Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Commission Meeting

May 28, 2009

Commission Hearing Room
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Headquarters Complex
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744

BE IT REMEMBERED, that heretofore on the 28th day of May, 2009, there came to be heard matters under the regulatory authority of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission in the Commission Hearing Room of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Headquarters Complex, to wit:

APPEARANCES:

THE TEXAS PARKS AND WILDLIFE COMMISSION:

THE TEXAS PARKS AND WILDLIFE DEPARTMENT:

Donations of $500 or more for May 28, 2009
Not Previously Acknowledged by the Commission
Item Donor Description Detail & Purpose of Donation *Amount
1 Partners in Palo Duro Canyon, Inc. Other Goods Two (2) each commercial grade Whirlpool washing machines and commercial grade Whirlpool clothes dryers for use at Palo Duro Canyon $3,576.00
2 Convention & Visitors Bureau Cash Cash donation for Resaca de la Palma State Park to be used towards Grand Opening expenses $500.00
3 Republic Waste Services In-Kind Services Twelve day use and haul off of 30 yard dumpster for 2009 Abandoned Crab Trap Removal $720.00
4 Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation (Anheuser-Busch) Cash Texas Parks & Wildlife Expo $11,387.45
5 Coastal Conservation Association of Texas Cash To offset costs to TPWD for gloves to facilitate the 2009 Abandoned Crab Trap Cleanup Program $522.00
6 Coastal Bend Bays and Estuary Program Other Goods To offset costs to TPWD for tarps to facilitate the 2009 Abandoned Crab Trap Cleanup Program $649.00
7 SPX Marketing Other Goods Eleven (11) pairs of boots, One (1) Hummingbird depth finder, thirty (30) under vest shirts for use in the Law Enforcement Program $2,740.43
8 Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies/ Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership Cash For nuisance aquatic vegetation control on Lake Caddo $28,000.00
9 Texas Outdoors Woman Network Cash To assist the Becoming an Outdoors Woman program $500.00
10 United States Forest Service Controlled Items Twenty (20) desktop and laptop computers $13,000.00
11 Wal-Mart Cash General donation for Lockhart State Park $1,000.00
12 Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation Cash Playground construction at Fort Parker State Park $2,000.00
13 McBride's Gun, Inc. Other Goods Five (5) $200 gift cards to purchase ammo and supplies for Region IX youth sporting trailer. $1,000.00
Total $65,594.88

*Estimated value used for goods and services

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
May 28, 2009
Retirement Awards
Division Name Title Location Service
Inland Fisheries Joan Glass Program Spec. V Waco 20 Years
Service Awards
Division Name Title Location Service
State Parks Sally Stolz Clerk III Washington 35 Years
State Parks David Bischofhausen Manager II Fort Davis 30 Years
State Parks Jimmie Rodriguez Jr. Program Spec. VI Kerrville 30 Years
State Parks Paul Kisel Manager II Denison 25 Years
State Parks Brent Leisure Manager V Bastrop 25 Years
Coastal Fisheries Winston Denton Program Spec. V Dickinson 20 Years
Coastal Fisheries Michaela Hill F&W Tech. III Rockport 20 Years
Coastal Fisheries Terry Stelly Natural Resource. Spec. V Port Arthur 20 Years
Coastal Fisheries Connie Stolte Program Spec. VI Lake Jackson 20 Years
Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Commission Meeting
(Testified)
May 28, 2009
Name/Organization Address Item Number Matter of Interest
Will Kirkpatrick, Freshwater, 21815 FM 705, Broaddus, TX #4 — Action — Proposed License and Boat Registration Fee Increases — Recommended Adoption of Proposed Changes License Fees
Patrick Pace, Boy Scouts #11 — Action — Land Transfer — Taylor County — 91.3 Acres at Camp Tonkawa Boy Scout Camp/Abilene State Park Land Abilene SP
Sandy Jenkins, City of San Antonio, P. O. Box 839966, San Antonio #12 — Action — Acceptance of Land Donation — Bexar County — Approximately 3,000 Acres — Government Canyon State Natural Area City representative regarding property transfer

P R O C E E D I N G S

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Good morning, everybody. It's good to see everybody. We've got a good crowd this morning. I want to welcome — we have a new commissioner, Commissioner Morian. Welcome aboard. And officially confirmed. Congratulations. And then we have a few other commissioners that have been here for a while, and they're now officially confirmed, so I guess we can all vote and do everything legally, and we're ready.

I also want to recognize we have some Commissioners that were on the Commission previously. Dick Morrison, George Bolin, and Tim Hixon are here. Stand up, please.

(Applause)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you all for coming today. And what we're trying to accomplish up here is based on what you all accomplished in the past. So I appreciate your service and everything all three of you did, and lots of other people that have served on this Commission over the many, many years. So it's a pleasure to be here.

With that, we'll open officially. The meeting is called to order May 28th, 2009, at 9:05. Before proceeding with any business, I believe Mr. Smith has a statement to make. Mr. Smith.

MR. SMITH: I do, Mr. Chairman. Thank you. A public notice of this meeting containing all items on the proposed agenda has been filed in the Office of the Secretary of State, as required by Chapter 551, Government Code, referred to as the Open Meetings Act. I would like for this fact to be noted in the official record of this meeting.

I also want to join the Chairman in welcoming all of you to the Commission meeting today. And just a couple of minor little housekeeping items, for those of you who have not joined us in the past, one, if I could just ask that either you turn off or silence your cell phones and BlackBerries, and if you've got a conversation that you need to have with somebody, if I could just ask if y'all would step outside during the course of the meeting.

Also, I know a number of you have signed up to speak on a particular issue. At the appropriate time, Chairman Holt will call you by name, and we'll ask you to come forward to the mike. And please state your name, and you've got three minutes to tell us your position and perspective on an issue. I'll keep track of the time over here. Green means go, and red means stop. And so I hope all of you have a chance to share your perspective, and we're delighted that you're here with us today. Thank you for coming.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Is there a yellow?

MR. SMITH: There's sort of a little warning light that comes on. It doesn't — it means speed up.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Doesn't mean caution; it means speed up. Okay. Thank you, Carter.

Next is the approval of the minutes from the previous meeting, which have already been distributed. Do I have a motion for approval?

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: So move.

COMMISSIONER HIXON: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: So moved, Commissioner Friedkin. Second by Commissioner Hixon. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Great. Thank you. Hearing motion — I mean, motion carries.

Next, the acknowledgment of the donations list, which has already been distributed. Hopefully, everybody has looked at it. Again I want to thank all those that donate literally daily, monthly, and throughout the year. Without all that support and help on an ongoing basis, this Department couldn't accomplish a lot of its goals, so I want to thank everybody for those donations.

Do I have a motion for approval?

COMMISSIONER MARTIN: So moved.

COMMISSIONER HIXON: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Commissioner Martin; second Commissioner Hixon. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: The motion carries. Thank you.

Next we'll do one of my favorite things, the service awards.

