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2014-03-06

Replatting of Indian Waters proceeds

By Judith Pannebaker BCC Editor

During a public hearing on Thursday, Feb. 27, Bandera County Commissioners Court discussed replatting portions of Indian Waters subdivision to establish three lots - one of which would be as 22 acres. The land in question is owned by Flying L Land & Livestock, LLC, managed by Michael Luigs and owned by Kevin D. Quarles and Michele E. Quarles.
Expressing concern about the replatting, Precinct 3 Commissioner Andy Wilkerson Sr. believed it that might bring future problems to the county in the form of a possible "takings" claim.
Specifically, Wilkerson contended that Indian Waters residents would be deprived of use of trails, lakes and creeks that had been previously dedicated for their perpetual use. "Now they are included in the replat," Wilkerson said.
Surveyor Mike Grogan asked if the commissioners court had oversight over restrictions.
"No, replied Judge Richard Evans.
"Then, that's a civil matter," Grogan said.
"I don't want the court to be involved in a civil matter either," Wilkerson rejoined.
According to Evans, however, the property owner retains the right to control the parks. "I've researched this because the property was once being considered as a site for the jail and justice center," he explained. Evans added, "You can sue anyone for anything, but the developer retains the right to do what he wants with the trails and green spaces as I understand it."
"We're supposed to give public notice if we take away from perpetual use and I couldn't find any records of public notice. That concerns me," Wilkerson said.
Grogan responded, "Have they not been put on notice to come here today to the public hearing?"
At this point, Robert Koimn, identifying himself as a county resident, asked, "Is any of this property in the city's ETJ?" The city's extraterritorial jurisdiction extends half a mile beyond the city limits. When it was answered in the affirmative, Koimn asked, "Has this been reviewed by the city?"
The general consensus of the court was that it had not because, as Evans put it, "Our agreement with the city is that (the county) controls the ETJ for platting."
"Aren't there still negotiations going on with the city and that the new agreement has never been finalized?" Koimn rejoined.
"No, sir, we have an agreement with the city in place and it hasn't been redone," Evans said.
"Weren't negotiations going on at one time with a special committee to re-do the agreement?" Koimn persisted.
"Both parties have to participate," Evans noted.
"Was the city not participating?"
"It would appear not," Evans said, concluding the exchange.
Grogan added that the replatting would improve existing conditions that allowed 20 septic tanks and grandfathered in substandard lots.
"I have no problem making one lot, but I'm concerned about a future takings claim," Wilkerson reiterated. To a question from Evans, however, Wilkerson said he had not contacted County Attorney Janna Lindig about his concerns.
"Is nobody here from Indian Waters subdivision to protest this replatting?" Precinct 2 Commissioner Bobby Harris asked.
"The landowners have been notified and there have been notices in the newpaper. I don't see how this is going to affect the county. If there was opposition, we would have heard by now," Grogan said.
Furthermore, should a new owner want to subdivide the 22-acre plot, he would have to come back before the court for approval, noted County Engineer Ray Rendon, who recommended approving the replat request.
Future lots could be subdivided into two acres with city utilities and five acres if no city utilities were available.
The replatting was approved 3-1 with Wilkerson casting the only nay vote.