Daren Horton, President, Greater Caddo Lake Association of Texas

Because of the contributions and support of the citizens of Harrison County and people who support the Caddo Lake community, we would like to share how the funds raised at our annual Bar-B-Q have spawned an answer for the Salvinia control effort on Caddo Lake.

The Greater Caddo Lake Association of Texas (GCLA) “Salvinia Action Committee” was formed in October of this year. The goal was twofold — First, to have as many Caddo-focused organizations as possible on the same page, with the same plan, pooling resources and driving in the same direction to manage the Salvinia. The second, to educate and inform citizens and groups about the effectiveness of the Giant Salvinia Weevil.

The first step in our collective journey to manage the Salvinia is to establish a greenhouse to grow and maintain the Weevils. A blueprint for a Weevil greenhouse has been developed along with a budget to build and equip it. A timeline has also been developed to have the operation in production by the end of March 2014. Negotiations have been started to secure a waterfront site that meets all critical legal, environmental and functional requirements. Finally, a budget for all start-up and first-year operations has been completed.

In early November, the Salvinia Action Committee began systematically approaching area organizations and municipalities to secure funding. To-date the following funds have been raised:

  • GCLA Bar-B-Q – $11,000.00
  • GCLA – $21,000.00
  • Cypress Valley Navigation District – $10,000.00 COMMITTED
  • Harrison County – $12,000.00 COMMITTED
  • Caddo Lake Institute $35,000.00 COMMITTED

CVND, CLI, GCLA, the City of Marshall, Harrison County, TX. A&M and others have provided funds in the past and have a history of working together since the Salvinia was first discovered on Caddo Lake in 2006.

On August 21, 2013, Congressman Louie Gohmert held a town hall meeting in Marshall and told the citizens he is very concerned about our fight against Salvinia. The Congressman announced he was working to secure funding for our effort. On October 17, 2013, State Representatives Chris Paddie and Lyle Larson toured Caddo Lake with members of GLCA. Both agreed that allowing nature to solve the problem through the propagation of the Salvinia Weevil is the clear option moving forward. They reinforced the need to assist the Salvinia project through regulatory relief in permitting and by exploring all avenues of funding to ensure the Salvinia eradication project can continue.

Assistance from these officials is critical in establishing sustainability in the management program. The GCLA Board will continue to keep the citizens who cherish Caddo Lake informed of our progress and the progress made by these officials.

GCLA would like to thank the Citizens of Harrison County, The Caddo Lake Institute, Cypress Valley Navigation District, Judge Hugh Taylor – Harrison County, and the assistance of Harrison County Precinct 1 Commissioner William Hatfield for taking the lead in assisting our cause. In the next four months we hope to see a partnership of all entities and municipalities in the area come together to save Caddo Lake.

You can help by making a tax deductible contribution at www.gclaoftx.com/join-gcla-now or mail checks to Greater Caddo Lake Association PO Box 339 Karnack, Texas 75661.

Greater Caddo Lake Association of Texas

P.O. Box 339
Karnack, TX 75661