Press "Enter" to skip to content

North Channel Star

Jacinto City upgrades Fire Station

UNDER CONSTRUCTION: Jacinto City’s original 1974 fire station gets a much needed remodeling and expansion of facilities, including day room, kitchen, sleeping rooms, showers, offices, equipment storage, and exercise room. L to R: Firefighter K. Dixon, Fire Chief Rebecca Mier, City Manager Lon Squyres, Firefighters C. Virgadamo, D. Magby and carpenter Cervando Acosta (red shirt). (Photo by Allan Jamail)

By Allan Jamail

Jacinto City, TX. – October 4, 2018 – Jacinto City already has many new projects under way or recently completed, and is now upgrading and expanding its Fire Station.

City Manager Lon Squyres said, “The original station was built in 1974 for a strictly volunteer fire department. The dorm quarters are not adequate and it lacks basic life safety measures such as a fire escape. The new addition addresses all of these issues by providing several small individual bunk rooms and adequate showers for the firefighters. Part of the older current facility will become a better exercise room than we currently have.”

Fire Chief Rebecca Mier said, “The new addition provides additional office space and training space that will be more conducive to our day to day operations.”

Plans include new wiring and lighting in the truck bays of the existing building. Future plans include replacing the rolling overhead doors, which are too old and require continued maintenance.

Planning for the new addition started last year, and construction will be complete before the end of this year 2018.

The two story addition will add about 3840 square feet to the building. The contractor for the work is Portfolio Builders of Houston. Council approved a contract for $755,500 for the project. The building was designed by Gilbert Hoffman of Hoffman Liu Design Associates, with the joint venture architectural firm of TDCK Architects.


3 Superintendents speak to Chamber


SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENTS from the 3 local districts were the featured speakers at last week’s monthly North Channel Chamber Luncheon at the San Jacinto Monument Room. ABOVE, King Davis of Sheldon ISD, Angi Williams of Galena Park ISD, and Greg Ollis of Channelview ISD brought the audience up to date on activities at each of their districts.

Davis spoke about two topics, the devastation in his district from flooding after Hurricane Harvey, and the progress on new schools built under the Bond program. Sheldon is experiencing a tremendous growth in student population.

Williams spoke about results from the GPISD Bond program, and new and renovated schools. This month her district is holding cornerstone/ribbon cuttings on four new schools, three elementary and one 10th grade school.

Ollis spoke about the effort his staff, including the transportation department, made to help citizens after the flooding from Hurricane Harvey, and his pride in his staff.


Leaders host Town Hall on new Legislation

Congressman James E. Clyburn, Assistant Democratic Leader, at the Town Hall with State Senator Sylvia Garcia, middle, and Congressman Gene Green, right. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX. – At the North Shore Community Fellowship of Faith Church, Senator Sylvia Garcia, Congressional leaders Gene Green, Sheila Jackson Lee and U.S. House Assistant Democratic Leader James E. Clyburn (SC) informed citizens and civic clubs in attendance of recent legislation passed and signed by President Trump that’s having a negative impact on income taxes, health care benefits, and affordable housing tax credits for working families.

Pastor Robert I. Dixon, II, made the North Shore Community Fellowship of Faith Church building available for the meeting so the church members and citizens can come hear and learn about Medicare, Social Security, and citizen issues.

“Just when we thought America’s affordable housing crisis couldn’t get any worse, Republicans picked up their shovels and kept digging. Their tax scam is projected to cause 235,000 fewer affordable housing units to be built and 262,000 jobs to be lost over the next ten years. With an existing shortage of more than 7 million units, we simply cannot allow this crisis to go on unabated,” Clyburn said.

Congressman Green reported the 2018 Medicare Trustees Report projects that Medicare Hospital Insurance (HI) Trust Fund will bring in less revenue due to changes made in the Tax Cuts Act (commonly known as the “Trump tax cuts”).

Senator Garcia will be the Democratic Party’s nominee to replace retiring Democrat Congressman Gene Green of the 29th District. The district has a high number of Democrats and she’s favored to be elected if Democrats turnout in large numbers. Opposing Garcia is Republican Phillip Aronoff and Libertarian Cullen Burns. Garcia said she’s not expecting an easy win and she’s asking her supporters to work hard to get voters out until the last voter votes at 7 PM November 6th.

