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North Channel Star

Commissioner Garcia details his plans for Pct. 2 improvements

Commissioner Adrian Garcia speaks at the Chamber luncheon about his plans for Pct. 2.

By Gilbert Hoffman

Speaking last week at a North Channel Chamber luncheon, Harris County Pct. 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia covered a wide range of topics related to his concepts of improving conditions for all the residents.

Garcia said that his focus at all times is on Precinct 2, and what he can do to better conditions there. He said a fundamental change in how the precinct is run is his emphasis on spending county money to hire companies and workers that are located in the precinct. He introduced his purchasing director, Jose Jimenez, saying he was they key to implementing the new plan.

Garcia reflected on his first seven months in office, and how it seemed like an unending string of catastrophes. He noted that his term started the first week with an ExxonMobil fire in the refinery in Baytown, and currently was ending the period the same way with the same disaster. He noted that the refineries in Precinct 2 have a history of violations of air and water pollution, and vowed that the county would implement new procedures to minimize these. Because of the large number of petrochemical plants in his district, he said that environmental concerns and safety would be a primary concern that he would focus on.

Garcia noted that his precinct has the lowest household income in the county, and related to that is the lowest home ownership percentage. He noted how important this is, related to other problems of educational achievement and crime rates.

He said a priority is to raise the level of educational achievement, and as a start he has partnered with HCDE, the Harris County Department of Education, to provide free SAT college preparation for about 200 motivated students that need help to pass the college entrance tests. This is a four week course for high school students, and if successful will be repeated for more. Garcia noted that passing the SAT will open more educational opportunities, and result in more job and career choices and opportunities.

Garcia told the students, “Go on to succeed, but come back to Precinct 2 and Give Back.”

Garcia said that healthcare was a major concern, and noted that he had started the first “food pantry” at a Clinic in the district, to provide more healthy food to clients. He noted that other factors affecting access to good healthcare included transportation, which is being provided.


Hurricane Recovery snagged by floodplain rules

HARRIS COUNTY – The public doubtlessly wants to stop flooding, but with new rules adopted in early July, building new will come at a premium.

Harris County Commissioner’s Court has established new rules that require that builders set off as much retention as would handle flooding at the 500-year floodplain. The vote was unanimous on July 9 concerning unincorporated Harris County to move the model from the 100-year to 500-year floodplain. The new rules are related to projecting increases in the state’s rain from federal studies and the Atlas -14 rainfall data. All of this is atop of any other requirements by enforcers like the Harris County Flood Control District.

According to County Judge Lina Hidalgo at the assembly, “To make sure the new development takes into account the latest rainfall protections and the new development is required to retain as much water as possible so as to offset any impact they would have on the folks downstream.”


First Baptist Church Jacinto City celebrating its 75th Anniversary

Remaining in the same location since the beginning, the First Baptist Church of Jacinto City (FBCJC) will celebrate its 75th anniversary on August 18, 2019. Located at 10701 Wiggins, the church and its members have seen many changes throughout the community, but it has remained strong and committed to presenting the message of Jesus Christ and His resurrection.

With the first meeting on August 6, 1944, and housed in a tent, a church was formed with the name of Universal Baptist Church. With an initial membership of 117, the last charter member on the roll died in 2008. The first building was completed in 1945 and served as the sanctuary, office space and classrooms. This building now serves as a worship center for a Hispanic Congregation, Iglesia Bautista Resurrection, and the church offices.


Demolition of old Jacinto City Police Station makes way for the new JCPD building

10429 Market Street Road, JTB Demolition workers demolishing Jacinto City’s 70 year old police station. A new two-story facility has been built there that’s now in operation by the city’s police force. (Photo by Linda Jamail)

Down with the Old, Up with the new Jacinto City Police Station

Jacinto City, TX. – Monday morning July 29, 2019, marked the end of an era and the beginning of a new era in time for Jacinto City’s history, especially the police department’s history.

After two years of construction, the city’s police force has finally begun using their new two-story police station, located at 10429 Market Street Road, behind the old police station.

Current and former city officials gathered to witness the demolishing of the 70 year old police station that’s had fewer than 10 police chiefs run the department. As the demolishing began some present started going down memory lane about some of the well kept humorous secrets of times past at the police station.

Mayor Ana Diaz said, “I’m glad to see we’re nearing the completion of the new police station, which will provide better police protection for the citizens. And our police officers will benefit too, by having a larger working space, removing the dangers they’ve faced from the overcrowded conditions when processing those brought into the police station.”


Pct. 3 Constable race finds Eagleton, Jones, Florus already registered

Ken Jones seeks old position

HARRIS COUNTY – By far the most contentious local, primary race in 2016 was the race for the Democratic candidate for Precinct 3 Constable. Now we find the incumbent Constable facing his old boss, and the wife of his last Republican opponent. While there is plenty of time for others to also run, these three have already selected a responsible financial treasurer to seek campaign finances for office.

The race will be held November 5, 2020. The official deadline for filing isn’t until Dec. 9 of 2019 for the Democratic Party. The Democratic party spokesperson indicates that they do not know who will run as yet and the Harris County Clerk of Court has no listing as to who might run.

As rumor would have it, eleven people are running for the office but no official record indicates this or whom those candidates might be.

Still with certainty, we can say that Harris County Precinct 3 Constable Sherman Eagleton is running, the former Constable Ken Jones is running, and Deborah Florus is running, and each has named an election treasurer. All three have long histories in law enforcement. Eagleton and Jones have held the office and Deborah Florus is a Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy and wife of Dan Webb, the last Republican Candidate for Precinct 3 Constable and formerly with the Department of Public Safety.


