The Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) has proposed to construct a large electrical transmission line across the largest piece of protected land — public or private — in Gillespie County.
Owned by Mrs. Terese T. Hershey, one of Texas’ most renowned conservationists, the 1,500-acre Hershey Ranch is protected by a conservation easement which was supposed to conserve it in perpetuity.
The Hill Country Land Trust, one of Texas’ 30 private, nonprofit land trusts, “holds” the conservation easement, and is entrusted with ensuring that the land is protected forever.
A conservation easement is a voluntary agreement — individually negotiated between landowner and land trust for each property — that perpetually restricts all future non-agricultural development of the property.
The landowner retains title to the property, while being assured that it will stay in its natural, productive state forever.