FAQs

 

Need assistance? 

Have a question?  Check out the list of frequently asked questions below.  If you don't find the answer you're looking for, please feel free to contact us by e-mail at admin@ComalTrinityGCD.com or 830.885.2130

 

What is the mission of the Comal Trinity GCD?

 

The mission of the Comal Trinity GCD is to maintain the hill country way of life by conserving, protecting, and preserving our Trinity groundwater resources.

 

Why does Comal County need a groundwater conservation district?

 

Groundwater is one of Comal County's most valuable resources and it is important to the future of the county to be proactive about protecting both the quality and the quantity of this precious resource.

 

What rules are now in place regarding my current well or a well I am planning to drill?

 

The Comal Trinity GCD has yet to enact any changes to existing regulations concerning wells under its jurisdiction. Well drilled into the Trinity Group of Aquifers throughout Comal County continue to be regulated according to state standards by licensed well drillers.  Additionally, wells for new subdivisions tapping into the Trinity Group of Aquifers in Comal County requires adherence to current County regulations regarding lot size and sewage requirements.

 

What kinds of things will the Comal Trinity GCD do?

 

The Comal Trinity GCD is committed to proactively managing and protecting Trinity Aquifer groundwater resources in Comal County.  In time, this will include conducting research in groundwater availability, quality, and use in the Trinity Aquifer, and the development of approaches for addressing any identified issues before they become problems.  The Comal Trinity GCD also conducts public outreach activities to inform county residents about research findings and meetings, and generally to keep them up to date on Comal Trinity GCD activities.

 

Will the Comal Trinity GCD be able to tax me?

 

According to 2015 84th legislature’s HB 2407, the District’s enabling legislation, the Comal Trinity GCD does not have taxing authority.

 

Who governs the Comal Trinity GCD?

 

The Comal Trinity GCD is governed by a seven-member Board of Directors appointed by Comal County Commissioners.  Initial board-member terms are staggered 2 and 4 years, followed by 4-year terms.

 

Who is eligible to be a Director of the Comal Trinity GCD?

 

If you are a registered voter in Comal County, you are eligible to be a Director-at-Large.  Four Directors are appointed by County Commissioners; one each from each respective precinct.  To be appointed as the Director from a county commissioner's precinct, you must be a registered voter of that precinct.  Three other Directors are appointed “at large” from county municipalities by Comal County’s Commissioners Court.  To be appointed as the Director from a municipality, you must be a resident of a county municipality and be a registered voter of Comal County. 

 

Why was there no election to confirm the Comal Trinity GCD?

 

The Comal Trinity GCD was created by legislative action and, since Comal Trinity GCD does not have property taxing authority, the State legislators saw no need for a confirming election.

 

What authority does the General Manager have?

 

The General Manager of the District shall have the authority to carry out the purposes of the District and to conduct the necessary activities of the District promulgated by the District Rules without action of the Board.  The purpose of this authority is to allow the General Manager to properly conduct the daily and managerial activities of the District in order to allow the District to efficiently and effectively manage and preserve the Trinity Aquifer groundwater resources in Comal County.

 

How can I find out more about what the Comal Trinity GCD is doing?

 

The Comal Trinity GCD will publish meeting notes, research findings, geographic information system (GIS) maps, and many other types of information on this website.

 

Is there currently any fees imposed by the Comal Trinity GCD?

 

Fees for non-exempt well users were established as of December 21, 2015 and became effective

January 1, 2016. Please visit Chapter 12. Fee Schedule for additional information

 

Will there be fees for the Comal Trinity GCD in the future?

 

Yes.  The Comal Trinity GCD may charge permit fees for drilling new wells.  

The district have imposed reasonable production fees on each well that is not exempt from permitting based on the amount of water actually withdrawn from the well.  District fees for non-exempt users have been established at:

  • $1 per acre-foot for groundwater used for agricultural purposes; or

  • $20 per acre-foot for groundwater used for any other purpose.

 

What does “Exempt” and “Non-Exempt” mean?

 

The simple answer is that residential and livestock wells pay no pumping or “production fees.”  A well is exempt from paying “production fees” provided that the well:

  • is used solely for domestic use or for providing water for livestock or poultry regardless of land lot size and is drilled, completed, or equipped so that it is incapable of producing more than 25,000 gallons of groundwater a day (most residential wells pump between 4,000 and 8,000 gallons per day so, they’d be “exempt” from paying any production fees);

  • is not capable of producing more than 10,000 gallons of water a day (most residential wells pump between 4,000 and 8,000 gallons per day so, they’d be exempt from paying production fees); or

  • is metered and does not produce more than 10 acre-feet of water in a calendar year (most residential wells are not—and need not be—metered so, they’d be “exempt” from paying production fees).  This subsection applies more to water-intensive small businesses such as restaurants, animal clinics, cosmetology, and small health care businesses.  Generally, they would not pay production fees.

