball field.

— John Langevin, Fort Worth


The Fort Worth Crime Control and Prevention District (CCPD) is funded by 1/2 of a cent of your sales tax dollars, and for this coming year will be $50,625,926.00! That number represents a huge public investment, and we have been making that commitment in the police department for the past 14 years. Just ball park numbers here, but that would represent somewhere in the neighborhood of $600 MILLION funding for our police over that 14 year run of the CCPD, and clearly demonstrates that we have gone above and beyond in our support of and for our police department.

As you consider your stance on the renewal of the Crime Control and Prevention District (CCPD), please consider that all of the programs that are currently being discussed and offered as a benefit to YOU such as the gang unit, Code Blue, COPS, graffiti, canine unit and neighborhood police officers and districts could be funded with HALF (1/4 cent) of the money (SEE BELOW) currently going into the CCPD. Wouldn't it be nice to have the other half of those available dollars for repairs to our neighborhood streets, keeping all libraries open and all community centers functioning at 100% percent capacity...and still have money left over?

Well it can happen, but because the CCPD Board did not give us the option on the ballot, the only way that it CAN happen is to defeat the CCPD on the ballot on November 3rd and then bring it back as a more efficient and productive CCPD in May of 2010.....funded with 1/4 cent of our available sales tax dollars.....and then rededicate 1/4 cent for neighborhood streets, libraries, and community centers complete with youth programs.

Consider it a "wake up call" election for the CCPD by voting against the CCPD this be reborn anew in May of 2010 without one single police officer loosing their job, no closure of Neighborhood Policing Districts, COPS/Code Blueand the Gang Unit will continue to function as before.

Also consider that the current term of the CCPD doesn't expire until May of 2010, and even then the district has reserve funds to function for quite some time after even if the district were not renewed in May. In order to get real crime reductions (greater than the reported 35%) we need creative thinking and much greater accountability and independence within the CCPD.....AND please, it would be most helpful to "we the people" to loose the words would, could, should, might and maybe.....all of these words lead us only to unproductive speculation at a time when we need real facts and figures, and those "facts and figures" need to come from a source NOT benefiting from the dollars being spent.

Stay tuned. More will follow when our campaign on the CCPD continues in earnest with public meetings and discussion.


What a positive way to support neighborhoods!

Early voting is NOW through October 30th.

Election Day
November 3, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

THEY said

Hell No.

Bowing to intense public pressure, (GUESS WHO) says it will not drill for natural gas within the upstate New York watershed, an environmentally sensitive region that supplies unfiltered water to nine million people.

The people of New York are making noise because gas drillers are jeopardizing their water too. Don't miss the entire article on Splashdown!

cc: Residents of Fort Worth

Dear Ms. Hicks-

As your appointee to the now defunct Urban Forestry Board I enthusiastically support a fine with no negotiated settlement for Chesapeake Energy for illegally clear-cutting 231 trees.

For the Fort Worth City Council to even consider this deal justifies my concerns for elimination of the board. The gas drilling ordinance already allows generous exemptions for this industry that have resulted in the tragic loss of thousands of acres of valuable Fort Worth green space.

This action has, at minimum, the appearance of deceit on the part of city staffers who advised and assured UFB members that the trees and green space of Fort Worth would remain well protected by the Tree Ordinance after the UFB duties were transferred to another board.

Further, this action indicates a vital need to reestablish the UFB with strengthened rules. As I stated in my previous letter to you of May 24, 2009, the negative impact of gas production on air quality alone requires the city to go above and beyond what other cities do to protect green space.

Several air quality studies bear out my long-held contention that Fort Worth air quality has been and is being eroded by gas drilling. We need to send a message that no person or corporation is beyond the law.

The spirit of our Tree Ordinance is defiled when we allow arrogant and powerful industries to undermine what we know to be true and just.


Don Young

More WHO said WHAT

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram daily newspaper seems to be doing a much better job as of late concerning the truth about the Carter Avenue pipeline.

The Trinity River Vision Authority doesn’t want to complicate its ambitious project that includes Gateway Park north of I-30 at Beach.