Project Recovery Harvey has funds available

Project Recovery Harvey is open to Homeowners affected by Hurricane Harvey, or, depending on the program, the floods of 2015, 2016, & 2017, who are U. S. Citizens and Permanent Legal Residents.

The first step is to complete the pre-application to determine which program you may qualify for by visiting

After you complete the pre-application, you should receive an email verifying that your information has been recorded. Help is available by calling 832-927-4961 or stop in to speak with an intake specialist at any location listed here.


Community mourns loss of Jim Gilbert

JIM GILBERT, Receiving an award from the North Channel Area Chamber of Commerce

A Gentle Giant

By Charlotte Jackson

Earlier this month, the North Channel Community lost a friend, a leader and a true Rotarian. While in Colorado Springs, James “Jim” Gilbert passed away on July 13, 2019.

He had been an instrumental part of the North Channel area before retiring to Carrolton, TX. Many of us knew him from the years he worked at Woodforest National Bank as well as the years he worked with Community Bank. Others knew him from the years he served on the boards of the W.D. Ley YMCA, Texas Chiropractic College as well as serving three years as the President of the Port Region Economic Alliance.

He was a cofounder of the North Channel Area Chamber of Commerce and he has the rare distinction of having served as President of both the Galena Park/Jacinto City Rotary Club and the Rotary Club of North Shore.

As mentioned during a Memorial Service which was held at Fellowship of the Nations on Monday, July 22, the year that Jim served as President Elect of the North Shore Rotary, the fundraising record soared passed $300,000 for the Annual Catfish Fray and Crawfish Boil. Both Dr. Charles Grant and Bill Palko mentioned that Jim’s ability to impact lives on a personal level and develop relationships led to this accomplishment. Jim never met a stranger.


New Voting Machines on Trautman’s agenda

Diane Trautman, Harris County Clerk receives demonstration and an explanation of the newest voting machine technologies to provide voters a more comfortable voting experience. (Photos by Allan Jamail)

Touch Screen Voting Machines could be coming to Harris voters

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX. July 16, 2019 – Dr. Diane Trautman, Harris County Clerk, has her sights set on getting Harris County voters the newest voting equipment available to provide voters an easier, more comfortable and reliable voting experience.

At the 2019 Annual International Association of Government Officials (iGo) Conference Trade Show, vendors displayed and demonstrated various types of equipment and software to improve performance for governments performing services to the public.

Attending the conference were elected and appointed officials such as county and city clerks, record keepers, tax assessors, secretaries and businesses with interests in learning and obtaining insights to the most modern equipment and software.

Clerk Trautman is interested in the county getting new voting machines that’ll make voting easier, quicker and to provide both electronic and hard copy records of votes cast in an election. (more…)

WOODLAND ACRES: City to replace Miles Street

City of Houston’s Kenya Williams of Capital Projects Public Engagement Division of the Public Works Department describing the Miles Street Replacement Project and gives a PowerPoint presentation. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX. July 9, 2019 — GPISD’S Woodland Acres Middle School (WAMS) was the location for a public hearing by the City of Houston to explain, receive input, and answer questions from the citizens concerning the upcoming Miles Street Replacement Project.

The meeting began at 6:30 PM with a welcoming statement from WAMS’s new principal Manual G. Escalante. Escalante said he was just recently hired two weeks ago.

He said, “Yesterday, just one day before tonight’s meeting, I was making my first visit to WAMS by using Miles Street to get here. The street was so bumpy upon my arrival at the school, I immediately made a note that something must be done to fix Miles Street. Within moments I got a pleasant surprise when I was informed about tonight’s hearing to begin a replacement project for the street.”

Ms. Jordan McGinty, South Sector Manager for Houston’s District E Councilman Dave Martin, said, “Councilman Martin has been pushing to get the Miles Street project started before Hurricane Harvey. He’s glad to see it’s going to begin soon.”

The ground-breaking is scheduled for July 22nd, with 6-month completion expected for January 2020. The less than a mile long project will begin on Industrial Road and finish on Market Street Road. The project was awarded to Infrastructure Services, Inc. (ISI), for a cost of $2.4 million. Work days will be Monday through Saturday from 7 AM to 7 PM; no work on Sundays and holidays. Some driveways could be inaccessible for about 5 days, but only after a 5-day advance notification. Water and trash service will not be interrupted.


Charles Grant receives San Jacinto College Foundation Distinguished Alumni Award

Charles Grant receives the Peters Distinguished Alumni Award from Melissa Peters, Coordinator, Alumni and Annual Giving, San Jacinto College Foundation.

By Charlotte Jackson

At the Sail Into Summer event held by San Jacinto College at the Maritime Campus last Saturday, Dr. Charles Grant received the Distinguished Alumni Award.

As the San Jacinto College Foundation staff sat down to select a recipient of the 1st Distinguished Alumni Award, there was truly little room for discussion. It was fitting that the award should be given to the individual who was the very first alumni to ever join the San Jacinto College Alumni Association. The College honored Dr. Grant by naming the Fine Arts Center on North Campus after him. To this day, he is still very active with the College as he has served on the Foundation’s gala host committee, alumni event committee, and the Alumni Advisory Board. Dr. Grant has been relentlessly serving our community for over 40 years.


Commissioner Garcia hosts Job Fair July 24


The Houston Contractors Association (HCA) and the office of Commissioner Adrian Garcia, Harris County Commissioner Precinct 2, are proud to co-host an information session and a job fair to engage and educate anyone interested learning about job opportunities in the civil construction sector. All applicants must be 18 years of age or older, have reliable personal transportation, able to work outdoors, able to pass a drug test, and must be willing to work a 50-60 hour work week.