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Topic 17 of 64: Save Our Springs

Tue, Sep 24, 1996 (11:20) | Paul Terry Walhus (terry)
Save Our Springs is a local Austin organization which is trying to
preserve and protect our local watershed and environment.
26 responses total.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 1 of 26: Paul Terry Walhus  (terry) * Wed, Jan 29, 1997 (22:27) * 1 lines 
What is the latest on the endangered salamander?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 2 of 26: Paul Terry Walhus (terry) * Wed, Jun  4, 1997 (18:16) * 26 lines 
Subject: Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Shawn Colvin this Friday!

********** THIS FRIDAY! *********************


This Friday, June 6th, Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Shawn Colvin (plus some very
special guests) will headline a benefit concert - the Soul of the City
Celebration - to celebrate the 7th anniversary of the all-night council
meeting that spawned the SOS movement.
When: 8:30 p.m. Friday, June 6th, 1997
Where: La Zona Rosa, 612 West 4th Street, Austin, Texas

The event will also feature a multimedia exhibit which will include
videotaped testimonials from the Council meeting. Also, a new SOS t-shirt
designed by GUY JUKE will be available at the event.


If you have any questions, feel free to call the SOS Alliance office at
477-2320, ext. 41.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 3 of 26: Paul Terry Walhus (terry) * Mon, Sep  1, 1997 (08:42) * 142 lines 
From Brigid Shea:
Subject: Urgent council message: don't amend SOS

Dear Friends of Barton Springs:

The City Council has called a special meeting for this Tuesday
Afternoon at 4:00 pm at the Council Chambers, on Second Street
between Guadalupe and Lavaca. The sole purpose of the hearing is to
adopt a City "grandfathering" ordinance to substitute for the state
grandfathering statute that was repealed this last session of the Texas


Please attend this public hearing, bringing friends and
family along if possible. If you cannot attend, please phone, fax or
email the Councilmembers (esp. Mayor Watson, Daryl Slusher, Gus
Garcia, Beverly Griffith, and Bill Spelman). Phone and fax information for
the Council is set out below.

Here's how I see it. You may feel differently. I urge you to
convey your opinion to council whatever it is. This issue is too
important for the Council to only hear from a few of us. They are hearing
plenty from the developers and their lenders--the same ones who have
ignored the wishes of Austin citizens who have been working hard to protect
Barton Springs since the 1970s.

Remember how offended we all were when the RULE Council delayed SOS
only 3 months in 1992?? Now, after 5 years of nefarious delay by the
previous council, and collusion between the City Manager, Mayor Todd,
the City Attorney and developer lobbyists, our new "pro-SOS" council
is considering an ordinance that would give up to four more years to
"begin construction" outside compliance with the SOS requirements.

In my view this proposal is wholly unacceptable.

The only reason given for such a delay is to "show the Legislature we
The only reason given for such a delay is to "show the Legislature we
are reasonable." This has never worked in the past and will not
work this time unless we give Jim Bob Moffett, Gary Bradley and a few
others everything they want. That means many millions of square feet of
commercial and industrial development, many thousands of apartments,
traffic nightmares on Mopac, Brodie and other arterials, and tons more
pollution for the aquifer and Barton Springs.

SOS was reasonable in 1992 and is reasonable today. In my view
there are simply no good reasons for further delay in enforcing SOS,
and numerous good reasons to implement SOS now!!

In summary, these reasons are as follows:

1. Voter Mandate: SOS was passed under the City Charter by
two-thirds of Austin voters. Because of the high turnout in the SOS
election, SOS received anywhere from 50 percent to 100 percent more
votes than any sitting council member. All of the current councilmembers
were supported because of their support for, not opposition to,
implementing SOS.

SOS should not be amended
unless (1) it is publicly posted as an SOS amendment, (2) there is
ample time and opportunity for informed public input, and (3) the
proposed amendments provide superior protection for Barton Springs.

The proposed ordinance flunks all 3 of these criteria.

2. Science Mandate: The science is now clear that SOS requirements
are absolutely necessary to prevent further pollution. The science
also tells us that the aquifer and springs are already damaged, and
that we must begin now to repair the damage and not continue allowing
more damage to be done to the watershed.

3. Federal Mandate: The Endangered Species Act requires the City
to avoid further jeopardizing the survival of the Salamander. We
worked extremely hard to make this listing happen. The City should
be helping us implement this federal mandate, not lead the charge to
undermine it. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service stated in the
listing of the Barton Springs Salamander that development should
comply with current regulations. While it did not name the SOS
ordinance, it is clearly understood. Backing away from SOS
requirements is in direct conflict with these guidelines.

The federal Clean Water Act also requires the City's stormwater
management programs, which includes its implementation of water
quality ordinances, to acheive nondegradation. Allowing more time
for more polluting development violates the Clean Water Act.

4. Fairness Mandate: SOS is fair; those persons already lined up to
build in very short order can do so under SOS. What is most unfair it to
allow more polluting development that cannot be cleaned-up. Further delay
of SOS implementation is not fair to the citizens of Austin.

