Updates

Survey Seeking Homeowner Interest

SURVEY PROPOSAL: The Board of Directors of Lakeway MUD (LMUD), the current provider of potable water services to your home, is evaluating a proposal to construct a public sewer system in the first 17 sections of Lakeway neighborhood that would be owned, controlled, and maintained by LMUD allowing the option for homeowners to connect to it instead of their existing septic tank. We ask that you please give us your response indicating your level of interest in this proposal. A summary of the proposal is below. More information will also be available at the upcoming meetings:

Monday, Feb. 26th at 7:15pm and Thursday, March 1st at 8:30am
Held at the Lakeway Activity Center, 105 Cross Creek

LAKEWAY HISTORY: Lakeway was founded in 1962 with the construction of the Lakeway Inn and Marina. Between April 1962 and April 1971, the first 17 residential sections of Lakeway, now known as “Old Lakeway” neighborhood (your neighborhood), were built. LMUD was formed in 1972. LMUD passed a bond issue that included the installation of a sewer system to all Lakeway homes, but the first 17 sections of Lakeway (Old Lakeway) residents chose to opt out since they had just installed their septic systems (which remain under the regulatory control of the LCRA).

ABOUT LMUD: LMUD is a political subdivision, separate from the City, that provides water, wastewater, and water reuse (recycled water used for landscape irrigation) services to the surrounding community. LMUD would be responsible for the installation, management and repairs of the proposed sewer system in Old Lakeway. Old Lakeway customers are currently “Out of District” (OD) customers versus the “In District” (ID) customers who pay property taxes to LMUD. Old Lakeway customers would continue to be OD customers even if the LMUD Board approves the proposal.

TIMELINE: As currently proposed, Phase 1 of the project would commence in approx. February 2019 and consist of constructing the majority of the required infrastructure (e.g., installing approx. 30,000 linear ft. of pipe and constructing a new a lift station, located off Flamingo Dr.). Phase 1 is expected to take about 8 months and on completion should allow approx. 265 homes along the Live Oak Golf Course area the option to be connected to the new system. Phase 2 would follow, allowing the approx. 760 houses in the rest of Old Lakeway the option to connect to the new system.

PROJECT PURPOSE: LMUD has received reports that many septic tanks in Old Lakeway are failing and preliminary indications that those residents may be interested in replacing their private septic systems with a public sewer system.

Some of the potential benefits to Old Lakeway residents and to the entire Lakeway community from replacement of private septic systems with a public sewer system include:

  • Environmental: Avoids leaching of septic waste into Lake Travis (a source for recreation & drinking water).
  • Conservation: New infrastructure allows “reuse” water for landscape irrigation (initially Phase 1 residents only).
  • Resale Value: Simplifies home sale process; Relieves homeowner of maintenance and liability of septic tanks.
  • Lot Use Flexibility: Frees up space to add a pool or expand home (subject to City ordinances & approval).

The potential drawbacks to continuing to use a private septic system include:

  • Cost: Homeowner bears all costs of owning and maintaining septic systems (e.g., learning to use it and properly maintaining it with regular inspections by the LCRA, pumping, repairs, and replacement).
  • Inconvenience: Septic tanks put the highest level of limits on what and how much you can put down the drains.
  • Land Usage: Drain field area must be left vacant, making the space unusable for the homeowner.
  • Undesirable at Resale: Real estate agents report that home buyers generally prefer collectivized public sewer over private septic systems.

OPTIONS AND COSTS: To assist you in your evaluation of this proposal, LMUD has prepared the following estimated costs of service*:

Option 1: Connect as Soon as Available

Homeowner agrees to connect to the sewer line as soon as it becomes available.

Best option for those with a failing septic system or one that is more than 25 years old. Note that LMUD will try to work with you and the LCRA if your septic tank fails before sewer is available to you to avoid installing a new tank.

Monthly Base Rate approx. $14/mo. 
Volumetric Rate
(e.g. showing $2.50/1,000 gal.)
approx. $20/mo.
(Varies per household: example based on avg. Dec.-Mar. of 8,000 gal.)
Debt Service Rate (e.g., if paid for 25 years) approx. $60/mo.
Service Fee (system maintenance) approx. $ 5/mo.
_________________________ ___________________________
Avg. Monthly Fee Total $99/mo.