MR. SMITH: Thank you, Mr. Chairman and members of the Commission. We have the privilege today to recognize colleagues that have served with this Department with great distinction for long periods of time. We're going to start off with a goodbye to one of our colleagues, Joan Glass, who has been a biologist with us for 20 years in Inland Fisheries. She has worked in our Kills and Spills team, which, as all of you know, is the group of biologists that investigate the impacts to our natural resources from oil spills and natural disturbance events like hurricanes and tornadoes. She's been a very dedicated employee, represented the Department very well, particularly on water issues up in North Texas and the Panhandle, and served as the Departmental representative there on the Llano Estacado Water Advisory Group. And so Joan Glass has been with us for 20 years, and we celebrate her retirement today and wish her all the best in the next phase of her life after Parks and Wildlife. Let's give Joan a big round of applause. Joan.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: For those of you who've not had a chance to go to Washington-on-the-Brazos, you absolutely should. It is one of our flagship historic sites in the system. Obviously, you know the importance of that to Texas history. Very, very special place, and one of the things that makes it special are our colleagues that work there. And Sally Stolz has worked there for 35 years for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. She was the office complex manager there for Washington-on-the-Brazos and the Barrington Living History Farm and Fanthorp Inn. She actually retired after 34 years of service, but then couldn't stay away. She had a little separation disorder complex fortunately, and came back to work for us again there on site. And so it's a great privilege to recognize Sally for 35 years with Texas Parks and Wildlife. Sally, Stolz, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: Jimmie Rodriguez has been with the Department for three decades, and he has left his fingerprints on the Texas Hill Country literally and figuratively. He started out at Lost Maples, helping to open up one of our first state natural areas in the system, then moved over to Guadalupe River State Park, where he helped open that state park. Went over to Enchanted Rock to work there for a number of years. Was at Kerrville-Schreiner Park, which is now part of the city park system there in Kerrville. And currently serving in the Hill County as director of our Operations and Safety, and really takes a great deal of pride of implementing our minor repair program there in the region and working with his colleagues throughout the Hill Country state park system. And Jimmie's been with us for 30 years. Real proud to call him a colleague. Jimmy, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: The next individual that we're going to recognize has been with us for 25 years. And Paul Kisel, great story. He applied for a job with this Department 41 times before he was hired, and shame on us and the hiring managers, is all I've got to stay. Paul was hired after what only can be described as persistence, persistence, persistence and placed at Lake Houston, did a lot of work there at the San Jacinto Battleground complex. Was promoted to be ultimately Superintendent at Inks Lake, and is currently our complex manager there at Eisenhower State Park up there on Lake Texoma. And had the privilege of working with Paul this year on some pretty complicated things having to do with the Corps of Engineers and our lease and a concessioner and marina agreement. And Paul has just handled that very, very well. And very, very proud of his leadership and all he does for our state park system. 25 years, Paul Kisel. Paul, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: The next individual that we want to recognize has been with us for 30 years also in our state park system. And David Bischofhausen literally and figuratively works out in God's country. He is our complex manager there at the Davis Mountain State Park and Indian Lodge, which I know some of you have had the privilege of staying in that wonderful old restored CCC structure, Balmorhea Springs, arguably the greatest swimming hole in the state of Texas. And he started with us as a summer intern, worked at Fort Lancaster and Fort McKavett. Now obviously there in the Davis Mountains, very involved in the Chamber of Commerce and the Texas Mountain Trails region helping to promote nature tourism out in that area. And let's celebrate David's 30 years with the Department. David, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: Every once in a while in State Parks, Walt Dabney takes a vacation or turns his back, and we hire or promote a Red Raider, just to see if he's paying attention. And Brent Leisure is one of our most vocal advocates, shall I say, for the red and black, much to Walt's chagrin. Brent has been with us for 25 years. Had a very long and storied career in State Park, worked as superintendent right over here at McKinney Falls and over at the Bastrop/Buescher complex. Now our Regional Director for an area that spans from Huntsville State Park all the way over to the Guadalupe River and Government Canyon there in the Hill Country. And Brent raises his hand every time we need somebody to do a job on behalf of the Department. And the only lapse in judgment that I'm aware of that Brent has had is when he's tried to keep up with Mr. Dabney on a mountain bike and occasionally is known for tumbling over the handlebars. So other than that, Brent has been a great leader in our State Parks, so let's celebrate his 25 years with the Department. Brent Leisure.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: I think, as all of you know, we've got a very dedicated team of biologists on the coast that work to protect our bays and estuaries and our fishery stocks and our natural resources there. And Winston Denton has been a biologist with us for 20 years, stationed up in Dickinson there at our marine lab, one of our experts at kind of assessing impacts to the bays and estuaries and habitats after major storm events like Rita and Hurricane Ike. He's been the Department's liaison to the oil and gas industry when they have been seeking to get counsel and help as they're doing seismic work on the Upper Coast, and just represented us very, very well. Winston's been with us for 20 years. Let's celebrate that today. Winston, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: I think, as y'all know, one of the hallmarks of the Coastal Fisheries Division has been the long-term data set, which they've collected through the gill nets and the bag seines and the trawls. And so they've just given us really a wealth of biological information to help us make informed management decisions about our coastal fishery stocks. And Michaela Hill has been with us as a Fish and Wildlife Technician for 20 years. She has helped with the collection of all of that data during the course of her career with us. Been very involved in interviewing fishermen to help kind of understand their attitudes and perspectives on things, taking care of our equipment. She's been a part of that Corpus Christi ecosystem team, and for 20 years she's served us proudly. Michaela, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: Terry Stelly, up in Port Arthur, was hired 20 years ago by the Department to work as a harvest biologist for us up on the Sabine Lake estuary. Really noted for his work on striped bass, worked on a subcommittee in the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission on anadromous fish. Very involved in East Texas water issues, served as the Department's ex officio member on the East Texas Water Planning Board, and just been a real leader in helping us make sure that we have sufficient good fresh water inflows down in Sabine Lake and that very, very important estuary on the Texas Bay. Terry Stelly, 20 years. Terry.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: Sea Center, up in Lake Jackson, is one of our flagship hatcheries and outreach programs, just a very, very special place. And one of the reasons for that is folks like Connie Stolte. And Connie has been with us for 20 years. I'm going to tell a story that Mike Ray probably was not expecting me to tell. But when Connie applied for a job as a hatchery technician, Mike apparently was under considerable pressure to hire someone out of LSU. I suspect Durocher was trying to reach across to Coastal Fisheries and permeate that division. Fortunately, the better sense got a hold of Mike and he went with Connie. She worked her way up to Hatchery Biologist, and she now leads our Visitor Center Program. You know, we have close to 60,000 visitors a year that come through there, and she leads our very, very dedicated group of volunteers. We have upwards of 900 volunteers, many of them Dow retirees, that really consider Sea Center their own. And she just does a remarkable job of motivating them and engaging them. And so, 20 years, Connie Stolte. Connie.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: I think, as all of you know, Memorial Day kicked off kind of boater and water season in Texas, and that is a huge, huge issue and important time of the year for our game wardens and law enforcement community as they work to ensure that our boaters and swimmers and other recreational enthusiasts are able to operate safely and responsibly on the water. And so it is particularly timely that we are acknowledging the work of Chris Green, one of our game wardens stationed in East Texas. He's been named the Southern States Boating Officer of the Year. And Chris graduated from the Game Warden Academy back in 1993. He's stationed in Smith County, responsible for overseeing boater and water safety, among many, many other things on the Sabine and Neches Rivers and Tyler Lake and Lake Palestine. And not only has he really excelled in his law enforcement work, he has done everything from helping to get a successful prosecution on a criminally negligent homicide recently in East Texas. He's rescued capsized fishermen that were in danger of drowning. But he gives back to the community, and each summer he finds time to take out adults from the Tyler area that are physically and mentally challenged and wouldn't otherwise have an opportunity to get out on the water. And so Chris exemplifies the best of this Department, and he's here today as we celebrate this honor. Chris Green, our Officer of the Year. Chris, please come forward.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: We've got the privilege today to acknowledge a long-standing friend and partner and colleague in the parks community. Larry Pressler, as many of you know, has led the Parks and Recreation Department down in the City of McAllen for 36 years. And Larry recently shared the news that he was going to retire. And what's significant about that are a couple of things. One is Larry was really instrumental in working with this Department in getting the World Birding Center established. And as Scott Boruff and Walt Dabney have noted, he was really a stable force in sometimes a very destabilizing environment. And Larry stayed steady throughout the whole time, focused, helped develop that complex, and in his spare time built a world-class local parks system in McAllen, grew it from about a dozen employees to now more than 150. Had seven parks when he started, now have over 30 major parks, 30 miles of hike-and-bike trails, established the Quinta Mazatlan Nature Center as part of the Birding Center. Larry has just been a great, great friend to this agency, a wonderful colleague. Grew up on a ranch in the Hill Country that he was telling me a good part of that is now part of Enchanted Rock. So he has contributed to this agency in many, many ways. Scott Boruff, a dear friend of Larry, is having eye surgery today, and so keep him in your prayers, and he wishes he could be with us today to celebrate that. Larry Pressler. Let's recognize Larry, our friend and colleague. Larry.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: The last recognition that we want to do is someone who's no stranger to all of you, Terry Erwin, who has led our Hunter Education and Hunter Safety Programs. He's been such a leader really internationally in this effort. And many, many entities have recognized Terry for his great work in reaching out not only in Texas but across the country and across the borders, as he works to train folks internationally on how they can develop hunter safety programs. And our great partner, Safari Club International, is here today to recognize him with their Educator of the Year Award. We have Thomas Saldias, who is their representative. Thomas, by the way, is getting his Ph.D. at Texas A&M — that ought to make you proud, Dabney — in Human Dimensions. And so he's going to come forward and give this award to Terry. So, Thomas, please come forward.

MR. SALDIAS: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the Commission. First of all, I would like to thank Texas Parks and Wildlife on behalf of the Peruvian Government. A few weeks ago, I don't know if everybody's aware, we were able to bring one of the Peruvian wildlife officials to be trained at Texas Parks and Wildlife for about 15 days. It is the first time that a South American wildlife official has been trained in the North American model of wildlife management. So on behalf of all the Peruvian hunters and of our government, we thank you very much for this great opportunity.

On behalf of Safari Club International, I would like to present this award to Terry Erwin, a token of our pledge to vocational excellence. He has achieved all the qualities we look for in our recipients. As a personal note, I would like to mention that I met Terry Erwin almost three years ago, and during this time he became a friend, an advisor, and a mentor, and also a father-like figure for me. He gave me the opportunity to work with him, translate the Texas Instructor Training Manual into Spanish, and then we traveled together to Peru to conduct the first Hunter Education Program ever held in a South American country.

Thanks to Terry's efforts in implementing hunter education in Peru, our law now requires proof of hunter education for any applicant looking for a hunting license in Peru. We didn't have to reinvent the program. We just applied the best we found, and that was the Texas Hunter Education Program.

During the last year, Terry has certified students, instructors, and finally instructor-trainers in Mexico. And as of today, volunteer instructors from Mexico, under the supervision of the Hunting Mexican Federation, has certified over 1,500 students. Thanks to his efforts, Mexico has accomplished in one year more than was accomplished in the last 10, since the program was implemented in that country.

