We have a relatively safe community with a low crime rate. The consultants tell us we have the best roads of any city of our comparable size. Our widespread use of covenants ensure that we have stronger regulations over development and existing properties than any city can achieve using ordinances. We have a relatively low Township property tax rate. So again, what problem does the board believe we need to so urgently solve?
I urge all Woodlands residents to pay special attention to the upcoming November 2018 elections for the new seven member Board for the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District (LSGCD). We need new board members who will vote to support future decisions that will not adversely impact south Montgomery County and northwest Harris County though over pumpage of our aquifers. An increase in pumpage greater than the current 64,000 acre-foot goal may help settle the current legal dispute with Conroe and other major water suppliers, but will do so at the expense of those of us living in south Montgomery County.
Most Woodlands Residents normally pay little attention to the requirements of our Restrictive Covenants and Standards (collectively called Deed Restrictions) or their enforcement. At least until they want to make improvements or major repairs to their property. But when they purchased their homes they agreed to abide by the requirements of these Deed Restrictions. Standards have been developed for both Commercial and Residential Properties and are applied uniformly across all The Woodlands. These standards are updated from time to time to reflect new building practices, materials and architectural designs. Numerous HOAs exist within The Woodlands, which also have their own Deed Restrictions. However, these individual HOA rules and regulations are subservient to The Woodlands Restrictive Covenants and Standards.
Our Restrictive Covenants and Standards are an integral part of the overall governance structure envisioned by George Mitchell. They were originally developed by The Woodlands Development Company to sustain his ideas and concepts.
Did you know The Woodlands has more public art per capita than any other community in the United States? We have over 36 pieces of art residing in the public domain and another 30 plus pieces residing on private property. The problem is…too few people know this amazing fact and too few Woodlands residents talk about our art or know the history of our art. Beginning with The Family, a sculpture acquired for The Woodlands’ grand opening in 1974, The Woodlands Development Company has embraced the arts as a mean to enrich our community from our very beginning. We are grateful to live in a community where art is one of our founding pillars of excellence.
Today, our unique “Township” form of government, technically a “Special District,” provides a broad range of essential services not provided by our County and does so at a relatively low cost. We have a very efficient alternative form of government. So why incorporate until we are forced to do so? If not threatened by annexation, what factors would justify the complexity and cost of becoming a city? Will the residents be willing to pay a higher tax rate to incorporate? For what additional services? Incorporation will deliver even fewer County services than we receive today but with no lower County taxes. These are areas where many will have opinions, often differing from one another.
I also think understanding Mr. Mitchell’s HUD submission in 1972 is an important reference in understanding his vision. This document presents a very comprehensive view of his vision at the very beginning of the journey. When I read this document, I am amazed at how relevant his vision is still today.
At an Aug. 9 board of directors meeting, the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District directors unanimously approved a general and special election to take place Nov. 8. Directors also approved an agreement with Montgomery County Elections to run the directors’ election.
A sweet and friendly spirit, Tough is filled with stories of what it was like to be part of the initial development of the place where more than 115,000 people call home. Take The Woodlands Waterway, for example; Tough said that used to be a mere drainage ditch.