In fact, Chesapeake already has gotten easements under several dozen properties on the street, including some acquired through eminent domain powers allowed under state law. The main roadblock at this point is that Chesapeake can’t lay pipe under city streets at intersections without council approval.

But modest homeowners shouldn’t have to end up helpless against more influential interests. The benefits of the Barnett Shale won’t look so good if the neighborhoods that make Fort Worth a great place to live lose out when it isn’t necessary.

Keep making noise and asking questions! Due to the resolve of a group of concerned citizens, somebody had to start listening. Remind them WHO this city belongs to.

Remember, if it happens on Carter, YOU could be next.

More "Visions", More Flooding

There were two stories back to back that caught our attention last night. The first was Fort Worth planners meeting with approximately 200 residents to learn about the "Lake Worth Vision". Restaurants, shops, parks, etc. at Lake Worth, think Trinity River Vision on a hopefully smaller, less expensive scale.

Without any pause, the next story was about repeat flooding in Collin County. Homes with 2-3 feet of water inside. They showed footage from the same area that was hit in the 2007 floods. Watch the story at

In an area of Celina known as "Old Town," drainage has been an issue for years.

The frustrated homeowners say drainage problems are nothing new to the neighborhood. News 8 did a story on Alabama Street in June of 2007. A new culvert helped, but didn't eliminate the problem. The homeowners believe the city could do more to help the drainage situation.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Can you hear them now?

Speak up Fort Worth! We're listening!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

WHO wants to know?

It's been asked before, why exactly couldn't the Carter Avenue pipeline go on the opposite side of I-30?

If the option was seriously being considered, what do those representing the residents of Fort Worth have to say about the mess the drillers have made of Gateway Park while they take water from the Trinity river on property owned by the Tarrant Regional Water District that is earmarked for the Trinity River Vision and happens to be making millions because its covered in gas wells owned by Chesapeake?

Ask them.

WHO said WHAT again?

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram article about the Carter Avenue pipeline does a good job at keeping up with WHO said WHAT.

Chesapeake told city officials and neighborhood residents last week that the department won’t allow the pipeline to run parallel to the highway because of safety concerns.

Chesapeake also said the pipeline couldn’t run north of I-30 because it would interfere with the Trinity River Vision redevelopment project.

Chesapeake announced last week that it wanted the City Council to approve a street crossing for the route in November and that construction would begin in December.

Maribel Chavez, Transportation Department district engineer, said Friday that the pipeline could run parallel to the freeway if Chesapeake met certain safety criteria.

"I never told them, 'No, you cannot be in the public right of way,’ " Chavez said.

J.D. Granger, executive director of the Trinity River Vision Authority, said his staff is working on an alternative route that would run north of the freeway near the river.

Company representatives said last week that other routes have technical problems, such as topography and a lack of construction space, that make it infeasible to build the pipeline parallel to the highway or the Trinity River Vision property.

Good job Fort Worth residents! Keep making noise and hold THEM accountable for what they say!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Word of the Day

Keeping up with the developments of Carter Avenue and DISH, TX we missed Mr. Woodard's latest gem in the Fort Worth Business Press.

Thanks to one of our readers for pointing it out!

Eminent domain

In the 18th century a biographer named James Granger illustrated his Biographical History of England by inserting engravings or photographs collected from other books. He would mutilate and cannibalize other books to obtain material for his book. From his modus operandi comes the word “grangerize.”

If an eminent domain-mandated two-bit dime-sized billion dollar boondoggle Town Lake ever covers up the post card natural beauty of the picturesque Clear Fork-West Fork confluence, and children of the future ask their teacher, “Where is the confluence?,” it seems to me the proper tutorial reply would have to be: “It was grangerized.”

– Don Woodard, Fort Worth

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Amen Sister

No one says it quite like TXSharon.

Incoming from the Watchdog

Go to Facebook and join - STOP the Carter Avenue Pipeline!

And don't miss the meeting tonight!

Remember, your street could be next!


exactly is Carter Avenue?

