Conservation Committee

Wednesday, 9:00 am, August 26, 2009

Will Rogers Memorial Center
Amon G. Carter Jr. Exhibits Hall
South Texas Room/Cactus Room Area
3400 Burnett Tandy Drive
Fort Worth, TX 76107

Commissioner Mark E. Bivins, Committee Chair
Scott Boruff, Committee Liaison

Approval of Previous Meeting Minutes

  1. Update on TPWD Progress in Implementing the TPWD Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan – Permission to Publish Rules Related to Implementation of Legislation during 81st Texas Legislature
    • Galveston Bay Wetland Restoration
    • Land and Water Resources Conservation & Recreation Plan
    • Wildlife Action Plan
    • Ocelot Translocation
    • Climate Change Workshop
    • Lesser Prairie Chicken Conservation
    • Audubon Sheldon Memorandum of Agreement
    Staff: Carter Smith
  2. Land Acquisition - Hardin County - 1,500+- Acres at Village Creek State Park - Permission to Begin the Public Notice and Input Process
    Staff: Ted Hollingsworth
  3. Land Donation - Bastrop County - 37.36 Acres Adjacent to Buescher State Park (Action Item No. 21)
    Staff: Ted Hollingsworth
  4. New Environmental Review Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) - Permission to Publish Proposed Changes in the Texas Register
    Staff: Ted Hollingsworth

Committee Agenda Item No. 1
Presenter: Carter Smith

Conservation Committee
Update on TPWD Progress in Implementing the TPWD Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan
August 26, 2009

I. Executive Summary: Executive Director Carter Smith will briefly update the Commission on the status of the agency's efforts to implement the Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan (the Plan).

II. Discussion: In 2001, the 77th Texas Legislature directed that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) develop a Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan (Tex. Park & Wild. Code §11.104). In November 2002, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission (the Commission) adopted the first Plan. A revised Plan was adopted by the Commission in January 2005. The Plan is available on the TPWD web site. Executive Director Carter Smith will update the Conservation Committee on TPWD's recent progress in achieving the Plan's Goals and Objectives as they relate to the Conservation Committee.

The Plan consists of 8 Goals and a total of 56 Objectives. The Goals stated in the Plan are as follows:


Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Presenter: Ted Hollingsworth

Conservation Committee
Land Acquisition - Hardin County
1500+- Acres at Village Creek State Park
August 26, 2009

I. Executive Summary: Staff has been working closely with The Conservation Fund on a transaction that would more than double the size of Village Creek State Park by bargain purchase.

II. Discussion: Sixty-nine mile long Village Creek is one of the last free-flowing streams in east Texas, and is home to rare fish and mussels. Village Creek State Park, consists of 1090 acres, including almost 2 miles of frontage on the creek, was opened to the public in 1994. The park consists of longleaf pine uplands, slope forests, and floodplain wetlands, including baygals and cypress swamps. As the City of Lumberton expands, housing continues to be built along the park boundary.

A large tract of undeveloped timber land, contiguous with the park to the south, and including additional creek frontage, has been identified as a high priority for acquisition and addition to the park for many years. Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) staff has been working with The Conservation Fund to identify a process for acquiring and protecting this tract. Through a creative combination of mitigation and grant funding, The Conservation Fund is able to offer the tract to TPWD for approximately one quarter of its value.

Staff requests permission to begin the public notice and input process.

Attachments – 3

  1. Exhibit A – Location Map
  2. Exhibit B – Vicinity Map
  3. Exhibit C – Site Map

Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Exhibit A

Location of Village Creek State Park - Hardin County

Location of Village Creek State Park in relation to the State of Texas

For help in interpreting this map, please contact Ted Hollingsworth.


Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Exhibit B

Map Showing Location of Village Creek State Park and Vicinity

Location of Village Creek State Park in relation to Lumberton, Orange, Beaumont and Port Arthur.

For help in interpreting this map, please contact Ted Hollingsworth.


Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Exhibit C

Site Map - Subject Tract in Yellow

Location of Village Creek State Park in relation to Big Thicket and Hancock Tract.

For help in interpreting this map, please contact Ted Hollingsworth.


Committee Agenda Item No. 4
Presenter: Ted Hollingsworth

Conservation Committee
New Environmental Review Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with
Texas Department of Transportation and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
August 26, 2009

I. Executive Summary: Staff of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) and Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) propose changes to the Environmental Review Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

II. Discussion: In accordance with §201.607 of the Transportation Code, TPWD reviews proposed public transportation projects for anticipated impacts to natural resources, and provides recommendations for avoiding, minimizing and compensating for those impacts. The details of this arrangement are codified in the Environmental Review MOU and an associated procedural Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). Under these two memoranda, TxDOT provides information on each transportation project, and staff of the TPWD Habitat Diversity Program review these projects and submit comments on a range of potential impacts to fish and wildlife resources, and on ways to mitigate those impacts. The MOU is adopted by rule by both TxDOT and TPWD.

Staff of both agencies have been in discussions regarding ways to both streamline the review process and improve mitigation for impacts to natural resources. The resulting changes to the MOU include project area thresholds below which TxDOT will not submit individual projects to TPWD, and a rate schedule under which TxDOT will provide funding to TPWD to be used for undertaking conservation transactions and projects to offset transportation project impacts to Texas lands and waters.

Staff requests permission to publish the proposed changes in the Texas Register.


Back to Top
Back to Top