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Posts published in April 2018

EAST HARRIS COUNTY LEADERSHIP LUNCHEON: Hernandez voices need for regional solutions

L – R: State Rep. Mary Ann Perez, Sabrina Khan, Rep. Ana Hernandez, Rep. Armando Walle, Adrian Garcia and Amir Khan, CEO of Ashland Hospitality, Inc. (PHOTO BY ALLAN JAMAIL)

HOUSTON, TX — State Representative Hernandez (D-Houston) joined over 100 local business leaders, elected officials, and community members at the Holiday Inn in Channelview on Thursday, April 19. The event, the first of its kind in the region, was hosted by Amir Khan, CEO of Ashland Hospitality, Inc., and his wife Sabrina.

Other officials in attendance included Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, State Representatives Armando Walle (D-Aldine) and Mary Ann Perez (DPasadena), Harris County Constable, Precinct 2 Constable Chris Diaz, and Jacinto City Mayor Ana Diaz. Attendees discussed the need for regional cooperation, pressing workforce needs, and the importance of strong leadership that recognizes those issues at all levels of government and in the private sector.

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Galena Park/Jacinto City Rotary raises $10,000 at annual cake auction scholarship drive

Senator Sylvia Garcia with her $310 winning bid chocolate Reese Explosion cake baked by Letha Garcia. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

Jacinto City, TX. – April 17, 2018 — The Galena Park/Jacinto City Rotary Club held their annual cake auction, setting a fund-raising record.

According to Maria Rodriquez, Director and 2018 Chairperson, the auction raised nearly $10,000 to benefit students with scholarships. Amir Khan, CEO of Ashland Hospitality, Inc., made the highest bid of the event, of $500 for a German Chocolate cake baked by Brandon Ceniceros with the GPHS Culinary Class.

Rodriquez, the club’s Past-President, said, “We doubled the money collected from the past years.” She baked and donated 9 of the 43 cakes auctioned, and serves as the Rotary District 5890 official photographer.

Standing L – R: Maria D. Rodriguez, GP/JC Rotary Club, Past-President, Bill Palko, District 5890 Rotary Club Governor, Aliyah Silva, Lupita Ramírez, Pamela Pérez, Bryan Clements, GP/JC Rotary Club, President, Astrit Flores, Crystal Arguelles, Daniela Lira, and Jennifer Ramirez. Kneeling L – R: Oscar Silva, Galibadlo Villareal, Ju-Juan Morín.

EPA announces San Jacinto River Waste Pits cleanup agreement

SCOTT PRUITT, EPA ADMINISTRATOR

EAST HARRIS COUNTY – Environmental activists and residents of the areas around the San Jacinto River Waste Pits praised the announcement Monday that the PRP (Potential Responsible Parties) had come to an agreement with the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) to start the engineering design work required to implement the ROD (Record Of Decision) that called for the removal of all of the toxic waste from the site.

The EPA press release announcement read as follows:

DALLAS – (April 9, 2018) Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that an agreement has been reached with International Paper Company and McGinnes Industrial Maintenance Corporation to perform a remedial design for the San Jacinto River Waste Pits Superfund Site selected remedy. The selected cleanup action addresses the potential dangers posed by dioxin contamination at the site in Harris County, Texas.

“This agreement marks the next step in my commitment to the people of Harris County to expedite the remediation of the San Jacinto Waste Pits site,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “EPA will ensure that the remedial design removes all the contamination as quickly and safely as possible and permanently protects the health and safety of the surrounding communities and the San Jacinto River.”

The EPA’s cleanup plan, with support from state partners and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, includes installing engineering controls before excavating approximately 212,000 cubic yards of dioxin contaminated material for disposal. The estimated cost for the remedy is $115 million, representing a reasonable value for the cost incurred.

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Galena Park/Jacinto City CIP displays Emergency equipment & planning

Pictured to the right, David Wade Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (Harris County), – Southeast Texas Regional Advisory Council Philip Cutler, Chris Collier, Mayor Esmeralda Moya & Austen McMillian. Mayor Moya said, “I fully support the Galena Park-Jacinto City Community-Partnership (CIP) which if there’s a disaster it will protect and save citizens lives. It’s all about the citizens.” In the background is a portable emergency hospital and in a time of need it can be quickly erected in less than an hour with 16 hospital beds to treat victims and to provide doctors and medical personnel with everything needed to stabilize victims until they can be transferred to a hospital. (Photo by Allan Jamail.)

By Allan Jamail

GALENA PARK – Unbeknownst to most Harris County residents, representatives from cities and county governments meet monthly with industries to plan for an emergency disaster event on how to better protect the citizenry.

The Galena Park-Jacinto City Community-Industry Partnership (CIP) met with Diane Sheridan CIP facilitator and heard reports on local plant conditions and how the plants would collectively respond to an emergency. The attendees learned the industry and community capacity for managing major industrial fires, explosions and toxic releases, and then toured and learned how the emergency equipment can be used.

Allan Jamail, writer for the North Channel Star and former Emergency Management Coordinator (EMC) of Jacinto City, said he’s proud of the improvements made to protect the communities since he served in the 1980’s. “Today with the advance technology of emergency equipment and the coordination of governments and industry planning it will mitigate or lessen the severity of the impact on communities should a disaster occur in Harris County,” Jamail said.

The East Harris County Manufacturers Association (EHCMA) announced the release of a new CAER Online member alert notification system. This new system will provide a simpler, more intuitive website for EHCMA member companies to post informational and alert messages to the membership and general public. Community members can visit this website to view posted messages online from EHCMA member and nonmember facilities or local offices of emergency management.