Green, Lee and Clyburn said they’re supporting Garcia because she has a proven record of leadership producing positive results for her constituents over the years.


Ponder resigns in Galena Park

Barry Ponder

City government in Galena Park finds itself in a state of change once again, as a leading City Commissioner has resigned from the board, with no reason given.

Barry Ponder, a leader of a group known as “Citizens for A Better Galena Park” and a Commissioner since elected in 2017, sent a letter to the city secretary with his resignation. Although missing from all commission meetings since the date of his letter, August 22, the commission has made no public announcement of this resignation or acknowledged his absence. City Attorney Robert Collins told the North Channel Star that the city has up to 120 days, by state law, to appoint a replacement. This replacement would be voted on by the Commission. After 120 days, if no action is taken, the city must hold a special election to replace Ponder.


A number of citizens have questioned whether another Commissioner, Rodney Chersky, is qualified to hold his seat on the board because he no longer resides in the city.

Although the city charter says that you must be a resident if you run for office, Collins explained to the Star that even though Chersky announced that he had moved into Houston in July, the charter says he can hold the seat until June 1st of the next year, or until a general election is held. However, Collins said this is his interpretation, and will ask for a ruling from the Texas Attorney General.

Attorney Collins addressed this situation publicly at the last Commission meeting on October 2nd. He also noted that Chersky plans to move back into Galena Park, which may make this problem moot.


The North Channel Star has learned that a number of citizens of Galena Park have been interviewed recently by a representative of the Texas Attorney General, Sergeant Mark Richardson. (more…)

San Jac’s New Cosmetology and Culinary Center

PRESENT AT THE NORTH CAMPUS GROUNDBREAKING for the new San Jacinto College Cosmetology and Culinary Center were from right to left: Brenda Jones, provost, South Campus; Teri Zamora, vice chancellor, fiscal affairs; Jeanette Liberty, program director, legal assistant; Heather Rhodes, dean of business and technology, North Campus; Dr. Bill Raffetto, provost, North Campus; Dr. Laurel Williamson, deputy chancellor and college president; Marie Flickinger, chair, Board of Trustees; Dan Mims, Service chair, Board of Trustees; John Moon, Jr., member, Board of Trustees; The Honorable Congressman Gene Green (TX-29); Teri Crawford, vice chancellor, marketing, public relations and government affairs; Mike Cade, representing Harris County Commissioner Jack Morman; Dr. Allatia Harris, vice chancellor, strategic initiatives, workforce development, community relations and diversity; and Van Wigginton, provost, Central Campus. (Photo by Melissa Trevizo / San Jacinto College)

HOUSTON, Texas – The San Jacinto College North Campus held a groundbreaking for its state-of-the-art Cosmetology and Culinary Center, on Friday, Sept. 21, 2018.

The facility was made possible by community support of a $425 million bond referendum in 2015. The referendum will allow the College to build new facilities, update infrastructure and security, and remodel nine buildings that are at least 30 years old.

“At San Jacinto College, we are continually looking at how we can better serve our students with new facilities that meet both the needs of our industry as well as today’s modern student,” said Dr. Laurel Williamson, San Jacinto College vice chancellor and college president. “I want to thank our community members for supporting us and approving the bond so that we can better serve our community.”

The center will feature updated classroom space and modern labs to enhance the training for those interested in a cosmetology or culinary career. It will also house a full-service salon and spa and a bistro dining area open to the public.


State representatives host Senior Citizens at Annual Dance

Several hundred Senior Citizens Dined and Danced

STATE REPRESENTATIVES Ana Hernandez and Mary Ann Perez helped Armando Walle hold his 10th annual Seniors Dance last week, at the Pct. 1 Hardy Seniors Center. Visiting guests included Congressman Gene Green and Commissioner Rodney Ellis.

Several hundred seniors attended this event, and enjoyed good BBQ food, good company, and even a chance to dance a little.

Walle thanked his staff, Myriam Saldivar and Rahul Sreenivasan, for making the arrangements, and Myriam’s family for the decorations.

All attendees had their picture taken in the Wanted Frame.

Chamber hears latest news about Port of Houston

GARRET BERG, Port of Houston Authority

The keynote speaker at last month’s North Channel Chamber luncheon was Garret Berg, Assistant Manager of Community Relations, Port of Houston Authority.

Berg gave an overview of the importance of the Port and the Ship Channel to the Houston and Texas economy, and then brought the audience up to date on improvements and changes taking place at the various port facilities.

