City hires attorney for help with BRA plan

It was not a unanimous vote, but the Granbury City Council agreed Tuesday night to pay a $5,000 retainer to an attorney for legal advice regarding the Brazos River Authority’s (BRA) Water Management Plan.

Earlier this year, commissioners with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) deferred a decision on the BRA’s request for additional water rights pending a water management study.

A number of local elected officials and members of the Lake Granbury Waterfront Owners Association (LGWOA) traveled to Austin in January to express concerns to the TCEQ that water rights from Lake Granbury and the Brazos are stretched to the limit. Low lake levels draw criticism from lakefront property owners and others.

Council member Mickey Parson, who made the motion to retain attorney Ken Ramirez for legal advice pertaining to the BRA water study, indicated that time is of the essence because of a planned TCEQ meeting in mid-November.

“We need to be ready to move on the 14th,” he said, referring to the month of November.

Mitch Tyra seconded Parson’s motion, and Tony Allen also voted in favor of hiring Ramirez. However, council members Laurel Pirkle and Nin Hulett voted against.

Hulett said the money paid by the city would be for nothing more than “busy work,” and that the City Council was “getting the cart before the horse.”

“I don’t think we even ought to look at this thing,” he said.

Parson disagreed and noted that Ramirez has a good track record with water-related issues.