According to the Yahoo Map service, it's directly across I-30 from Gateway Park

(including "Disposal Rd" what a fitting name).

WHO has control of the park property?

The Tarrant Regional Water District.
It's good to have connections.


Dear Neighbors,

Recent extensive news reports, printed and broadcast on radio and television, tell us the Barnett Shale remains very active. Come to this Thursday’s meeting to learn the latest news concerning the New Beginnings Church proposed drill site, and how it will affect the quality of life in our neighborhood, and the Carter Avenue proposed pipeline and other gas-related issues affecting our homes and lifestyle.

There is proposed new activity at 2201 Oak Hill Road. (the empty brown house)

Come to Thursday’s meeting to learn more.

BOHN Meeting:
7:00 pm Thursday, Oct. 22 at Trinity Christian Church
6020 Meadowbrook Drive, Fort Worth 76112.
Refreshments served at 6:30 pm

If you did not get a yellow newsletter on your door, please forward this to your neighbors, and encourage them to come to this important meeting.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Welcome to Shale

We were a fan of Jerry Lobdill back when he was helping Gary Hogan run for District 3. We are even more so now.

If you need another reason to wonder why YOU should be concerned about the pipeline on Carter Avenue, and the deceptive practices of the gas industry, read Mr. Lobdill's guest column in the FW Weekly.

If a lot of your neighbors also signed, the gas company now has powers you were never told about. The lessee can essentially do whatever he wishes on the surface to produce the gas under your property. He can hold your property hostage for decades by performing inexpensive, nonproductive tasks. He can, and from all historical evidence will, pollute any surface location where he installs mineral extraction equipment. He does not care what you think about it.

Equipment that is no longer functional still leaks carcinogens into the ground. The surface rights owners have been denied access to areas on their property. So, while you've been told verbally that there'll be no effects on
your surface usage, that is not an enforceable contract provision, and the lessee, and his landman representative, knew it when he or she asked you to sign.

They didn't tell you that each drilling pad will require a 16-inch gathering line to carry away the gas to a processing facility or that right-of-way for this line can be taken by eminent domain if necessary or that the line will lie as close as 20 feet from home foundations without regard to the possible presence of enclosed spaces under the homes that can cause accumulation of unodorized gas and subsequent explosions in the event of a leak.

The city has acted as a co-conspirator by approving the industry's activities and helping create a bandwagon atmosphere that blinds mineral rights owners with dollar signs.

Statistically, those numbers imply that when industry and the City of Fort Worth have enabled a full build-out of the gas field here, there should be roughly one such incident every six months in Fort Worth.

Texas Flooding Again

The National Weather Service in Fort Worth has reported the Trinity River will rise above flood stage by early Thursday morning. It will then crest at 34 feet. The last time this happened was 9-11-2007.

They also said streams and creeks are already full from the earlier rain and heavy downpours are expected through midnight.

We hear they are having some flooding problems on Northside Drive in Fort Worth as well as in Keller, and part of the Haltom City trailer park was evacuated, again. Same places as in 2007.

Remember what happens when, nothing was ever done.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Why YOU should care...

Why should you care if Chesapeake puts a pipeline on Carter Avenue in Fort Worth?

Because if it happens here, it can happen anywhere.

YOU could be next.

The gas company can show up and claim your yard. They'll offer you a small amount for it (IT being the loss of use, loss of value, loss of safety and security for the rest of your life) and if you say no? Then they will take you to court and take it by eminent domain.

Over a year ago the gas drillers showed up in their slick suits and shiny cars, on this beautiful tree lined street with its multi-cultural families and begin intimidating and bullying the residents into submission. Some residents on Carter have limited English skills. Some are disabled. Some are elderly. The gas company offered a minimal amount of money for their property, their safety and peace of mind.

One neighbor made a lot of noise and got some media attention. That neighbor got more money. Not enough, but what are your options really?

If you refused to sign you were told they will take you to court and sue you for your own property. They will get their way and you will get nothing. (Ever seen Grapes of Wrath? Durango has an excellent point, be sure and watch the video.) Think about this, how does a family making a small income hire an attorney to fight the biggest industry in the city? One that is IN with the city? Residents would need money for an attorney, time to take off work, transportation to and from court, child care and so forth. Since you have no choice, all you can do is sign, life as you once knew it is now over.

