Breckenridge Texan

Petition for wastewater permit at Hubbard Creek Lake withdrawn

Petition for wastewater permit at Hubbard Creek Lake withdrawn
September 21
19:49 2023

By Tony Pilkington and Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan

According to a notice by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, the application for a wastewater permit by the Peninsula RV Resort was withdrawn by the applicant on Sept. 14.

A notice from Laurie Gharis, chief clerk with TCEQ, dated Sept. 19, states that the public meeting scheduled for Oct. 12 has been canceled.

The application for the permit was withdrawn because Brook Hatchett has canceled her plans to build the RV resort, which she had been planning to locate on Hubbard Creek Reservoir, approximately 1.53 miles northwest of the intersection of County Road 315 and Farm-to-Market Road 3099, in Stephens County.

The requested permit, which was submitted to TCEQ on Dec. 16, 2022, was for the discharge of treated domestic wastewater into Hubbard Creek Reservoir (aka Hubbard Creek Lake) with a daily average flow not exceeding 15,000 gallons per day. In response to the proposed plan, a group of local residents sent a petition to the TCEQ, as well as posted comments on the TCEQ’s website in opposition to the permit application. In March, State Rep. Glenn Rogers formally requested a public meeting regarding an application for a permit to discharge treated wastewater into Hubbard Creek Lake. That was the meeting that had been scheduled for Oct. 12.

“It really saddens me that all of these people are misinformed by a handful of people that have done nothing to better this community, but only to benefit their own bottom line and pocket,” Hatchett said this evening, Sept. 21. “It’s been pretty hurtful, to be honest.”

David Wimberley, Hatchett’s attorney, said in a conference call with Hatchett and the Breckenridge Texan, “Due to the petitions, harassment and complaints about the project, we have determined that it would be best to abandon the project in the Stephens County area, and we are looking to put this project somewhere that it will be appreciated … and welcomed.

“And the other community can benefit from the … $58 million in revenue from Stephens County in the first year alone,” Wimberley continued. “(The revenue) will go to the benefit of a different investment area besides here, where everybody refused to get educated enough to understand the project to try to move our community forward. But, there was such opposition to moving our community forward, we’re just going to do it in a different location and make that community $58 million in the first year. There is just so much opposition by people that do not understand it; the water would have been cleaner than the water in the lake. It’s people that are opposing it because they just didn’t want it beside their house.”

Wimberley said those opposed to the project were “misinformed, uninformed and refused to get educated about it.” Those opposed to the RV resort didn’t want an “RV park” near their property, he said.

“But, it’s a lot more than RV park,” Wimberley said. “It was going to be a marina, Jetski rentals, gas for the lake. … There was going to be a restaurant; it was going to be a bar and grill. This was … an $8 million project estimated to bring in $58 million per year. And because of … all the people raising so much cane about it, we’re just gonna be sent somewhere else that is more appreciated. It’s absolutely ridiculous.”

Wimberley said that Hatchett had a study done by an economic consulting firm that estimated that, in addition to the money spent at the RV resort, the project would have brought in millions of dollars to businesses in the City of Breckenridge. That money would have generated sales taxes that could have been used for street repairs and could have led to lower property taxes, he said.

Prior to the withdrawal of the application for the permit, the TCEQ Executive Director had issued a preliminary decision stating that the permit, if issued, would meet all statutory and regulatory requirements. A technical review of the application had been conducted and a draft permit prepared, which if approved, would have established the conditions under which the facility would have operated. According to information from TCEQ in May, the preliminary determination was subject to reexamination and potential modification if new information was received.

“The only reason, the only way you could object to it is if you didn’t read it, you didn’t understand it,” Wimberley said. “There’s zero environmental concern from any environmental engineer in the state of Texas about this project. And if the … EPA and government officials have zero concern, people should understand that there’s probably not any concern. And, there wasn’t any concern; there wasn’t going to be an issue with the lake.”

Wimberley said that Hatchett is looking at another possible location outside of Stephens County for a resort similar to the Peninsula RV Resort she had planned, but he declined to reveal a specific place until the plans are more definite.

The Breckenridge Texan left a phone message for one of the organizers of the petition against the permit application, seeking a comment on the withdrawal of the application, but at this time, we have not received a response.

For more information about the Peninsula RV Resort’s wastewater application, click on the following links to previous Breckenridge Texan articles:

Local residents express concerns about proposed wastewater treatment plant for planned RV resort at Hubbard Creek Lake

Rep. Glenn Rogers requests public meeting on application to discharge treated wastewater into Hubbard Creek Lake

TCEQ issues preliminary decision on Peninsula RV Resort wastewater permit application, prepares draft permit


Cutline, top photo: This view of Hubbard Creek Lake shows the peninsula where the Peninsula  RV Resort was planned and the general area where the wastewater discharge point would have been. The petition for the wastewater permit was withdrawn on Sept. 14. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)



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