Residents question BRA water fee

January 8, 2014

By DEBBIE SCHNEIDER

With the lake down 8.48 feet, the majority of boat docks on Lake Granbury are dry.

The lake is so low, in fact, many waterfront owners cannot even see the lake from their property.

But the annual water use invoice from the Brazos River Authority (BRA) has been mailed, and some property owners are not too happy.

An annual fee of $45.95 is assessed by the BRA for the privilege of installing water lines and a pump to use lake water to sprinkle the lawn.

Don Oper, who has owned property in Comanche Harbor for about seven to eight years, is not pleased with some wording on the invoice.

With the lake down, he is not able to get lake water with his pump.

“The invoice indicates that you may call the BRA if you wish to discontinue service,” Oper explained.

He called – and found out there’s more to the process than a phone call.

Oper said he was informed that he could opt out, but would be charged a $25 fee when applying for a new permit.

“I was okay with that, until she told me that I would need to remove the water line and the pump. That information should have been presented on the invoice,” Oper stated.

BRA spokeswoman Judi Pierce said that numerous people have called regarding payment.

“We’ve explained that an owner may avoid the fee by removing their pump and contacting the BRA to cancel their permit.”

An inspector visits the property to confirm removal, and the permit is canceled.

“If they’d like to reinstate their permit at a later date, they may print out a form from our website at http://www.brazos.org/gbPermits.asp and contact the local office,” Pierce said.

The invoice states that the dock fees will not be assessed, effective Jan. 1, 2014. However, the residential water use permit is due by Feb. 1.

According to information on the brazos.org website, the permit allows up to 5,000 gallons of water to be drawn on a monthly basis.

“Lake Granbury is a water supply reservoir and water levels will fluctuate; therefore, a permit may need to modify pumping equipment in order to maintain continuous access to the water supply. Nevertheless, access is not guaranteed in all circumstances,” according to the website.

TO REACH BRA

The number to reach the BRA regarding the permit is 1-888-922-6272.

[email protected] | 817-573-7066, ext. 255

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