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Posts published in February 2018

Galena Park opens Woodland Acres Police Substation

Officer James Boyett, Commissioner Barry Ponder, Mayor Esmeralda Moya, Commissioner Rodney Chersky and Officer Jason Adams. (Photo by Allan Jamail)By Allan Jamail

Galena Park, Tx. – Woodland Acres: Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2018 – Galena Park Mayor Esmeralda Moya with City Commissioners Rodney Chersky, Barry Ponder, Interim Police Chief Reese Martin, City Secretary Mayra Gonzales and Economic Development Coordinator Jorge Flores opened a first time ever police substation in the city.

Mayor Moya said, “Enhancing the safety and security of our residents is our top priority. For the last two years Woodland Acres citizens has expressed to me a concern about the long police response time to their subdivision. Today with the support of Commissioners Rodney Chersky and Barry Ponder we’ve taken action that will provide the immediate police presence on a citizen’s call for the police.”

Moya said, “The police officers stationed and working out of the substation will patrol this neighborhood cutting down on crimes such as home burglaries and other thefts. Because of the increase in property values the substation and manning it continuously seven days a week is made possible without a tax increase.”

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Early voting started February 20th

Voters in East Harris County can now vote early for the Primary Election, at the following locations:

– Crosby Branch Library, 135 Hare Road

– North Channel Branch Library, 15741 Wallisvillle Road, North Channel

– Baytown Community Center, 2407 Market Street, Baytown

– Galena Park Library, 1500 Keene St.

– Downtown, Harris County Law Library, 1019 Congress Avenue

Early Voting Hours are:

– Feb. 20 – Feb. 23, 8 am – 4:30 pm

– Feb. 24, 7am – 7pm

– Feb. 25, 1pm – 6pm

– Feb. 26 – March 2, 7am – 7pm

The Primary Election Day is Tuesday, March 6. Polls will be open 7 am – 7pm. You may vote either Democratic or Republican ballot, but not both.

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TxDOT holds meetings on I-10E improvements

The Houston District of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) is currently holding public meetings in neighborhoods at four locations along the I-10 corridor.

These meetings are called “open house formats (no formal presentations)” and are meant to show the public areas under study, and to receive comments from persons interested in interacting with the planning process.

I-10 is under study because it carries a high volume of auto and commercial traffic, and this is expected to increase in the future due to activity and expansion in the petrochemical industry on the East side of Harris and Chambers County.

The study is known as a PEL (Planning and Environmental Linkages) study, required by the federal government. The purpose is to gather feedback during planning to inform the environmental review process, including the National Environmental Policy Act. The study encompasses I-10 East from I-69 near downtown Houston, to State Highway 99 (Grand Parkway) in Chambers County.

Public meetings were held last week, and this week, at Barbers Hill High School, Goose Creek Memorial High School, Channelview High School, and Mickey Leland College Prep Academy.

The format was to show large photos and maps of the highway, broken into sections, with drawings that indicated environmental concerns, and aerial photos displaying current road alignments and cross-sections. Forms were provided for public comments to be submitted.

For anyone missing the meeting but wanting to see the information, it is available at the TxDOT offices on Washington Avenue in Houston. It is also on the internet, at the following address: https:// www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/projects/studies/houston/houston-pel-i-10.html. The study would include the city areas of Houston; Jacinto City; Baytown; and Mont Belvieu.

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Galena Park restores 1936 Fire Truck

Mayor Moya giving a engraved plate to firemen Henry and Beall with their names on it to be attached to the truck. L – R: Fire Chief Paul Gregory, Mayor Esmeralda Moya, Sam Henry and Robbie Beall. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

Firemen Refurbish Antique Fire Truck

By Allan Jamail

Galena Park, TX. – February 6, 2018 at the regular council meeting Mayor Esmeralda Moya recognized and commended Firemen Sam Henry and Robbie Beall for their volunteering to restore the city’s first fire truck.

Because of the invaluable volunteer service of Henry and Beall the 1936 Ford Seagate fire truck was restored for $14,000 compared to the $124,000 price tag quoted by a company specializing in fire truck restorations. Their work took 22 months to complete with the help of two local companies. AmSpec restored the chrome, Burbank Barrel polished the brass and San Jacinto College painted it. The antique truck is only used now for parades or on display at city events.