Terry, thank you very much for all your help in promoting hunter education in other countries, much like the model that you help maintain in Texas and across North America. It has been a pleasure and honor working with you over the past three years, and I hope to have more years of service together. On behalf of Merle Shepard, Safari Club President, and Norbert Uhlman, the President of the International and Development Committee, I'm honored to present to Terry Erwin the Safari Club International Educator of the Year Award. Terry.

(Applause and pause for photographs)

MR. SMITH: Mr. Chairman and members of the Commission, this concludes my part of the presentation today. Thank you.

(Pause)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you, everybody. That was wonderful. First order of business is Item Number 1, an Action Item, Approval of a Revised Agenda. Item Number 6, Designation of Nonprofit Partners, has been withdrawn at this time. Do I have a motion for approval?

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: So move.

COMMISSIONER MARTIN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Commissioner Bivins, second by Commissioner Martin. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you. Motion carries.

Go on now to Item Number 2, Briefing — Research Activities of the Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Unit at Texas Tech. They're beating up on you, Walt. Where's Walt? We're going to all beat up on Walt today.

Anyway, welcome Mr. Jay Roberson. Thank you.

MR. ROBERSON: Good morning, Mr. Chairman, Commissioners, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Jay Roberson. I am Coordinator of Research and Technical Programs in the Wildlife Division, and I'm here today to introduce you to Dr. Reynaldo Patino, who is leader of the Texas Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Texas Tech University in Lubbock. And he will be making a short briefing to you on the work that they're doing there.

The Federal Government has assisted the state wildlife agencies since the 1930s in conducting research that is essential and important to the declining species of that time, and important to today as well. This program provides research expertise on important wildlife conservation issues here in Texas, and it provides post-graduate training to future wildlife biologists and fisheries biologists. On average, about 5 percent of the research that the Wildlife Division conducts is done through the Unit program, and we have four cooperators in that. Besides the Department, there is the Texas Tech University; USGS Biological Resource Division, which is the research arm of the Natural Resources side of the Federal Government; and the Wildlife Management Institute.

The Unit in Lubbock was created in 1989, and we have contributed about $150,000 per year for specific research projects, and another $40,000 per year over the last 10 years from the Wildlife Division for general operation of that Unit. The Unit is led by Dr. Patino, and his expertise and training and experience is in fisheries ecology, physiology, genetics, and toxicology. With him today are Dr. Clint Boal, the Assistant Unit Leader, whose expertise is in terrestrial wildlife, particularly birds of prey. We also have with us today Dr. Jim Flemming, who is the Unit Supervisor for the Southern Region, which covers 13 states from North Carolina to Texas. We have a Unit Cooperators meeting tomorrow here in the Bass Conference Room, where we'll talk about strategy and plans for the coming year.

We also have two graduate students with us, who are working on various research projects, some of which are displayed in the foyer out here. If you have a chance to look at the posters in the foyer, please do so. You can see some of the sophistication and modern methodologies that are being used to conduct research.

Dr. Patino will be making briefing for the Commission on the Role and Benefits of the Unit. Dr. Patino?

DR. PATINO: Thank you very much, Jay.

First, I would like to thank the Chairman and the members of the Commission for allowing us a moment in your busy agenda to come and tell you about the Texas Co-op Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and the Wildlife Division for having coordinated our presentation today. We are especially pleased about the timing of this opportunity, because this year it happens to mark the 20th anniversary since the start of our operations at Texas Tech. So it has a special significance for us.

The purpose, as Jay said, today is to briefly explain to the Commission, who we are, what we do, and some of the unique cooperative research opportunities that are available to the various cooperators that govern our activities through the Unit. And if I can start with the first slide. This is — some of this has already been mentioned. We are the result of a partnership between Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Texas Tech University, the U.S. Geological Survey, Wildlife Management Institute, and also the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. They're all the main partners in the agreement that established and governs our operations. We are located on the main campus of Texas Tech University in Lubbock. As has been already said, this is the 20th anniversary; 20 years earlier we started operations. I think we were first on paper established in '88, but were first staffed and started operations in '89. And we also — the Texas Unit is one of 39 similar units, cooperative research units, in 37 states throughout the country.

The mission of our Unit and the mission of the Co-op Unit program in general is to provide scientific information for use towards the conservation and management of renewable natural resources. And we do that by conducting research. We have — Unit scientists have our own personal research programs. We also train graduate students, and two of them are here with us today. And we also provide technical assistance as requested or needed.

The scope of our research operations, again, it focuses on renewable natural resources of concern to the state of Texas, but many of the issues and problems are trans-boundary issues, so we also — those issues we go across borders when needed and also look at regional, national, or even international issues that may be of concern. But our focus — obviously, we are here — our focus is Texas, and one of our main cooperators is Parks and Wildlife.

Just to give you a brief explanation of what the roles of the various cooperators are, the USGS, Geological Survey, provides funding to support currently two federal Unit scientists. There's currently a vacancy, a third position that is currently vacant, that hopefully, things turn around, we might be able to fill in the near future, sometime in the future. By agreement, we have graduate faculty status with the university, Texas Tech, in this case. We advise, supervise graduate students, and we also teach graduate-level courses. So we more or less function as a regular graduate — I'm sorry — faculty member of the university.

The university provides laboratory space, office space, and also provides some office staff support. They also provide for projects that come through the Unit, provide a discount or overhead rate, which is one of

the — probably one of the attractive components of the operation. More of the money that is made available goes actually to research as opposed to overhead costs.

Texas Parks and Wildlife provides a portion of the base funds that are necessary for our — just our standard maintenance and operation costs, as Dr. Roberson mentioned. And all cooperators provide guidance on research directions. As was mentioned, we have our annual cooperators meeting tomorrow, and this is where some of that guidance is provided. And also all cooperators, as they — when they have research needs or we are requested, they provide also funds to conduct the research.

Some of the unique opportunities available through the Unit for research by the various cooperators is that through the Unit all parties to the agreement, all cooperators — federal, state, and Texas Tech — have access to each other through the Unit. They are all equal partners in the agreement.

Through the Unit also any of the cooperators have access to any faculty member in the host university, in this case Texas Tech University. So it's not just the Unit scientists that we, you know, provide the scientific expertise. It's any faculty member within our campus that has a particular expertise that is needed by any of the cooperators is accessible for that purpose.

The primary — as I mentioned already, the primary mechanism for the cooperative research is the discounted overhead rate that the university provides. All projects that come through the Unit, be it federal or state, that come through this cooperative agreement, they enter into the university at a discounted rate of 10 percent. Standard rates are 45, 46 percent, so it's a significant savings to the cooperators if they come through our Unit.

Now I'm just going to go very briefly through some of the samples of research that we do. These various projects are explained in more detail in the foyer and in the posters that we have, and you're welcome, if you wish, if you're interested, to browse through those posters. And if you have any questions, we will be there at the break. Some of our students will be there at break, if you have any questions. But we work on lesser prairie chickens in the Panhandle. We have a number of projects that are either conducted by Dr. Boal, our terrestrial wildlife biologist, or other faculty members on campus that are funded through the Unit on lesser prairie chickens. As you know, there's a declining population problem with the lesser prairie chickens, and that's becoming an issue, so we're dealing with that.

Another project — this is a small project in our case, but we also started a pilot project locally in Lubbock, in the Lubbock Canyon Lake system, looking at golden algae problems, blooms. There's been problems of golden algae blooms locally in Texas, so we are addressing those issues, trying to understand maybe what controls those blooms and what we could probably do to control them, to manage them. And this is also a statewide concern. But we're dealing with this issue.

Wind energy development. That's — it's happening. Every time, I'm sure, you drive to Lubbock you see more and more wind turbines along the road. And one special concern maybe is the impacts of these turbines on wild birds and bats, flying organisms. And that's why we're dealing with some of those issues, ecological issues, concerning wind energy development.

Then this is probably one example of a trans-boundary issue of concern. The common snook is — until some decades ago, that was a very abundant fish in South Texas, a marine species, but the populations have been declining. This is a concern also in Mexico. I mean, common snook is a trans-boundary species, and Mexico is also concerned about their — snook fishes. There's a number of species. So we have a project with some biologists from Tabasco to try to — it's a production issue. We're trying to develop techniques to spawn the fish in captivity so they can be used either for aquaculture or for restocking of depleted population. So this is a concern also that our Mexican colleagues also share with us.

So, briefly, that's what we do. That's who we are, what we do. And if you have any questions, I'll be happy to answer them. Or if you have time during the break, we'll be happy to answer questions before the posters.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions, Commissioners?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Lesser prairie chickens. We were visiting with one of your colleagues out in the hallway, and we were commenting about how the — because you show the lesser prairie chicken research, and then you're showing the wind turbine research going on. And we — there seems to be a possibility that these are going to clash at some point. Am I saying that correctly?

DR. PATINO: I would rather defer that to my colleague, Clint, or to Jay.

