Saturday, October 10, 2009

"Hicks" Nix Rick's Tricks

Coordination Defeats I-35
Trans-Texas Corridor Project

391 Commissions Trans-Texas Corridor

American Stewards of Liberty
Copyright 2009

On October 7th, 2009 we had one of our most resounding victories for coordination that not only affects Texas, but the nation. It is a victory for private property rights proving that when a few good Americans decide something is wrong and are willing to take a stand, they can win against incredible odds.

In a press conference in Austin, Texas, Amadeo Saenz, executive director of the Texas Department of Transportation (TXDOT), announced on behalf of Texas Governor Rick Perry, that the Trans-Texas Corridor, I-35 Segment is dead. TXDOT will be recommending the “No Build” option to the Federal Highway Administration.

You read it right – the key leg of the NAFTA Superhighway is dead and every member of American Stewards of Liberty played a key role in making this happen.

It is hard to place into words the magnitude of this coordination victory.

In August of 2007, four unpaid mayors and their school districts in eastern Bell County, Texas stepped forward and asserted their coordination authority for the first time in Texas history.

They demanded an equal seat at the table with TXDOT and held their first meeting with the agency on the I-35 super corridor October 22, 2007. It was during this meeting that the environmental study director informed them the Final DEIS (Draft Environmental Impact Statement) would be submitted to the Federal Highway Administration (FHA) by January, 2008.

The next step would be condemnation of the 146 acres per mile to build the super highway.

The newly formed Eastern Central Texas Sub-Regional Planning Commission (ECTSRPC) went to work laying out in government-to-government meetings the flaws in TXDOT’s study and violations of law being committed by the agency.

They met two more times with the Transportation agency filing two lengthy petitions with the Federal Highway Administration, the latest one being sent in June, 2009 calling on the FHA to reject the study in its entirety. The ECTSRPC set forth 27 pages of violations of federal law being carried out by FHA’s agent, TXDOT that no one had pointed out before.

TXDOT and FHA have been in discussions on the final DEIS for most of this year. We have no doubt that the last petition caused the FHA to suggest TXDOT present another option. Today we learn that option is “NO BUILD.”

The coordination strategy utilized by these courageous Texans, developed by Fred Kelly Grant, president of American Stewards, stopped the I-35 Trans-Texas Corridor.

How big is this coordination victory for local government? Here is what we were up against:
  • The Trans-Texas Corridor was a keystone project for Governor Perry;
  • It was fully supported by President George W. Bush;
  • It had the funding of the Spanish Corporation, Cintra-Zachry;
  • The people of Texas tried to repeal the TTC project during three legislative sessions, but were thwarted each time by the governor and road lobby;
  • The State of Texas spent $16 million on environmental and planning documents;
  • $3.5 million were made in political contributions to candidates from TTC Contractors;
  • $6.1 million was spent by TTC Contractors for paid lobbyist to get the project through.
We’ve won the battle on the I-35 Corridor by using the coordination strategy because of the generous support and commitment of the members of American Stewards of Liberty.

If you are not a member of American Stewards, we invite you to join us. Click Here to sign up.

If you would like to learn more about the coordination strategy used to stop the I-35 Trans Texas Corridor, make plans to attend our annual conference, November 5-7 in Denver, Colorado where we will spend two-and-a-half days teaching you how you too can bring home local control. Click Here to learn about the conference.

Click Here to read the press release.

Click Here to read the petition to the FHA.

Click Here to read more about Texas coordination.

© 2009 American Stewards of Liberty:

To search TTC News Archives click HERE

To view the Trans-Texas Corridor Blog click HERE