Flower Mound Leader > News
Guest column: Drilling isn’t dead
By Al Filidoro, guest columnist
Hayden/Webb/Dixon – the slate of candidates running against Mayor Northern, me, and Councilman Lyda (NFL) – would have you believe that gas drilling is a dead issue in Flower Mound.
Those who have followed this issue for years, such as Flower Mound Citizens Against Urban Drilling however, know better. (For more on this please read “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me” by FMCAUD at www.stopthedrilling.blogspot.com)
“The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior” is a favorite piece of counseling advice from famous Texan Dr. Phil McGraw for his TV guests. This election needs a dose of Dr. Phil’s no-nonsense sensibility. Do you really want to elect Steve Dixon and Bryan Webb, who have been consistently pro-gas in the past, just because they say they aren’t anymore? As Dr. Phil would say, “Are you kidding me?”
Mr. Webb, who signed a gas lease with Keystone, was then endorsed by Keystone in his unsuccessful run for the council in 2010. He regularly addresses the council to advocate pro-gas positions. As recently as last month he urged the council not to enact a measure that would make it more difficult to overturn our new gas ordinance, which has been lauded as one of the most protective in the nation. He’s since flip-flopped on that and other gas drilling issues. He may consider his flip-flop on drilling a smart political move. I believe, however, that Flower Mound voters are too savvy to be that easily misled.
Mr. Dixon promised in both his 2008 and 2009 the council runs to strengthen the gas ordinance. Once elected he failed to do so. In fact, he voted to allow zoning for a gas Centralized Collection Facility, refused to support my motions for gas moratoriums, and would not approve the request in the Flower Mound citizens’ petition to create an oil and gas advisory board to review the gas ordinance. After NFL was elected in 2010 the council majority was no longer pro-gas. Realizing his new minority position on the council and his political vulnerability if he acted pro-gas, he eventually joined us in voting for a moratorium and a committee to review the ordinance. Sadly, by this time the Hilliard well on 2499 was already grandfathered. Responsibility for that sits squarely on Dixon’s shoulders.
Unlike his running mates, Hayden’s track record on gas drilling is good, but he knows he can’t run on that. He knows if you elect Hayden/Webb/Dixon, he can’t promise you the same protections he previously delivered with NFL because he will have given up his voting position and his running mates are pro-gas. So Hayden has joined Webb and Dixon in trying to distract us from drilling issues with their aggressive, pro-developer economic plan.
It’s a tough sell to switch from pro-gas to pro-developer. Flower Mound residents are rightfully skeptical of any special interest affiliation. NFL’s excellent track record of improving roads and other infrastructure, balancing the town budget, and reducing the town’s long-term debt – all actions which allow us to be well poised to seize opportunities for quality development that fits with the country-atmosphere of Flower Mound when the economy recovers – provide further challenge to the validity of the Hayden/Webb/Dixon campaign narrative that paints our town as anti-business.
NFL has maintained or improved services without tax increases, exercised conservative fiscal management including balanced budgets and reduced long-term debt, and protected the community from the encroaching industrialization of gas wells near homes and schools.
With NFL, promises made have been promises kept. We ask that you support our re-election to Flower Mound Town Council.
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