MR. ROBERSON: Well, as you know, the lesser prairie chicken is on the candidate species list from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Yes.

MR. ROBERSON: And it's been upgraded from 8 to number 2 on that list, so its listing is likely in the future. And we do have a personal history of a larger prairie chicken, the Attwater's, here in Texas, the habitat loss, we think that's related to the decline of the Attwater's. We would like to do, I think, whatever we can to prevent that from happening for the lesser. There are other states involved in this; it's not just Texas. Kansas, Oklahoma, Colorado are all involved in it. So we're looking at everything that has to do with lesser prairie chicken decline, range contraction.

But the grouse species, as a rule, are very susceptible to — prairie grouse species, to overhead obstructions. And they don't tolerate it very well. Forest grouse are a different matter, of course, but the prairie grouse are, and that's just one aspect. In fact, the wind energy turbines may be more of an impact on other wildlife species than the lesser prairie chicken. We just don't know. Particularly the bat species. So we're investigating it all.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any other questions, comments?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Well, thank you, and thank you for all the work you're —

Oh, I'm sorry. Commissioner Duggins?

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: When do you anticipate that you might issue preliminary conclusions or some sort of report on the effects of the turbines on wildlife?

MR. ROBERSON: That really gets into our habitat assessment folks, and there is so much to learn right now about what the impacts of those turbines are on wildlife. Kathy Boydston of our staff is working at the international level with other states and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to establish some guidelines about the impacts. And we will work with her on the research side. We will work with her through the executive office on defining what the future research goals are and what we can say in terms of impacts at that time. But right now it's really — it's a new area. We don't know a lot about it. So as far as when, that's — for me, that would be hard to judge. I would say there would be some guidelines in the near future.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: How long are you — how long is your data set going to run? When do you estimate that we would have sufficient data to make a valid conclusion?

MR. ROBERSON: Well, the long-term studies are the very best. Before and after control impacts, a lot of times because these farms are on private lands, we don't have a lot of prior notice. We need a minimum of two years' prior research on these areas and then two years' post-construction. And that, of course, requires access to those private lands. We need that done across ecological areas in the state, not just the High Plains in Edwards Plateau, but also our coastal areas.

So I — my personal view, and being new to the wind research side of things, is that we will need a number of studies done over a number of years, association-type or correlation-type analyses, to draw any conclusions about the impact. And it will vary from location to location on which species are affected and what we can do to mitigate those losses.

MR. SMITH: Commissioners, if I could, I think what you're hearing from Jay is that, you know, there's an abundance of caution but also concern by the scientific community about the emerging wind development and what the impacts may be, both from a direct mortality perspective of species, like birds and bats, but also indirect impacts on the landscape in terms of fragmentation and avoidance, such as you see with prairie grouse that will move their leks and breeding areas long distances away from any large vertical structures. This issue still very much in its formative stages, and so we don't have a lot of data right now.

As I think you all aware, we have put together with the wind industry and the conservation community, private landowner community some voluntary siting guidelines that are very much an iterative process as we are updating those for eco-regions in the state. Our first priority is the Panhandle, because of this issue about the concerns with the lesser prairie chickens and the burgeoning wind energy development in that area.

We will obviously keep you all apprised as we develop more data. We're investing heavily with Texas Tech, also with A&M Kingsville, Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute, in looking at the issue of neotropical migrant songbirds and are working with all of our scientific partners to help look into this. But it's safe to say we're still very much in our early stages of trying to ascertain direct and indirect impacts. There's a lot of concern out there to be fair about this, as wind energy is growing, growing, and growing, candidly it's outpacing our ability to keep up with it from a scientific perspective. Very, very important issue on the landscape.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any other questions or comments for either one?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you both for taking the time.

MR. ROBERSON: Thank you.

DR. PATINO: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: And obviously very pertinent to what's going on literally as we speak. So thank you.

Item Number 3, Briefing — Texas Bighorn Society, A 30-Year Partnership, and Mr. Calvin Richardson.

MR. RICHARDSON: Good morning, and thank you, Mr. Chairman, Commissioners. My name's Calvin Richardson. I'm Program Leader for Desert Big Game. I'm here today — did we lose the slides? I'm here today to introduce a tremendous partner of the Wildlife Division, a tremendous partner of the Desert Bighorn Sheep Program. But before I make that introduction, I just want to provide you with a brief historical background of the Sheep Restoration Program in Texas, as well as a little bit on our current status of the sheep population.

Historically, desert bighorns occupied most of the mountain ranges of the Trans-Pecos Region. We don't know exactly how many sheep there were originally, but by the late 1800s numbers had declined to about 1500 animals. By 1905, Vernon Bailey estimated that there were only about 500 desert sheep left in Texas, and the last of the native bighorns were gone by 1960. There were a number of factors that led to the decline, including unregulated market hunting, subsistence hunting by mining camps, early settlers. Large numbers of sheep and goats in the early and mid-1900s resulted in forage competition. Barriers, such as net-wire fencing, prevented free movement of sheep. But most importantly, bighorns were unable to cope with the diseases carried by domestic sheep.

Early attempts to stop the decline included the prohibition of bighorn sheep hunting in 1903. In 1945, Sierra Diablo WMA was established as a sanctuary for the few remaining bighorn sheep in Texas. And in 1959, propagation efforts were initiated at the 427-acre brood pen at Black Gap WMA, and those efforts were plagued by disease and predation over the next two decades.

The sheep program experienced few successes until the formation of the Texas Bighorn Society in 1981 and the construction of the Sierra Diablo brood pens in 1983. This effort, combined with the trans-locations of surplus sheep from other states, such as Nevada, Arizona, Utah, finally got the restoration program revitalized and underway.

Over the past 30 years, a strong partnership has evolved between the Texas Bighorn Society and Texas Parks and Wildlife. This cooperative approach is a formula that has worked well in the restoration of desert bighorn sheep to much of their native range in Texas. Annual sheep surveys in August and September indicate an increasing trend in sheep numbers over the past two decades, with a resulting record number of sheep observed this past year of 1200. Permit issuance has also increased from two permits 10 years ago to a record 15 permits this past year in 2008. And our current population estimate of desert bighorns is approximately 1500 sheep.

This could not have been accomplished without the dedicated biologists who fought through the challenges during the early years. And, simply stated, we would not have desert bighorn sheep in Texas if it were not for the support, the funding, the partnership of the Texas Bighorn Society.

Now I'd like to introduce the President of the Texas Bighorn Society, Mr. Robert Joseph, and Vice-President, Mr. Charles Wolcott.

MR. JOSEPH: Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Robert Joseph, and I am the current President of the Texas Bighorn Society. Charles Wolcott is the Vice-President. The Texas Bighorn Society is an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization solely dedicated to conserving and restoring the desert bighorn sheep in the state of Texas. We have a little over 500 members, and over half of those are life members. In the printed agenda item you have in your packet, there's a list of accomplishments that we're very proud of on Exhibit A that I would encourage you to look at at your convenience.

What we're going to do now is I'm going to show you a little short, six-minute video, which outlines our partnership with Texas Parks and Wildlife and what we have done together over the past 25 to 30 years. You might recognize the narrator on this video. It's Dr. Red Duke from Houston, who is one of the founders of the Texas Bighorn Society.

Andra, could you play the video, please?

(Video presented)

MR. JOSEPH: I'm trying to change slides, hold on. You know, in addition to our great partnership with the Texas Parks and Wildlife, I would be remiss if I didn't include another very important, equally important partner in the Texas bighorn story, and that is the private landowners in Texas. Today there are more sheep on private land than there are on public land. And without the landowners' cooperation and support, we would not have a sheep program in Texas.

The Texas Bighorn Society does not distinguish its work between working on public land and working on private land with private landowners. In fact, our last two work projects have been on private land, and we do these projects completely free of charge to the landowner. If they're interested in bighorn sheep and trying to take care of them and protect them, we're there to support them as well.

In 2008 — that's the wrong slide, here we go. In 2008, we built two new water guzzlers in the Baylor Mountains on the Baylor Mountain Ranch, north of Van Horn, Texas. This slide depicts our staging area. The water guzzlers we built were actually on top of those mountains in the background.

This is our company mule, 21st-century style. It carries all of our equipment with a drop line up to the top of the mountain and carries all of the volunteers on the inside.

Just two months ago, in March of this year, we built two new guzzlers and repaired an old guzzler in the Van Horn Mountains on the, once again, privately owned Lado Ranch. It's a great group of volunteers, as you can see. The girls that want to work just as hard as the guys. We also encourage youngsters, especially when it's time to drive T-posts, as you can see. Here our volunteers are assembling the apron of the guzzler. These folks are all volunteers. They come from all walks of life, except maybe these guys. I'm not sure what they're doing.

This is an interesting photo. It appears that we're building this guzzler on kind of a flat place, but I'll assure you that's really just a ridge, and it falls off about 1,000 feet on each side of it. So it's a perfect place to build a water project for sheep and other animals.

Here's one of the completed projects from the Lado Ranch this year. And then as any of you know much about us know, after we get through working, we also like to have a little fun. So that's part of our group as well.

