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JACINTO CITY, GP TO BAN ALL ILLICIT DRUGS

CONSTABLE CHRIS DIAZ AND JACINTO CITY POLICE CHIEF JOE AYALA display some of the illicit drugs such as “Kush” that were confiscated in the area. New ordinances in Jacinto City and Galena Park will give officers more authority to remove these drugs from their communities.

CONSTABLE CHRIS DIAZ AND JACINTO CITY POLICE CHIEF JOE AYALA display some of the illicit drugs such as “Kush” that were confiscated in the area. New ordinances in Jacinto City and Galena Park will give officers more authority to remove these drugs from their communities.

New Ordinance expands enforcement power, definition of Designer Drugs

Last week Jacinto City council passed an ordinance on first reading, that will give the police authorities in their jurisdiction more ability to arrest people that have illicit drugs in their possession.

In a like move, Galena Park council on Tuesday of this week had the first reading of a similar ordinance, that will also give local police the authority to remove these drugs from the community.

The proposed ordinance was read for the record by City Attorney Jim DeFoyd, and each council will take a final vote at their next meeting, adopting the measure.

At last Thursday’s council meeting in Jacinto City, police chief Joe Ayala distributed a brochure on various types of illicit and illegal drugs that his department has had to deal with recently.

These include synthetic drugs with street names such as Kush, K2, Smiles, Spice, Bath Salts, Blizzard, N-Bomb, Fake Weed, and Black Mamba. Kush is a derivative form of marijuana.

Synthetic drugs are created using man-made chemicals. They are known as designer drugs, and there chemical state is slightly altered, to avoid being classified as an illegal drug. This ordinance is designed to cover these variations, making it possible for law enforcement agencies to apprehend and prosecute those who posses the designer drugs.

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Galena Park to have Gateway Plaza

PRELIMINARY DESIGN STUDIES for the Monument. (Art Courtesy Knudson, LP)

PRELIMINARY DESIGN STUDIES for the Monument. (Art Courtesy Knudson, LP)

GALENA PARK – City Council met at their regular meeting last Tuesday, and voted to proceed with the Gateway Plaza project.

This will be a landmark in a new plaza next to City Hall, if current plans are finalized. Originally the monument was to be at an entry to the city, but a suitable site was not found, and the plaza concept was developed instead.

Council approved $25,000 for landscape design. The whole project is expected to cost about $125,000, and the Economic Alliance is funding $75,000 and the H-GAC (Houston Galveston Area Council) funding $25,000. Surrounding cities also have similar landmark monuments, according to City Manager Robert Pruett.

Council also approved the lease/purchase of a new fire engine, a pumper that will cost about $520,000. $218,000 of this will be provided by the Texas Forest Service, and the remainder will be paid by a note at about 2% for the city. The new engine is expected in a few months, Chief Gregory said.

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Harris County Sheriff’s Office: Solving Cold Cases

rotary cold casesNORTH SHORE – Rotarians heard from Harris County Investigator Bobby Minchew on how his department pursues so-called “cold cases.”

Minchew is one of two officers assigned to his department, which was restarted in 2009 by Sheriff Garcia. It was initially constituted in 1998. They work with the three homicide squads, following up on cases that have had no leads for over two years. Then they are turned over to he and his partner Eric Clagg, for another look with a fresh perspective.

He said that there are currently over 540 open cases in their cold case files, some of them dating back to the 1960’s and 1970’s. When an old case is referred to them, they review the file and make a decision whether to pursue it farther. However, even if they don’t work the case, it remains open.

Changes in the way the Sheriff ’s office investigates a case have helped them, he said. In the 90’s DNA became a useful tool, especially on older cases where it wasn’t used before. Also, in 2007 a new electronic date base was initiated, making it easier to investigate the available information.
Minchew’s CCC (cold case unit) studies DNA in a data base known as CODIS, firearms evidence files, with a national registry known as IBIS, and fingerprints, known as AFIS.

The work of his unit has resulted in clearing 22 murders, and charging 25 suspects.

When they decide to investigate a case, it is usually because of new tips, information from family or friends, or DNA database matches.

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Nadolneys celebrate 80 years in Cloverleaf

naldoneys 80 years cloverleaf

FRANK NADOLNEY

Frank and Carmen Nadolney are celebrating the 80th anniversary of the founding of Cloverleaf this year.

This subdivision community with over 3800 homes, is the result of the vision of Frank’s father and mother, Romanus F. and Frances Nadolney.

