The 2019 Texas Legislature and Governor Abbott greatly expanded the TWDB's role in flood planning. The TWDB will be administering a new state and regional flood planning process with flood planning regions based on river basins. The regional flood planning process will be developed, and initial regional flood planning groups formed by late-2020; the first regional flood plans will be due in January 2023, and the first state flood plan will be due September 1, 2024.
Flood Planning Region Boundaries
The TWDB designated 15 flood planning regions in Texas on April 9, 2020. Board designation of flood planning regions is required under Senate Bill 8, 86th Texas Legislature, which established a new regional and state flood planning process for the state.
Regional and State Flood Planning Rules
The TWDB completed the review of public comments received on the proposed regional and state flood planning rules. The input received from the public during the comment period was thoughtful and constructive, and resulted in beneficial changes. The May 21, 2020 Board Item document includes attachments that describe the public comments received and changes made in response to those comments.
At the May 21, 2020 Board meeting, the board approved the final administrative rules for 31 Texas Administrative Code Chapter 361 and 31 Texas Administrative Code Chapter 362 relating to Regional and State Flood Planning to implement Senate Bill 8, 86th Texas Legislature.
Open Solicitation for Regional Flood Planning Group (RFPG) Members
The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) received over 590 nominations for the initial membership of the regional flood planning groups at the close of the nomination period on July 17.
Although the nomination period has closed, the Executive Administrator of the TWDB is still accepting targeted nominations for individuals to serve as initial members of the following regional flood planning groups and interest categories:
- All Regions: electric-generating utilities
- Region 1. Canadian-Upper Red: flood districts, industries, water districts
- Region 2. Lower Red-Sulphur-Cypress: industries
- Region 4. Sabine: water districts, water utilities
- Region 9. Upper Colorado: flood districts
- Region 13. Nueces: water utilities
- Region 14. Upper Rio Grande: water utilities
Please note that an individual may be nominated for multiple interest categories but can only be designated by the TWDB to represent a single category in any particular region.
These planning groups will be responsible for developing Texas' first regional flood plans by January 2023, which will culminate in the state’s first-ever state flood plan. The ideal candidate will have experience in and a continued strong interest in working cooperatively on public issues; be committed to and possess expertise in flood risk-related issues; be strongly affiliated with and endorsed by the interest category for which they are nominated, and be capable of playing a leadership role in a regional flood planning group.
The Board will designate one individual for each of the 12 interest categories for the voting positions for each of the 15 flood planning regions. The interest categories are as follows:
- Agricultural interests
- River authorities
- Water districts
- Flood districts
- Electric generating utilities
- Water utilities
- Environmental interests
- Small businesses
For more information and to submit your nomination, please see the Solicitation for nominations of individuals to serve as initial Regional Flood Planning Group (RFPG) members document.
Open Solicitation for Political Subdivisions to Support Regional Flood Planning Groups (RFPG)
The Executive Administrator of the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) is soliciting for names of political subdivisions that are interested in supporting each of the 15 regional flood planning groups (RFPG) by:
- Serving as the designated Planning Group Sponsor, and/or
- Providing free public meeting spaces for the RFPG, and attending public, to use regularly
Each regional flood planning group is responsible for designating a sponsor to apply for and receive financial assistance from the TWDB to develop or revise a regional flood plan. To assist the RFPGs in initiating their planning efforts, the TWDB will prepare a list of interested entities and provide that list to the RFPGs at their first meeting. The planning groups will not be limited to choosing a planning group sponsor from the list provided by TWDB.
A Planning Group Sponsor must be a political subdivision, defined as county, city, or other body politic or corporate of the state, including any district or authority created under Art. 3 § 52 or Art. 16 § 59 of the constitution and including any interstate compact commission to which the state is a party and any nonprofit Water Supply Corporation created and operating under Ch. 67.
Acting as a planning group sponsor does not mean that the political subdivision will also have an associated voting or non-voting position on the planning group nor does it preclude them from having a representative as a member.
For more information and to submit your interest form, please see the Solicitation for Political Subdivisions to Support Regional Flood Planning Groups document.
The deadline for submitting interest forms to the TWDB has been extended to August 21, 2020.