News

Stuart Henry was the first lawyer in Texas to make a living in environmental law on the side of the environment.  He was the first environmental officer for the City of Austin.  He 10637548 300x300was an auto mechanic before going to law school in Houston.  He was real, and hilarious, and loving, and fearless.  He is gone now, but will continue to inspire us every day.

Services are this Thursday at 11:00 a.m., Gethsemane Lutheran Church, 200 West Anderson Lane. His obituary and a guest book are linked  here.

Stuart Henry did more to protect the Edwards Aquifer and its Great Springs than any other person. He represented the Sierra Club in the landmark Endangered Species Act lawsuit to protect rare fish, salamanders, and other species that require clean and strong spring flows at Comal and San Marcos Springs. The lawsuit forced the State of Texas to establish the Edwards Aquifer Authority to limit Edwards Aquifer pumping in order to sustain spring flows during times of drought.

Stuart mentored and inspired a dozen or more lawyers to choose a life of defending the water, air, land, wildlife, and rural communities of Texas. Stuart nurtured the founding of the Save Our Springs movement, later serving as SOS Alliance Board Chair. Henry gave SOS Executive Director Bill Bunch his first job in law, insisting that Bill show up for the interview in a t-shirt, swim suit, and flip flops rather than take the time to go home to change clothes. The dress code stuck and continues to this day at the SOS office.

The “CodeNEXT” citizen petition initiative will be on the ballot this November as Proposition J. If Austin voters approve Proposition J, then before CodeNEXT (or other comprehensive revisions of the land development code) can become law, there will be a waiting period and voter approval requirement. The initiative states “there shall be both a waiting period and voter approval by election before CodeNEXT (or any subsequent comprehensive revisions of the City’s land development laws) is legally effective.” A “yes” vote on Proposition J means voters will have to approve CodeNEXT or the next CodeNEXT; a “no” vote means council may enact a comprehensive land code revision without voter approval, as is currently the law.

Proposition J’s waiting period and voter approval requirements apply only to “comprehensive revisions of the land development laws.” Comprehensive revisions are a legal term of art: it means only a once in a generation complete overhaul of the City’s land development laws such as in 1985 and proposed with CodeNEXT. (Mixon, Texas Municipal Zoning Law, 7.002). Proposition J does not require a waiting period or voter approval for any specific development, any incremental changes in law, or the enactment of new programs (such as flooding mitigation or affordable housing) short of a complete revision of the land development laws.

Barton Springs University has been rescheduled for Tuesday, October 23rd

Barton Springs University is a year-round series of educational events and classroom presentations, highlighted by a full day of outdoor learning and fun at Barton Springs Pool.  

Untitled designThe Barton Springs University day is designed primarily for high school students but includes college students and the general public. It features lectures, hands on activities, an interactive community fair and training by leading academics, professionals, and policy makers on central Texas water science, public policy, history and sustainable living. It is free and open to the public.  Go to https://bartonspringsuniversity.org/ for more information

Barton Springs University is produced by Save Our Springs Alliance in partnership with: Save Barton Creek Association, City of Austin Parks & Recreation, Watershed Protection, Water Utility and Austin Resource Recovery, University of Texas’, Environmental Science Institute, Texas State University, Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer Conservation District, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Texas Parks & Wildlife and others.

 

 

Exhumed from the archives!  We're happy to present this 1992 epic legendary all-star recording of Austin's music community coming together to sing the praises of The Soul of Austin, Barton Springs.

Featuring the talents of Bill Oliver, Bob Livingston, Jerry Jeff Walker, Marcia Ball,  Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Butch Hancock, Ponty Bone, Paul Pearcy, Steven Fromholz, Joe Ely, John Inmon, David Halley, Sarah Elizabeth Campbell, Doug Powell, Bobby Bridger, Tomas Ramirez, Riley Osbourn, and Mitch WatkinsChorus: all of the above plus:Aunt Pearl (Joe Sears), Didi Snavely (Jaston Williams) of Greater Tuna, Susan Lindfore, Christine Albert, Connie Hancock, Tommy Pierce, Monty Montgomery, Jim Ellinger (Wheatsville), Jeri Arsenault, Cecelia Nasti & Bryan Beck (KGSR radio), Jenny Clark (ACTV), Helen Ballew (Hill Country Foundation), Jennie Hamilton (SOS Coalition) - "Barton Springs Eternal" is now available for download from our new Bandcamp page:

Grab the song in any file format you like for as little as a dollar - all proceeds from the sales of this track go to Save Our Springs Alliance and Save Barton Creek Association to support our round-the-clock work to preserve our clean water and the Austin way of life.

 

 

 

Thank you to everyone who donated, volunteered, spoke up at a public meeting, sent an email, or signed a petition in support of saving our springs.  We are Polar Bear Splash 2018 S Pruitt 89blessed to have a community that cares about our work and protecting Barton Springs.  Thank you!! 

Check out these way fun photos from New Year's Day at Barton Springs.  The cold didn't bother folks enough to stay away - it was crowded all day and huge fun.  Winter swims at Barton Springs are the best all season long, so don't miss out on the very best of Austin in the days, weeks and months ahead.