North & East Texas
Cass County Commissioners Court awarded contracts to Ben E. Keith Co. for food supplies for the jail for $1,426 per month and to Kaybro Technologies for site management services three days a week for $47,500 for a year.
Collin County began moving into its new $35 million addition to the courthouse. The offices of the district attorney and district clerk and the law library were the first to operate in the new facility with 190,000 square feet.
Dallas County Commissioners Court awarded a contract of $1 million to Staples to replace Office Depot as the county’s supplier.
Ellis County Commissioners Court approved a contract of $95,306 with Correctional Healthcare Companies for health care for jail inmates.
Gregg County received a federal grant of $538,445 for airport projects, including reconstruction and expansion of parking and terminal renovation, and a state grant of $13,200 to provide free immunizations for children and adults.
Hamilton County Commissioners Court approved a contract with Century Link for a telephone system for $39,986.
Harrison County received a grant of $90,000 from the Texas Department of Transportation for runway improvements at the airport.
Jasper County Commissioners Court approved tax abatements for an expansion by Southeast Texas Industries in Buna expected to add 100 to 150 new jobs.
Johnson County Commissioners Court awarded a contract to Global Tel Link Corp. for inmate telephone service and banking and voted to purchase for $19,263 a 50-foot tower from Sabre Industries in Alvarado for the emergency operations center. Also, Fitch Ratings assigned a rating of AA+ to $6.405 million in general obligation bonds series 2011 and upgraded to AA+ outstanding debt of $13.6 million in GO bonds and $400,000 in certificates of obligation. Fitch said, “The county’s financial performance has been very strong.”
Kaufman County Commissioners Court awarded a contract to replace 6,000 feet of asbestos concrete pipes for the Elmo Water Supply. The engineering contact was awarded to Velvyn and Weeks Engineering of Athens. Funding comes from a $275,000 grant from the Texas Department of Rural Affairs. Commissioners also honored Terrell First Christian Church on its 135th anniversary.
Lamar County Commissioners Court agreed to provide $33,799 to help fund a staff member for the Department of Family and Protective Services.
Leon County Commissioners Court accepted a grant from Encana to enable the Keep Leon Beautiful program to purchase two solar-powered can compactors for the Centerville sports field.
Limestone County Commissioners Court authorized final payment to Kingham Construction for the $13.2 million law enforcement center.
Madison County Commissioners Court selected Woodbine Acquisitions Corp. to install a temporary above-ground waterline in Precinct 4 to be removed upon completion of water wells in the area. Commissioners also were entertained with a fiddle solo from Colby Sheppard, 9, who began his music career at the age of 3 and has performed with Ray Price, Asleep at the Wheel, and others and has a part in a feature film “Cottonwood.”
Montgomery County Commissioners Court approved a grant of $34,454 to help fund the salary of a sexual assault investigator at Children’s Safe Harbor.
Navarro County Commissioners Court approved the county’s annual contract with Google for data storage for $7,500.
Polk County opened its new judicial center. The project by Kingham Construction Co. also included remodeling of existing buildings, including the courthouse.
Rains County Commissioners Court voted to provide office space for the STAR program, which provides family crisis intervention counseling, short-term emergency residential care, and counseling for at-risk youth.
Sabine County Commissioners Court approved four bridge projects at a total cost of $1.76 million with grants from the Texas Department of Transportation and $95,127 in matching funds from the county.
San Augustine County Commissioners Court selected B&D Security to install a security system at the courthouse, including motion sensors, video system, and automatic door locks, and Jennings Executive Telephone Systems to provide new telephone service for county offices.
Titus County Commissioners Court voted to advance $180,000 to the Winfield VFD to purchase a new pumper-tanker truck, which was delivered before the arrival of a grant of $155,000 from the Texas Forest Service. Earlier commissioners committed $16,000 with the balance to be paid by donations.
Trinity County Commissioners Court voted to award $8,400 to the 356 Volunteer Fire Department as the local 10 percent march for an emergency grant from the Texas Forest Service to purchase a new brush truck.
Aransas County Commissioners Court accepted a state grant for the Live Oak Nature and Education Trail at Tule Creek. The project, to be conducted with environmental sciences classes at Rockport-Fulton High School, will provide nature awareness, education and recreation. Also, commissioners awarded from hotel occupancy tax funds $50,000 to the Rockport-Fulton Chamber of Commerce for advertising and $20,000 to the Fulton Mansion for operations. Aransas is one of Texas’ top 50 counties for tourism.
Bastrop County Commissioners Court awarded a contract of $12 million to TFR Enterprises of Leander for disaster debris removal and clearance after recent wildfires.
Burnet County reduced its cost for indigent health care from $1.1 million to $775,000 with the aid of state funds and also received a state grant of $425,000 for a new public defender office.