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Galena Park & Jacinto City seniors enjoy Valentine’s party

Seniors and organizers at the first Annual Valentine’s Dance Party. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

By Allan Jamail

Galena Park, TX – February 13, 2018 citizens of Galena Park and Jacinto City came together to provide area seniors with a Valentine’s Dance Party. Jose Ramon one of the organizers said, “This is our first year to provide a Valentine’s party for the seniors and we’re hoping this will become an annual event.”

Seniors enjoyed dancing, food, refreshments and door prizes. (more…)

LyondellBasell Channelview Complex opens new administration building

LyondellBasell officials joined Pct. 2 Commissioner Jack Morman on Wednesday, to cut the ribbon opening their new administration building. Helping with the scissors are site manager Kim Foley and EVP Dan Coombs, center.

CHANNELVIEW, Texas – Feb. 14, 2018 -The Channelview Complex of LyondellBasell (NYSE: LYB), one of the largest plastics, chemicals and refining companies in the world, today opened the doors to a new, state-of-the-art administration building. The site began construction of the $70 million, 96,347 square foot building last year as part of ongoing safety enhancements for the complex.

Harris County Precinct Two Commissioner Jack Morman and several other local community leaders and residents joined LyondellBasell employees and Executive Vice President of Global Manufacturing Dan Coombs to celebrate the opening of the three-story building during a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“This building investment represents our commitment to putting safety first in everything we do,” said Coombs. “As a company, we are always seeking ways we can improve the safety of our sites. This building, with its enhanced safety features and new location, showcases our continued focus on this effort.”

The new building is located away from operating units and features a number of safety and work enhancements for the site, including on-site security, security card-access to offices and improved fire suppression systems. It also has an on-site Health Center and a room for new mothers.

In addition to relocating the administration building, the site also moved the operations control room for the north plant and maintenance department to the new campus.

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Coach Arrington selected to NJCAA Hall of Fame

Head Coach Tom Arrington, middle, will enter the NJCAA Baseball Hall of Fame this summer.

San Jacinto College legend for 16 years

By Amanda Fenwick

HOUSTON – Tom Arrington can soon add “Hall of Fame” to his signature, as the veteran coach will enter the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Baseball Hall of Fame this year.

“I am shocked and surprised. It hasn’t really sunk in yet,” said Arrington, who enters his 18th year at the helm of the San Jacinto College program. “As a coach, my success starts with the players. They are the ones playing the game. It is my responsibility to guide them and transition them along their path. I am very blessed and thankful to have this opportunity.”

Arrington owns an overall record of 742-298 (.713) in his 17 years as head coach. He has guided San Jacinto College to 13 conference titles, 11 regional championships, six national runner-up finishes at the Junior College (JUCO) World Series, four third place national finishes and one fifth place national finish. His 37 wins at the JUCO World Series is an all-time record, as is his 59 total games played at the prestigious national tournament.

San Jacinto College Assistant Coach Kory Koehler made the nomination to the NJCAA Hall of Fame Selection Committee, and says that he views Arrington as a mentor, friend and family friend.

“In my 18 years with Tom, I have learned a great deal about relationships,” Koehler said. “He is a leader on many levels. He runs a very organized program and emphasizes to his players and staff a need to grow and develop into community leaders. He cares for his players and for his staff as if they were his own family.”

Arrington began his coaching career in 1991 at the College of Mateo before moving on to San Francisco State University and College of Marin. He came to San Jacinto College in 2000 as an assistant coach, focused on the pitchers, and was named head coach in 2001. In the Spring of 2011, Arrington was appointed athletic director for the San Jacinto College North Campus. He played professionally for the Triple A team of the Texas Rangers; in Guadalajara, Mexico; for the Salt Lake Trappers; and for a Single A farm team of the Montreal Expos.

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Former JC Little League President arrested

By Allan Jamail

JACINTO CITY – Tuesday, February 6, 2018 Jacinto City police arrested Christopher Vasquez the former Jacinto City Little League president and charged him with felony theft of baseball league funds.