And it's been a great 30-year partnership. We look forward to working with you in the future. Thank you very much for your time and allowing us to appear before you today.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Well, thank you very much for taking your time.

Commissioners, any questions or comments?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Well, I'll certainly comment. You know, this is the type of partnership that Texas Parks and Wildlife has been lucky to be involved in. So thank you. And, I mean, this is a heck of a success story.

MR. JOSEPH: Well, thank you. We're proud of it, but we couldn't have done it without the help of the private landowners and certainly not without the help of this Department and the very dedicated biologists and others that are out there every day doing the work. We get a lot of the credit, but those guys do the work.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Well, thank you very much. I appreciate it. But it does. I mean, I think this is an example of what can happen when everybody's willing to work together. And, I mean, the turnaround is pretty phenomenal, when you think about going from zero to where we are today.

MR. JOSEPH: We've been very fortunate.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Well, as you said, a lot of hard work by everybody working together. So, again, thank you very much for taking the time.

Any other questions or comments?

(No response)

MR. JOSEPH: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you.

Item Number 4, an Action Item, Proposed License and Boat Registration Fee Increases — Recommended Adoption of Proposed Changes. Mr. Gene McCarty.

MR. McCARTY: Good morning. For the record, my name is Gene McCarty. I'm Deputy Executive Director for Administration. The item before you today is Proposed Increase in Hunting and Fishing License and Boat Registration and Titling Fees.

Just a little background. You know, the license fees, both boat registration and titling, were last increased by Texas Parks and Wildlife in 2004. Prior to that, we had not increased fees since 1996. So we have kind of a long history of a long period of time between individual fee increases. Just part of the justification here is, since 2004, operational costs for the Fund 9 divisions, those divisions directly associated with the hunting and fishing license and boat registration and titling fees, has increased by 6.1 percent per year.

The proposed fee increase for hunting and fishing licenses would be a 5 percent rolled up to the next highest dollar. This would equate to an approximate $2 to $5 increase per license for most of the most popular hunting and fishing licenses. There are a number of exceptions, and I'll go through those here in a minute. This additional revenue would equate to approximately $3.5 million per year.

This kind of gives you an idea of what the fee increase would be for the more popular licenses. The Super Combo would go from $64 to $68. The Resident Hunting would go from $23 to $25, the Resident Freshwater Fishing, from $28 to $30; and the Resident Saltwater license, from $33 to $35. As you can see, that's generally from $2 to $4 dollars.

The exceptions that I was talking about, number one, the Lifetime License. We would increase that license, for the hunting and fishing license, from $600 to $1,000; and the Lifetime Combo, from $1,000 to $1,800. This is in an effort to try to get the actuarials back in line with what the original plan was, which was approximately 25 years.

The Resident Shrimpboat Captain's license increases from $30 to $50. The reason for this is to try to recapture some revenue loss when the rule was changed requiring all hands on deck to have a general commercial fishing license. And various resident and nonresident commercial licenses, while their increase would be 5 percent, the actual value would fall outside the line of the $2 to $5 that I discussed earlier, because they're mostly some really high-valued license, high-cost value of the licenses, for example, the Nonresident Hunting license is a $300 license, and a 5 percent would make $15, so it will go to $315.

Boat registration and titling fees, again, a little background. They were last increased in 2004. And I just want to remind the Commission that boat registration fees cover a two-year period. These fee increases would be used to improve and update the boat registration titling system, provide improvements in boat-theft enforcement, provide additional funding for boat-fuel costs for game wardens, and boating safety and BWI enforcement.

The proposed increase for boat registration and titling would again be a 5 percent rolled up to the next highest dollars with two exceptions, and I'll go through those in a minute. And this proposed increase would generate approximately $1.6 million in additional revenue.

As you can see, generally we're talking about, you know, for a vessel less than 16 feet would go from $30 to $32; from 16 to 26 would go from $50 to $53. The two exceptions that I talked about was vessels from 26 to 40 would go up significantly, and vessels over 40 would go up from $90 to $150. And this is to try to get this actual licensing cost, you know, more in line with the value of the vessel and the overall impact of the vessel.

We also have some other new revenue opportunities that we're including here. One of them would be to implement an administrative fee of $100 for the reinstatement of a revoked license. Another one would be to reinstate the Nonresident Commercial Fishing Boat license. This license was inadvertently dropped off of our license category two years ago, and we do have a statutory obligation to have that license, so we need to reinstate it. And then we also have the proposed Annual Lifetime License draw, which basically will be a similar lottery draw for — at a Lifetime License.

Actions since our last Commission meeting. We presented this proposal to the Commission in March and received Commission approval to go to the Texas Register. We published in the Texas Register on April 24th, 2009, and solicited public feedback via public hearings, Web, the U.S. Mail, and phone. As you can see, we had 19 public hearing sites scattered across the state. Summary of the public hearing comments are below. For recreational licenses, we received 50 in support and 140 in opposition. For commercial, 24 in support; 15 in opposition. For boat registration/titling, 15 in support and 24 in opposition. For the Lifetime License, we got 10 in support and 36 in opposition. And for the Lifetime License draw, we received 31 in support; 5 in opposition. And the license reinstatement, 29 in support and 9 in opposition.

Staff would request the Commission adopt this motion as you see here and the amendment to the — the amended motion, or the amended amendment is to address we have reduced the proposed fee increase for the vessels over 40 feet from $200 back to $150.

And I'll take any questions.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions from the Commissioners?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Let me see. We now here have somebody signed up to speak, Will Kirkpatrick, on this item. Will?

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Good morning. My name is Will Kirkpatrick. I live on Sam Rayburn Reservoir, where I've conducted a series of fishing schools for 21 years at Stephen F. Austin State University's facility. Director Smith, we've been told the Department needs additional monies from us.

In 1998, I was asked by the Department to present an overview of the last 30 years of catch-and-release. This was due to my long tenure as professional angler and fishing guide. In 1999, I was appointed by Director Sansom to the Department's Freshwater Advisory Board, and reappointed twice.

Following my appointment, it was requested I testify before the Texas Sunset Review Board, which was examining the Department. This request drew upon 31 years working for Bell Telephone Corporation over much of the United States, while fishing and hunting in 21 states and three countries. Shortly thereafter I was requested to set up a meeting in Lufkin to generate funds for an economic study of Sam Rayburn by the Department due to Jasper County's reneging on a financial commitment. This meeting generated over $25,000. I was recently told by your District Managing Supervisor that this $50,000 study was faulted from the start, yet the Department has used Dr. Robert Ditton of E&M — A&M — sorry — recognized authority on these type of studies and has done many other similar projects.

In '02, Mr. Durocher requested I set up a meeting with local leaders in Hemphill to gain support of the newly planned Freshwater Fish Hatchery on Toledo Bend, scheduled to cost $13-1/2 million. In February of '04, late Commissioner John Parker requested I attend a meeting on this same project. It was then proposed to cost $16- to $20 million, but give anglers more bang for their bucks. The last estimate of this project is now $27 million, yet provides less ponds, costs millions extra, and requires more maintenance, which is not much bang for us.

In my letter dated September 5th, 1995, to Director Sansom, I proposed tapping an in-place source of revenue currently utilizing our state's waters for monetary gain completely free of charge. While I've been guiding, I've paid $2,575 for this privilege. These fishing tournaments generate millions of dollars each year for their promoters and individuals, yet pay absolutely nothing additional into Department's coffers. Mr. Durocher will tell you this is only a social issue, yet ESPN paid $44 million to purchase B.A.S.S. Wal-Mart, which is the world's largest retailer, and Genmar, a huge boat builder, run a similar series of fishing tournaments, again, paying nothing into our coffers.

A recent Big Bass Event on Rayburn drew 7,551 anglers with an entry fee of $200 for three days. This totals approximately $1.5 million while paying out approximately $324,000 in cash money. The rest of the event's prizes were provided free or at a significant discount to the promoter who has conducted these events for 25 years. These same tournament anglers were responsible for transplanting a large amount of giant salvinia onto Rayburn, and God only knows where else that it went, while some existing infestations were transplanted by other tournament anglers. The majority of the time, these promoters and participants do not handle or care for fish properly, and I've got the documents for that.

If you'd like to know how, I'm going to put Gene on a little spot here. The Department's association with some of these tournaments, you might ask him about rubber checks. It's an interesting story. You'll have to do it in private.

Commissioner Holt, if you didn't have to pay for the auditorium use in professional sports, it would be quite a savings of money. And they don't pay a dime to use these, and it's the same thing. Thank you for your time. If you have any questions, you've got a packet. My phone number's there. I'd be more than happy to share everything we've got for you. But the Department needs to look at this. I sat here yesterday and listened to Mr. Duggins explain about do we — are we getting enough money for what we're paying. And they're not paying anything.

You know, it's — if you're a truck driver — and we related to this — if you're a truck driver, you pay about three times for a commercial license what we pay for our individual driver's license. And the reason you pay that is because you use the highway for a source of income. It's the same thing when I buy a guide license. I'm paying for a privilege of using public waters. Just buying a fishing license does not give you that privilege. That only gives you the privilege for private fishing for your own enjoyment.

Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you. I wrote a note. Thank you, sir.

Any questions for Mr. Kirkpatrick?

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: I guess I have a question on that. Are you —

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Yes, sir.

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: You know, we did the Bass Classic at Lake Fork. And that generated quite a bit of money that went back into the Department.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Correct.

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: And I guess maybe we need to — you're saying we need to utilize that for the process in other tournaments or —

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Everything that's done — ESPN is owned by Disney. It's the world's largest entertainment network. Commissioner Friedkin, being involved with Toyota. That's a big company. And the reason they do what they do is for the advertising that they get out of it. It's awful good publicity for the — what was it? — Toyota Tundra, I believe was their big truck? And they are one of the major sponsors of B.A.S.S.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Right. But are we talking about programs that — I'm a little confused. Are we talking about programs or tournaments that fund the Department or tournaments in general? Specifically, the Toyota Texas Bass Classic funded the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Phil can, you know, speak to the specifics about where that money went. But that's incremental money that the Department wouldn't otherwise have.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: This one tournament on Rayburn has been there for 25 years.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: No. I'm talking about the Bass Classic, which was Commissioner Bivins' question.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Well, the Bass Classic, the money it generated, the money we were given I would imagine was a very small percentage, when you let in how much advertising Toyota got out of this. Now, the money that we got, that the Department got, it's a lot of money to an individual, but it's not a lot of money for —

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Well, with all due respect, that's actually incorrect.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Okay.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: And I'd be happy to walk you through the economics of that.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Okay.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Phil and I can do that at the end of the meeting, if you'd like.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: Okay.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: But I think you need to know the facts in that regard before speaking about it, because it has been beneficial to the Department, and it's been significant, and certainly more significant than it's been for pure advertising bang for the buck. So, anyway, we can talk about that later.

MR. KIRKPATRICK: They have — there's approximately a million anglers. This is using your figures. There's approximately a million freshwater anglers in Texas. We estimate that, from the figures I've been given, 6 percent of them fish money tournaments. And I sat down last night. If you take one-fourth of those — I'm just talking about major money tournaments, not these little $25 entry fee and you get a cup, but major money, which we just had one on the Red River, which is not ours, but — and it — first prize was $500,000. So these major — if you take 25 percent of it, that's 15,000 anglers that are making significant monies off the resource and not paying anything back into it other than they buy a fishing license. A lot of their equipment they don't buy, so you don't get revenue in off the Wallop-Breaux Dingle-Johnson. I know for that, because I've been with the same largest lure company in the world for over 35 years. And you don't get any money out of the tackle that I get from them.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any other questions?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you, Mr. Kirkpatrick.

Any other questions or comments on this?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Do I have a motion on this particular -

COMMISSIONER FALCON: Mr. Chairman —

COMMISSIONER HOLT: — -Action Item Number 4?

COMMISSIONER FALCON: — before making a motion —

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Commissioner Falcon.

COMMISSIONER FALCON: Yes. Before making a motion, I'd like to ask that yesterday, when we went over the budget and the sales of licenses and other sources of revenue, it looked like we were $3 million short this year in comparison to last year. And it seems like we're running out of time to make up that deficit. And how would that impact the budget for the —

MR. McCARTY: We're currently about $2.2 million down in hunting and fishing license, and an additional $600,000 or so in boat registration and titling. And we had — when we did our revenue forecast early in the year, we made some adjustments based on that. And we were basing it on being about 2 percent down overall, so we will make budget with what we've got, with what we have, because we did make — we did basically forecast that early in the season.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Gene, when you say down, are you talking about down from the year before?

MR. McCARTY: Yes. '09, FY '09 license sales —

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay.

MR. McCARTY: — are approximately running about 2 percent behind FY '08.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: And just for the general group, what's your sense of why we're down? What are the various reasons?

MR. McCARTY: Couple of things. Certainly the hurricane was our biggest impact in the early part of the year. Hurricane Ike really drove early license sales on the coast, and especially in the Upper Coast. There's some of those counties that license sales were 60 to 70 percent below normal. And then secondarily, as the economy started to catch up with us and the economic downturn, fuel costs, and so forth, during the middle portion of that, and then as November came around and the economy turned, you know, that kind of exacerbated the situation. We didn't catch up as quickly as we would have hoped to.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Dr. Falcon, any questions or comments?

COMMISSIONER FALCON: I just appreciate the comments from the public on how we could potentially raise more money, because I think we're going to have to look at all kinds of different avenues on how to raise more money. We've been concerned about Fund 9 for at least the two years that I've been on the Commission and what was going to happen to the monies available in the future. And so I certainly appreciate any comments and any help from the public on what we could potentially do to raise more money to continue at least the services that we're providing now, and hopefully more in the future.

MR. McCARTY: We have a group within the agency, it's a license team, that is a just very, very energetic and inventive group of people that are looking at new opportunities. Of course, this Super Combo lottery came out of that group. And that group has got just so much energy and just looking at so many different opportunities out there. There's a new idea all the time, and we're vetting them and working through them as quickly as we can, and just because we need to look at all the opportunities and lots of different diversification of our revenue base.

COMMISSIONER FALCON: Thank you very much, Gene.

That's all, Mr. Chairman.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you.

Any other questions for Gene before we vote?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Do I have a motion?

COMMISSIONER FALCON: So move.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Motion from Commission Falcon, second by Commissioner Friedkin. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Great. Thank you.

Thank you, Gene.

We'll move on to Item Number 5, Local Park Grant Funding for Projects Listed in the General Appropriations Act, TPWD Rider 34. Tim Hogsett's up. Tim?

MR. HOGSETT: Good morning, Mr. Chairman, members of the Commission. I'm Tim Hogsett, Director of Recreation Grants Program in the State Parks Division. The 80th Legislature, along with the competitive money that we were given for park grants, also gave us a list of 18 specific projects and $16.6 million to fund those. Specifically, the Appropriations Act reads, "Out of the funds appropriated for local park grants, the Department of Parks and Wildlife shall allocate $16,685,000 in matching grants for the following grants."

The list included two projects that we're bringing to you today that have now submitted applications. The first one is for $200,000 for a Community Park in the city of Lancaster, which is in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. And the second one is $200,000 in matching funds for Raymac Park, which is for the Airline Improvement District. That's a municipal improvement district in Harris County. And we're asking you specifically today to approve the motion that funding for the Special Appropriation Rider projects as listed in Exhibit A are approved. And I'd be glad to answer any questions.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions for Tim?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Didn't have anybody sign up to speak. Do I have a motion?

COMMISSIONER HIXON: So move.

COMMISSIONER FALCON: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Commissioner Hixon, seconded by Commissioner Falcon. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you. Hearing none, motion carried. Thanks, Tim.

MR. HOGSETT: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Item Number 6, Designation of Nonprofit Partners, has been withdrawn at this time.

Item Number 7, Action — Alligator Proclamation — Recommended Adoption of Proposed Changes. Mr. Amos Cooper, please.

MR. COOPER: Mr. Chairman, fellow Commissioners, my name is Amos Cooper, and I'm the Assistant Area Manager for the Upper Coastal Wetland Eco-System Project. And I'm here today to present the changes to the Alligator Proclamation. All alligators harvested in Texas must be tagged with the CITES hide tag because of similarity of appearance to endangered crocodilians elsewhere in the world. On public hunting land, there are two types of CITES hide tags for alligators. There's a commercial hide tag of $120. There's a not-for-sale tag at no cost.

The proposed amendment would clarify that alligators taken on public land and initially tagged with a not-for-sale tag must be tagged with a commercial hide tag purchased from the Department if the alligator is to enter commercial trade.

We had a total of 49 public comments, and yours is going to be a little bit different. This was updated this morning. I think you had 27, but we had a 38 agreed and 11 disagreed on it.

Staff recommends that Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt an amendment to 65.357 concerning purchase and sale of alligators with changes that are necessary to the proposed text as published in the April 24th, 2009, issue of the Texas Register. Are there any questions?

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions, comments? Yes, Commission Duggins.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: What were the substance of the objections, the 11 objections you received?

MR. COOPER: There wasn't any continuity about them. It was all over the place. We had a couple that the rules were ‑‑ they said it was poorly worded. There was two commented that they were in agreement with it, but they didn't know they were. The update was explained to them. Another comment was that they opposed the rule because they thought it would it would be too expensive to put into play. Another comment was he was against the commercial use of wildlife resources. That's basically it.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any other questions, comments?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you, Amos.

Do I have a motion on this?

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: So move.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Good. Commissioner Bivins. Second by —

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: — Commissioner Duggins. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you. Motion carries. Great.

Item Number 8, Action — Public Hunting Lands for Approval, Open Season on Public Hunting Lands, Public Hunting Activities on State Parks. Ms. Linda Campbell. Linda?

