Boerne Mayor Schultz: Stop Chasing Huge Water Wasters Like Buc-ee's!
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Don't believe the hype (or drink the Kool-Aid). Buc-ee's is a bland, soulless business that sells cheap, Chinese, plastic trinkets and junk food. It may be technically located in the County (for now) but it's got the Mayor's fingerprints all over it. To make matters worse, Boerne is running out of water and Buc-ee's just compounds the problem. It doesn't belong in Boerne, Texas for a number of other reasons:
1) AREA WORKFORCE SHORTAGES: local restaurants are already suffering;
2) CRIME: Many of us have heard about the crime at Boerne Hollow due to its proximity to the Valero (lots of traffic, some criminal). What happens when the City builds a road connecting Buc-ee's to Regent Park and Menger Springs?
3) ENVIRONMENTAL / SAFETY ISSUES: fuel tanks totaling 1/2 Million gallons; approximately 100 gas pumps off-gassing carcinogenic fuel vapor into the neighborhood;
4) INCOMPATIBLE SIZE: 53,000+ square foot building plus huge 10-20 acre paved lot; 5x larger than the Valero across the highway; probably the largest business on IH-10 between Cascade Caverns Road and John's Road;
5) STORMWATER RUNOFF: millions of gallons of water a year containing gasoline & oil residue spilling into Menger Springs, the Cibolo Creek and the Cibolo Nature Center;
6) TAX ABATEMENT: Boerne gave Buc-ee's a sweetheart tax deal ($ millions);
7) TRAFFIC: daily vehicle visits will average 2,500; reconfiguring the exit to Buc-ee's will cost $30 Million; will be built at the same exit as the local hospital (what if ambulances can't get through?);
8) UTILITIES: hookups to the City utilities will cost $3-5 Million;
9) WATER SCARCITY: ~100 toilets and 500,000 gallons of water usage monthly (6 million gallons annually putting it in the top 10 of water users in Boerne); even more dependency on Canyon Lake water (Boerne is already running out of water);
10) ZONING: the location violates the Town Entrance Overlay to the Boerne Master Plan and RUDAT Study; property still listed as "residential" on KCAD online.*
There is no Buc-ee's in Fredericksburg. The first Louisiana location (Baton Rouge) got nixed for unknown reasons. Floridians are fighting the Buc-ee's invasion. Why should Boerne have lower standards and get stuck with this eyesore? Does the Mayor know what happened in Junction, Texas with the Flying J Truck Stop?*** Tell the Mayor to stop chasing old economy businesses ("low hanging fruit") and plan something substantive that will last 100 years (e.g. a museum like Fredericksburg's). All of his promises of economic benefits to Boerne from this project are a mirage. Property and sales taxes will go to bondholders from outside the state, construction crews will go back to San Antonio and profits will go back to Buc-ee's home office (Pearland/Houston).** Most of the 170 employees won't even live in Boerne and Buc-ee's only pays these higher benefits to full-time employees (most are part-time so they won't qualify).**** Where's the benefit? We already have more than 25 gas stations and convenience stores in Boerne. Too much supply already in Boerne and not enough demand. The ugly truth is that Buc-ee's is designed for commuters and travelers, not tourists.
*Note (1): The address of the Buc-ee's site is 33375 Interstate 10 (KCAD Property IDs 15922 & 15923). It is a vacant, 25-acre lot right now. The old Jennings Anderson Ford building is next door and owned by Bill Miller, the BBQ guy. Bill has 55 acres.
**Note (2): Pearland, Texas, a Houston suburb and home to Buc-ee's, has been rated one of the ugliest in Texas. It is also one of the most polluted with at least one EPA Superfund Cleanup site.
****Note (4): www.Glassdoor.com
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