Option 2: Connect Later

Start paying a Monthly Reservation Fee now to obtain a lower rate upon connection, then connect when ready.

Best option for those looking to sell their home in the next few years or would like the option to eventually connect. Maintenance of existing septic system continues to be the homeowner’s responsibility under regulation of the LCRA.

Monthly Reservation Fee approx. $30/mo. (credited toward your future debt service payments)
Once your household decides to hook up to sewer, the Option 1 fees will go into effect with the “Debt Service Rate” varying based on when you decide to hook up. Each homeowner will pay approximately $18k within a 25 year time frame. With the approx. $30/mo. working towards this fee, a homeowner who opts-in to hook up in 5 years can expect to pay a Debt Service Rate of approx. $67.50/mo. for 20 years; 10 years would be $80/mo. for 15 years. This option will also incur a one-time upfront “System Capital Costs” of $4,000 to pay for the installation of your home’s grinder pump (this fee is covered by LMUD for homeowners who choose Option 1).

Option 3: Decline to Connect

Homeowner is not in favor of the option to connect to this proposed sewer system.

If you choose this option, be aware that if your septic system fails LCRA inspection, the replacement system must meet current standards, with the average cost of a new tank being $30,000 (contact LCRA for details). If you or a future homeowner decides to connect to sewer later, you/they will still have the option with the same details as Option 2, but with no “Monthly Reservation Fee” being deducted from the monthly “Debt Service Rate”. This option will also incur a one-time upfront “System Capital Costs” of approx. $ 4,000 to pay for the installation of your home’s grinder pump.

*All costs subject to change. All costs are approximate based on preliminary engineering estimates using current dollars and rates.

NOTE FROM LMUD’S GENERAL MANAGER: Before March 9th please fill out, sign, and submit to Lakeway MUD the form below. You are also welcome to print, complete and mail your response, or call me with your reply. If you have any questions, you are welcome to give me a call, however I would like to reserve this option for homeowners who are out of town; for all residents who are in the area, please try to attend one of our information meetings (dates on reverse side), coming prepared with your questions and comments. I look forward to hearing from you soon! Thank you for your careful consideration of this proposal!

Sincerely,
Earl Foster, LMUD, General Manager


Homeowner Survey Response For The Proposed Installation Of A Public Sewer System In The First 17 Sections Of Old Lakeway Neighborhood

  • To assist the LMUD Board in evaluating the feasibility of its proposal to provide a public sewer system in the first 17 sections of Lakeway neighborhood, the LMUD Board is seeking your response indicating whether your household would likely choose to connect to LMUD’s proposed public sewer system if the proposal passes. It is anticipated that the LMUD Board will consider the results of this survey and vote whether to move forward on the proposal at a regular board meeting in March or April 2018 (date is subject to change so please check the LMUD website for updates).
  • I/we have been informed of LMUD’s Public Sewer System Installation Proposal for the Old Lakeway neighborhood and
  • This is not a binding contract. LMUD is trying to get an accurate indication of the number of homeowners in Old Lakeway who would be interested in having the option to replace their existing septic systems with a connection to a public sewer system. If the LMUD Board determines that it appears feasible to move forward on this proposal, we will notify you if it passes and send you a contract to sign regarding your decisions which will legally bind you to your chosen option. We appreciate your time and attention to the consideration of this proposal!
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Tips on Preparing for Adverse Weather Conditions

When preparing for freezing weather, please remember the Four P’s: People, Pets, Pipes and Plants.

People – When temperatures are below freezing, it can be dangerous – even deadly. We encourage everyone to stay inside of a building during freezing temperatures if possible and to dress in temperature-appropriate clothing.

Pets – Freezing temperatures can be dangerous or deadly for your pets, too. Please bring them inside if possible. If it is not possible please make sure that they have shelter and something to keep them warm.