All other wells (e.g., those commercial wells capable of pumping more than 25,000 gallons per day, or those metered and producing more than 10,000 gallons per day) are non-exempt; that is, they are not exempt and must pay production fees according to the amount of water withdrawn.

 

How much water is 25,000 gallons per day?

 

That is a LOT of water!  It means your well must be capable of producing more than 17.36 gallons per minute.  The average household uses about 400 gallons of water per day.  A swimming pool that is 15 feet by 30 feet, at 6 feet deep holds approximately 20,250 gallons of water.

 

What wells are eligible for exempt well status?

 

A well qualifies for exempt well status if it is used solely for domestic or agriculture use or for providing water for livestock or poultry that is either drilled, completed, or equipped so that it is incapable of producing more than 25,000 gallons per day.

 

What is "Domestic Use"?

 

Domestic use means the use of water at a single-family household to support domestic activities including drinking, washing, and sanitation.  It also includes irrigation for household lawns and gardens.  Domestic use does not include use for any commercial purpose or at any commercial establishment.  Domestic use does not include a use at any commercial establishment with a single-family household.

 

What is "Agricultural Use"?

 

That answer is a little complicated, but it basically means raising crops, plants, or animals for sale.  Raising a horse for pleasure or a cow for milk for the family would probably fall under Domestic Use rather than Agricultural Use.  You can call the District Office with specific questions.

 

What is a GCD?

 

A GCD (groundwater conservation district) is a district created under Texas Constitution, Article III, Section 52 or Article XVI, Section 59, that has the authority to regulate the spacing of water wells, the production from water wells, or both.  Hereinafter, these districts will be referred to as GCDs or districts.

 

How many GCDs are there in Texas?

 

Currently, there are about 100 GCDs in Texas.  The districts are shown on the GCD map.  If the link does not work, insert the following into your browser:  https://www.twdb.texas.gov/mapping/doc/maps/GCDs_8x11.pdf

 

Who creates GCDs?

 

Groundwater conservation districts are either created by the Texas Legislature under and subject to the authority, conditions, and restrictions of Article XVI, Section 59 of the Texas Constitution, or by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality through a local petition process (Texas Water Code §36.011).

 

Will I have to pay a fee or tax for my own groundwater water use/well production?

 

NO.  The district does not impose any fees on domestic or livestock water use.  Domestic and livestock wells are exempt from all production fees by State Law.  Larger wells can only have fees imposed through amendment of the current rules and the required public hearing associated with that process. 

 

What do you mean by “producing” or “production”?

 

“Producing” means the act of extracting groundwater from an aquifer by pump or other method.

 

What will the District do with the information on my well registration?

 

The District is in the process creating a monitoring network within the county for the purpose of protecting the aquifer and gathering data on the hydrogeology of the Trinity Aquifer within Comal County.  In order for this monitoring program to work, we need to have accurate records regarding well location.  The information gathered on each well is the same information sent to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation by all Water Well Drillers.

 

Will the district require a meter on my home well?

 

NO.  The Comal Trinity GCD does not require meters on domestic or livestock wells.  State law exempts domestic and livestock wells from metering regardless of District Rules for larger wells.

 

Will the District restrict my water production?

 

NO.  The District has no production limit currently in place.  The district has the authority to limit production on large wells such as irrigation and municipal wells, but small domestic and livestock wells will be exempt from any production limits under state law.  If the district does impose water production limits on large users in the future, it is important to remember that all users will be treated equally under the rules.

 

How does the District protect my property values?

 

The District protects property values by preserving the quantity and quality of groundwater for future generations.  Groundwater below landowners’ property is protected from neighboring landowners who could drain all their groundwater without a GCD in place.

 

How does the District manage groundwater?

 

The Comal Trinity GCD seeks to balance the needs of all groundwater users with the requirements of a sustainable aquifer.  The District operates in a fair and equitable manner through a management plan and rules (both are currently under construction by the Board of Directors).  They are designed to prevent waste, collect data, plan for future resources, and educate people about water conservation and aquifer protection.

 

How do I contact the Comal Trinity GCD?

 

Please feel free to contact us with your questions, comments, or suggestions.  We welcome your feedback!

     Comal Trinity Groundwater Conservation District

     PO Box 664

     Spring Branch, TX  78070

     Email:  admin@ComalTrinityGCD.com

     Phone:  830.885.2130

 

Other Questions?

Need assistance?  Have a question?  Check out the list of frequently asked questions above.  If you don't find the answer you're looking for, please feel free to contact us by e-mail at admin@ComalTrinityGCD.com

 

Comal Trinity

Groundwater Conservation District

We are working feverishly to protect your Trinity Aquifer water resources.  If you have questions, feel free to contact us at:

PO Box 664, Spring Branch, TX 78070
Email: admin@ComalTrinityGCD.com

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