Port Aransas South Jetty (Port Aransas, Tex.), Vol. 9, No. 31, Ed. 1 Thursday, January 24, 1980 Page: 2 of 8

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JANUARY 24, 1980
Deeport EIS
Moving Again
Deeport, the proposed super-
port at Harbor island, appears to
have had some life breathed back
into it in terms of the required
moves through the Corps of
Engineers permitting system. The
project sponsor, the Nueces
County Navigation District No. 1,
has been wrangling, for more
than a year, with the question of
how to respond to the objections
that were raised regarding the
draft environmental impact state-
ment. In addition, district officials
have been trying to arrive at a
format that will be acceptable to
the Corps for submission of
materials for a required final
impact statement.
Now it appears that a format
developed for the district by
Espey Huston, a consulting firm,
will be the one followed in
preparing a final EIS. The
consultant prepared one sample
chapter for the district, and that
chapter, an oil spill analysis
relative to the proposed port, has
been reviewed by Walter Conrad,
a Houston attorney who special-
izes in environmental law. He
reported that he feels it is in a
form that will make an acceptable
submission to the Corps, for them
to use in making a permitting
Initially, the plan was to also
ask the Corps office to review the
sample format, but there is no
indication that this has been done.
Representatives of the industry
management committee, the main
backers of the port proposal, have
been briefed on the new format
and Conrad’s opinion of it, and,
while it is not yet official, it
appears that the committee will
give the port staff the go ahead to
begin preparing the final EIS
information for submission.
If Conrad had indicated that the
format would probably not be
acceptable, the district and man-
agement committee would have
been faced with the decision of
whether to scrap the whole
project, which has been in the
Wyatt Will Be
Challenged In May
A field of hopefuls is develop-
ing in the upcoming race for the
14th congressional district seat
now held by Joe Wyatt. Shortly
after it was announced recently
that Wyatt, 38, had entered a,
hospital for a six week treatment
for alcoholism, names of potential
candidates in the race began to
surface. So far, other than Wyatt,
who has announced for re-elec-
tion, only one other candidate has
filed for the May primary. Filing
deadline is early February. The
other filed candidate is former
state representative Joe Salem, of
Corpus Christi. Salem, 59, served
four consecutive terms in the
Texas house and then was
defeated in a 1976 attempt at a
state senate seat. Salem paid his
$1,500 filing fee last Monday.
Other names being talked about
for the race are Nueces County
Judge Robert Barnes, who has
said he will announce his candi-
dacy shortly; State Senator Bill
Patman, of Ganado, and State
Representative Arnold Gonzales,
of Corpus Christi. Patman is the
son of the late Wright Patman
who served in congress for 47
years, representing east Iexas.
Barnes served as a Nueces County
v Commissioner from 1959 to 1970,
when he was elected County
Judge. He is now serving his
third four-year term as judge,
which will expire in ;982. When
planning since 1971, or begin
again from scratch writing another
draft document. Since Conrad’s
opinion was that the draft
document could be developed into
a final, the district must now
proceed with seeking answers to
the substantive issues raised in
the objections filed against the
project as it was described in the
draft impact statement. Port
Director Harry Plomarity said that
once the official go ahead is
received from the members of the
management committee, it will
take about five or six months of
work to gather the needed
information to address the sub-
stantive issues.
Objectors hit the proposal not
only on the basis of the
environmental damage it would
cause in its construction and
possible oil spills resulting from
its operation, but also questioned
whether it would contribute to
increasing storm floods and
damage to Port Aransas, as a
result of the configuration of the
dredge spoil disposal areas and
the deepening of the channel from
its present 45 feet, to the
proposed 80 feet. The need for
the local sponsorship project has
also been questioned by many,
including the Environmental Pro-
tection Agency. Other agencies,
including the National Marine
Fisheries Service, U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Service, and the Texas
Parks and Wildlife Department
has also objected to the project as
proposed. If the EPA objections
are not resolved by the sponsor,
the Corps decision on whether to
grant a permit for the project
cannot be made by the Galveston
District Engineer, and the whole
issue becomes one to be dealt
with at the Washington level of
the Corps and EPA.
Espey Huston was contracted
bv the district to prepare the
sample chapter format. It has not
yet been announced whether the
firm will continue with the
