More On Regulating Private Water Wells?

RECEIVED Wed., Aug. 1, 2012

Dear Editor,
    Last month I received a flier from a company offering to drill a water well on my Central Austin property for $5.95 per foot, with satisfaction guaranteed. That sounded like a bad idea, and I emailed my concerns to everyone on the City Council. I received two replies. Mike Martinez wrote, "We are working on this issue and will have something on the council agenda soon." Chris Riley wrote, "I first raised this concern with the Water Utility over a year ago. There are some legal questions about restricting access to groundwater, and the wells don't directly impact our water supply, since our drinking water comes from the lake. But I agree that we ought to keep an eye on this."
    I thought state water rights laws would prevent the city from restricting drilling private water wells. However, your article [“Then There's This: No Drought Here,” News, July 27] suggests that Austin "borrow a page from the city of Pflugerville and pass an ordinance that regulates them.” How about writing a follow-up article describing how, specifically, Pflugerville is regulating private water wells?
Bill Smith
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