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-UPDATED 6/18/22 06:39PM


The MCWCID#1 received an allocations of 61,040.9686 acre -feet of water in 2020 and 20,529.4332 in 2021. Anthony Stambaugh, TCEQ Rio Grande Watermaster recently reached out to all the districts with low account balances to discuss the basin conditions, the low account balances and to ensure conservation and drought contingency plans according to Laura L. Lopez the Media and Community Relations Manager for TCEQ.

The MCWCID#1 does have a conservation and drought contingency plan in place. Ms. Lopez emphasize the importance of these plans to this district because they deliver water for domestic, municipal and power supplies. Due to the uncertainty of the drought conditions TCEQ encourages all water right owners to be proactive in managing their water rights.

The MCWCID#1 is allocated water according to the rules of Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and the terms of the districts individual water rights.


TCEQ will not allow the district to divert more water than what is in their water accounts and are obligated to move into enforcement against the district for unauthorized diversions, Ms. Lopez explained in the email.  Although TCEQ is able to assist in locating water for contract or purchase and help the district with any permitting needed to authorize the use of the water.


The TCEQ’s allocation rules and the district’s water rights are complex, and Mr. Stambaugh has met with Board President Randy Edwards, General Manager Brenda McCalip, and Board Member Javier Mancha to explain the allocation process and review the district’s allocations.   Unfortunately, some of the information communicated in the video is not accurate.  Mr. Stambaugh did not communicate that there would be a May allocation nor is the explanation about the district’s allocations accurate. Mr. Stambaugh has communicated to the district that he is available to meet again and discuss and questions or concerns from the district, and can clarify any misunderstanding.

Laura L. Lopez, Media and Community Relations Manager TCEQ


The Maverick County Water Control and Improvement District No. 1 held a meeting Tuesday evening to propose an Emergency Water Plan. The conference room was filled with worried district members about the potential shut down of the district’s operations.

The meeting began with a quorum being recognized followed by public testimony. Board member Javier Mancha took a moment to voice his concerns about the situation.

“Where is the water? I cannot tell you where the water went because I have been trying to ask for four months, where is the water that has been allocated for 2020 and 2021?”

Board Member Javier Mancha


Beyer Junfin, a former board member requested to participate in the public testimony. He started by saying “It’s unfortunate we have a grandstand by a board member not understanding where the water is” in response to board member Mr. Mancha’s concern.

The meeting continued with board President Randy Edwards reviewing the Emergency Water Plan with those in attendance. He offered the opportunity for District members to state their concerns with the plan written for the board to consider. Mr. Junfin’s concerns continued about the water district being forced to be shut down.

“So you all are just going to pray like hell and hope everything works out?… You essentially have two more months of operation before we shut down?”

Beyer Junfin, Former board president

President of the board, Mr. Edwards stated “We prepared the Emergency Water Plan as requested by the TCEQ. Under the restricted operations we are running right now, we calculate it at around three months of operation.” Mr. Junfin suggested that TCEQ may have misallocated water and do not allocate the same amount to this district as others further south.

“We are not getting water allocated by TCEQ, we do have a drought but this goes back several years that they haven’t allocated us enough water.”

Beyer Junfin, Former board president

Newly elected board member, Henry Moses challenged Mr. Junfin asking if he had any proof to substantiate the fact that TCEQ is misallocating the water? Mr. Junfin responded that based on previous years when he served the board, he noticed that the allocation were dropping for the Maverick County WCID#1. He stated that he has been after TCEQ representative Anthony Stanbach about the issue but has not received respond to the misallocation issue.

NOTE: We made contact with Laura L. Lopez the Media and Community Relations Manager for TCEQ. They will be responding to our request for comment in reference to the claim of misallocated water.


The impact of the water district being forced to shut down will hurt the farming community in Maverick County. The uncertainty of a District shutdown left members worried about the next step moving forward.


“Where is the water? I cannot tell you where the water went because I have been trying to ask for fourth months, where is the water allocated for 2020-2021?”

Javier Mancha Board Member

“Mr. Mancha, are you aware that the district members have more water in their accounts than the actual district has in theirs?”

Jake Moen, Superintendent

“I know there has been a lot of questions about where is the water… It is my understanding a couple of years back, weren’t we giving away water? I would like to bring that up, a lot of water was given away”

Brenda McCalip, General Manager

“So you essentially have two months of operating on normal?” and “We are just not getting allocated water by TCEQ like other water districts south of here”

Beyer Junfin, Former Board President

“Do you have proof to substantiate the fact that TCEQ is misallocating water. Facts for what you are insinuating that TCEQ misallocated the water”

Henry Moses, Board Member


Maverick County Water Control and Improvement District No. 1 started out as Maverick County Irrigation Canal back in 1904. Louis Dolch partnered with Rancher Dobrowolski in clearing 400 acres of brush south of Eagle Pass and began irrigating crops with water pumped from the Rio Grande River. Irrigation was essential to the area because of the hostile climate in Maverick County lacked sufficient annual rainfall to manage the crops. Minor projects were completed but the area significantly improved with the arrival of Company Goldfrank and Frank and the settlement of Indio Ranch. They started irrigating and planted different crops. By 1909 the area grew to eight irrigated farms, over 1,000 acres in Maverick County.

In 1885, Scottish-born rancher Patrick W. Thomson came up with project to build a gravity-flow irrigation network that would divert water from the Rio Grande River. Soon Eagle Pass Irrigation Co. was formed and hired F.B. Maltby, a government engineer. He surveyed the site and develop a cost estimate for the project. Thompson completed construction of three miles of the canal in 1889. Although the project was delayed due to the lack of funding. Eventually Thomson attempted to raise funding by forming a company of English investors known as The South West Texas Water Supply and Land Co., Ltd. The necessary permits were acquired from the Mexican and United States governments to conduct studies on the soil in the area. Robert Wallace from the University of Edinburg was contracted to analyze the soils and conduct a feasibility study for the proposed project. The feasibility study yielded positive results for the area. Efforts to raise the capital for the project was derailed because of the Boer War outbreak. Thomson continued seeking financial support for the irrigation project until his death in 1910.

Captain W.A. Fitch moved to Eagle Pass from San Antonio in 1882. He worked closely with his son, Maverick County Judge W.O. Fitch and other local leaders which lead to the creation of the Maverick County Water Control and Improvement District No. 1 in 1926. Four million dollars in bonds were went up to finance the irrigation project. In 1932 the network of gravity driven irrigation canal went into operation turning the Quemado Valley into a land of cultivation. By 1940 the canal serviced areas in El Indio south of Eagle Pass and additional 34,500 acres on the north side of Eagle Pass under the gravity driven irrigation network. Around 1970 the District had grown having a main canal measuring 108 miles with addition 200 miles of lateral canals. The main canal at the time was the biggest type of canal in the State of Texas.

Sources: Maverick County Irrigation Canal


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