It is also not fair to attack the RULE council for a 3 month SOS
delay but somehow give the okay to our "pro-SOS" council to approve even
more delay, following five years of delay. This is especially true given
that the information developed in the last 5 years makes it even more clear
how important
it is to stop excessive development in the Barton Springs Zone.

SOS was carefully drafted to be not only effective in protecting water
quality, but fair to landowners. Now is not the time to reward those
developers and their lenders who chose to ignore the citizens, the
scientists, and the federal mandates to protect Barton Springs.

Please attend the public hearing or convey your views by phone or fax
before the 4:00pm Tuesday meeting.

Also, please be courteous. The Councilmembers are our friends. Please
address the merits of the issue and refrain from any personal attacks. We
believe the Council will stand by SOS if they hear your concerns.

You should also thank councilmembers, especially Daryl Slusher, for
successfully challenging the unconstitutional Circle C legislation.

Council contacts are as follows:

Mayor Watson: 499-2320, 499-2337fax
Gus Garcia: 499-2264, 499-1887fax
Daryl Slusher: 499-2260, 499-3212fax
Beverly Griffith: 499-2258, 499-1886fax
Bill Spelman: 499-2256, 499-1884fax
Willie Lewis: 499-2266, 499-1890fax
Jackie Goodman: 499-2255, 499-1888fax

Unfortunately, we don't have email addresses for the council members
at this time.

Thank you for your attention.

Bill Bunch

Save Our Springs (S.O.S.) Alliance, Inc.
P. O. Box 684881
Austin, TX 78768

Voice (512) 477-2320
FAX (512) 477-6410

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 4 of 26: sos open house  (terry) * Thu, Sep 18, 1997 (08:26) * 3 lines 
There's an open house at the new sos offices tonight.
Thursday that is, 9/18/97. Call 477-2320 for directions.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 5 of 26: Paul Terry Walhus (terry) * Sun, May  3, 1998 (04:34) * 11 lines 
SOS just won a major victory with the Bond Election that Austin
voters approved, including a 15,000 acre buffer of green space, a flood tunnel
for Waller Creek, and a larger Austin Convention Center. It raises the
hotel tax and the water rates to pay for it.

SOS is strong, and well organized thanks to the efforts of Brigid Shea
and Robin Rather (daughter of Dan Rather), who head up SOS.

I'm expecting an email any day from Brigid on the place, time of the victory

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 6 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Tue, May  5, 1998 (09:04) * 1 lines 
that's a victory years in the making! Yea!!!!

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 7 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Wed, Nov 11, 1998 (11:28) * 1 lines 
Personally, I'm against any new taxes, in any form, for any reason. If there aren't enough people for an idea to fund it, without taxes, it ought not come to pass.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 8 of 26: Ray Lopez (ratthing) * Wed, Nov 11, 1998 (17:57) * 3 lines 

good news for the springs!

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 9 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Sun, Nov 15, 1998 (10:20) * 1 lines 
Frankly, It's all about quality of life. I like the springs, I dislike giving money to politicians. If you give politicians money to accomplish something, sooner or later they will steal the money, and come back saying that they need more. Austin has more than it's share of crooked politicians.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 10 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Mon, Nov 16, 1998 (14:55) * 3 lines 
wow, that's quite a pessimistic view.
Do you believe in government of any kind?
Believe that any of it is worthwhile, that is?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 11 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Mon, Nov 16, 1998 (20:31) * 1 lines 
On the side of the courthouse in my hometown, in letters eight feet high, carved into solid granite, there is a saying, "VOX POPULI VOX DEI", that is the extent of the government I believe in. Translation: the voice of the people is the voice of god. Says nothing about any politicians. Personally, I believe, if you lined all the lawyers and politicians up, and shot them, tomorrow, the world would be a better place.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 12 of 26: Ray Lopez (ratthing) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (09:23) * 10 lines 

that is an unfortunate majority opinion nowadays. we live in the
greates country ever in the history of the earth, and people
fail to realize that its greatness is due to the way it governs
itself. it is easy to criticize the government and wish it was
mimized when one is living the benefits of that government. of
course it is not perfect, no human endeavor is. but government
can work, particularly to protect the interests of the
disenfrachised have nots.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 13 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (09:26) * 2 lines 
wow, shoot them all huh?
Can politicians ever distance themselves from their positions in your opinion or do you consider them a race all of their own?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 14 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (12:10) * 7 lines 
Actually, I did not mean that literally. I do, however believe that the only honest politician, is a dead politician, because a dead politician cannot lie.
Instead of shooting them, I would like to see a vote of, "No Confidence", instituted in this country. If you don't like the choices on the ballot, you vote, "No Confidence", and everyone on the ballot for that office is barred from running for that office for life, and a new election is held. Three no confidence votes and you are barred from politics for life. All political contributions including personal expenditures by the candidate should be limited to 1 dollar. Same as shooting them, but not as blood

