TWDB Approves Publication of Draft SWIFT Rules

Lissa Gregg

The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) announced on their website that they have approved the proposed draft State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) rules for publication in the Texas Register. This means the formal comment period is open and citizens are encouraged to review the draft and submit public comments. Individuals will also have opportunities to comment on the draft rules at several TWDB work sessions and Board meetings that will take place in San Antonio, San Angelo, Fort Worth and Austin. The formal comment period will remain open until Sept. 1, 2014. 

Texas voters approved Proposition 6 on Nov. 5, 2013. The approval of Prop 6 made a one-time allocation of $2 billion from the State’s economic stabilization fund that created the SWIFT and State Water Implementation Revenue Fund for Texas (SWIRFT). According to TWDB’s website, the funds “will be used to finance water projects in the current state water plan. Before the funds become available in 2015, the TWDB Board has to approve administrative rules that define standards for rural, conservation and reuse projects, as well as prioritize projects that are seeking financial assistance.” 

TWDB Board member Kathleen Jackson commented, “While the Board is pleased with the draft rules that were approved for publication, we want to stress that they are in fact, a draft. The Board faces a unique challenge with the size and diversity of Texas. Each part of the state has different water needs and demands. That is why the Board will continue to travel the state and receive public comments from the people of Texas. We want the final rules to represent the diversity of our great state and the various water needs each community faces.”