Chief Texas property rights group states concern about border wall


Highlights

Texas Wildlife Association says wall will interrupt Rio Grande access for landowners, livestock and wildlife.

Property values are a concern, too, says Wildlife Association.

Trump administration gearing up for lawyers to obtain land for border wall.

To the list of groups and people anxious about a border wall cutting through rural and wild areas of Texas, add one of the state’s most powerful landowner rights and conservation groups.

The executive committee of the Texas Wildlife Association announced this week that it is “concerned that a physical barrier along the rural Texas/Mexico border would result in substantial condemnation of private property by eminent domain, interrupt landowner/livestock/wildlife access to water from the Rio Grande, harm property values, and impair critical wildlife movement corridors for species such as black bears, mountain lions, white-tailed and mule deer, and desert bighorn sheep, among others.”

The Texas Wildlife Association counts 10,000 members who own or manage 40 million acres in Texas — an area larger than the state of Florida.

TAKE A LOOK: Statesman journalists fanned out to cover the prospects of a border wall

While the Wildlife Association executive committee statement also said the organization “sees merit in physical barriers at strategic locations, such as metropolitan areas” and that smuggling traffic is “massively disruptive to ranching, wildlife, and land management practices,” it was the latest suggestion that a border wall will meet resistance from influential quarters in Texas.

Gov. Greg Abbott, for one, has said he is against a wall through the Big Bend, as has U.S. Rep. Will Hurd, R-Helotes, who represents that West Texas area. Environmental groups and wildlife scientists also have announced their opposition.

With much of the Texas-Mexico border in the hands of private landowners, the Texas Wildlife Association statement suggests landowners may be in for a showdown with the White House.

The Trump administration is seeking $4.1 billion over the next two years to begin construction of a wall on the Mexican border, as well as money to hire 20 more Justice Department lawyers to “obtain the land” for the wall.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

COMMUNITY NEWS: A&M extension holds food preservation workshop

TRAVIS COUNTY LAKEWAY Sing Along to present vaudeville theater Lakeway Sing Along will present its 18th annual spring show, “Vaudeville & Beyond,” at 6 p.m. April 26-28 at the Lakeway Activity Center, 105 Cross Creek. The shows will include dinner with music by the Lohman’s Crossing Band. Tickets are $30 and available at the activity...
Federal money to connect Texas schools to fiber at risk, officials say
Federal money to connect Texas schools to fiber at risk, officials say

Delays and denials by the federal government are putting Texas schools at risk of losing millions of dollars in potential subsidies that would help pay for installing high-speed fiber internet in classrooms, according to state officials. Last year, state lawmakers approved $25 million to help school districts over the 2018-19 budget period replace...
In gentrifying East Austin, are dogs replacing children?
In gentrifying East Austin, are dogs replacing children?

Olga Hernandez sat on the porch of her East Eighth Street house on a warm April afternoon, offering a few minutes to the latest reporter to come through asking about gentrification in her quickly changing neighborhood. Between pointing out rental units, she called hello to a young man and woman walking dogs down the sidewalk. Hernandez, 67, recently...
Opinion: Playboy comes to D.C.

Playboy Enterprises just announced that it has purchased a table at this year’s White House Correspondents Association dinner. Swell. Just what we need. The dinner, as you’ve probably heard, is an annual ritual of narcissism in which leading press figures don black tie and hope to see, or better yet, be seen with, Hollywood stars. Like...
California murder suspect arrested after SWAT standoff in Pflugerville
California murder suspect arrested after SWAT standoff in Pflugerville

A California man suspected of fatally stabbing his ex-girlfriend earlier this week was arrested in Pflugerville on Saturday after an hourslong standoff with SWAT officers. Kevin Darnell Dickson, 55, was taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Lone Star Fugitive Task Force and Austin police at about 1 p.m. Saturday. He had been barricaded inside a home...
More Stories