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Channelview FFA auction highlights successful show

The annual Channelview FFA Auction was held on Saturday, April 7 at Allen Hall Fairgrounds. The ceremonies opened with the Presentation of Colors by the Channelview FFA Officers. One of the highlights of the auction was the bidding of the Madisyn Beach’s Grand Champion Steer, left, Channelview Glass secured the steer with a winning bid of $5,500. (Photos by Mark Kramer, Channelview ISD)

The 55th annual Channelview FFA Livestock Show celebrated another successful year as the auction highlighted the conclusion of the event at the Allen Hall Fairgrounds on April 7.

Many livestock, horticulture and craft exhibits were featured during the week. Auction highlights included the bidding of the Grand Champion and Reserve Champion steers. Madisyn Beach’s Grand Champion Steer earned $5,500 with a winning bid by Channelview Glass. Colton Taylor’s Reserve Champion Steer was purchased for $8,000 by Yates Remodeling.

Other major winners and their buyers included:

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Domecoming: Public parties in the Astrodome

25,000 Fans gathered for the Dome tour.

HOUSTON – Fans of the Astrodome brought their memories to a large party Monday night, inside the famed Dome.

The Astrodome Conservancy held the party, and at least 25,000 fans showed up, to hear music, eat some food truck grub, and mostly just stare at the cavernous space and relive their memories of the last time they saw a game or event there.

It was the 53rd Anniversary of this so-called Eighth Wonder of the World, which is about to gain a new life as an indoor park and event space for the County.

Commissioner’s Court in February approved a $105 million plan to renovate the Dome, and work will start in the fall, so this is the last time the Dome would be available to see it the way it was when it opened in 1965.

Some new, some old fans gazed up at the space.

Phoebe Tudor, chair of the Astrodome Conservancy, said that this event was so popular that the 25,000 tickets sold out in less than two hours. Tickets were free, too.

Fans remembered when the Dome was the home of the Astros, from 1965 to 1999, and the Oilers from 1968 to 1996. In 2009 building inspectors ruled the building unsafe, and it has been closed since then.

The revitalization plan calls for an underground parking garage, with 9 acres of park space above at street level.

The new Dome will be available for festivals, conferences, and commercial space, according to County Judge Ed Emmett. It will also be a passive and recreational park, under an air-conditioned dome, another first for the city and the country. Emmett also envisions that the space can be used as an adjunct to NRG center, for boat shows, auto shows, and the Rodeo. Construction will start in October, and last for 17 months.

Other districts, community help CISD band’s bus crash victims

A fundraiser sponsored by the Channelview Band Boosters for those affected by a major charter bus crash involving Channelview Falcon Band members and chaperones was one of many activities held recently to support the group.

By Mark Kramer, Channelview ISD Public Relations

After the Channelview High School Falcon Marching Band was involved in a major bus accident while returning home from Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. on March 13, they are receiving some help from many friends.

Goose Creek CISD, La Porte ISD, Pasadena ISD, Sheldon ISD and Texas City ISD are all lending equipment to the Channelview Band until they are able to replace the instruments that were destroyed in the crash. The instruments will quickly be put to good use as Falcon Band members are scheduled to participate in the University Interscholastic League Wind Ensemble contest April 25-27.

In addition, North Shore Senior High School Band Director Shane Gorforth and Crosby High School Band Director Kevin Knight are working together with the Channelview Band to prepare them for the UIL Wind Ensemble event. Falcon Band Director Aaron suffered major injuries in the bus accident and is recovering at an area rehabilitation facility.

“We are very appreciative of everyone’s willingness to help out,” said Jennifer Tunink, Channelview ISD’s fine arts director. “The outpouring of support from so many districts, businesses and the community has truly been a blessing to all of us.”

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Jacinto City Police arrest armed robbery suspect

Gregory T. Cromwell Jr.

By Allan Jamail

Jacinto City, TX – Monday, March 26, 2018 at midnight the police responded to a call at the service station in the 10200 block of I-10 East Freeway of a suspect attempting to shoot someone. Upon arrival officers observed a suspect breaking out the locked glass door with a gun to gain entry. The suspect saw the officers, dropped his gun inside the shattered glass door and fled on foot, after a foot chase officers apprehended the suspect identified as Gregory T. Cromwell, Jr.

Cromwell earlier was trying to extort money at gunpoint from a person outside the station. The robbery victim (complainant) went inside the station under the pretext to get the money the robber demanded from the ATM machine. The complainant once inside told the store clerk of the robbery who then placed the store in lockdown mode and called the police.

Police transferred Cromwell to the Harris County Jail where’s he’s being held with no bond after he was charged with Aggravated Robbery with a Deadly Weapon and Unlawful Possession of a Weapon by a Felon. He has a prior felony conviction record of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon.

KILLER SOUGHT IN GALENA PARK

By Allan Jamail

GALENA PARK — Monday April 2, 2018, the Galena Park police dispatcher received a 9-1-1 call at 10 pm of a shooting in the 1500 block of 3rd Street.

According to Detective Jessica Bolanos, when the police arrived they discovered inside a home two shooting victims. Detective Bolanos said a 42 year old male identified as John Meyers had been shot multiple times and was dead at the scene. Another male victim shot multiple times was identified as Justin Boon, age 27. He was taken to Ben Taub Hospital and is listed in critical condition. The victims are father-in-law and son-in-law related.

The Harris County Sheriff Department’s crime scene investigation unit arrived at the scene and gathered evidence.

Sheriff’s Department Investigators will pursue the case seeking the murderer. At this time, a motive and an ID are not known. Police Chief Rick Gonzales and Detective Jessica Bolanos are asking for anyone with information to call them at 713675-3471.