Columns/Opinions

Fri
23
Oct

Around Hearne

By Kent Brunette
 
Information on Hearne’s Texas Department of Agriculture Community Enhancement Fund meetings, events, and training center grant application is forthcoming. This Monday, the City of Hearne submitted a grant application to the Home Investments Partnership Program. Funded by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development, this low-income occupied housing grant is administered by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs.
 
Fri
23
Oct

Revenue estimate reflects slowdown in energy sector

By Ed Sterling
 
Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar on Oct. 14 announced the release of his office’s Certification Revenue Estimate. The “CRE” is an update to the Biennial Revenue Estimate, a document that gives state lawmakers a good idea of how much revenue will be available for general-purpose spending in 2016-2017, the next two-year state budget period.
 
Fri
16
Oct

Incremental progress continues

By Kent Brunette

The City of Hearne will soon discover whether it got a $350,000 Texas Enhancement Fund grant for the proposed Crossroads Meetings, Events, and Training Centre. This grant is being offered by the Texas Department of Agriculture in a statewide competition for a very limited range of permissible projects. Hearne’s application is reputedly a top contender. Rose Marie Boulevard and Hackberry Street nearest the Crossroads Nursing and Rehabilitation Center have been ground-down to below curb level. Asphalt topping can’t be far behind. 

Fri
16
Oct

BP settles with five states, federal government

By Ed Sterling

BP, one of the world’s largest oil and gas companies, has settled with the federal government and the states of Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida over claims related to the Deep Water Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality announced on Oct. 5 that Texas stands to receive $800 million of the $20.8 billion settlement “to restore Gulf resources with portions dedicated to the coastal economy as well as restoration projects to address damage to natural resources.”

Fri
09
Oct

Governor requests border help from Washington

By Ed Sterling
 
Gov. Greg Abbott on Sept. 30 wrote a letter to U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, requesting immediate action to address “the significant increase of illegal border crossings.” Nearly 10,000 immigrant families and unaccompanied children were detained after illegally crossing the U.S.- Mexico border in August, an increase of more than 50 percent over August 2014, Abbott said, quoting official reports.
 
Fri
09
Oct

Get ready for Old Man Winter’s return

By Kent Brunette
 
While it may only be October, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer the following emergency preparedness and response tips. Local merchants and mechanics can help you with your winterization needs. Since it is always a possibility, prepare for extremely cold weather every winter.
 
Fri
02
Oct

I just feel better today

By Dennis Phillips

 

While I never write about religion, or spirituality in this column, I do often write about myself. I hope that at times this column will make you laugh, make you think and even give you a moment of pause to see things a little differently. Living with hate, anger and frustration is just not a healthy way to live. Recently, having fallen under verbal attacks, all of those feelings were dominating my everyday life. Distracting from what is important in my life and that is my family, friends and yes, this newspaper.

 

Fri
02
Oct

Lawmakers get input on jails, suicide prevention

By Ed Sterling 

 

The July 13, 2015, death of Sandra Bland, a woman arrested and jailed after a traffic stop in Waller County, has prompted meetings of Texas House and Senate committees. Bland, whose body was discovered in her jail cell three days after she was put in custody, was ruled a suicide. Charged by the lieutenant governor to conduct an interim study, the Senate Criminal Justice Committee met for more than four hours on Sept. 22.

 

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Fri
25
Sep

American Community Survey updates poverty statistics

By Ed Sterling

Texas’ poverty rate improved to 17.2 percent in 2014, according to U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey released Sept. 17. Embedded in that statistic is this: more than 4.5 million Texans — 1.7 million of whom are children — still live in poverty. In 2014, the poverty line for a family of three was about $19,000 per year.

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Fri
25
Sep

Walking quorums defined

By Dennis Phillips

The term is not new, nor is the idea of a walking quorum. It is a term however that recently has been tossed around Robertson County and this is a great time to define and explain the term “walking quorum.” According to the Texas Open Meetings Act — A “walking quorum” occurs when members of a governmental body meet in a series of meetings in person or via phone or other electronic communication in numbers less than a quorum to discuss public business and avoid the requirements of the Act.

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