Naked City

Springs Summit on Tap

With the fledgling Envision Central Texas effort enjoying a good run with regional participation, two area officials representing different ends of the political spectrum are rolling the dice on another rare endeavor: a regional environmental summit. The free event, the first of its kind, takes place Friday, Dec. 6, from 8:30am-3:30pm at the Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Rd. Liberal Austin City Council Member Daryl Slusher has teamed with conservative Hays Co. Judge Jim Powers to organize the summit. A slew of elected officials and federal, state, and local government staffers have been invited to help map out a Regional Protection Plan for the Barton Springs Zone. A regional thought process is the best way to develop a strategy to preserve this particular zone of the Edwards Aquifer, says Slusher. The idea is to move local jurisdictions away from acting independently of one another on planning issues that will affect the entire region.

Last spring, Slusher asked city staff to develop a top 10 polluters' list, along with an action plan to correct the problems. The list, released in September, doesn't name individual polluters but identifies the major sources. Construction sites topped the list, followed by, among others, spills, water-and-wastewater line breaks, heavily fertilized lawns, lack of environmental controls at existing developments, and roadways -- all (and more) of which will end up on the regional fix-it wish list by the end of the day Friday.

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