Pipes – Frozen pipes are no fun. When pipes freeze they can burst, leading to expensive home damage. Follow the following tips to prevent pipes from freezing:
• Be sure to wrap/insulate any exposed outdoor pipes and faucets.
• Indoors, leave one faucet to drip – usually at the sink located in the back of the house since water usually comes from the water line in front of your home. This will keep water flowing through all of the pipes on the underside of the house.
• Keep your heater set to a minimum temperature of 50 to 60 degrees and open cabinet doors where sink pipes may be located. All of this helps prevent pipes from freezing.
• Know in advance where your water shutoff valve is located. It is usually in the front yard.
What to do if your pipes freeze
In the unfortunate event that your pipes freeze, turn off your water at the shutoff valve. If you cannot close your shutoff valve – or you have fire sprinklers that you cannot turn off – you can call us at 512/261-6222. You should also be prepared to contact a plumber and a water damage restoration company to help.

Plants – Last but not least, are plants. Many of us have a lot invested in our plants. Protect your investment by bringing potted plants indoors and covering bedded plants with a blanket, sheet or specially-made plant cover.

Old Lakeway and Septic systems

L.M.U.D. recognizes the special needs of about 1,000 of our patrons and we want to assist them in connecting to a municipal sewer system and thereby getting them off of their septic tank systems. Basically, we hope to accomplish this without any front-end cost. There is a lot of wrong information out there so I would like to clear some of it up. I would like to clarify a couple of things about septic tanks in old Lakeway. Lakeway MUD will be doing the survey. Lakeway MUD gets calls every week from individuals in Old Lakeway whose houses are on septic tanks. Either their septic tank has failed, or they want to know about the possibility of connecting to the central wastewater system.  Sometimes leach fields may not be on the homeowner’s property, or the house is selling and the septic tank needs to be brought up to today’s standards. In some cases the homeowner cannot meet the new standards, so they have to design a system that LCRA will approve specifically for their situation.  Some want to consider putting in a pool but don’t have room because of the septic tank.  In the next couple of months we are going to be working on an education program and survey to see if there is sufficient interest to warrant further investigation of the possibilities of offering a community wastewater system to the Old Lakeway (out of District) areas. If you have any questions please call me.

Respectfully,

Earl Foster, General Manager, Lakeway MUD

512/261-6222 Ext 140

Announcing Lakeway MUD New Billing System

Effective Monday, February 27, 2017 Lakeway MUD  transitioned to a new billing system that  offers more information to our customers while reducing the paper we use each billing cycle.

Our customers will need to register on the new system to access their accounts. To register, click on ‘My Account’ in the upper right hand corner of this page and follow the easy instructions to gain access to your account

If you have not been using Auto Pay, our automatic system of charging your Credit Card or Bank Account for your Bi-Monthly bill, this is an excellent opportunity to begin. This system saves a tremendous amount of paper, provides peace of mind knowing your payments will be on time with no late fees, and provides electronic (email) communications to you before your bill is charged to your account.

If you prefer to pay each time, there is a new feature that allows you to make one time payments by Credit Card or Check without even having to log into your account.  Simply go to our website, www.LakewayMUD.org, click on “My Account” in the upper right hand corner, then click on “Quick Pay” on the right hand side of the screen.  It is fast, easy, and saves paper and postage!

Electronic Statements and Notifications (Paperless)

Whether you are on Auto Pay, or prefer to write a check, or enter your payment on the portal  each billing cycle, all options are available for Paperless options. We waste a tremendous amount of paper every billing cycle.  In the past, we had to send a return payment envelope with every mailed statement even though the payments were electronic due to the limitations of the old system.

Now, we can eliminate these wasted envelopes, but more importantly we can eliminate the cost of printing statements and mailing them-a big cost savings to our customers and tax payers. Simply sign up for electronic statements, and we will send you an email with your billing statement attached in PDF form.  All you have to do is click on the attachment to view your statement; you don’t even have to sign in to your account!  Remember, if you are on electronic statements, you can print your statement at home if you need to, or we will be glad to print one for you upon request.

