1:45 pm
Tue August 30, 2011

Major Texas Utility, Losing Customers, Reorganizes

Photo courtesy LCRA

A reorganization is underway at the Lower Colorado River Authority, a major wholesale supplier of water and electricity in Central Texas.

In a memo dated last Thursday, the LCRA's new general manager, Rebecca Motal, announced that four senior positions have been eliminated.

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3:57 pm
Mon August 22, 2011

Lawmaker Asks LCRA To Suspend Lake Releases

The high water mark under a bridge near a Lower Colorado River Authority pump house that transfers water from the Colorado River to irrigation canals that supply water to the rice fields around Bay City, Texas Friday, June, 10, 2011.
Photo by Michael Stravato/The Texas Tribune

Citing falling lake levels amid the driest nine-month period in state history, the chair of the Texas Senate's Natural Resources Committee is calling on the Lower Colorado River Authority to take emergency actions that would suspend the release of water from the Highland Lakes for interruptible customers downstream.

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7:32 am
Thu August 4, 2011

Top Morning Stories August 4, 2011

Former president of Huston-Tillotson University, has died. John Quill Taylor King, Sr. was 89.
Photo courtesy of Houston-Tillotson University

Former Huston-Tillotson University President Dies

John Quill Taylor King, Sr., the longest serving president of Huston-Tillotson University, died yesterday. King, 89, served as president of the school from 1965 to 1988. He began his career at Huston-Tillotson College as an Instructor of Mathematics and Business Administration immediately after earning his Bachelor of Science degree from the school in 1947.

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11:55 am
Mon July 18, 2011

Chance of Tropical Rain Looks Slim

The exceptional drought could get worse with no chance of significant rainfall in the near term.
Photo by KUT News

In case you haven't noticed, it is hot, hot, hot outside and Central Texas is in need of some showers. Late July and early August are normally the driest and hottest parts of the summer, so the chance of rain is slim.

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Water Quality
3:50 pm
Fri July 15, 2011

Watching for Algae Blooms

Despite drought conditions, Lake Austin's algae levels are within a healthy range while area streams show signs of low oxygen and excessive algae growth.
Photo courtesy jdearingdavis on flickr at

Officials in Oklahoma have closed some of the state's lakes because of blue-green algae outbreaks. The fast growth of already-present algae, paired with high temperatures and still water, pose serious risk to swimmers.

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1:46 pm
Mon June 20, 2011

LCRA Warns of Lake Hazards, Urges Conservation

The Lake Travis level is 23 feet below the monthly average of 461 feet.
Photo courtesy of LCRA.

Correction for Clarification: The Lower Colorado River Authority requests that customers impose mandatory water restrictions when the combines lake storage drop below 900,000 acre-feet of water, but does not curtail.

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5:23 pm
Tue June 14, 2011

LCRA Criticized for Hasty GM Pick

Rebecca Motal was named new General Manager of the LCRA.
Photo courtesy of the LCRA.

When LCRA General Manager Tom Mason announced his resignation last week, some observers cried foul, claiming he had been pressured out for political reasons.  State Senators  Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay)  Glenn Hegar  (R-Katy) and Kirk Watson (D-Austin) -- all of who represent regions that use water sold by the LCRA -- said they would carefully monitor the hiring of Mason's replacement.

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2:31 pm
Tue June 14, 2011

Texas Water and Electric Supplier LCRA Names New Boss

The LCRA leases the Tom Miller Dam from the City of Austin.
Photo by Photography JW

The board of the Lower Colorado River Authority wasted no time in naming a long-time staffer to take over as the organization's general manager, following the resignation of Tom Mason (pictured) a week ago.

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4:09 pm
Tue June 7, 2011

LCRA Boss Quits

Tom Mason will step down as LCRA general manager at the end of June.
Photo by Lower Colorado River Authority

The man who has been in charge of the Lower Colorado River Authority for the past three-and-a-half years is resigning. LCRA general manager Tom Mason’s last day on the job will be June 30, according to a news release from the agency.

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10:51 am
Wed May 25, 2011

Only Three Boat Ramps Open On Lake Travis For Memorial Day

View in a larger map

With Memorial Day weekend just days away, only three out of the eleven boat ramps on Lake Travis are open right now. You can see their locations in the map above. Eight ramps are closed because of low lake levels. Lake Travis is currently more than 20 feet below its May average.

That has public officials warning boaters about so-called Sometimes Islands, temporary land that is exposed when lake levels fall. You can see a picture of Sometimes Islands on Lake Travis here.

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News Brief
6:07 am
Tue April 26, 2011

Top Morning Stories April 26, 2011

The Lower Colorado River Authority has been awarded a permit that could expand its water supply.
Logo courtesy of the LCRA

LCRA Could Expand Water Supply in the Future

The state’s environmental agency has awarded the Lower Colorado River Authority a permit to capture water from the Colorado River downstream of Austin during heavy rains and floods.  The water would be stored in reservoirs that would be built in Wharton, Colorado and Matagorda Counties.  Many growing Central Texas communities, including Austin, buy their water from the LCRA.

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3:33 pm
Tue March 29, 2011

LCRA Launches Drought Update Page

Drought conditions aren't expected to be as bad as 2008-09's dry spell, but 2011 is shaping up to be a dry spring and summer.
Photo by KUT News.

Dry, drier, driest: Drought conditions are returning to Central Texas, and one expert thinks it could be this autumn before the region gets enough rain to reverse the trend. 

That has officials at the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) making sure people throughout the region know what condition our water supply is in.  The authority has launched a "Drought Update" page that shows a graphical representation of the drought situation.

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4:43 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Lake Austin and the Hydrilla Plant

Austin has rejoined its battle against the invasive hydrilla plant
Image courtesy City of Austin Watershed Protection Department

Lake Austin is getting lower.  The Lower Colorado River Authority is drawing down the lake's level so that City of Austin crews can do battle with hydrilla, an invasive water plant that clogs the lake. 

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3:37 pm
Wed December 1, 2010

Lake Austin Will Drop By Twelve Feet Next Month

Lake Austin will drop by 12 feet next month to help fend off invasive plants.
Image courtesy atmtx

Annoying, non-native plants are growing out of control in Lake Austin, and the city is asking the Lower Colorado River Authority to drop lake levels next month to help fend them off. Lake Austin is a stretch of the Colorado River between the Mansfield and Tom Miller dams.

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