The Nadolneys arrived in the North Shore of Houston in 1935. Originally R. F. was from Michigan, and Frances was raised in Sweetwater, Texas. They had met at her employer’s, Western Union, and married in 1929. After an illustrious but short career with the Notre Dame football team, and the Green Bay Packers, R. F. had gone to California, New Mexico and elsewhere to develop housing subdivisions.

As a football player, R. F. was known as “Peaches” by his teammates, which included playing for the famous Knute Rockne at Notre Dame, and Green Bay in 1922, and four seasons with the Milwaukee Badgers of the early NFL. His football teammates included George Gipp, and Curly Lambeau. As a result, Nadolney was later enshrined in the U. P. College Football Hall of Fame.

Nadolney started Cloverleaf Farms by buying about 1000 acres from the Hornberger interests. As time passed, Nadolney sold lots in the subdivision from Manor Street on the east, working westward until they finally built out Freeport Street and Evanston Street, and lots were built out with modest homes for the workers in the shipyards, refineries and defense industries near the port, it became necessary for the school district to build a school for all the new children. So in 1942 the Nadolneys donated 6.5 acres of land to the Galena Park school district, for a new elementary school named Cloverleaf Elementary. It opened with 256 children, and now has almost 1000 with successive additions.

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GALENA PARK MEDIATION OFF, LAWSUITS RESET

ESMERALDA MOYA, NEWLY ELECTED MAYOR OF GALENA PARK, WILL BE INSTALLED INTO OFFICE ON JULY 1 AT 6:00 PM AT CITY HALL.GALENA PARK – City leaders have returned to their contentious ways, as word came from Mayor Moya’s attorney, that they will not agree to mediate the differences between parties, but wish to reset the lawsuit that Moya filed against City Manager Robert Pruett and City Council (Commission) members. In her suit, Moya is asking the court to affirm her authority to run the city, specifically to authorize payments, preside over meetings, appoint charter committee members, and other issues. She has asked for a jury trial. The charter election set for May contains many of the issues she seeks resolved.

In a second suit, filed by a private citizen, Barry Ponder, he is suing Council members, the city manager, even the Mayor for denying his request for a special charter election. He also charges Councilman Simms with receiving illegal insurance benefits, and Pruett with racism.

In another lawsuit filed by Ponder, he asked for a temporary injunction to enjoin the May 9th charter election. A TRO or Temporary Restraining Order was denied by a judge, and a new hearing on this has been delayed as of this week. It is set to be rescheduled in “a few weeks.”

Ship Channel Collision and spill close waterway

Congresspersons, Environmentalists express concern

Rep. Babin talking with U.S. Coast Guard Cap. Brian Penoyer.

Rep. Babin talking with U.S. Coast Guard Cap. Brian Penoyer.

HOUSTON – After the collision of two large cargo vessels on Monday, in foggy conditions, and the subsequent spill of thousands of barrels of a highly flammable toxic chemical known as MTBE, authorities and environmentalists have become concerned over the economic and environmental effects of the accident.

The Coast Guard closed the Houston Ship Channel to all ship traffic after the accident, affecting incoming and outbound cargo ships. Although the leak has been stopped, the investigation and clean-up are expected to take several days, according to Capt. Brian Penoyer of the Coast Guard.

After a helicopter tour of the site, by two Congressmen, they issued statements of concern and looked for answers to avoid the problems in the future.

Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee held a news conference after her tour, saying the $850 billion in business conducted at the port is at stake, and she thinks the answer is for the U.S. government to widen and deepen the channel.

U.S. Representative Brian Babin (TX-36) personally surveyed the damage and response today to the Houston Ship Channel collision, which occurred Monday within Babin’s Congressional District. Babin was provided with an aerial survey and briefing by U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Brian Penoyer, who is overseeing the response. Babin offered his steadfast support and commitment to Capt. Penoyer and all those involved in cleaning up and reopening the channel.

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Chamber hears of Youth-Reach intervention work

CURT WILLIAMS, Director of Youth-Reach.

CURT WILLIAMS, Director of Youth-Reach.

NORTH CHANNEL – The Chamber of Commerce luncheon featured a presentation by Curt Williams, the director of Youth-Reach. Founded in 1984, this little known institution has worked with over 2,200 boys who were “troubled and delinquent.”

Youth-Reach was started by Williams, after experiencing in his own youth addiction and pain, many problems of the boys that he eventually decided to help. In 1984 he changed, committing his life to Christ.

In the early years, Williams ministered to boys on the streets of Montrose, but later he was given a home in east Houston, and he began to serve boys with hope of improving their lives.

