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Community members opposed construction of The Hollows Apartments in Channelview

Channelview Health & Improvement Coalition Meeting Minutes

By Carolyn Stone

During December research of The Hollows found this $37,811,161 182 unit subsidized housing apartment complex was to be funded with $11,000,000 of Harris County Community Development Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG) funds along with mortgage revenue bonds and 4% tax credits for the investors. Community members were opposed to this project and began preparing a petition in opposition to present to Pct. 2 Commissioner Garcia, Judge Hidalgo and the other Harris County Commissioners.

On or about December 4, 2019 community members learned the developer, LDG Development, was holding a public meeting at Harvey S. Brown Elementary on Wallisville Rd. on Saturday Dec. 21st to announce The Hollows Apartments to the community. Despite this meeting being held four days before Christmas several hundred community members attended the meeting and were very vociferous in their concerns related to and in opposition to the proposed project.

In response to the community concerns and opposition to the complex Horace Allison from Housing & Urban Development lectured community members informing them they should be better people, but the most telling statement came from the developer, Mr. Dru Childre of LDG Development, who informed the community members, “You need to understand this is not housing for hard working individuals like yourself.”

Mr. Childre’s statement was applauded by the community members and taken as confirmation this complex would be a burden upon the residents of Channelview.


First female to command Houston’s Northeast Division

Police Commander C. Hatcher

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX. – The Houston Police Department made history when Lieutenant C. Hatcher a 27 year veteran of the police department was promoted to the rank of Commander. She became the first female Commander of the Northeast Division at 8301 Ley Road, Houston, TX 77028. Commander Hatcher has the responsibility for providing police service to three police districts with an estimate of 203,000 residents within an approximate 130 square miles.

Hatcher a mother of four children whose father wanted her to become a lawyer decided on a law enforcement career instead. In 1993 she went to work at the jail divison of the Houston Police Department. She graduated from the police academy in 2000 along with other cadets who were tagged the nickname, Y2K Babies.

She’s held the rank of Sergeant, Lieutenant and now Commander. In 2006 she passed the Sergeant’s test, six years later in 2012 she passed the Lieutenant’s test and in 2018 passed the Commander’s test. In order to be promoted for a rank increase a candidate is evaluated by test grade score, college education, years of service and assessment of your service record. Hatcher got a college education from the University of Houston and obtained a Masters Degree from Sam Houston State.

Commander Hatcher has a broad amount of experience having worked in the jail, patrol, juvenile divisions and in an Assistant Chief’s office. She was on the 2017 Super Bowl Planning Committee which began three years in advance developing plans for security, traffic control, crowd control and public safety.


New leadership installed at the 43rd North Channel Area Chamber Gala

2020 North Channel Area Chamber of Commerce Board.

By Margie Buentello, President & CEO

Christie Gates was sworn in as Chairman of the board for the North Channel Area Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, January 23, 2020 at the 43rd Annual Awards and Installation Gala. Harris County Justice of the Peace, Lucia Bates, performed the ceremony at Sylvan Beach Pavilion.

Additionally, other officers and directors took the oath that evening pledging to “promote business growth and quality of life in the North Channel Area.”

Gates is the Chief Administrative Officer in Sheldon ISD. In her current position, she leads the Administrative side of the district, which includes supervising campus principals, as well as overseeing the Advanced Academics, Personnel Services, Student Services, Transportation, Maintenance, Technology, Emergency Operations, and Communications departments for the district. Over the past year, she has worked with her leader-ship teams to successfully open two new campuses in Sheldon ISD. In August of 2019, the district opened a new elementary campus, Sheldon Lake Elementary, and in January of 2020, the district opened the doors to a brand new high school facility by relocating over 2,400 students into a newly constructed C. E. King High School campus.


Sheldon FFA students hold successful Livestock Show

FFA STUDENT EXHIBITORS and Faculty Advisors pose for a group picture after the successful Annual Livestock Show.

SHELDON – The C. E. King High School FFA held their Annual Livestock Show and Sale Saturday, Jan. 18th. Students exhibited a total of 41 animals, and bidding from Buyers was lively. The event was held at the Agriculture barn on Old US90, the Beaumont Highway.

According to FFA adviser Robyn Jones, the bids totaled $32,650 and after add-ons the show raised a total of $44,120 for the students, who use the money for scholarships and costs of raising the animals. Jones said the high volume bidders were Shy Girls Saloon and Alfonso Trevino, tied for the top spot among the buyers. (more…)

San Jacinto College launches program to provide full tuition to eligible students

PASADENA, Texas — In partnership with Good Reason Houston, San Jacinto College has launched the Harris County Promise at San Jacinto College, a program for local high school seniors to earn a tuition-free higher education credential.

