Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas Welcome to the Official Website for the Texas Senate
Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas
Welcome to the official website for the
Texas Senate
Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr.: District 27
Lucio Masthead Graphic
Press Release
April 8, 2013
Contact: Daniel Collins
General Counsel & Press Secretary
Lucio Bill to Modernize Irrigation Districts Passes Senate

AUSTIN — Today, a bill by Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr. (D-Brownsville) which would modernize how irrigation districts assess fees passed out of the Texas Senate.

Senate Bill 611 would change the manner in which all water districts — water improvement districts, water control and improvement districts, and irrigation districts — determine the amount of flat rate assessment against the irrigable land they serve. Historically, these districts have served various clients, including local farmers, homeowners who flood-irrigate their yards and local cities' public utilities. Due to urbanization, however, water districts that previously substantially delivered only irrigation water are now delivering larger amounts of raw untreated water to cities.

Senate Bill 611 would allow water districts to determine flat rate assessments by taking into account the amount of expected expenses which are associated with both the district's irrigation and city water delivery services.

This bill previously passed out of the Senate Committee on Natural Resources in late March.

"Laws concerning Texas water districts have not kept up with changing times, including changes in cost, technology, and the increasingly urban clients these water districts serve," Senator Lucio said last month.

Now passed out of the Senate, Senate Bill 611 moves to the Texas House of Representatives.