That leads us to the lone hold out. The one person still willing to say no, you cannot take my land, my home, my safety to pump gas down my street. An individual willing to stand up for what is right and just. This resident has appeared in court against the big industry alone. They have learned as much about the shady dealings of the industry as can be learned. They are also still being ignored by Fort Worth city leadership and, for the most part, metroplex media.

The reporters came in full force to the meeting on Carter last week, and after their 30 second sound bite on air, it was all but forgotten. This, even though the reporters the Lone Resident spoke with were shocked and disgusted by the deceptive tactics being used last week by the gas industry. The reporters also thought this issue had been laid to rest. It was, during the recent Fort Worth elections. The industry hoped no one was paying attention anymore. More people are paying attention than they think. All of us should be.

We are told that Chesapeake plans to lay the pipeline next month, even though they do not have the proper permits or permission from the Lone Resident hold out. Arrogant? They can afford to be. When you have unlimited resources and the backing of the Mayor and council, WHO is going to tell you no?

The residents of Fort Worth, that's WHO.

Stay tuned...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Welcome to Texas?

Eminent domain, political corruption and gas drillers gone wild!

It is the modern day old west. Sad.

While we were watching Carter Avenue and Dish, Texas residents fight for their homes and lives, TXSharon has been screaming for help. Read those, and all in between. Then send them to everyone you know. TXSharon and our contributor/watchdog, Don Young will be on the air Tuesday!!

Check out the FW Weekly cover story. You won't believe it either.

Our water is in jeopardy, our air, our property. Our lives.

Please send help. Hurry!

Citizens of the Shale

Say What?

If you don't play close attention to the daily newspaper, you might not realize the recent Trinity River Vision article was the Fort Worth Way of saying, consider it done.

Show of hands, WHO saw this was coming when the daily paper recently pointed out the Fort Worth Cats home, LaGrave field, financial problems could be "in the way" of the TRV? And some of you held out hope when for once, you agreed with Mr. Schnurman.

The problem is that the city doesn’t have any extra money. The only public entity with surplus funds is the water district. Its mission is to provide water and flood control, and its full-throated support of the Trinity River Vision is already pushing the limit.

It has to draw a line somewhere, and the minor-league stadium is the place.

We are glad someone draws a line with our money, somewhere.

Where does former councilman Jim Lane, draw the line? The Fort Worth Star-Telegram daily newspaper found out.

"We’re going to need that land for the Trinity River Vision Project," Lane said. "It can be bought now, and I just hate to see it go away. I challenge all of the political entities to make this happen now. We can buy it now, or someday it might be in the hands of foreign bankers and we could be forced to pay five, 10, 20 times or more than we would now."

The only one of those entities not facing a financial crunch is the water district.

Doesn't your water bill continue to rise? Do your neighborhoods continue to flood?

Seems like there is a better use for our money.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

She's back!

And as usual, we are glad. Her latest Letter to the editor in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram speaks volumes.

The Star-Telegram recently reported that the U.S. has stockpiled so much natural gas that its storage capacity will soon be exhausted. No mention was made of this oversupply in a Friday report that the Fort Worth City Council is hustling through Chesapeake’s application to cross city streets in order to run a natural gas pipeline through Carter Avenue, a stable neighborhood in an east-side area. Why the hurry?

In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court gave governments the right to take private property from citizens and give it to private corporations. Since then it’s been "Katy, bar the door" for fat cats. Going a step further, the state of Texas gave pipeline companies the same right to condemn private land as governments have. Gov. Rick Perry vetoed a bill that would have allowed pipelines to run along state highways.

Where will it end, folks? Do you think they will stop at your doorstep? As naturalist John Muir said, "Nothing 'dollarable’ is safe."

— Guelma B. Hopkins, Fort Worth

Friday, October 16, 2009

Carter Update

See TXSharon for the latest.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

So what happened on Carter?

