Senate Committees Hold Joint Hearing on Texas Drought and Wildfires
State Senators Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls) and Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay) brought their respective senate committees together on November 1, 2011 to discuss how the drought and wildfires have impacted a variety of industries and businesses in the state of Texas. Representatives from the agriculture and energy sectors as well as from state agencies, municipalities and river authorities testified on the economic impact of the drought and wildfires. Committee members focused on the expectations for the future and the best ways to alleviate concerns as drought conditions continue.
Earlier this month, Lt. Governor David Dewhurst issued select interim charges to six senate committees and one subcommittee focusing on the extreme drought conditions and devastating wildfires that have burned across Texas this year. "Our state is growing faster than our ability to provide an adequate supply of water. This is a serious problem that is being further compounded by the ongoing drought conditions" said Senator Craig Estes, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Affairs. "Every Texan is impacted by the damaging effects of drought and wildfires. The extreme drought places critical pressure on our state's energy load, strains municipal and state agency budgets, and wreaks havoc on the Texas farmers and ranchers that supply our food supply."
During the hearing, Senator Estes encouraged all Texans to vote in favor of Proposition 2 and Proposition 8 on the November ballot. Estes and the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Affairs continue to research available resources and tools that mitigate the devastating effects of the drought and wildfire. For additional information about the hearing, including presentations and handouts, please contact the committee office at 512-463-0340. Citizens can also view the archived video feed of the hearing at www.senate.state.tx.us.
Senator Estes is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Affairs, and represents Senate District 30 covering an 18-county region of North Texas. Senator Fraser is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Natural Resources, and represents Senate District 24 covering a 21-county region in the geographic center of the state.