Just go to your account, look for ‘Bill Preference’ in the lower left hand corner, click on ‘Edit’ and choose ‘Electronic Billing’.  Or, if you prefer, just call us or email us at CustomerService@LakewayMUD.org and request Paperless Billing.  We will be glad to make the change for you.

New Billing Statements and Added Information

We know you will be pleased with the easy to read format and additional information provided on your new billing statement.  There is a graph that show each month’s usage for the past two years so you get a clear visual snapshot of your usage trends.  If you suspect you may have an issue, you can request that we run a profile showing your usage by hour by day for the past 30, 60, 90, or 120 days at no charge to you.  We can usually have these profiles to you within a few days of your request.

Register Now and See Your New Account Format

We encourage everyone to register now on the new website and become familiar with the new format. Remember, sign up now for Auto Pay and/or Electronic Billing.  Save money, time, and worry about timely payments.

We are excited about our new system, and we trust you will pleased as well. Please call us at 512/261-6222 Ext 110, or email us at <strong>CustomerService@LakewayMUD.org</strong> should you have any questions or need any help.

Board Meetings

Our Regular Board Meetings are the second  Wednesday of each month,  9:30AM at our District Office (1097 Lohmans Crossing).  Please click on the link below to view agendas .
Agendas

New News and a Bit of History

Officers elected by the Lakeway MUD Board on June 13, 2016 were: Larry Burmeier, President; Thomas Brewer, Vice President; Don Goff, Secretary; Lawrence M. Christian, Treasurer.  Thank you and congratulations  to  these officers for their voluntary contributions of time and talent to Lakeway MUD.

Election of Lakeway Municipal Utility District (LMUD) Board of Directors was held on May 7, 2016. We wish to thank Kay Andrews for her 12 years of service, and Mel Neese for his 4 years of service.  We deeply appreciate their commitment to helping LMUD achieve new heights.

Re-elected to the Board was Tom Brewer, who has served as a Director since June of 2011. We appreciate his willingness to devote another term of service.  Newly elected Directors are Don Goff and Lawrence Christian.  Goff has been Chairman of the Administrative, Personnel, and Community Relations Committee and has been active in improving each of those areas during his tenure.  Christian has been the Chairman of our Finance Committee and has been instrumental in supporting the outstanding financial results LMUD has enjoyed in recent years.  We congratulate all three Directors whose terms began at our Monthly Board Meeting on Wednesday, May 18, 2016, and we thank them all for their continued willingness to devote even more of their personal time to the betterment of LMUD. All of the Board and Committee Members serve with no compensation and their willingness to help improve our organization and community is outstanding.

A new Board is always a fresh start, and causes reflection on past events. We thought it might be interesting to look back on some of the historical happenings at LMUD.  The first Board meeting was on August 28, 1971, and the new MUD was named “Travis County Municipal Utilities District No.1”.  The second meeting was held on October 25, 1971, and the name was changed to “Lakeway Municipal Utility District No.1”.

Shortly after the second meeting, the City of Austin passed a resolution that LMUD could not furnish water or service to any customer in a sub division within LMUD unless it was approved by the Planning Commission of the City of Austin.

The third meeting took place on December 6, 1971. One of the highlights was a request from the Texas Department of Public Safety that sufficient space be planned in LMUD’s District Office to house two officers including desk space, storage, and a retaining cell for those arrested.  The Board Members at that meeting seemed willing to consider that request, but there is no evidence it was ever mentioned again.

On September 3, 1971, LMUD received its first invoice; it was a bill from Harvey Smith, Surveyor, in the amount of $90.  The charge was for 6 hours of office time at $15 per hour!  This invoice was paid by the Lakeway Land Company who was then reimbursed by LMUD No.1.

In December of 1971, and article appeared in the Austin Statesman in which the Mayor of Austin, Roy Butler, was quoted as saying he was not happy seeing MUD’s sprouting up around Austin. It was his belief that this event would stunt Austin’s growth.  It’s doubtful that today anyone familiar with Austin would claim that its growth had ever been stunted!  Just as an interesting side note:  in 1972, the Lakeway area was in Zip Code 78746, and it was an Austin address.