The Carter Avenue pipeline meeting was held in Fort Worth tonight. Well, two of them were. The one residents had on Carter and one Chesapeake had, which the Carter residents were not invited to. To be fair, a couple were, though we hear the names and addresses were wrong.

Lone Star is told Channel 33, 8, 11 and 5 were there. And the daily newspaper. Good. Someone is listening.

Guess now we wait and see WHO says what...

Carter Avenue

Check TXSharon for info about today's Carter/Chesapeake meeting.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Good question

A comment on our previous post about Carter Ave. reminded us of an earlier post and letter from Fort Worth. We'll copy some of it below. You can read all of it here.

Here's an interesting letter we received that sheds some light on why an "alternative route" was needed. (Aug 08)


I would like to provide you an update you on where we stand on reviewing the options for the Thomas well site. I met with Chesapeake more than a week ago to discuss the various pipeline routes. They owe me an exhibit of all of the routes they considered and an itemization of the impediments to each option. I expect to get that document this week. We discussed extensively the property north of I-30 that is controlled by the Tarrant Regional Water District. There is an existing pipeline in that area that is scheduled to be moved with the Trinity River Vision project. It appears that the remaining area will not be sufficient to accomodate an additional line. However, I am awaiting written confirmation about this from Woody Frossard at the Tarrant Regional Water District who is also the project liaison with the Corp of Engineers.

We also discussed the option of the pipeline under Carter Avenue ; however, with the staging/boring of the pipeline, there is an entire house that would have to be condemned/removed to accomodate this path which is undesirable. This leaves the various perimeter routes on which I am awaiting the engineer's evaluations.
Again, all of these items are still under discussion until we have definitive answers from the various parties involved. In the meantime, no permits will be issued. Please allow us to complete our discussions and we will update you as possible.


Susan Alanis
Planning and Development

Your Thursday Plans have changed...

Thursday's pipeline meeting concerning Carter Avenue has been cancelled. WHY?

That depends on WHO you ask.

Sources say Chesapeake has cancelled the meeting due to "a conflict with the city". Huh? Wasn't the meeting to be held at a college?

Only a few residents on Carter were notified of the "public" meeting.

Other sources tell us Kathleen Hicks claims she didn't know there was a meeting tomorrow. Emails show Chesapeake claims she was scheduled to attend.

WHO do you believe?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Carter Ave...again

We've received many emails from many sources about the mysterious Carter Avenue pipeline in the past 24 hours. Someone recently asked, WHY it's on the front burner again? They thought it had all been said and done, Kathleen Hicks was on the news awhile back concerning it (though NOT on Carter Ave).

It was moved to the back burner because there was an election going on.

Elections and eminent domain don't mix. Just ask those involved in the Trans-Texas Corridor.

Seems only some residents on Carter received the invitation. WHY? Good question. Another good question, will your council and mayor be attending? Ask them.

If you live on the Barnett Shale - go to the meeting Thursday. Ask questions as if your life depended on it. Because it does.

Yesterday - Dish, TX., today, Carter Avenue...
Question is, WHO's next?

Dish leads the way

Learn about the meeting on

Once again, we salute Mayor Tillman for his dedication to his town and residents.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Got Plans Thursday?

You do now.

TX Midstream Gas invitation:

Please join us for an informational presentation discussing the proposed pipeline route along Carter Avenue and the analysis of all Thomas to Hickman alternatives. TMGS representatives will be available to answer your questions during Q&A period following the presentation.

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 15th 6:00 - 7:30 pm

Texas Wesleyan University 1201 Wesleyan Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76105

McFadden Science Center Lecture Hall, corner of E Rosedale Ave & Wesleyan St

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Going Twice

Tonight on the local news ( they discussed the failed Trans-Texas Corridor again.

A citizen they interviewed stated "It's been ten years, at least, and nothing has been done." Sound familiar?

Guess which group is involved? The North Central Texas Council of Governments. Mike Morris, from the COG, says there was "an irrational, emotional initiative with regard to the Trans-Texas Corridor..."

