Fort Stockton Holdings feels it’s important for our elected officials to understand our permit application, and the extensive studies that have been conducted on our land, so they can make informed judgment. Below is a letter we sent to West Texas state representative and senators.

Dear Representative,

There are certain things all Texans care about—property and water being two of them. Recently, my family has been put in the position to protect our rights to both.

I’m writing to introduce our company, explain some of the current debate which may have reached your office, and assure you that our plans provide significant benefit to areas of the state. Our plans are honorable and legal, and we hold ourselves accountable and ready to answer any questions.

Since those who would compromise legal property rights have continued to spread misinformation and outright falsehoods, please permit us to attach a quick review of the actual facts.

While this issue is obviously important to us, as Texans for five generations, it’s rapidly developing more far reaching implications. If governmental bodies can arbitrarily and capriciously abrogate long established property rights, Texas will be a far different state in the future.

Here is the background: My company, Fort Stockton Holdings, currently holds historic and existing use permits from the Middle Pecos Groundwater Conservation District, which allows us to produce water from our acreage for agricultural use. This water currently irrigates fields of alfalfa which is shipped all over the country to feed animal livestock.

In July 2009, our company, Fort Stockton Holdings, LP, submitted an application to the Middle Pecos Groundwater Conservation District asking to transfer the same amount of water for which we currently (as opposed to greater amounts pumped in the paste) hold agricultural permits to surrounding municipalities and industries where a projected shortage is seen.

The application clearly states that we are not seeking to drill any new wells or withdraw more water than is already permitted to me for agricultural uses.  Because we are asking to use the same amount of water that we’re already permitted, there will be no change in the impact. We are simply changing the use of our water, not the amount of water. And we feel people – and the potential for economic growth and development which create jobs – and saving energy are high priorities.

Our great country, and the great state of Texas, has always looked toward the future. We have rewarded the entrepreneurs who took risks and undertook new enterprises. That’s what we’re trying to do here.

We know that for some this is a complicated and emotional issue, but we know you grapple with similar issues daily. We ask you to study the facts. As a leader of the people of our state, your constituents look to you for straightforward discussion. We stand ready to answer any questions about the permit application.

We will happily make available Mike Thornhill, president of the reputable Thornhill Group, one of the state’s leading hydrogeologists. His company is known for its experience, objectivity and integrity, and his company has studied the geology and hydrogeology of the region at length.

Theses studies are, in fact, comprehensive and voluminous, and while we are pleased to make available in their entirety, we are working on a condensed, executive summary which we should have available shortly.


Clayton Williams, Jr.

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