How did this all begin? I thought gas drilling was only in Tarrant county.
The city of Dallas started talking with the gas companies back in 2006. By then, word had spread from Tarrant county to Dallas county that there was “riches to be had” under the ground. Similar to the gold rush in California. The Barnett Shale map shows that the gas pools lie under the western edges of Dallas county from the south to the north. In simple terms, from District 3 to District 6.
Originally, the talk in 2006 was putting gas wells in Kiest Park and at the corner of Illinois and Cockrell Hill Road. Yes, that is what you read. Now, can you imagine people living, working, playing next to a gas well? Fast forward to 2007. The gas well revenue subject came back again after Tom Leppert came into office along with many new council members. Many meetings throughout 2007 behind closed doors later, it was official, the city of Dallas was ready to do business with the gas companies. Here’s the presentation that was made to the Dallas City Council back in early 2008.
The bidding began. The result was a big fat check for around $34 million payable to the city of Dallas from XTO ENERGY(now owned by EXXON) and TRINITY EAST ENERGY, LLC. Only two council members voted NO. Mitchell Rasansky and Angela Hunt were the only two to vote NO.
Want to read what Councilwoman Hunt had to say? Here is an excerpt from her blog:
Council Foregoes Public Hearings Before Leasing Public Land for Gas Drilling
Thursday, February 7th, 2008 at 11:23 PM
On Wednesday, the council discussed a proposal for the city to lease city-owned land to private companies so they can drill for gas on public property. The proposal will allow gas drilling and wells within 300 feet of residential neighborhoods and public parks. In return, the private companies will give the city $32 million.
Have you heard about this? No? Perhaps because there weren’t any public hearings to discuss whether we, as a city, want to have drilling rigs and gas wells littering Dallas’ landscape.