North & East Texas
Cherokee County Commissioners Court accepted proposals from Sinclair & Wright Architects, of Tyler, for three renovation projects at the election building, sheriff’s department and tax assessor/collector’s office and a new building for the Precinct 4 justice of the peace.
Cooke County received a grant of $46,853 from the Help America Vote Act and an energy efficiency grant of $86,365.
Grayson County Commissioners Court approved an Eagle Scout project to connect two walking bridges at Loy Lake Park.
Gregg County Commissioners Court amended its budget to transfer $5.698 million to fund a state project to make safety upgrades on SH 149, one of the state’s most dangerous highways.
Harrison County Commissioners Court conducted its first meeting in the courthouse in 47 years after its recent renovation. “It’s the capitol of the county,” Judge Richard Anderson told the Marshall News Messenger. “We’re looking forward to having all the people see the beautiful courtroom.”
Hill County received a federal grant of $86,365 for energy efficient lighting in both jails and exterior lighting at the courthouse.
Houston County Commissioners Court approved tax abatements and economic development incentives for Zilkha Biomass Crockett LLC, which plans to invest $20 million in its new wood pellet plant in Crockett. Commissioners also approved a contract with Russell Drilling for $295,400 for a water well for Berea.
Hunt County received a state grant of $115,153 for energy conservation to replace the boiler system for courthouse air conditioning.
Jasper County received $250,000 from the Texas Department of Rural Affairs to install 30 sewer systems for low- and moderate-income families.
Johnson County Commissioners Court voted to join the city of Alvarado in a tax increment financing reinvestment zone. Commissioners also approved a contract with Metroplex Control Systems for security systems at the law enforcement center and $110,800 for improvements at the Cleburne farmers’ market
Lamar County will get two new bridges in an agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation, including a $285,444 bridge over Cherry Creek. Judge Chuck Superville told the Paris News, “By doing this matching work, our commissioners have become their own economic development group.”
Marion County Commissioners Court approved a contract with Pritchard and Abbott for tax collection computer software for $25,340 for 2010-11 and $26,660 for 2012-13.
Montgomery County Commissioners Court voted to purchase for $1 million six acres of land, a building of 4,300 square feet, and two warehouses near the criminal justice center to construct a forensics center in Conroe to serve area counties.
Nacogdoches County Commissioners Court accepted a grant of $115,153 to replace 20-year-old air-conditioning units at the jail and purchased property with two buildings for a proposed technical training center to be operated by Angelina College.
Navarro County Commissioners Court approved tax abatements for Russell Stover Candies for expansion in Corsicana that will create 55 new jobs.
Red River County has six families qualified for a 2009 HOME grant in a federal program designed to provide affordable housing to low-income families.
Upshur County Commissioners Court approved a $315,247 project for a new control system and 50 color cameras at the jail by Sydaptic, of Waco, and $428,000 for courthouse restoration by Komatsu Architects, of Fort Worth.
Van Zandt County Commissioners Court awarded a contract of $400,490 to Integrity Steel Works of Colorado Springs, Colo., to repair doors at the jail.
Wood County Commissioners Court approved a bid of $153,975 from Mobile Specialty of Jacksonville for an EMS mobile command trailer and $5,000 for radio equipment.
Atascosa County EMS received the donation of a 1981 ambulance from Quality Ambulance of Pleasanton. It will be converted into a communications unit for first responders.
Blanco County held groundbreaking ceremonies for its new law enforcement center and jail.
Cameron County received a federal grant of $1.7 million for a Workforce Solutions summer youth jobs program. “It gives young people from low-income families with fewer resources an opportunity to enter the labor field,” County Judge Carlos Cascos told the Los Fresnos News. “It gives a great opportunity for businesses to find good workers at no cost.”
Chambers County will accept primary sponsorship of a U.S. Department of Transportation project to develop a barge terminal on Cedar Bayou with federal grants.
DeWitt County Commissioners Court reached agreement with Petrohawk Operating Co., which has drilled five wells in the county this year, to help finance road repairs and maintenance.
Fayette County received a state grant of $86,365 for energy conservation, including the installation of energy-efficient light fixtures, insulation, and new air-conditioning units in several buildings.
Fort Bend County Commissioners Court approved an agreement with the city of Kendleton for $488,804 to construct a wastewater treatment plant with a federal community development grant.
Gillespie County will help host a TCEQ agricultural waste pesticide collection program Sept. 30 at the fairgrounds.
Goliad County received a grant of $50,000 to purchase a propane-powered vehicle for its senior citizens program.
Hays County Commissioners Court approved $10,000 for the new Dispute Resolution Center to continue operations to Dec. 31. “You’re meeting a real need for those who cannot afford it,” said Commissioner Debbie Gonzales-Ingalsbe.
Hidalgo County Commissioners Court approved agreements with the Sharyland, Mission and La Joya school districts for a program to address truancy and juvenile delinquency.
Jackson County received a federal grant of $40,000 in the Edward Byrne memorial justice program for its sheriff’s department.
Jim Hogg County Commissioners Court approved $45,700 in matching funds for a grant of $138,000 for new lights and covered bleachers at sports fields.
Jim Wells County Commissioners Court approved a contract of $103,560 with Correctional Maintenance Inc. for repairs for jail locks.
Lavaca County is purchasing the first three of six Lucas 2 life-saving machines for about $15,000 each for its emergency vehicles. Physio-Control, of San Antonio, demonstrated the machines for cardio-pulmonary resuscitation at a commissioners court meeting.
