Guadalupe-Blanco River Trust Preservation Matters


November 16, 2005

GBR Trust receives historic San Marcos River water rights for benefit of all users

SEGUIN - A lease agreement approved today between the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA) and Thornton Family Investments, L.P. will protect historic, senior water rights on the San Marcos River by assigning them to the Guadalupe-Blanco River Trust (Trust). This will be a first for a Texas-based land trust.

According to Todd Votteler, the Trust's executive director, the Trust is dedicated to conserving the land and water of the Guadalupe River watershed for its natural, recreational, scenic, historic and productive value. The Trust was created by the GBRA Board of Directors in 2001.

The initial lease period is five years. During this time, the rights will be held by the Trust and the water will remain in the San Marcos/Guadalupe Rivers for the benefit of all who use the river system. The Trust will make annual lease payments, and the lease period may be extended by both parties.

"Our family's desire is to ensure that these water rights, and their contribution to the flows of the San Marcos River, will be protected," said Robert Thornton. "We have been working with GBRA for several months to finalize this arrangement. It was our desire that these rights be placed with the Trust. We know the Trust understands and appreciates the value of these rights to our family, as well as to the river system and environment."

"The Thornton family are direct descendants of Ed Cape, whose vision and desire to protect the San Marcos River prompted him to obtain these rights from the State of Texas between 1895 and 1905," Votteler said. "These senior water rights are some of the oldest in the Guadalupe River Basin and amount to 70 acre feet of water per year, which is equivalent to almost 23 million gallons of water annually. As long as the San Marcos Springs are flowing, this water will be available. We are honored that the Thornton's have placed their faith and confidence in us."