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Texas State Senator Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville)

Texas State Senator Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville) on Thursday issued a public statement saying that he has listened to attorneys representing a Montana company that wants to build a waste disposal facility in San Augustine County, and he has also heard loud and clear from his constituents in Deep East Texas. Senator Nichols says the bottom line is he opposes the plan to build the facility, and he has sent off a letter saying just that to the Texas Railroad Commission.

The company, PA Prospect Corporation, currently has a request filed with the Railroad Commission/Oil & Gas Division in Austin to build the facility. That plan has created a lot of discussion throughout the area after it was learned that the proposed location is near a creek that flows into Lake Sam Rayburn about 10 miles to the south.

Senator Nichols said his constituents “are concerned about potential water and soil contamination, as well as the potential for runoff from the facility into the creek running through the property, which feeds into neighboring streams and Lake Sam Rayburn”.

According to the application filed by the company, materials that would be dumped at the site include oil based drilling fluids, old tank bottoms from gas, crude oil production facilities and reclamation plants, soil contaminated with crude oil, condensate, produced water, old O & G waste pit liners, and other waste containing arsenic, barium, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury, selenium, and benzene.

The following is the full statement by Senator Robert Nichols:

The PA Prospect Corporation, based in Montana, has submitted an application to the Texas Railroad Commission to create an oil and gas waste disposal facility in San Augustine County, located in Senate District 3 which I represent. I have heard from many San Augustine County residents who are concerned about how the proposed facility could negatively impact their lives, farms and homes. They are concerned about potential water and soil contamination, as well as the potential for runoff from the facility into the creek running through the property, which feeds into neighboring streams and Lake Sam Rayburn.

My office has reached out to discuss the project with PA Prospect Corporation and has attended a community meeting on this issue. However, many unanswered questions still remain about the impacts of this project to the local community and environment. I have also sent a letter to the Railroad Commission sharing my opposition against this proposed facility. My office will continue to work with the local communities and the Railroad Commission as this application goes through the process.

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Broadcast journalist & on-air personality - Rayburn Broadcasting Company - KJAS 107.3 FM in Jasper, TX and KFAH 99.1 FM in Pineland, TX