News / Blog
The San Jacinto River Authority voted 5-1 at a special meeting Feb. 20 to continue temporarily lowering Lake Conroe until December 2022, with some modifications.
After listening to four hours of public comment—with Lake Houston/Kingwood residents urging a continuation of lowering, and Lake Conroe residents asking for an end to it—board members then debated for nearly an hour, changing their proposal multiple times. The board ultimately voted to change the fall lowering while keeping the spring lowering the same.
Fall lowering would begin Aug. 1, lowering the lake to 200 ft. Beginning Sept. 1, it would be further lowered to 199.5 ft.—instead of 199 ft. as has been in effect.
If a storm enters the region, the city of Houston may initiate an additional prerelease to 199 ft. by notifying the SJRA in writing of their call for prerelease.
ref Community impact newspaper Conroe 2-21-2020
Listen to the SJRA Board...
What has changed April 2018 to February 2020?
Still No Science
Al Heilman MD
A copy of the audio from the SJRA board meeting on April 26, 2018 was obtained thru a Freedom of Information request. It is available below. Times are referenced for each of the comments.
1. The communities of Lake Houston and Kingwood had significant flooding and they made their appeals to the SJRA board. 5 comments (4 lake Houston and 1 Lake Conroe) to start the meeting.
2. The Board was informed by Jace Houston, the general manager, that the City of Houston had approved a plan that was ½ of the lowering the current plan has. It starts around the 58-minute mark on the audio.
3. The current lowering was presented by the board president without any reference to science to support this decision. Nor was there any time for public comment. It was an emotional response to the Kingwood/ Lake Houston community’s loss. 1hr 27 mark on the audio.
4. This plan could have environmental impacts on the fish and wildlife. 1hr 26 mark on the audio.
5. The plan that had a minimal cost. 1hr 26 mark on the audio.
6. The most effective solutions for Lake Houston flooding are solutions downstream of the dam. 1hr 27 mark on the audio.
7. The Board stated that they needed to communicate better with the communities. 1 hr. 42 mark on the audio.
Fast forward to February 2020
1. There are no environmental and economic impact studies for this plan’s effects on Lake Conroe. The Seasonal Lowering has a significant cost to the businesses, homeowners, and the environment.
2. There is still no science that shows that this is an effective solution to downstream flooding for the Lake Houston Communities. The dredging is complete, which was the original reason for this plan.
Yet, the SJRA board is planning on voting whether to continue this temporary plan for a 3rd year.
The Lake Houston communities have struggled to get relief from the City of Houston for its flooding issues. Why has it taken so long to get them effective relief?
The communication with the SJRA is broken and needs to be fixed. It must be open and transparent. A press release by the SJRA, is not an effective communication method for any of the communities. Neither are meetings where you have no responses, and blank stares from board members. We need open quarterly or semi-annual presentations from the board about its plans. There needs to be a 2-way exchange of ideas and listening and respecting each other’s opinions and ideas. Emails to the SJRA board need to be answered.
SJRA special Board meeting Tuesday night completely filled the Lone Star Convention center with a standing room only crowd and a sea of Red Supporters. Over 1000 in attendance. Presentations and data from the Sjra were laking 2 key points. Here is a link to the slides from the SJRA presentation.
Where's the Science?
1. The SJRA board did not present one engineering study that presented data on what the effect of the 2 foot seasonal lowering of lake Conroe would be following water from the Lake conroe dam and then following the water all the way to Kingwood and Lake Houston.
(view the you tube video as to why this is needed)
2. The SJRA board had not done any studies looking into the economic or the environmental impacts the seasonal lowering of Lake Conroe had had on the lake communities
Significant stories of frustration and damage were presented from the residents of the lake Conroe Communities.
In a 3-2 vote Tuesday, Montgomery County commissioners approved a resolution opposing the seasonal lowering of Lake Conroe.
Here are the SJRA Speaker registration forms and the rules
Click on the image to download the file
Representative Metcalf and Senator Nichols send letters to the SJRA Board asking them to Stop the Seasonal Drainage of Lake Conroe.
December 23, 2019
The Conroe City Council unanimously approved a resolution opposing the seasonal lowering of Lake Conroe ahead of the San Jacinto River Authority Board of Directors consideration to continue the strategy in February. Sends a letter to Governor Abbott. reference
SJRA Board Meeting
Thursday, December 12th, 2019
was closed due to overwhelming attendance, by the fire marshal.
The next SJRA Board meeting should be held in a venue where everyone can attend.
Write to the SJRA Board and your elected officials and voice your opinions.
Walden Residents packed the December 12th 2019, SJRA Board meeting. Many others were waiting to get in when the meeting was closed by the fire marshal at 7 30 am. Meeting was to start at 8 am. Many cars were turned away. Write to the SJRA Board and express your opinion. Here is a link to their website: