Possible pollution issues are driving a handful of Henly residents to oppose construction of a concrete batch plant near the area.
While residents pleaded with the Dripping Springs City Council Aug. 14 to support their cause, the location of the plant, which is outside of the city’s jurisdiction, left officials’ hands tied.
Residents of the Silverado Estates subdivision in Henly took to the Aug. 14 meeting during the public comment period to express their opposition to the project.
The plant, located in the 4000 block of west Highway 290, is operated by Lauren Concrete Inc. The company is currently seeking a permit from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality for the plant.
However, the location of the plant is outside of Dripping Springs’ extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ). It is instead in an unincorporated part of Hays County.
However, the city council could send a statement of support for the residents of Silverado Estates that could potentially help influence TCEQ’s findings for the permit.
Ed Michael, a member of the board of directors for the Silverado Estates subdivision, said the plant will have negative effects on personal health due to pollution that would inevitably come with the plant.
“What we need is a resolution opposing the plant,” said Randy Livingston, a resident of the neighborhood. “And if you cannot give us that, at least ask to arrange a meeting with TCEQ. We need (the council) to help push us to discussion with TCEQ.”
The plant’s location in and around a residentially dense population is not a good location for a concrete batch plant, Michael said. And with proposed subdivisions coming in the near future, the plant could pose safety issues.
Greg Sheever, who opposed the plant, said many area residents rely on rainwater and the aquifer to live, and with high amounts of livestock in the area, the plant could impact the wildlife population.
“We are already running out of water as it is,” Sheever said. “There will be too many straws in the aquifer if this plant gets approved.”
Mayor Todd Purcell said the council and city do not have much authority with this issue, but urged residents to stay vigilant.
“We are proactive with smart growth but there are also limits to our reach, especially with issues located outside of the city limits,” Purcell said. “Thank you for coming out and letting us know what’s going on.”