Learn about the Southern Edwards Plateau Habitat Conservation Plan (SEP HCP)

Bandera Meeting of the Ranchers and Landowners Association Tuesday, May 5th, 2015 at 7:00 pm Mansfield Park Recreation Center in Bandera The Ranchers and Landowner Association of Texas are inviting their membership and all area landowners to a very special and informational meeting addressing the possible mitigation of endangered species habitat. Mitigation is a voluntary program by which landowners are compensated for conducting land management practices that benefit endangered species. The proposal, commonly known as SEP-HCP is being undertaken by Bexar County and the City of San Antonio in cooperation with the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The goal of the program is to conserve endangered songbird habitat within the surrounding counties north and west of San Antonio. Landowners in the counties of Medina, Comal, Kendall, Kerr, Bandera, and/or Blanco counties are eligible to participate. This very important meeting will take place at the Recreation Center at Mansfield Park in Bandera on Tuesday, May 5, 2015 and will start at 7:00 P M. Mansfield Park is located on SH 16 North. As mentioned before, all landowners are encouraged to attend and become familiar with this proposed voluntary program. Speakers will include Richard Heilbrun representing the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department…

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A Habitat Conservation Plan for the Southern Edwards Plateau: Opportunity or Liability

by Milan J. Michalec Bexar County and the City of San Antonio are working on a regional planning effort to balance the conservation needs of rare plants and animals with the demand for economic growth and development. This program is known as the Southern Edwards Plateau, Habitat Conservation Plan (SEP HCP):http://www.sephcp.com/ Since the initial public comments were recorded during the scoping period in 2011, this program has been has been controversial. Commissioner’s Courts of Bandera, Blanco, Kendall, Kerr and Medina Counties, representing 5 of the 6 affected counties in the region, all approved resolutions opting out of the plan. The summary of public comments recorded during public meetings held in in Helotes and Kerrville during February of 2015 showed no change of public opinion despite four years of public outreach from Bexar County and the federal governments. The consensus of County Commissioner’s Courts has generally been that this plan would give Bexar County the mechanism to destroy habitat critical to certain Endangered Species by acquiring land in Bandera, Blanco, Comal, Kendall, Kerr and Medina Counties which would then be designated critical habitat. On the other hand, the SEP HCP could provide interested land owners the opportunity to preserve their property…

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