MS. CAMPBELL: Good morning, Commissioners. For the record, I'm Linda Campbell, Program Director for the Private Lands and Public Hunting Program in the Wildlife Division. I'm here today to request action on establishing an open season on public hunting lands and to present proposed public hunting activities on state parks. Establishing an open season on public hunting lands allows the Department to hold public hunts during the upcoming hunting season beginning September 1st, 2009. Also, statute requires the Commission to approve public hunting activities on units of the state park system.

You've been provided the proposed State Park hunts for the 2009-2010 season. Just briefly, there are a total of 1,676 hunt positions proposed on state parks, of which 253 are youth positions. This year, three state park units have returned to the Public Hunting Program. They are Pedernales Falls, Pedernales Falls Annex, and Mother Neff State Park. Also this year there are three new state parks proposing hunts. They are Palo Duro Canyon, Lake Texana, and Stephen F. Austin.

Staff recommends the Commission adopt the following motions. The first one, "Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes an open season on public hunting lands to run from September 1, 2009, to August 31, 2010." And the second motion, "Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes the public hunting activities contained in Exhibit A to take place on units of the state park system." Any questions?

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Comments for Linda on the public hunting?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: I'll have my usual comment.

MS. CAMPBELL: Yes, sir.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Let's keep it growing —

MS. CAMPBELL: Yes, sir.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: — and going. Congratulations.

MS. CAMPBELL: I hear you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Yes. I'm glad you're adding some new parks and putting some back in. That's great. Hopefully we can get this drought broken and it'll help too.

MS. CAMPBELL: Yes.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Wonderful. Do I have a motion on this?

COMMISSIONER HIXON: So move.

COMMISSIONER MORIAN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Commission Hixon, second Commissioner Morian. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: All right. Thank you. This motion does carry. Thank you, Linda.

Item Number 9, Action — Deer Tagging and Documentation Requirement — Recommended Adoption of Proposed Changes. Mr. Clayton Wolf. Clayton?

MR. WOLF: Mr. Chairman and Commissioners, my name is Clayton Wolf. I am the Big Game Program Director in the Wildlife Division. Yesterday I presented to you several items and talked about some of the work of our White­­­-tailed Deer Advisory Committee. I'm not going to go into the details that you've heard before except to say a lot of work has taken place. Much of it is coming to fruition, some of that through some statutory changes downtown that will become effective September 1st. However, there is one item and one recommendation from our advisory committee that this Commission can address, because this Commission has the authority to amend and modify tagging requirements.

Carcass tagging requirements currently cease when a carcass is at a final destination and is processed for cooking or storage and that carcass is beyond quarters. And, of course, you may recall that the White-tailed Deer Advisory Committee recognized that technically someone could be in violation of the law if they took a carcass down to quarters and put it in a freezer and didn't go beyond quarters. And so at least part of the attempt was to fix that little technical error.

Previously, we proposed that carcass tagging requirements would cease when a carcass was at a final destination, was processed for cooking and storage, and at least one quarter had been removed. And after we proposed that initial amendment, we learned there was a little bit of confusion over other documentation requirements. And as well, we visited with Law Enforcement Division, and they had some recommendations that would help enforcement and some clarity. And so with your permission, we went back to the Texas Register, and the current proposal before you is that carcass tagging, wildlife resource document, and proof-of-sex requirements would all cease when a carcass is at a final destination, the four quarters, hindquarters, and back straps have been completely severed from the carcass. Additionally, tagging requirements, the WRD, and proof-of-sex requirements would cease at a cold storage or processing facility only if the carcass had been logged in a record book and a record book was required at that facility.

We received 72 comments on this: 97 percent agree; 3 percent disagree. And of those who disagreed, they provided no specific rationale for their disagreement. Therefore, staff recommends that the Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt amendment to 65.10 concerning possession of wildlife resources with changes as necessary to the proposed text, as published in the April 24th, 2009, issue of the Texas Register. And with that, I'll be glad to answer any questions you might have.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Clayton, you're being nice to us today.

MR. WOLF: Extremely.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions or comments for Clayton on this particular issue or any other for deer?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you, Clayton.

MR. WOLF: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: And we do need a motion. Do I have a motion on this?

COMMISSIONER FALCON: So move.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Commission Falcon, second by Commissioner Friedkin. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Motion does carry.

Item Number 10, Action — Land Exchange — Galveston County — Receipt of 11 Acres in Exchange for six acres — Galveston Island State Park. Corky Kuhlmann. Corky?

MR. KUHLMANN: Good morning. For the record, Corky Kuhlmann with the Land Conservation Program. This is a land transfer at Galveston Island State Park. Galveston is this island southeast of Houston. You can see the exchange area by the magenta circle. It is across the county road from the Gulf, from the beach part of the park. This item is that we would get Tract 1, approximately 11 acres from a private landowner, in exchange for Tract 2, where our current maintenance yard is, and a small section, which is Tract 3. If you look in the before and after, the current boundary in that area is fairly erratic. After the exchange, it would be an even, smooth boundary, but it would create a private tract completely separate from the rest of the park.

In this exchange, the landowner will deed approximately 11 acres to Parks and Wildlife, pay a negotiated amount difference, pay all closing costs, surveying/appraisal costs, and clear the amphitheater site to Parks and Wildlife's satisfaction. The theater site, the 11 acres which we'll be getting, is a liability not only to the owner, the current owner, but to Parks and Wildlife, because there's nothing to keep any park visitors from getting on it. And as you can see, it's in rather shabby condition.

Parks and Wildlife will lift any deed restrictions on the Stewart Mansion tract and the theater site and receive — or give 6.2 acres to the adjacent landowner to include the existing maintenance complex. The existing maintenance complex was damaged. Ike had about five or six foot of water in it, and we're not really losing anything. We're going to rebuild the park anyway.

With that said, the motion the staff would like you to consider is that Texas — or recommends — is that "Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission finds that ownership of the 6.2-acre maintenance yard tract at Galveston Island State Park is no longer in the best interest of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, that there is no reasonable or prudent alternative to transfer ownership of this 6.2-acre tract, and that the transfer of the 6.2-acre tract in exchange for the 11-acre tract and monetary consideration includes all reasonable planning to minimize harm to the park. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission therefore authorizes the Executive Director to take all necessary steps to exchange the 6.2-acre tract for the 11-acre private tract and monetary consideration, and to remove deed restrictions from the tracts involved."

COMMISSIONER HOLT: I'll bet a lawyer wrote that.

MR. KUHLMANN: I think that's money in your pocket. I'll be glad to answer — be did have a public meeting. Virtually nobody showed up at the public meeting. The friends group, Galveston Island State Park Friends Group, did write a letter in support of the exchange.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions or comments for Corky?

Commissioner Duggins?

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: I think the record should reflect the amount of the consideration being paid.

MR. KUHLMANN: It's currently under contract. The consideration that we have contracted for is $575,000.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Corky, thank you.

Any other questions or comments for Corky?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Thank you.

Do I have a motion on this?

COMMISSIONER MARTIN: So move.

COMMISSIONER FRIEDKIN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Commissioner Martin, second Commissioner Friedkin. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Wonderful. Thank you, Corky.

Let's see. We're on Action Item Number 11, Action — Land Transfer — Taylor County — 91.3 Acres at Camp Tonkawa Boy Scout Camp/Abilene State Park.

MR. KUHLMANN: This is a land transfer at Abilene State Park, Taylor County, Texas. The state park and Boy Scout camp is south of Abilene, Texas, at a little community called Buffalo Gap. We have a request from the Texas Trails Council, Boy Scouts of America, to donate or transfer approximately 91 acres of land. You can see the park in the green, and the outline of the red is the area that's being requested in the transfer. Here's a little closer shot of what the transfer property looks like.

A little bit of history about the park and the Boy Scout land. This land was deeded to Parks and Wildlife in 1933 and a CCC camp was set up to build the park. And they did build some infrastructure on the 91 acres that's to be transferred. It's been — I've found since then, or people said that this particular tract had been used by the Boy Scouts since 1929, and the City had given them an adjacent 40 acres that they do have deed to now. In 1949, we officially entered into a lease with the Scouts. That lease was renewed in 1956, and the current lease expires in the year 2018.

If this transfer were to take place, Parks and Wildlife would place a conservation easement on the property and give — which would give Parks and Wildlife a say in land-management issues, determine where new infrastructure could be built, and that would include new trails, new roads, and it would also protect all cultural and natural resources on the property, the CCC structures and archeological sites that we've already documented. In addition to the conservation easement, there will be deed restrictions that state if, it is no longer used as a Boy Scout camp, it will revert back to Parks and Wildlife and that the land cannot be used as collateral on a loan.

I'm going to make it easy on me on this one. Staff recommends that you adopt the motion before you, and I'll be glad to take any questions.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions on this one for Corky?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: We do have one individual that wants to speak, Patrick Pace, please. Patrick Pace here?

(No response)

MR. KUHLMANN: I know Mr. Pace left Abilene this morning to get here. He's on his way, but unfortunately it doesn't look like he got here in time to speak. He had called me to say he was on his way.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Oh, then somebody put this name. And that's fine. He just indicated he was — he says he represents the Boy Scouts and he was for this.

MR. KUHLMANN: Yes.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Great. Any other questions or comments?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. With that, I need a motion, please?