Nueces County Commissioners Court approved a contract of $4.7 million with Safenet Services of Flour Bluff for improvements to Borchard Regional Fairgrounds in Robstown. Commissioners also approved a contract of $72,883 with Naismith Engineering for design of a $1 million park on 17 acres of land donated by Banquete ISD.
Travis County completed its purchase of a 15-story office building and adjacent parking garage in downtown Austin for $61.25 million. The county’s administrative offices will move to the building, which will undergo some renovations, in early 2011.
Washington County Commissioners Court honored the Brenham High School baseball team for its Class 4A state championship. Commissioners also approved tax incentives for packaging company Stanpac USA, which plans a capital investment of $2 million and payroll of $3 million for 85 to 90 new jobs.
Webb County Commissioners Court approved renovations to the jail elevator with ThyssenKrupp Elevators for $450,000 and to the Juan Francisco Farias Veterans Museum with FQR Architects.
Williamson County Commissioners Court named two rooms in the new Round Rock annex after two of the county’s first commissioners, Washington Anderson and Jacob Harrell.
Wilson County Commissioners Court voted to waive permit fees for people rebuilding after June floods.
Zapata County Commissioners Court approved the purchase for $10,000 of an EKG monitor to install in an ambulance.
Andrews County Commissioners Court approved an agreement with Texas Department of Transportation for $3.2 million in improvements at the airport, including runways, drainage, lighting and signs. The county will provide a 10 percent match of $328,000. There is also an agreement for an automatic weather observation station for $120,000.
Brewster County received $234,859 from the Texas Department of Rural Affairs to construct two elevated water storage tanks in Terlingua and $454,000 from TDRA to provide first-time sewer service to 50 households in Study Butte and Terlingua.
Brown County received two grants totaling $40,000 for its domestic violence task force.
Callahan County Commissioners Court approved Sheriff John Windham’s plan to allow jail inmates to work in public areas, such as cemeteries, lakes, parks, schools and road rights of way “where their work would benefit the taxpayers.”
Culberson County received a grant of $234,869 from the Texas Department of Rural Affairs to construct a new fire station.
Dallam County Commissioners Court joined with commissioners from Hartley and Lipscomb counties to support the Panhandle Rural Transportation Planning Organization, a new group that also includes the city of Amarillo. Hartley County Judge Ronnie Gordon told the Dalhart Texan, “It will allow the county judges a good voice with transportation issues in our area.”
Dawson County Commissioners Court approved tax abatements for Mesquite Creek Wind Farm, a proposed $550 million project near Lamesa of BNB Renewables Holdings LLC.
El Paso County plans to build its third annex – a $4.5 million building of 10,000 square feet in west El Paso County in Vinton.
Fisher County received $449,000 from the Texas Department of Transportation to clean ditches and repair bridges.
Hardeman County received a State Energy Efficiency and Conservation Grant of $23,000 for new lighting and air-conditioning in the jail. Commissioners also approved furniture purchases to complete its new Chillicothe EMS office.
Howard County Commissioners Court approved a $2 million tax abatement of five years for warehouse expansion for the Plains Cotton Cooperative Association.
Llano County Commissioners Court approved the expense of $25,000 for climate-controlled storage units for records now at the Llano annex.
Lubbock County opened its new detention center after five years of construction at a cost of nearly $100 million, according to the Lubbock Avalanche Journal.
Lynn County Commissioners Court created the third reinvestment zone in the county for wind energy projects. The third is for Alternity Wind Energy after two earlier zones for WindTex Energy.
Mason County has a new commissioner for Precinct 2. Wilbern L. Frey, former county extension agent and MISD school board member, was named to fill the unexpired term of John Fleming, who died recently.
Menard County Commissioners Court approved the purchase of a robot to clean the pool and U.S. and Texas flags to fly at the Menard Multipurpose Center.
Montague County received a grant of $26,000 from the Help America Vote Act.
Moore County reopened its courtroom after four years of remodeling and renovation. It was restored to its original construction of 1930.
Parker County Commissioners Court implemented a program for trading guns confiscated by the sheriff’s department for ammunition.
Presidio County received $250,000 in federal funds for Cibolo Creek levee improvements in Presidio. The county also is now owner of the former Redford school building after its transfer from Marfa ISD. County Judge Jerry Agan told the International Presidio that officials envision the building as a community center or nutrition center.
Randall County is purchasing 120 Panasonic Toughbook mobile terminals with a grant of $800,000 from the U.S. Department of Justice for squad cars of 49 law enforcement agencies in 26 counties in cooperation with the Panhandle Regional Planning Commission.
Reeves County Commissioners Court approved Phase I of 2008 bond projects, including a $5.7 million golf course, $2.6 million sports complex and $800,000 park.
San Saba County Commissioners Court approved a survey of 200 residents about public health and safety needs.
Shackelford County received $12,000 from the Help America Vote Act to purchase laptop computers to use during elections.
Stephens County held open house for its new law enforcement center and jail.
Taylor County Commissioners Court approved a 25-year lease on 3.59 acres of land for the Potosi VFD to build a facility estimated to cost $500,000. It will be financed by private donations.
Tom Green County Commissioners Court accepted $2,000 from Target for a summer reading program and $57,000 in SECO state grants for digital controls for courthouse heating and cooling systems.
Wheeler County Commissioners Court voted to purchase a 2010 Ford F450 ambulance for $125,000.
Wilbarger County Commissioners Court voted to participate in the Workforce Solutions youth services employment program. – Compiled by Garner Roberts