Caldwell County Commissioners Court voted to spend about $66,000 for 50 new radios to distribute among the county’s 10 volunteer fire departments. The Lockhart Post-Register said “poor communication abilities inhibited firefighters’ ability to combat” recent wildfires.
Calhoun County Commissioners Court authorized a loan of $126,000, which will be repaid by a grant from the Texas Department of Park and Wildlife, for Magnolia Beach jetty construction.
Fayette County Commissioners Court approved an agreement with the County Information Resources Agency for redesign of its website to allow for immediate emergency updates.
Fort Bend County Commissioners Court approved agreements with the city of Houston to contribute $500,000 for the construction of a $2.29 million senior center and with Fort Bend County Women’s Center for a homeless prevention and rapid rehousing program.
Gillespie County Commissioners Court accepted a grant of $80,000 from the Alamo Area Council of Governments for radio upgrades and contracted with Vanir Construction Management of Austin to plan construction of a new detention center.
Gonzales County Commissioners Court approved the purchase of a new 9-1-1 voice recorder for the sheriff’s office for $16,835. “We either spend $16,000 now or $35,000 later when we aren’t in compliance,” Sheriff Glen Sachtleben told the Gonzales Cannon.
Harris County Judge Ed Emmett appointed R. “Cactus Jack” Cagle, a civil court judge, as new commissioner for Precinct 4 after the resignation Oct. 1 of Jerry Eversole, who was in his sixth term of office.
Kendall County Commissioners Court approved the purchase of 14 iVotronic touchscreen voting machines for about $28,000 and 10 ePollbooks to check-in voters at the polls for about $21,000 with a grant from the Help America Vote Act.
San Patricio County Commissioners Court approved a contract with Skyview Aviation to operate McCampbell-Porter airport beginning Jan. 1, 2012.
Starr County has a new commissioner for Precinct 4 commissioner, Ruben D. Saenz, former Rio Grande city alderman. He replaces Abel N. Gonzalez, who died Sept. 14.
Williamson County Commissioners Court voted to resume funding its 40 percent share of the position of county trapper. Jack Bonner said since he started as county trapper in February 2008 there had been 1,568 reports of damage on 183 properties from wildlife in the county.
Wilson County Commissioners Court voted to lease a former Floresville ISD primary campus as courthouse annex No. 3 for $50,000 per year and to temporarily close the “deteriorating” 127-year-old courthouse in downtown Floresville.
Carson County conducted an official opening of its new 48-bed law enforcement center funded by the sale of bonds.
Eastland County Commissioners Court awarded $20,000 to each of the eight volunteer fire departments in the county and also paid for workers compensation insurance for firefighters.
Ector County Commissioners Court approved a budget for a pretrial intervention program designed “to provide some relief to the jail,” County Attorney Cindy Weir-Nutter told the Odessa American. The program aims to help first-time offenders of certain misdemeanor offenses avoid incarceration by offering them an agreement to pay a $500 fee with six months of supervision and 40 hours of community service. The attorney and Judge Susan Redford said the program would be self-sustaining.
Gaines County has a new commissioner, Biz Houston of Seminole, who replaces the retiring Isaias “Charlie” Lopez in Precinct 4.
Hemphill County Commissioners Court approved $150,000 for water lines for the Mesa View assisted living facility and awarded a contract to Greenstreet Construction of Lubbock for courthouse renovation for $1.72 million.
Howard County Commissioners Court approved an agreement with the city of Big Spring to construct a law enforcement center to house the sheriff’s office and police department. Southwest Architects will design the building and oversee construction of the $2.7 million building ($1.7 million from the city, $1 million from the county, according to the Big Spring Herald).
Kerr County Commissioners Court approved agreements with the city of Kerrville for operation of the airport for one year and for the cost of housing city inmates in the county jail for three years.
Pecos County Commissioners Court accepted a maximum price of $4.648 million from Lott Brothers Construction for an EMS and hangar buildings.
Randall County has completed expansion of the Youth Center of the High Plains by adding 27,552 square feet and increasing the number of beds from 62 to 86 for juvenile offenders in the Panhandle.
Reeves County Commissioners Court appointed city of Balmorhea secretary Terry Upchurch to serve as treasurer and complete the term of Linda Clark, who resigned to become auditor for Loving County. Commissioners also approved tax abatements for Southern Union Gas Co. for a new $130 million natural gas processing plant.
Shackelford County began construction of its $4.95 million law enforcement center by Dinosaur Valley Construction Co.
Tom Green County Commissioners Court approved tax abatements for Western Towers, a company that constructs communications towers.
Winkler County Commissioners Court approved grants to the Kermit VFD of $6,000 to send eight firemen to municipal fire school, $2,211 for a generator, and about $4,400 for repairs to fire trucks. H – Compiled by Garner Roberts