Written by Phil Cerroni
By Will Jukes
The Dallas Planning and Zoning Commission received a standing ovation Thursday, March 22 when it voted to deny permits allowing Trinity East Energy to locate up to 20 natural gas wells, in the Trinity River bottoms, and a compressor station on land just across the border from Irving. This is the second time the Plan Commission has rejected the permit. The first vote took place on December 20th, 2012. Commission Chairman Joe Alcantar, who supported the permits, asked the Commission to reconsider its decision in early January.
Opposition supporters came out for a final show of force, bringing dozens of speakers to the podium, including residents of Irving and Irving City Council member Rose Cannaday. The opposition required several extensions to give everyone a turn at the podium.
The proposal now defaults to the Dallas City Council, which can overturn the decision of the planning committee only with a supermajority of 12 out of 15 votes. Upcoming city council elections are expected to complicate the vote as the makeup of the council will change due to factors including the loss of drilling opponent Angela Hunt to term limits.