The citizen then states, "Get off their butts and do something, make a decision and correct the problem."

They did do something, they spent $60 million dollars. And they are about to start all over again.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Trinity Trash

We like when Durango is out and about. He learns things and gets great pics. Check out all the pics of the water stealing pipeline in the Trinity River and the Gateway Park propaganda signs for the Trinity River boondoggle.

Just don't read them after 10:00 p.m., that might be illegal.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Going to Dish

Saturday, go out and support the Watchdog. Help save Fort Worth!

Monday, go for a drive and support Dish, TX!

Come to DISH, TX

On Monday, October 12th at 7pm the Town of DISH will hold a public meeting to discuss the findings of recent air quality study commissioned by the Town.

Please attend and spread the word to your friends and neighbors. We need you to show your support for local government and citizens addressing toxic emissions in their community!

Town of DISH public meetingOctober 12th at 7 pm5413 Tim Donald RoadDISH, Texas 76247

Learn about the health risks of gas facilities in your community The results of DISH's air study revealed high concentrations of carcinogenic and neurotoxin compounds near and on residential properties near the megaplex of compressors stations operating at the corner of Tim Donald and Strader Roads in DISH.

These compressors have multiple engines and support equipment, such as condensate tanks, that emit fugitive toxic emissions. The report also indicated that many of the compounds in the air exceeded the Short-term and Long-term Effects Screening Levels according to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality regulations.

We need your help to support science, public healthPublic health and safety may be best served by immediately shutting down these compressors until they can be operated safely with emission controls. However, The Town of DISH is taking tremendous heat from the oil and gas industry, who like Big Tobacco and other industries, are simply belittling valid concerns and studies as "bad science."

We need you to turn out to this meeting and support the efforts of local government and citizens to gather emissions data and hold companies accountable for health impacts!

Woodard Words

Read below for a Letter to the Editor from the daily paper. When it comes to the Trinity River "Vision", no one sees it clearer.

Poetic Justice

The Editorial Board has many talented writers. I do not know who wrote Monday’s "Hope for Heritage Plaza," but it is an exquisite, serene and beautiful piece of writing. It would make Realtors describing houses for sale in the Star-Telegram envious. It should be entered for a Pulitzer Prize. It would win!

"In its prime, Heritage Plaza was the center stone sitting atop the lush green jewel box that is the 112-acre Heritage Park along the south side of Fort Worth’s Trinity River bluffs.

"This urban oasis, which marks the location of the original military outpost that gave the city its name, provided an expansive view northward toward the convergence of the Clear and West forks of the Trinity River. The terraced walkways, soothing waterfalls and canopied live oaks brought calm to visitors who sought them out."

In fact, it sounds like something that might have flown from my pen in one of my letters to the editor. But, of course, as Editorial Director J.R. Labbe well knows, I never would have substituted "convergence" for "confluence." And I would have added the postscript that you better look at it now because once it is covered by the Town Lake, it, like Ripley Arnold who marveled at its beauty, belongs to history.

— Don Woodard Sr., Fort Worth


Fort Worth's Best Watchdog, Don Young, wants YOU!

Saturday! Want to be in a movie? Read on.

My friend Paul John Roach, senior minister at Unity Church of Fort Worth, is concerned about how gas drilling in Fort Worth affects the entire planet. He reached out to several other groups who shared his concern. Their concern evolved into an idea to make a video inspired by the project.

What is 350?

International Day of Climate Action is designed to raise awareness about the importance of reducing CO2 emissions on planet Earth. When atmospheric concentrations of CO2 (carbon dioxide) are above 350 parts per million, climate change kicks in. Right now, thanks to fossil fuel production and burning, planet Earth is shrouded in about 390 ppm of CO2. Natural gas production in Fort Worth and the Barnett Shale region is a big part of the problem.

Back to Paul's video project.

Paul describes the project as guerrilla-style filmmaking, meaning, a small budget, free-form script and a lot of passion. This saturday morning, Paul and a professional crew will film concerned citizens at gas well sites near downtown Fort Worth. At about 1:30 p.m. they will arrive at Tandy Hills Natural Area, one of the most important and valuable green spaces in Fort Worth, to shoot additional video footage.

