Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2362
By: Hope
Natural Resources


Texas faces a difficult challenge in developing water policies that serve
both state and regional interests. The Texas Constitution authorizes the
creation of groundwater conservation districts to plan, develop, and
regulate the use of water.  House Bill 2362 creates the Lone Star
Groundwater Conservation District, subject to approval at a confirmation
election, to manage Montgomery  County's groundwater resources. 


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does
not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state
officer, department, agency, or institution. 


House Bill 2362 creates the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District
(district) in Montgomery County, subject to voter approval at a
confirmation election (SECTIONS 1 and 3).  The district is authorized to
assess production fees based on the amount of water authorized by permit to
be withdrawn from a well or the amount actually withdrawn.  The bill
provides that the district does not have the authority to issue bonds or
notes or levy taxes.  The bill prohibits the district from regulating the
production of water or assessing fees against the transfer of water that is
produced  in an area of a municipal utility district that is located inside
the district boundaries and transferred to an area within the municipal
utility district that is located outside the district boundaries.  The bill
requires the district to assess production fees for horticultural uses at
the same rate as fees assessed for other agricultural uses (SECTION 11).
The bill requires the district to coordinate with all adjacent groundwater
conservation districts to provide regional continuity in groundwater
resource management (SECTION 13).   

H.B. 2362 provides that the district is governed by a board of nine
directors and sets forth provisions regarding the composition and
administration of the board and the appointment, qualification, and terms
of the directors (SECTIONS 6-9 and 10).  The bill also sets forth
provisions regarding an election to confirm the establishment of the
district (SECTION 10). 


September 1, 2001.