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District History

Denton County Reclamation & Road District

This is a brief outline of the District and its background to help you better understand its purpose.

HISTORY: The area within the District was a working ranch in the Town of Hebron for many years (the Huffines Ranch). It regularly experienced significant flooding and had very limited access, but it was close to growing development areas.

In 1985, the State Legislature created the District with the primary power to reclaim the land from flooding. Additional Utility and Road powers were also included but neither have ever been used. To reclaim the land, a complicated engineering plan was developed detailing the size and location of all facilities required for reclamation, i.e. levees, swales, channels, lake sump and pump station that provide 500 year protection and an added 4 feet of freeboard instead of the usual 100 year protection. The Plan was approved by the State and various Federal Agencies. Hebron de-annexed the land, Carrollton annexed it and provided necessary water and sewer facilities. Later TxDOT built SH 121 Bypass and Denton County built Hebron Parkway. The District issued $9,650,000 of tax-free bonds to finance the cost of building the flood protection facilities to make the land inhabitable. Without the District’s facilities, none of the land could be used and the roads would not have been built.

DEVELOPMENT: Flood facilities were completed in late 1986, but by 1988, the national banking failures had begun. Financial conditions were not the same but very similar to the current banking and recession problems. All major banks in Texas except one subsequently failed and credit was almost non-existent. FDIC later foreclosed on the property but could not sell it until after the District took Bankruptcy in order to restructure the District’s debt (yes, even government entities fail and take bankruptcy). The Court approved an unusual plan that changed the District’s tax from being based on property values to a tax based strictly on the size of the property, with no exemptions and no exceptions. This made the land saleable and new owners took over in late 1993. They originally planned for a mixed-use development with much more office and commercial and less residential use. There was only a market for residential property, so they ultimately started off with Riverglen, then on to Oakwood Springs and Elmwood Trail. Lewisville schools greatly added to residential development. Later, Coyote Ridge was begun and the Golf Course followed. The District is essentially built out except property along Hebron Parkway. There are an unusual number of churches in the District. All pay District taxes.

DISTRICT FUNCTIONS: The District’s only function is to protect the lives and property of residents from flooding. Most people have never experienced firsthand the destructive forces and consequences of severe flooding and many times do not appreciate those dangers. The District’s facilities are considerably in excess of the minimum requirements and are approved by FEMA. The facilities are regularly inspected twice weekly and after every rain, and maintained to be ready on a 24 hour basis. Upgraded replacements are made periodically to provide up-to-date capabilities. Your District taxes pay the cost of properly operating and maintaining the levees, drainage channels, SCADA system the 30 acre retention lake, and pump station.