That's where you come in.

With the scenic Tandy Hills prairie as a backdrop we aim to send a positive message to elected officials of how important it is to regulate CO2 emissions. All you have to do is show up and demonstrate your message. After editing the video will be posted on YouTube. Check the website for more info and ideas.

When: Saturday, October 10, 2009, at 1:30 p.m.
Where: Tandy Hills Natural Area, 3400 View Street, Fort Worth
Bring: Your message to the world in words, pictures, dance, art, poetry or just by showing up. Kids are welcome and encouraged to participate! Bring drinking water.

Hey Mansfield

Here's something closer to your neck of the woods.

Arlington residents speaking out against gas well at UTA.

Read the article from the daily newspaper here.

The signs said the university got millions from Carrizo Oil & Gas for the lease while the neighbors received only noise, fumes and vibrations they say are "keeping kids awake" and causing "severe headaches."

"Air and sound quality at the site are frequently measured and assessed by Carrizo, the City of Arlington, and appropriate state agencies, and they are well within established standards."

DenBraber gathered nearly a dozen signatures from neighbors on a letter she sent to the Texas Railroad Commission asking the agency to prevent Carrizo from drilling in urban areas or at the university. She said she never received a response.

Carrizo paid $391,000 for the right to explore for natural gas on campus and made a one-time donation of $400,000 to the university, according to the Star-Telegram archives.

UT-Arlington receives a 27 percent royalty on any gas extracted from its property and in January received its first royalty payment of $528,495.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

$60 Million Dollars

That is the amount wasted in the Trans-Texas Corridor per WFAA. "TXDOT says after the TTC collapse it will listen better to balance property rights and transportation needs."

Did you hear that? They will LISTEN better.
Did you get your money's worth?

Kay Bailey Bailey Hutchison is now being endorsed by the Texas Farm Bureau. They were vocal against the eminent domain of the TTC. Why isn't Kay against eminent domain in Fort Worth for TRV? Ask her.

For Sale

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram daily newspaper has another TRV article you can't afford to miss.

LaGrave Field and surrounding land for sale.

This is a scary prospect for the backers of the Trinity River Vision, which aims to reroute a river and create an urban island about the size of the central business district.

This is more than a case of simply wanting development to occur; the Trinity River Vision project depends on it.

Its finance plan hinges on construction creating higher property taxes in the area, with that money being used for land acquisition and other expenses.

Its revised finance plan assumes no growth for three to five years, and to keep the project moving, it has arranged for a loan from the Tarrant Regional Water District.

Baseball fans are most concerned about the fate of the Cats, and the team has a pressing deadline to secure commitments for next season. But in the big financial picture, the team is insignificant, and LaGrave Field is more of an albatross than an asset.

The problem is that the city doesn’t have any extra money. The only public entity with surplus funds is the water district. Its mission is to provide water and flood control, and its full-throated support of the Trinity River Vision is already pushing the limit.

It has to draw a line somewhere, and the minor-league stadium is the place.

We're glad to hear there is a line somewhere...finally.
If the Water District has surplus funds, why did your water bill increase again?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

It's your money

And they want it. All.

Read the entire article "Despite cost concerns, Fort Worth council signals Trinity Uptown support" from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram daily newspaper.

City Council members are concerned about some aspects of the $909 million plan to pay for the Trinity Uptown project. But it appears a majority of them will ultimately vote to approve the plan.

Wait, they are concerned, but going to do it anyway? Ask them why.

The Fort Worth City Council is one of several government agencies involved in funding the Trinity River project.

The price of the project jumped from $576 million in March to $909 million in July. The City Council is only funding $26.6 million of the project directly.

Where did we get $26.6 million? Aren't we $50 million short? How much does the TRV department/staff cost?

The Tarrant Regional Water District is expected to pay about $226 million to the independent Trinity River Vision Authority get the project started.

The Water District was created to reduce flooding and provide clean water supply.

