Less than a decade ago, giant power companies and small, struggling rural communities east of Waco saw coal as their future. Now that future isn’t what it used to be.

In McLennan, Freestone and Robertson counties, power companies that have been the largest county taxpayers are now fighting for deep cuts to their taxable values. The companies argue that plants can no longer compete in market flooded with cheap natural gas, a point on which industry analysts agree.

— Waco Tribune