What’s your opinion on the Marvin Nichols Reservoir? Texas takes public comment

By Eleanor Dearman

Fort Worth Star Telegram, October 19, 2023

The state is taking public comment on the Marvin Nichols Reservoir project after a legislative win for opponents of the proposed 66,000-acre impoundment in northeast Texas that would provide water to the Metroplex.

The project along the Sulphur River would flood thousands of acres of bottomland hardwood forest in Cuthand. It was given a feasibility study in Texas’ latest budget. As part of the study, the Texas Water Development Board is taking public comment through Dec. 1.

The study came after pushback from advocates with Preserve Northeast Texas and gives those with concerns about the project time to make their opinion known. The review is looking at the project’s timeline, costs, land acquisition and economic impact, and the board is seeking comments on those subjects.

“People in my District deserve the right to be heard by state leaders,” said Rep. Gary Vandeaver, a New Boston Republican, in a statement “Too often rural Texans are left behind while the spotlight shines on the needs of our large urban neighbors. I fought for the Legislature to include this important review, and I hope everyone will speak out about how the timeline, cost and economic impact of Marvin Nichols would impact them and our overall community.”

The statement was sent in a Thursday news release from Preserve Northeast Texas.

Supporters say the project is needed to help address North Texas’ water needs as its population booms.

Comments can be emailed to feasibility@twdb.texas.gov.

The report will be submitted to Gov. Greg Abbott and the Legislative Budget Board by Jan. 5, 2025.