There was a Special Meeting of the Board on October 17, 1972 where an attorney by the name of Doran Eskew appeared before the Board and stated that he had been engaged by a group of citizens around the Lakeway area. Their purpose was to defend against any annexation by LMUD No. 1.  The President of the Board, Edward Plodzik stated that LMUD No.1 had no intentions of annexing any areas until and unless those areas actively sought out the help of the District.  In that meeting, the tax rate for 1973 was announced at $0.25 per $100 of evaluation;  a far cry from our 2015 rate of $0.1536 even without adjusting for 40+ years of inflation.  Another interesting note:  in January of 1973, there were 426 customers (compared to 4,200+ today) and the total LMUD No.1 billing was $6,645.  The average bill per customer was $15 for two months.

On July 13, 1983 at a Regular Board meeting, the Directors voted to change the name to Lakeway Municipal Utility District and it has remained the same since that meeting. Originally, the thought was that there would be additional MUDs formed that would want to use the Lakeway MUD name.  Since that did not happen, the ‘No.1’ was dropped.

We hope you have enjoyed this little look at history. We want to remind you that from May 1 through September 30 we are under Stage 2 Irrigation Restrictions.  All customers are limited to two weekly waterings.  Odd number addresses are Wednesday and Saturday, and even number addresses are Thursday and Sunday.  Commercial customers may water on Tuesday and Friday.  While we have had an abundance of rain the last few months, forecasters are predicting a hot and dry summer and fall.  We thank everyone in advance for your cooperation in conservation.  Please feel free to contact us with any questions at 512-261-6222, or by email at Lakeway@LakewayMUD.org, or by visiting our District Office at 1097 Lohmans Crossing. 

News From The City of Lakeway

City of Lakeway to enforce hands-free ordinance

Stage 2 Restrictions continue May 1-Sept 30 2017

Lakeway MUD Board of Directors voted to move to Stage 1 Restrictions effective immediately during the Regular Board meeting Wednesday, June 10, 2015.

Stage 1 restrictions between May 1 and September 30 call for the same watering schedules as Stage 2, which is twice per week according to the following guidelines:

For Odd Street addresses, Wed and Sat are irrigation days.
For Even Street addresses, Thurs and Sun are irrigation days.
Commercial customers may irrigate on Tue and Fri.

Just as in Stage 2, no watering is allowed between 10AM and 7PM.

The Board stresses that even though our conditions have improved greatly, our conservation efforts must continue.  While there are no restrictions on watering between Oct 1 and April 30, we ask that all users comply with the Stage 2 restrictions above at a minimum.  During the Fall and Winter months, very little irrigating is  needed and we can all contribute toward getting our storage up and ready for the coming summer.

The Board encourages all residents and businesses to continue the good water conservation habits we have all learned over the past few years.

Use Water Wisely!

Lakeway MUD Receives Award for Transparency

Texas Comptroller Leadership Circle Platinum Member – 6th YearAugust 28, 2015:  Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar wrote the following  to Larry Burmeier, President-Lakeway Municipal Utility District:

“I am pleased to inform you that the Lakeway Municipal Utility District has earned a 2015 Platinum Leadership Circle Award. Your application scored 23 of 23 possible on our ratings criteria to earn this award.

Your listing on our ‘Texas Transparency’ website now displays the Platinum seal to indicate that you have received this award.  Enclosed is your copy of a Leadership Circle Award Certificate. Congratulations on your success in moving forward on financial transparency and joining our Leadership Circle once again.”

This is the 2nd year in a row Lakeway Municipal Utility District has earned a Platinum Leadership Circle Award.” Platinum is the highest level attainable. The Lakeway MUD was the first Special District in Texas to be awarded this honor, and was awarded the Gold Leadership Circle Award 4 years in a row before Platinum was available.

Texas Transparency Check-Up Web site.

– Financial Transparency Documents –

Lakeway Municipal Utility District: A ‘MUD’ We Can All Be Proud Of!

