We recognize that the industry must be mindful of their contractual obligations to their leaseholders and shareholders as they develop the immense resources of the Barnett Shale. To that end, any committee must be charged with a mission that includes recommendations for regulatory reform. This reform must occur not only in relevant state and federal agencies, but also in the next Texas legislature. Without much stronger enforcement of measures that protect property, and human health and safety, our county will continue to suffer a host of losses, from immediate, recurring damages -- such as those inflicted on roads, bridges and floodplain -- to a growing crisis of confidence that will stifle investment and economic growth.
(For example, a candidate chosen to represent municipalities should not only bring wisdom back to his or her own city, but also help other cities unite in their protection of constituents both in their corporate limits and their extra-territorial jurisdictions.)
This body should receive testimony not only from local but also national experts when necessary. Its decisions need to be data-driven. This body will need support as it manages data from laboratories, industry, government and independent sources, including inspections and audits and other findings.
This body must meet in public. During its sessions, this body should document the applicable state regulations and local ordinances that coincide with best practices, and document those places where best practices are not being used in order to achieve the standard.