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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Fracking the Maharishi - Public Hearing Tonight!

The 715 pages of agenda details for tonight's crucial Arlington, TX City Council Meeting were a doozy to download!   As we were wading through all the minutia, we discovered these opposition letters to the Maharishi Drill Site that we did not see posted three weeks ago. 

These petitions are from the original zoning case number SUP-11-11 ~ not SUP-12-1 which was originally scheduled on the agenda for a public hearing on April 3rd.  That night, the Mayor announced it would be continued on April 24th.  We find it curious that both SUP's are now listed on the agenda.  What is the City up to?  Will these cases be heard individually or will they be combined?   We called for clarification, but were told we would have to wait and see how the council decides to handle that at the meeting. 

These business men from The Greenhouse Spa and Decision Analysts have valid concerns.  Gas drill sites do create toxic pollution, disruptive noise, and are ugly and dangerous.   

In addition, the proposed Maharishi Drill Site is about 200 feet away from a historic cemetery ~ PA Watson.  A drill site SHOULD NOT be allowed this close to a historic landmark, and fracking SHOULD NOT be done under people's graves - no matter what!

Arlington's Landmark Preservation Plan quotes Thomas B. Macaulay:

"A people which takes no pride in the noble achievements of remote ancestors, will never achieve anything worthy to be remembered with pride by remote descendants."

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

It Ain't Just Steam

Arlington's Gas Drilling Status Report does not mention that flowback operations are happening today at the Bruder Drill Site located at the intersection of I-20 and Park Springs in Arlington, TX.  Fortunately, we have Fish Creek neighbors out in the field equipped with video cameras.  

Julie Wilson, Public Relations Spokeperson for Chesapeake, states that flowback vapor is just steam. 
“The “vapor” you see from the tanks on this site is steam from hot water. […] Despite the alarming stories that are unfortunately sometimes circulated, we can assure you there are no harmful emissions to worry about.”

The evidence is in.   It's not just steam.

The City of Colleyville hired Modern Geosciences, an independent environmental consultant firm to monitor Titan's mini-frack job.   Methane, VOC's, Xylene, Toluene, Ethyl Benzene, Nitric Oxide, and Ammonia were detected during both the fracking and flowback process.  Here is the link of their findings:

We think Arlington should hire an independent consultant to monitor drilling activities, but our gas well regulator has been busy these days.  Here he is sitting on a panel with industry representatives promoting gas drilling at a recent UTA seminar.  (He's the one on the right.)

There are lots of rules for all of these drill pad sites.  Feel safer now?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

District 8

In the popular novel, The Hunger Games, heroine Katniss describes District 8 "as an ugly, urban place stinking of industrial fumes, the people housed in run down tenaments, barely a blade of grass in sight."   ~  Sound familiar?

As Arlington, TX  turns into an industrial zone, we'd like to introduce you to a candidate who is running for the At-Large Council seat in our very own District 8.     

Frisco resident Charla Hawkes Vinyard running for Arlington, TX City Council?? 

First, let's talk about that proposed zoning change for Overcoming Faith Drill Site which is still tabled ~ most likely until the elections are over.   Mind you, it is crystal clear that a gas drilling site is not compatible with the vision for the Tierra Verde overlay.  A future development for high-end exclusive homes is planned for that area.  Nevertheless,  here is how Frisco resident, Realtor,  and Arlington Planning & Zoning member, Mrs. Vinyard, voted on that case:

Also in question is her eligibility to run for Arlington City Council when she has dual residency.   Even if she is eligible, we question 1) Is this ethical?  and,  2) Will she be able to focus on Arlington's complex issues when she lives in Frisco?

Here is what the Fort Worth Star Telegram says about Charla Hawkes Vinyard:     

"The Star-Telegram reported late last month that Hawkes Vinyard apparently violated state law by claiming two homestead exemptions."

"One of the homes is at xxxx Bever Blvd. in central Arlington. She lists that address on her voter registration, her professional real estate licenses and her application to be placed on the May 12 general election ballot. The home is valued at $141,000."

"She has also taken a homestead exemption on a house valued at about $610,000 near Lewisville Lake, according to public records."

"David Weaver, a commercial and bankruptcy lawyer, said reports that Hawkes Vinyard previously claimed two homestead exemptions -- for homes in Arlington and in Denton County -- raise questions about where she really lives... "It's not about me. It's about the process and whether the city is going to follow it or not."

To read the full story click on this LINK.

Perhaps Mrs. Vinyard spends the majority of time by her Lake Lewisville home because she doesn't like living in Arlington's industrial zone.  We don't either.  We wonder if there is an extra guest bedroom for our Fish Creek neighbors when Chesapeake starts the fracking nightmare all over again.

Casting your vote does make a difference. 

When you cast your vote think about whether your choice of candidates will help beautify this city or slowly transform it into a post-apocalyptic scene like that in the Hunger Games.

For voting information click HERE.
For additional voting information call (817) 831-VOTE (8683).