The Paris News: Republicans discuss property taxes; reservoir

By Mary Madewell

The Paris News, June 11, 2023

Two controversial topics — the proposed Marvin Nichols Reservoir and property taxes — took front and center at a Thursday night meeting of the Lamar County Republican Party.

Lamar County Judge Brandon Bell and Sulphur River Basin Authority Chairman Chris Spencer of Hughes Springs headlined the event that drew an audience of about 40 people at the Lamar County Fairgrounds.

Spencer first explained the role of the Sulphur River Basin Authority, created in 1985 and charged with conservation and development of the state’s natural resources within the Sulphur River Basin. Former state senator and Lt. Gov. Bill Ratliff, then an engineer in Mount Pleasant, played a large role in the authority’s creation.

“His concern was that North Texas at some point was going to need water from the Sulphur River, and he wanted to make sure that the interests of Northeast Texas were protected because he could see it come like a locomotive and it was going to run over everybody,” Spencer said.

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