The city is paying $765,000 this week to move its auto pound out of the way of the project, and it might have to pay to relocate the police and fire academy.

More things "in the way" of TRV.

"There are other costs to the taxpayers; it’s not $26.6 million," Zimmerman said. Moncrief said the city would likely have to pay those costs even if the Trinity River project weren’t built.


The Trinity River Vision is expected to cost $909 million. Here’s a breakdown of who pays what: $26.6 million: City of Fort Worth $11 million: Tarrant County $64.4 million: Tarrant Regional Water District $320 million: Tax increment finance district $487.8 million: Federal sources.

Do you pay Fort Worth taxes? Tarrant County taxes? Water District taxes? Federal taxes? Then you will be paying for TRV. All of it. What benefit will you receive?

Moncreif says it will take "political courage to move project forward". We think it would take it not to. Well, that and common sense.

Just say No

The Trans Texas Corridor is dead in the water. Reason? People don't like eminent domain.

"The reason that's being given for the no-build option is that people don't want it," Meadows said. "They said 'Hell no.' "

In January, state officials announced the Trans-Texas Corridor was essentially dead, in large part because of public outrage and a backlash from state legislators who felt the transportation department had overstepped its bounds.

What does that say for Fort Worth and the Tarrant Regional Water District? They have overstepped their bounds and people have said "Hell no" to the Trinity River Vision.

WHO is listening?

You can read the entire article at here.


Letter to the Editor in today's local paper. Sorry Mr.Huff, looks like it will be awhile.

Once upon a time, not in the too distant past, it was easy to be proud to say, "I’m from Fort Worth." Now, not so much.

We have City Council members going all over the place at city expense, closing city swimming pools next year, ending the best program the city ever came up with in the Day Labor Center and throwing people out of work. At the same time, all or most of the City Council could afford to pay their own expenses if they want to see foreign places, the people who used the swimming pools will have no place to go, there is no one place to look for a job and our fine mayor rides around in a fine car he doesn’t own or drive.

Where do we end up? How long will it be before we can once again say, "I’m from Fort Worth and proud of it"?

— Edwin Huff, Morgan

Sunday, October 4, 2009

From the Watchdog

That was not a false alarm that FWCanDo started sounding in 2005. It just took awhile for tests to prove that gas drilling in the Barnett Shale is dangerous to your health. Now, in 2009, we finally have 4 important pieces of evidence:

> Dr. Armendariz'/EDF study
> Dish, Texas study
> Westworth Village, Texas study
> TCEQ infra-red videos.

Air and water baseline studies should have been done by the City of Fort Worth back in 2005 before drilling was allowed, but the city refused. Why? Here's what FW Asst. Attorney, Sarah Fullenwider, said in response to that question by me at a Gas Drilling Task Farce meeting in 2005:

"The State of Texas does not require us to do any studies so we aren't going to be doing any."

Read the latest gas drilling disaster denial in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram daily newspaper.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


The FW Weekly tells it like it is. Somebody has to.

This paper has published numerous stories about people’s water wells being contaminated or dried up after a gas well began drilling nearby. Every time, the energy companies denied responsibility and said there’s no proof, you go get your expert and we’ll get our 12 experts, you go get your lawyer and we’ll get our team of lawyers and we’ll all meet in court…for many, many years until you’re bled dry, sucker.

Tarrant County and the Barnett Shale aren’t unique. The same fight is being waged across the country, wherever drilling is occurring.

Back in 2005, the Weekly was just perking up to the potential for water problems. The industry, of course, was way ahead of the game, already getting exemptions passed in their favor. Lobbyists and their wheelbarrows filled with cash have a way of encouraging exemptions.

Read the article from the Weekly here. Be sure to click all the links.

Best of FW Weekly

The long awaited Best Of edition is out on the streets now! Durango has a good post on it. Check it out here.

Kudos to our frequent contributor, Don Young for being voted best Watchdog!!

And Kudos to Mayor Moncrief for continuing to hold the Politician Most Likely to Sell Grandma to the Highest Bidder slot. Reminds us, nothing was ever done - it just got worse. Sorry, Grandma.