COMMISSIONER MARTIN: So move.

COMMISSIONER HIXON: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Commissioner Martin, second Commissioner Hixon. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Great. Corky, thanks for putting this together. This is a good deal for everybody.

Okay. We're on Number 12, Action Item, Acceptance of Land Donation — Bexar County — Approximately 3,000 Acres — Government Canyon State Natural Area. Mr. Ted Hollingsworth. Ted.

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: Chairman, Commissioners, good morning. My name is Ted Hollingsworth. I'm with the Land Conservation Program. This item pertains to the second reading — this is the second time you've seen this — regarding the donation of 3,000 acres of land from the City of San Antonio to Texas Parks and Wildlife, several tracts, approximately eight tracts, all contiguous with Government Canyon State Natural Area. Government Canyon State Natural Area is just — actually, it's in San Antonio, but it's on the northwest border of San Antonio. These tracts are all contiguous with the state natural area. They're all high-quality habitat. They were acquired by the City with Prop monies to protect the aquifer, but they also have very high potential for conservation and recreation.

The tracts would be transferred to us in fee simple. They would have restrictions on them because of the occurrence of the golden cheeked warbler. The restrictions would be essentially identical to those that are already on the majority of the state natural area because of its occupancy by the endangered species. We are currently working on a habitat-management plan that would become part of the agreement. And we would be able to develop trails, wayside exhibits, picnic areas, such things, at our discretion, but the intent would be that the property would be made available to the public. The City has agreed that we could also hunt that property. Not a lot of hunt opportunities in the immediate vicinity of San Antonio, but with 11,000 contiguous acres, it would be a rare opportunity.

We've had several comments since I prepared this slide, 100 percent of those comments in favor of the transfer. Staff recommends that you adopt this motion: "The Executive Director is authorized to take all necessary steps to accept the donation of approximately 3,000 acres of land in Bexar County for addition to Government Canyon State Natural Area." And I'd be happy to answer any questions you have.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any questions from the Commissioners?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: I do have one individual that would like to speak, Sandy Jenkins, from the City of San Antonio. Is Sandy here?

MS. JENKINS: Good morning, Chairman and Commissioners. I'm Sandy Jenkins, and I'm just here to express the City's interest in making this deal happen. It would be a great benefit to the citizens of San Antonio. We have had one public hearing in April. We will have another one in June. And we have had no opposition at all. And so we're looking forward to making this happen.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Wonderful. Any questions for Sandy?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you for taking the time, coming down. The City of San Antonio's been great to work with, and I mean this is pretty amazing, when you think about it, in a major metropolitan area, to be able to do this, put this kind of state natural area together. And now with that and the 3,000 — what did you say? — 11,000 contiguous acres? Isn't that right?

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: Right.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Whew. That's wonderful.

Any other questions or comments?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Great. So I need a motion?

COMMISSIONER HIXON: So move.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: So moved. Commissioner Hixon, I'm glad you did that.

COMMISSIONER FALCON: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: And Commissioner Falcon seconds. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Thank you. This motion does carry. Thank you, Ted. You're up for 13, it looks like? Acceptance of Land Donation and Land Exchange from Brazos River Authority — Palo Pinto County — Approximately 700 Acres for 200 Acres of Submerged Lands at Possum Kingdom State Park.

Ted, you're putting together good deals here. Anyway, Ted's up. Thanks.

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: Chairman and Commissioners, good morning. My name is Ted Hollingsworth. I'm with the Land Conservation Program. This is the second time you've seen this item. It's a proposal to exchange some submerged land that we own at Possum Kingdom State Park for some uplands. This is in Palo Pinto County, about 60 miles west of Fort Worth. The initial transaction, the phase 1 transaction — and we have had surveyors on the ground now — would transfer approximately 300 acres to Texas Parks and Wildlife. The submerged tract, which is entirely below the pool elevation of Possum Kingdom Lake, is about 160 acres. The other piece of this that the Brazos River Authority would like in exchange is for us to make an easement on an existing water pipeline, a permanent no fee — it's about 900 feet. It just crosses one tiny corner of the park.

The land, as is much of the park now, would be controlled by FERC, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which would constrain it to low-impact recreational development, which, of course, would be our intent for the property anyway. That northern tract, what we call the thumb, that sticks out into the lake, is the tract that would be exchanged, would come to Texas Parks and Wildlife in the first transaction. We are exploring the potential for adding an additional 300 to 350 acres of uplands, undeveloped uplands, that would also make very good conservation and recreation property.

As you can see, the tract that would go back to the Brazos River Authority — or would go to the Brazos River Authority is entirely underwater and is currently serving no purpose for the park. And here's the location of the pipeline in question.

Take a deep breath here. The staff recommends you adopt the following motion: "The Executive Director is authorized to take all necessary steps to accept the donation of 700 plus or minus acres of land in Palo Pinto County for addition to Possum Kingdom State Park. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission finds ownership of the approximately 200 acres of submerged land in Palo Pinto County to no longer be in the interest of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, that there is no reasonable and prudent alternative to the transfer of ownership of approximately 200 acres of submerged land, and that the transfer of approximately 200 acres includes all reasonable planning to minimize harm to the park, and the Commission authorizes the Executive Director to transfer said approximately 200 acres of land to the Brazos River Authority." I would not be happy to repeat that, but I'd be happy to answer any questions that you might have.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: That was pretty good. Any questions or comments for Ted?

Commissioner Duggins.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: The easement would be for a waterline?

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: It's an existing waterline. Yes, sir.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: But would this be a written easement agreement?

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: There is an existing written easement agreement. We would amend it, so that instead of cycling every ten years, it would simply be a permanent agreement.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: And would it be limited to a waterline and not permit lines to transfer hydrocarbons or electrical power? I mean, is it limited?

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: Yes, sir. Exactly. It would be constrained to the existing waterline and existing waterline only.

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: Thank you.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any other questions or comments?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: A motion, please?

COMMISSIONER DUGGINS: So move.

COMMISSIONER MORIAN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. Commission Duggins, seconded by Commissioner Morian. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Motion carries.

Number 14, Item Number 14, Action — Land Acquisition, Bandera County — 732 Acres at Lost Maples State Natural Area. Ted?

MR. HOLLINGSWORTH: Chairman, Commissioners, good morning. My name is Ted Hollingsworth. I'm with the Land Conservation Program. This is a recommendation to acquire by purchase a little over 700 acres for addition to Lost Maples State Natural Area in Bandera County, a very popular state natural area, a short day-trip west of San Antonio.

The tract in question, you can see, is approximately 732 acres. The owner has been extremely cooperative. The way the acquisition is structured, we would buy 600 acres of that immediately. We have an option to buy an additional hundred acres that we would plan to exercise in September with the new fiscal year. The balance of that, the 30-plus acres, the landowner will be donating to Texas Parks and Wildlife to make this acquisition whole.

The important thing about the acquisition is that we can use the extra elbow room at the state natural area, but more importantly, it gives us the entire Can Creek drainage, which is the primary canyon that runs through the park and really gives it its spectacular Hill Country views. A large population of endangered golden cheeked warblers. No one is claiming any regulatory credit for that. That's simply a biological plus with the addition.

And staff does recommend that you adopt the following motion: "The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes the Executive Director to take all necessary steps to acquire a 732 plus or minus acre tract as an addition to the Lost Maples State Natural Area." And I'd be happy to answer any questions you have.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Questions or comments for Ted?

COMMISSIONER BIVINS: So move.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Wow. Do we have a motion, Senator — I mean — Senator Bivins —

(General laughter)

COMMISSIONER MARTIN: Second.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: — Commissioner Bivins, second by Commissioner Martin. All in favor?

(A chorus of ayes.)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Any opposed?

(No response)

COMMISSIONER HOLT: Okay. With that, the motion carries. Thank you.

Wow, Carter. You're being really nice to us.

MR. SMITH: Well, we're just trying to make it easy on you on a Thursday. So I think we're done.

COMMISSIONER HOLT: The Commission has completed its business. I declare us adjourned. Thank you.

(Whereupon, at 11:00 a.m., the meeting was adjourned.)

In official recognition hereof, we hereby affix our signatures as approved this 28th day of May 2009.

________________________________________
Peter M. Holt, Chairman

________________________________________
T. Dan Friedkin, Vice Chairman

________________________________________
Mark E. Bivins, Member

________________________________________
Ralph H. Duggins, Member

________________________________________
Antonio Falcon, M.D., Member

________________________________________
Karen J. Hixon, Member

________________________________________
Margaret Martin, Member

________________________________________
S. Reed Morian, Member

C E R T I F I C A T E

MEETING OF: Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Commission Meeting
LOCATION: Austin, Texas
DATE: May 28, 2009

I do hereby certify that the foregoing pages, numbers 1 through 80, inclusive, are the true, accurate, and complete transcript prepared from the verbal recording made by electronic recording by Penny Bynum before the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission.

6/04/09 (Transcriber) (Date)
On the Record Reporting, Inc.
3307 Northland, Suite 315
Austin, Texas 78731


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