information gathering and prepar-
ing the materials for the final EIS
to be submitted to the Corps. This
decision is expected following a
formal agreement to proceed by
the management committee.
« * -
■ *
Chamber Elects Gibson President
c.j. Jordan photo
he announces for the congression-
al race, he will be required to
resign his post as county judge.
So far, no Republicans have
filed for the congressional seat,
but Gerald D’Undger, a Corpus
Christi oil man, has said that he
will announce for the seat soon.
Wyatt, meanwhile, on the
advice of his doctor, is making no
public statements about the race.
The Port Aransas Area Cham-
ber of Commerce has elected new
officers who will be installed at
the annual Chamber banquet to
be held on February 6th.
Elected Chamber president was
George Gibson, president of
Island State Bank, and a long-
time officer of the Chamber of
Commerce. First Vice President is
Maisie Stimson, a former Cham-
ber president. Second Vice Presi-
Retail Sales Declined Here
Retail sales during November in
Port Aransas recorded a drop
from the same month in 1978. The
sales tax returned for the period
was six percent below that
recorded in the previous year.
The City’s one percent share of
the five percent sales tax was
Retail sales in Port Aransas
have been running about the
same in the fall of 1979 as they
were in the previous year, when
an inflation factor is removed
from the dollar total, but the
November figures show the first
aciuai dollar decline. Many local
merchants attribute this to the
spin-off effect of the Ixtoc I oil
spill that hit local beaches in
September. The oil has been
cleaned up, but the wave of
publicity that surrounded the spill
apparently discouraged a number
of the regular winter visitors to
the extent that they have not
come to Port Aransas this year.
South Padre Island, on the
other hand, recorded a whopping
119 percent increase in sales
during the November period,
when compared with the 1978
figure. The beach there was also
oil coated and subsequently clean-
ed up. That city has made a major
effort to spread the word that the
beaches are clean, and it appears
that the effort was a worthwhile
one. Also included in the total
probably were sales to people on
the clean-up crews, as well as
media and other visitors who
came to examine the spill and its
effects. South Padre’s one percent
share of the tax for the period
amounted to $5,306.28. 1 he South
Padre figure may be somewhat
too high, as Bob Bullock, the
State Comptroller pointed out that
this month’s figures for the whole
state contain an unusually high
number of late payments from the
previous month. Therefore, the
South Padre figure may actually
contain some returns that should
have been recorded with the
earlier month’s total.
deni is Pat Magee; Secretary is
Virginia Corn; and Treasurer is
Ed Sheppard.
The banquet, on the 6th is set
for 7 p.m. at Turtle Cove
Restaurant. Tickets for the Cham-
ber members and guests are $8.00
each. There will be a cash bar
available as well. Tickets may be
purchased at the Chamber of
Commerce office or from Maisie
Stimson or Marie Stiewig.
The featured speaker at this
year’s Chamber of Commerce
banquet will be Brian Hale, a
humorist who is employed by
Central Power and Light at its
Bay City office.
Starts The 27th
January 27th at 12 noon a
Dart-A-Thon will begin at the
Community Center. Tom Watters
and Scotty Phelps will attempt to
break the existing record of
continuous playing on the dart
board of 81 hours. The duo will
engage in a continuous game of
darts until one million and one
points nave been reached and the
record of 81 hours is passed.
Drawings for door prizes donated
by local business will be held.
Food, beer and set-ups will be
available. The EMS Ladies Auxili-
ary will provide food for the
event. All islanders stop by and
give support to the Dart-A-Thon.
All proceeds will go to the Port
Aransas Emergency Medical
Owner - Editor: Steve Fri^jln >
SOUTH JETTY is publi*h#d
•very Thursday by the South Jetip
Publishing Co,, Port ArooatP,
Texas. Subscription rote is SMbtft
per year. 25 cents by the single
Subscription and Office Mana-
ger; Sue Frishman
Address all correspondence tgfc-
South Jetty Publishing Co,
P. O. Box 1116
Port Aransas, Texas 78375
Office; 201 E. Cotter Avegge,
Port Aransas. Texas. Phone 7AP-
Display advertising deadline:.
Monday, 12 noon, the week of
The publisher will gladly corapct
•any erroneous statement regjud-
fag corporations, firms, or individ-
uals. when called to his attention.
Second Class Postage is paid at
ruri Aransas, Texas.
y.A —ss

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Frishman, Steve. Port Aransas South Jetty (Port Aransas, Tex.), Vol. 9, No. 31, Ed. 1 Thursday, January 24, 1980, newspaper, January 24, 1980; Port Aransas, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth601556/m1/2/ocr/: accessed August 7, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Ellis Memorial Library.

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