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Houston County Courier - Local News
Stories Added - January 2009
Copyright 2008 - Polk County Publishing Company

Houston County Commissioners Court Hears ESD 1 Report
Houston County Courier -  January 2009

The Houston County Emergency Services District No. 1 gave an annual report to members of the commissioners court during a regular Court session Tuesday, Jan. 27.  Representing the ESD were board members Dan Huff and Harry Pridgeon.
The ESD No. 1 has the same boundaries as the Grapeland Independent School District, and provides financial support to the Grapeland, Weches, Houston County Lake, and Latexo volunteer fire departments.
Huff noted that the ESD has been able to lower its property tax rate by about one cent over the last two years.  The current rate is 4.201 cents per $100 of appraised value.  The ESD No. 1 had a fund balance of $183,220.74 at the beginning of this year.
Members of the ESD board are appointed by the commissioners Court.  Along with Huff and Pridgeon, other members currently serving on the board for ESD No. 1 are Billy Horne, Susan Rowden and James Ingle.
In other business Tuesday, the Houston County Commissioners Court approved a new employee sick leave pool.  Participation in the pool is strictly voluntary.  Employees who choose to participate can contribute unused sick leave to the pool on an annual basis.  Participants in the pool can draw additional sick leave from it they exhaust all their time off due to a catastrophic illness or injury.
The court briefly discussed but took no action on a countywide burn ban.  Judge Lonnie Hunt reported that county fire marshal David Lamb was closely monitoring the fire danger level and was not recommending a burn ban at this time.  However, citizens are still being urged to be extremely cautious with any outdoor burning.
The court heard from Jennifer Allen, Houston County’s new agricultural extension agent.  Mrs. Allen reported that a training program on feral hog control has been scheduled for March 3 at 6:30 p.m. in the Central Baptist Church Activity Center in Crockett.
In other business, the commissioners court:

    • Approved payment of comp time to former jailer Joseph Woolley.
    • Approved the hiring of Lynn Lawson as a new fulltime jailer.
    • Authorized the disposal of an old computer and monitor from the Precinct 1 Constable’s office;
    • Authorized the county’s Information Technology Director, Fred Newtz, to begin working on a grant application to fund security cameras in county buildings;
    • Approved the purchase of wood laminate flooring at a cost of $1,103.81 and replacement of door glass at a cost of $174 for the district attorney’s office.



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