He spoke about the growth of the economy both locally and nationally, which is driving much of the construction and rebuilding of facilities at the Port of Houston.


Gene Green recognized for flu shot campaign

L – R: Walgreens Management Dominique Beale, Jacinto City’s Walgreens Pharmacy Manager, Congressman Gene Green, Store Manager Temika Verdine and Christopher Magee District Manager. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX — Congressman Gene Green was honored and presented a gift basket from Walgreens for his support of the Annual Flu Shot Program in the North Channel area.

This past August, the free immunizations for children program marked 23 years of preventative health initiatives sponsored by Walgreens, Congressman Green, and with the help of several Rotary clubs.

“Immunizations are one of the most important disease prevention steps we can take to protect our children,” said Green.

Galena Manor Civic Club’s President “Taggy” Hall retires

L. to R: Ollie Randle (Membership), Anne Murphy (Ways and Means), Diana Cotton (Sgt-at-Arms), State Representative Ana Hernandez, Eronia “Taggie” Hall (Honoree), Rosemary Coreathers (President), Tracy King (Vice President), Winnie Gilbert (Secretary). Back Row: Una Topps (Outgoing Treasurer), Paul Winfield (Treasurer), Elisiah Coreathers (Financial Secretary), not in photo, Johnetta Goodloe (Parliamentarian) and Bessie Cox (Membership).

By Allan Jamail

Galena Park, TX. – September 17, 2018 – The Galena Manor Civic Club at their monthly meeting honored retiring President Eronia “Taggy” Hall. Hall was presented an engraved award by Rosemary Coreathers, the new President thanking her for the 8 years of loyal and faithful service to the civic club.

State Representative Ana Hernandez presented a State of Texas recognition certificate commending President Hall for her positive contributions to the Galena Park citizenry. Former Galena Park Commissioner Barry Ponder said President Taggy Hall was responsible for bringing many issues to the City which resulted in improving the lives of the community.


Texas Ren Fest announces 2018 themes and a Royal Season Pass

Texas Renaissance Festival festivities are held at Todd Mission, 50 miles north of Houston.

HOUSTON – Magic, merriment and majesty await at this year’s Texas Renaissance Festival, the nation’s largest Renaissance-themed event, now announcing unique themes for all nine festival weekends, from September 29 to November 25, 2018, and a brand new season pass, The Royal Pass.

In 2017, Texas Renaissance Festival saw its second highest attendance season, welcoming a total of 644,917 attendees, while facilitating 63 weddings, the most recorded in a single season. Texas Renaissance Festival also saw a 14 percent increase in campers from the previous year, hosting 23,000 guests in the campgrounds – suited perfectly for both those seeking nighttime thrills around a bonfire, and families seeking a quiet retreat with a place to shake off the fairy dust.

“We encourage the noblest lords and ladies of the land who are interested in purchasing Festival tickets to secure the Royal Pass at once to get the most savings — up to 68% off admission, with many free perks included, such as preferred parking and access to TRF After Dark,” says Texas Renaissance Festival General Manager Terre Albert. “We’re thrilled for our loyal patrons to take advantage of such bargains, and excited to see everyone for nine themed weekends this year!”



TEXAS EDUCATION AGENCY has ordered The Rhodes School to close the Northshore campus on Wallisville due to “multiple fire code violations.” The school has referred students to their other three campuses.

NORTH SHORE – Officials of The Rhodes School were notified on August 24 by the Texas Education Agency that they must close their campus at 13334 Wallisville Road, due to the fact that the Harris County Fire Marshal had found numerous fire code violations. The school operated in a educational building previously used by the Christian Tabernacle, which is at the front of the site.

Specifically, the Fire Marshal said that the building lacked a fire sprinkler system, and a fire alarm system. It had blocked and limited exits, and its address is not visible from the street as required by the fire department.

The fire marshal made available to media photos that depicted electrical violations, kitchen violations, and construction violations.

The closure notice was unexpected and came with short notice. Rhodes School superintendent Michelle Bonton sent home a letter with students, explaining the options that families had for their children. They were able to enroll PK-2nd students in the nearby campus on Tidwell. Students 3rd-6th would be bused to other campuses of the Rhodes School, or allowed to transfer to another charter school. Officials indicated they are working to correct the problems and reopen in the near future.