It is no surprise that an old photo has reappeared on Facebook. It has been done with the intent to aggravate old wounds within Our Town. It is a picture of me holding a “Gas is Good” sign, while just out of view, another group is holding signs expressing an opposing view. A few minutes after the photo was taken, both groups began to mingle and engage in a friendly conversation. There was no finger pointing or name calling, just a handful of folks sharing their views and even learning from each other.
That Sunday afternoon is an example of what makes Flower Mound special: people with passion being able to talk through important issues. I gained a lot of respect for those individuals that day, and I appreciated the exchange of ideas.
Now fast forward to present day. We are in the thick of Flower Mound election season. There are some who believe that gas drilling should remain “the” focus of this election. Therefore, I am going to (again) address my beliefs on this topic. I am, and always have been, a strong advocate for safe and responsible gas drilling. The key words being “safe” and “responsible.”
I do not believe, nor did I believe two years ago, that “responsible” drilling includes sites in our town’s neighborhoods. My statements on this have been clear. And those willing to listen, have heard it.
Prior to my time serving on Flower Mound’s Planning and Zoning (P & Z) commission, a Centralized Collection Facility (CCF) was constructed on Scenic Rd. This facility was not approved by P & Z or town council, and no public hearings were held. In the fall of 2009, I voted to create a zoning classification for CCF’s to ensure that any new projects of this kind would receive public input and council approval before construction could begin. Fast forward two years. The language and the process that I helped create has been approved by our current P & Z and still remains within our revised ordinances. It has also been endorsed and approved by my opponents.
The concerns our residents have about gas drilling matter to me. I have outlined proposals to both our town council and LISD’s school board that address community safety concerns at existing pad sites in Flower Mound and other operations throughout the school district. The NFL ignored these suggestions. LISD used them as a basis to address health and safety concerns.
Today, we have a gas ordinance that assures development will not occur in our neighborhoods, near our homes or close to our children’s schools. It is the strongest, most restrictive gas ordinance in Texas, and probably the entire United States. I support it, and if elected, will defend it.
It is now time to address and find solutions to other issues. We need to focus on things that been ignored for the past two years.
o Growing our local economy
o Balancing our tax base
o Increasing sales tax revenue by encouraging companies to open desired shopping and restaurants in Flower Mound
o Attracting quality residential development that will address the evolving needs of our residents.
Next month, before you cast your vote, ask yourself a few questions.
Who has used the fear of gas drilling to increase anxiety and division within our community? Who is using this topic again (despite our new and solid ordinance) to feed on this fear? The NFL.
Who lobbied and voted to add protection, transparency and citizen input to the gas development process? Who offered solutions to address residents’ concerns at new and existing gas sites? Bryan Webb.
I ask that you join with me so that together, we can move Flower Mound Forward.
Flower Mound Town Council Place 2 Candidate
Flower Mound, TX