Police said the new league’s officials had tried to get the money from Vasquez for months by sending him letters, so after hearing nothing they decided to file a police report.

Vasquez was surprised by police at Hobby Airport as they took him into custody moments after he arrived on a flight from California.

Chief Joe Ayala said Vasquez is accused of cashing a check in September of last year for almost $17,000 that was supposed to fund new scoreboards. The check from Coca-Cola to the league was endorsed by Vasquez and cashed but never deposited into the league’s bank account according to records.

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Commissioner Morman details status of Precinct 2 at Chamber

Speaking last week at the North Channel Chamber luncheon, Pct. 2 Commissioner Jack Morman discussed the ravages resulting from the floods after Hurricane Harvey, and a large range of projects that will be built in the next few years in East Harris County to keep pace with the population growth.

Morman called it an Historic Flood, noting that in the past five years there have been three flood events in the county that exceeded the 100 year flood plans. In the county, over 30,000 homes were flooded, he said. Resources to help people were overwhelmed, and the county had to ask for the help of the general public for boats and evacuation rescues. He noted that Pct. 2 dump trucks were used as first responder emergency vehicles due to their high ground clearance.

Pct.2 is now in the recovery phase. A total of 260,000 cubic yards of debris have been picked up and hauled away. The Lynchburg Ferry, closed due to damage to both landings, is being repaired and scheduled to re-open in March.

To alleviate future damage from floods, the county is implementing new regulations calling for buildings to be elevated higher. Home buyouts have also occurred, and will continue. So far $20,000,000 has been allocated for this, and 21 homes have been purchased to date.

The county has requested funds from the federal government of $10 Billion dollars for new projects, but so far the money has not been appropriated. The county is planning on a bond issue in the fall, asking voters for 1 or 2 Billion dollars for Flood Control projects.

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Channelview HS student surprised with KPRC Scholarship

With the camera rolling, KPRC morning anchor Owen Conflenti congratulates Channelview High School senior Kennedi Henderson of being the winner of the KPRC Senior Scholarship.

It was just another normal day for Channelview High School senior Kennedi Henderson. All of the sudden, in the middle of class, some visitors known to Houston area television viewers entered the room with a welcome surprise.

Henderson’s face lit up with a wide grin as morning news anchor Owen Conflenti called her to the front of the classroom and presented her with KPRC’s $2,500 Senior Scholarship. She is the first recipient out of 20 Houston area students to receive the award, sponsored by Texas Mattress Makers.

“This is amazing,” Henderson said. “This was such an unexpected surprise, but I am excited that my family is here to share it with me.”

Several of Henderson’s family members, including her grandmother, whose home was affected by Hurricane Harvey were in attendance. Her parents, who are both Channelview educators, were also there to support their daughter, along with her brother, who is a junior at CHS.

Henderson is an outstanding student, ranked sixth in her class. She plans to attend Prairie View A&M University in the fall, where she will major in Chemical Engineering. Her involvement at CHS includes serving as a member of the National Honor Society and participating in the Modified Early College Program (MECA) at San Jacinto College. Through her success in MECA, Henderson will receive her Associate’s Degree in May, along with her high school diploma.

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Flood of Celebrities at Chamber Gala

The North Channel Area Chamber of Commerce held their 41st Annual Awards Ceremony and Swearing-in last Friday, January 19th at the Houston Hobby Airport Marriott.

It was a night sparkling with good food and great friends, dressed like Hollywood stars.

The featured speaker was Meteorologist Jeff Lindner of the Harris County Flood Control District, and a celebrity spokesperson for the Office of Emergency Management, after the flooding and devastation of Hurricane Harvey. Lindner’s face became the most familiar on television, as he reported on the effects of the hurricane and the subsequent flooding throughout the county.

Lindner’s account of the flood was a painful reminder to many in the audience, who had suffered personal loss at their homes or businesses. But his talk brought a new insight into the pitfalls of trying to predict the weather and warn residents of potential dangers.

As Lindner said of the Hurricane, there was “nothing comparable in U.S. history.” (more…)