The original campus, on a side street off Old Beaumont Highway, has grown to 26 acres, as well as a second campus in Gulf Shores, Alabama. The Houston campus serves boys from 12 to 17 years of age, and the Alabama location from 18 to 21. This second campus is now 81 acres large. Boys learn life skills, responsibility, and a high school education.

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CHANNELVIEW HS: “Shattered Dreams” program shows realities of drinking, driving

Channelview High School recently held its Shattered Dreams program designed to prevent teen drinking and driving. The event was hosted by Ben Taub Hospital's Trauma Services Department, a part of the Harris Health System. As part of the program, a simulated crash took place near the school on the first day of the two-day event. Channelview EMS and Fire, Harris County Constable Precinct 3 deputies, along with other local emergency personnel participated in the event as “first responders” to the staged accident scene, where students were portrayed as fatal accident victims.

Channelview High School recently held its Shattered Dreams program designed to prevent teen drinking and driving. The event was hosted by Ben Taub Hospital’s Trauma Services Department, a part of the Harris Health System. As part of the program, a simulated crash took place near the school on the first day of the two-day event. Channelview EMS and Fire, Harris County Constable Precinct 3 deputies, along with other local emergency personnel participated in the event as “first responders” to the staged accident scene, where students were portrayed as fatal accident victims.

Students filed out into the parking lot of Channelview High School and saw one of the worst automobile accident scenes they had ever witnessed.

It was only a simulation. It definitely got the students’ attention. It was all too real.

This is Shattered Dreams.

Shattered Dreams is an educational program designed to prevent teen drinking and driving. The event was hosted by Ben Taub Hospital’s Trauma Services Department, a part of the Harris Health System. The event was coordinated on the CHS campus by teacher Karen Hebert.

As part of the program, a simulated crash took place near the south side of the school on Crockett Street on the first day of the two-day event. Channelview EMS and Fire, Harris County Constable Precinct 3 deputies, along with other local emergency personnel participated in the event as “first responders” to the staged accident scene, where students were portrayed as fatal accident victims.

“Our students have often heard about the dangers of drinking and driving, but his program enables the reality of it to hit home in a very realistic and dramatic way,” Hebert said. “When they saw some of their friend and fellow classmates bloodied and their parents crying, it shows how life can be changed because of poor choices such as getting behind the wheel of a vehicle under the influence of alcohol.”

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Quilts at San Antonio’s Texas Cultural Center

don springer headshotEach year while I am visiting with my son Dave in Crosby we make our way to several of the Texas cities and towns. We did again this year-my 15th winter to be spent in Crosby. Almost all of those years we have found our way to San Antonio, one of my favorite American cities. The winter of 2015 was no different.

We went to San Antonio last week for about five days and found our way to the usual haunts. On all of our trips we have visited two of the SA sites, The Alamo and Riverwalk. We visit the Alamo for obvious reasons-out of respect of those who fought and died there. As for the Riverwalk, I go because I have always found it enjoyable and Dave, perhaps because he knows I want to go tags along. We always take a leisurely stroll along the river, usually take a boat ride although that was not so this year, and then pick a restaurant, for a fine evening meal.

We have never been disappointed with our choice of an evening meal there nor have we ever been disappointed with our visits to San Antonio. It is a great place.

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Galena Park Council accepts Charter Amendments for vote in May Election

CITY COUNCIL met twice in the last week, to consider 22 Charter Amendments, and to conduct the City’s business in an orderly manner. Note the portrait of Mayor Moya now hangs on the wall with others.

CITY COUNCIL met twice in the last week, to consider 22 Charter Amendments, and to conduct the City’s business in an orderly manner. Note the portrait of Mayor Moya now hangs on the wall with others.

GALENA PARK – After months of contentious meetings, since Mayor Moya took office in July, the City Council held two orderly meetings in the last week to conduct the city’s business.

Last Thursday’s meeting was a special called meeting, to receive and discuss a report from the Charter Review Committee on recommendations for Amendments to the City Charter. This Tuesday’s meeting was only normal business.

The committee presented 22 amendments, of which the council decided to approve and forward 18 for inclusion on the ballot in the May 9th general municipal election. No office holders are up for re-election this term, so this will be the only item on the ballot.

The 22 Amendments follow, briefly stated. All were approved except as noted:

1. Change the Commission’s name to City Council.

2. Establish a Department of Community Development to oversee development, planning, and building code enforcement.

3. Establish a Fire Department, with a Fire Chief and Fire Marshal and prescribe duties.

4. Establish a Police Department with a Police Chief, and prescribe duties.

5. Provide for conflict resolution between charter provisions.

6. Change the term of office for Mayor and Council to 3 years instead of 2, stagger terms, and have term limits.

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