The neighborhood has watched as large adjacent or nearby groups -- SWAPO and United Neighbors -- have negotiated lease deals at per-acre bonuses more than $15,000. Sterling Green, whose offer from GMB Professional Land Services on behalf of Paloma Resources is sitting at $6,000 per acre, has tried unsuccessfully to get GMB to allow it into the SWAPO group's boundaries.
Kris Garcia, a Sterling Green organizer, says about 40 percent of the homeowners in his neighborhood have already signed, leaving about 60-70 homes and hurting the group's bargaining power. He also says Sterling Green has a large number of elderly and single parents, doesn't have a well of resident professionals to draw on in forming a negotiating committee, and feels it's being treated unfairly based on the demographics.
"There's no lawyers that live among us," he said. "We're just a middle class neighborhood."
He says the neighborhood continues to talk to GMB about joining SWAPO. A GMB principal hasn't yet responded to emailed questions from Blogging the Barnett Shale.
Sterling Green (click here to visit its web site) is now interested in linking up with another nearby neighborhood, the portion of Turf Club Estates south of Nathan Lowe Road, which Paloma sent lease offers to in early January.
Those offers rose from $15,300 per acre to $16,100, says Carlos Lozada, a neighborhood organizer. Click here to visit Turf Club's web site. The royalty offer is 25 percent, with a three-year term and two-year option, and those terms have stayed the same.
Turf Club's offers are coming directly from Paloma and not GMB, Lozada said.
Lozada says Paloma increased its bonus offer after the neighborhood contacted the company. "We let them know we were doing this as a neighborhood," he said.
Of the 600 homes in the neighborhood, he says about 120 have signed up to be part of the group. Some homeowners have taken Paloma's offer and run, he concedes, but he believes the neighborhood has had success in getting property owners to hold off by quickly organizing door-to-door and through the fast construction of a web site.
"As far as monetary value, yes, (the bonus offer is) good," says Lozada, who works as an equipment technician. "But our concern is with what else is in that contract."
"I don't see why they can't extend the SWAPO boundaries," Lozada said.
He says his neighborhood and Sterling Green continue to talk "back and forth" about a possible alliance.
Here's a map of the area built by Turf Club, including the boundaries of the major Southwest Arlington leasing groups and speculated drill sites. Sterling Green is just west of Bowen Road, south of Green Oaks, north of Sublett Road, and contiguous to SWAPO's east boundary. Turf Club Estates is east of Bowen Road, north of Sublett, west of Cooper, and contiguous to United Neighbors' south boundary.
The portion of Turf Club Estates north of Nathan Lowe is included in United Neighbors, which negotiated its lease deal last fall.
-- Scott Nishimura
(Photos: S.J. Stovall Park)
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