When was the last time you thought about your water utility provider? In all likelihood, it was the last time you turned on a faucet and no water came out. Or, maybe it was the last time you paid your water bill. Perhaps it was the last time you had a leak and had to employ a plumber to fix the problem. If you are not thinking a lot about your water and wastewater provider, chances are they are doing a good job for you.

Lakeway Municipal Utility District (LMUD) provides Water, Wastewater, and/or Reuse Water to over 4,000 homes and businesses in the City of Lakeway. Depending on the season, anywhere from 2 to over 5 million gallons per day of fresh water are provided to our customers for drinking, bathing, irrigating, etc. With that kind of volume going to that many customers, it’s pretty amazing we don’t think about it more often!

Here are a few interesting facts about LMUD you may not be aware of:

  • LMUD was established in 1972; we have been serving a large portion of the Lakeway area for over 40 years! Other Water and Wastewater providers service the remainder of the City of Lakeway and The Hills.
  • TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, the governing body for all MUD’s in Texas) recognizes LMUD as a premier organization and often uses LMUD as an example and model for other utilities.
  • Our water has been recognized as the #1 drinking water in Texas, and #3 in North America!
  • We have received the Texas Comptroller Leadership Circle Award for Financial Transparency for the sixth year in a row! LMUD was the first Municipal Utility District to receive the award.
  • All Board meetings are video recorded and posted on the LMUD website for public viewing. All committee meeting minutes are posted on the website as well.
  • The LMUD Water Operations Office Received Gold Certification from LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for the energy saving and environmental friendly design.
  • LMUD  received a Platinum Level Certificate of Appreciation from the City of Lakeway for extensive and ongoing efforts to help mitigate wildfire risk in the City of Lakeway.
  • Our credit rating with Standard and Poor’s is AA-, the highest rating attained by any MUD in the State of Texas.
  • We make full use of our water, without wasting! Virtually all of our Wastewater is processed through our plants and returned to customers as reuse water to be used for irrigation. None of our wastewater is returned to the lake. This means that we save on average 485,000 gallons daily from being pumped out of Lake Travis, in addition to the extra costs that would be incurred to treat and deliver that water. That’s about 177 million gallons per year of savings applicable to our precious supplies in the lake as well as our resulting water rates!
  • Despite rising costs in every expense area, we have managed to reduce recurring real dollar expenses every year for the last 5 years! The only exception was in 2012 when we had the additional expense of purchasing the raw water barge from the LCRA (Lower Colorado River Authority), but our recurring expenses were still less than in 2011.
  • We have managed to keep our tax rate level (or lower it) for the last 5 years in a row even with increased rates for materials and labor.
  • As of this date, we have replaced our old customer meters with updated electronic models at 100% of our customer base. These new meters allow us to read the meters electronically, and give our customers hour by hour profiles of their usage in order to help detect areas of improvement.
  • Our 5 member Board of Directors and 19 Committee Members meet monthly to lend their expertise to improving and guiding LMUD. All of these Lakeway residents serve with no compensation and donate their time willingly, providing great value to our organization.
  • Our staff is available 24/7 to deal with emergencies; the Lakeway Police Department lends us a hand by contacting our “on-call” personnel when needed.
  • We have experienced drought conditions for the majority of the last 5 years; we had to enact “Stage 3” Water Restrictions up until June of 2015.  With the rains we had during the Spring, we were able to move to Stage 1 Restrictions. The Lakeway residents have been extremely supportive at each stage. While we have had to issue a few warnings about off-cycle watering, we have not had to issue a single fine for continued abuse.
  • Our Management team has 58 years LMUD management experience and 102 years of total management experience. Combined with the countless years of experience our Board and Committee members bring to the table, we are led by highly qualified seasoned veterans who are dedicated and focused on achieving our goals.

So, the next time you turn on the faucet, you might remember that “you are in good hands” (to borrow a phrase!). All of us at LMUD understand that we work for you, and it is our goal to keep you pleased with and proud of Lakeway MUD, your water service provider. Please feel free to contact us via our website, email, or phone call should you have any questions or suggestions. And, thanks to all for the tremendous cooperation you have afforded us through these trying drought conditions.