Harris County Promise is a partnership between local independent school districts, higher education institutions, and Good Reason Houston aimed at increasing college credential and degree attainment for the region. Data shows that 65 percent of today’s jobs require more than a high school education, but only 21 percent of students in Harris County earn a postsecondary credential.

“Harris County Promise provides an incredible opportunity for high school students and their families,” said Dr. Brenda Hellyer, San Jacinto College Chancellor. “The Promise and college staffs will partner to provide additional support for our students to enroll in college, stay on a path to completion, and ultimately earn their certificate or associate degree.”

The Promise program launched last month in seven high schools across three school districts with three community college partners. The participating high schools in the San Jac Promise program are from Pasadena ISD. Seniors at Dobie, Sam Rayburn, and South Houston High Schools are eligible for the tuition-free program, which requires that students be Texas residents and complete four steps to enroll, regardless of GPA or family income.


Sheldon ISD calls for 2020 Bond Election

Sheldon ISD school board members who attended Tuesday’s workshop unanimously voted to call a May bond election in the amount of $438.8 million.

The majority of the bond funds would be allocated toward the construction of new campuses; expansions and renovations to existing campuses/district facilities; and security upgrades. Other portions of the bond would include a new multipurpose arena as well as a community/ district natatorium.

“We have been experiencing tremendous student growth throughout the district over the past few years – really over the past decade,” Sheldon ISD Superintendent Dr. King Davis said. “Although most of our student growth was anticipated, there has been a recent influx of significant future developments within our district that most likely will impact our student enrollment numbers in the near future.”

Some of these future developments Dr. Davis was alluding to include two new apartment complexes (projected 378 combined units), the new Imperial Forest Edition near Royalwood Elementary (projected 326 homes), and another proposed housing development near Garrett Elementary.

“According to our PEIMS data, Sheldon ISD’s enrollment has increased by approximately 734 students since last school year alone,” Dr. Davis said. “I appreciate our board’s proactive approach to address these current and future capacity issues.”

Dr. Davis said the bond, if approved, would be spread out into three phases.


Sheldon FFA holds successful show

Samantha Doerr wrangles the Grand Champion Steer as the judges look it over.

SHELDON – The C. E. King High School FFA held their Annual Livestock Show and Sale last Saturday, Jan. 18. Students exhibited a total of 41 animals, and bidding from Buyers was lively. The event was held at the Agriculture barn on Old US90, the Beaumont Highway.

According to FFA adviser Robyn Jones, the bids totaled $32,650 and after add-ons the show raised a total of $44,120 for the students, who use the money for scholarships and costs of raising the animals.


“STOP THE BLEED” program presented at Rotary

Bryan Clements speaks on the “Stop the Bleed” program.

North Shore Rotarians at their luncheon last week learned about an important program used in the Galena Park schools, called “Stop the Bleed.” Bryan Clements, the police chief of the Galena Park ISD and a Rotarian, explained the theory and techniques behind the lifesaving program. After a serious wound, inflicted by accident, gunshot, or other event, he explained that it is important to help stop bleeding until medical responders can arrive. He said what happens in the first 5 minutes can make the difference in whether a life can be saved.

Clements said that the Texas legislature passed a law in their last session, that requires a “bleeding control station” in schools, plus training of personnel to use the blood stop kits.

With the help of the North Channel EMS, all GPISD schools north of I-10 have been equipped with the kits, and in total Galena Park ISD has 800 from NC EMS, and another 162 from the district.

Clements proceeded to show the Rotarians how the kits can be used to stop bleeding, including applying pressure to a wound, or packing a deep wound with gauze, and applying a tourniquet where needed.


Congressman Babin reviews conservative accomplishments

Congressman Brian Babin spoke to the Highlands Rotary last Tuesday.

By Gilbert Hoffman HARRIS COUNTY – Bian Babin, Congressman for the 36th District of Texas, was in Highlands this week to speak with the Rotary Club.

His topics ranged from national to local subjects in which he is involved. He sits on the Committee on Science, Space and Technology, which includes NASA, and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, which includes the Port of Houston and the Ship Channel.

Locally Babin was instrumental, along with Congressman Gene Green, in getting the Waste Pits in the San Jacinto River designated on the EPA’s national Superfund List.

Babin noted that his district has a great number of transportation facilities that are important to the economic strength of the nation. These include four port in his District TX-36, the port and ship channel, and Interstate I-10. He said the closing of lanes on the bridge is unacceptable, and harmful to the local and national economy. He said that TxDOT is working on a plan that would replace the highway and bridge at the river with a suspension bridge, anchored on each shore but with no supporting columns below in the river. This is similar to Baytown’s Fred Hartman bridge. He cautioned, however, that a project like this takes a long time to become reality.

In the meantime, he is working with the Corps of Engineers to get more secure moorings for barges in the river, to minimize any possible damage to the bridge again.

He is also working with the Corps to get legislation to dredge and widen the ship channel, important to continued economic growth in the region.