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 15 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (14:13) * 2 lines 
So was the student government you were involved in not politics?!?!?
How were you so different or should you be lined up with the rest of them?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 16 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (15:28) * 4 lines 
Student Association was not political like the government is. One major difference was that anyone could form a party and get on the ballot on a party ticket. we had something like 18 parties running in each election, something which the power structure in this country is set up to prevent. It is extremely difficult to get a new party on the ballot. in most states it is nearly impossible. the democrats and republicans get to play by one set of rules. everyone else plays by a much stricter set of rules. T
e other major difference is that the nine of us that ran things, weren't elected, or appointed by anybody but ourselves. We were not even officially a part of Student Association although we were the executive officers of the student union. From time to time one of us would run for senate and get elected, but just until someone else could be appointed to the office.
Officially we were the executive board of the freshman orientation committee of FOCUS which was the most powerful student organization on campus, and by charter and bylaws FOCUS was totally apolitical.
There were nine students on the board, but we also had a faculty advisor. He did not have a vote, but he told us when we were considering something that was a bad idea. Usually he kept us from stepping on the wrong toes, sometimes we had to do it anyway. He was Dr. Barry White, the Dean of Students.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 17 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (15:50) * 5 lines 
so you see, it really wasn't the same thing as national politics. When was the last time you heard of someone joining a political party to run for the senate, getting elected, and stepping down so that someone else could be appointed to fill his seat?
most of the students at the university did not know that our executive board existed. and only a handful knew who was on the board.
out of a student population of 45000 less than 300 students knew that the executive board was any more than an administrative function of FOCUS. Only about 50 students knew who was on the executive board.
How many politicians could function with that degree of anonominity.
Of course, every administrator knew exactly who we were, because, if they were not in an academic function, we could eliminate their job, we never did or even thought about doing anything of the sort. It was never necessary.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 18 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (17:16) * 1 lines 
the mayor of Podunk, LA sure functions with 'that degree' on anonymnity.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 19 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Tue, Nov 17, 1998 (19:35) * 1 lines 
Really? Less than one percent of the residents know who he is? This I gotta see. a town of 45000 people Where less than one percent of the people know there is a mayor, let alone know his name. And This guy has absolute control over the police department, the movie theaters, concerts, allocates all the office space in town, runs all the restaraunts, operates three bars, a bowling alley, and a pool hall, not to mention the only disco in town.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 20 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Wed, Nov 18, 1998 (05:14) * 5 lines 
good point

how bout sonny bono who sure as hell didn't need mayoralness to make him a public figure?
Or Clint Eastwood?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 21 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Wed, Nov 18, 1998 (05:46) * 4 lines 
Sonny Bono was mayor of Palm Springs and Clint Eastwood mayor of Carmel. I don't
know about Sonny Bono, But Clint Eastwood was elected by acclaim. at least the first time. When I was stationed out there, my friends and I used to eat lunch
with Clint Eastwood. If you were in the military he would join you for lunch if
you were at the restaraunt at the same time. He usually eats at the boars head.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 22 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Wed, Nov 18, 1998 (15:57) * 2 lines 
we're not talking about why he was elected, we're talking about why he ran... the whole political evil you keep referring to.
So... is he an exception to the rule for politicians then?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 23 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Wed, Nov 18, 1998 (16:30) * 1 lines 
Career Politicians, O K ? If you open the hood on your car and do some mechanic's work, does that make you a mechanic?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 24 of 26: Stacey Vura (stacey) * Wed, Nov 18, 1998 (17:22) * 2 lines 
so what about Ross Perot?
On the off chance he were elected, would he be exempt from your abhorrance of politicians?

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 25 of 26: Tim Guenther  (TIM) * Wed, Nov 18, 1998 (20:46) * 1 lines 
If Ross Perot was a politician, he'd be president right now. One thing about Ross Perot, he means what he says.

 Topic 17 of 64 [austin]: Save Our Springs
 Response 26 of 26: terry (sprin5) * Wed, Feb 16, 2000 (19:32) * 20 lines 
As you may know, the City of Austin is proposing a "peace treaty" deal with
Gary Bradley, developer of Circle C. The legal and strategic implications of
this deal and its impact on the Barton Springs Zone are extremely complex.
As a result, SOS has a formal review team made up of lawyers, planners and
scientists evaluating every single detail. So far, SOS Alliance is not
ready to support or reject the deal. We do have one major message for the
City: the deal MUST BE MORE ENFORCEABLE than it currently is. Specifically,
we are asking that an independent third party ( besides the City and
Bradley) be added to the contract. This third party would have legal
standing and the right to sue, thus making the contract more sustainable
over time and less vulnerable to the legislature or future city councils
overturning it unfairly.
SOS will be delivering this message to the Council tomorrow night, while
reserving the right to endorse or reject the deal later after the review
team has completed its evaluation. The full SOS board will meet in late
February to make its final decision before the Council votes on March 9th.
Please let us know if you have any questions or comments regarding this
matter and thank you for your continued support of Barton Springs!!

from the SOS Alliance dated 2/16/2000 (today)

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