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September 2009

VOLUME 24 NO. 185 WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 30, 2009

 

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Hospital: Following Monday night's board meeting of the Liberty County Hospital District, Board President Bruce Stratton and Vice President Paul Henry met with managing partner of Frontier Health Care Albert Schwarzer. After that brief meeting, Albert Schwarzer indicated there was no need to negotiate further and the deal was off. With that, the deal to reopen the hospital with the district in ownership and TI Group in management is no longer on the table. The state licensing board was contacted to release the license and critical access designation, as well as returning the keys to the building to Liberty County Tax Assessor / Collector Mark McClelland. In a related note, information from Chambers County indicates the same ownership company, Frontier Health Care, is in arrears on the county taxes for the Winnie Community Hospital in an amount more than $80,000. The last payment made on the Chambers County property taxes was in January 2009.

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Fatality Wreck: 39-year-old Earl Bryant died following a two vehicle wreck yesterday morning on FM 1409. According to Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Troy Dyson, the Cleveland resident was traveling north on FM 1409 when he apparently fell asleep at the wheel and drifted into oncoming traffic striking a south bound vehicle. The driver of that car, 27-year-old Brandy Gunn and her 9-year-old daughter Courtney Ward were taken by Life Flight to a Hospital in Houston.

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Silas Parks Trial Set: We reported in June of the death of former Dayton woman, Sara Sheffield Parks in Idaho. Shortly after her death, her husband, Silas Parks, was arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder for her death and the death of their unborn child. A trial date has been set for March 22, 2010. Idaho Prosecutor Bill Thompson said if convicted of the murder charges, Silas Parks could be sentenced to life in prison. He added, prosecutors now have 60 days to decide whether or not to upgrade the charges to capital murder.

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TVE Kickoff Dance: The popular TVE Kick Off Dance is back after a 5 year absence. It is this Saturday evening with gates opening at 8 p.m. Tickets are $7 at the gate with presale tables available. Call 336-7455 or visit their web page to learn more. Get to the TVE website by going to ours, www.kshn.com

**************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 9,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 14.90 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 184 TUESDAY, SEPT. 29, 2009

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Shooting Death: A Liberty County man, Gary Harrison, 36, is dead following a shooting Sunday evening around 9:15 at the Tarkington Mobile Home Park on CR 2518 near Hwy 105. According to reports, he was shot by 20-year-old Lewis Hightower III with a 12-gauge shotgun. Captain Steve Green said Garry Harrison was reportedly mortally wounded while forcing his way into his next-door neighbor's home. The Liberty County Sheriffs Department continues to investigate this fatal shooting. As of this report, no charges have been filed.

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Chase: Dayton Police Det. John Headrick said a high-speed chase Sunday night ended when the fleeing men tried to drive a truck through a field and a pond. Dayton Police officers arrested two Conroe men, Luis Alonso age 36 and Michael Watson age 29. Both were charged with evading arrest. Det. Headrick said the chase began after police got a disturbance call from a tavern on Highway 321 in Dayton. In addition, the truck the men were driving was reported stolen; however, officers are in the process of verifying that information.

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Clean Up: About 1,000 pounds of trash was hauled off from along the Trinity River near the Hwy. 105 Bridge Saturday following a cleanup event held in conjunction with National Public Lands day. In all, there were 77 volunteers. Even some folks camping along the river lent a helping hand. Trinity River Refuge Manager Stuart Marcus said it was a great job of helping the environment. The aluminum collected will be recycled.

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Better Business Bureau: In addition to providing consumers with free information about businesses, the Better Business Bureau also checks on the advertising claims made by various companies. Michael Clayton, President of the BBB of Southeast Texas said in most cases, businesses that make dubious claims in the advertising will stop when the BBB points out those claims cannot be substantiated. For more information, call 800-685-7650 or go to www.bbb.org.

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Funerals: Oliver W. Graves, 78 of Huffman. Services tomorrow 2 p.m. at Pace Stancil Funeral home in Dayton. Jerald Jefferson Hatcher, 80 of Buna. Services tomorrow at 10 a.m. at Faith and Family Funeral Services in Batson.

**************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 9,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 15.25 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 183 MONDAY, SEPT. 28, 2009

Hospital Development: In just days new hospital management, new owners and a new name will signal a new beginning for medical care in South Liberty Co. Liberty-Dayton Regional Medical Ctr owned by Liberty Co. Hosp. Dist.. Bd. Chair Bruce Stratton says it will be managed by T.I. Group, a California Co. The old ownership is no part of the new deal. Preparations to reopen begin today and they should begin accepting patients this week. A 3rd party will pay most debts of the previous owners and recover their money with about a $36,000 a month lease by the hospital district. Co. Tax man Mark McClelland agreed to postpone the Oct. 5 fixtures and equipment auction. Today Dist. Judge C.T. "Rusty" Hight will be asked to set aside his previous court ordered seizure to recover unpaid property taxes.

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Recently some Dayton leaders and news media got a tour of the new Dayton Community Center. More than 45,000 square feet includes large event areas, senior citizens center, offices for the Dayton Community Development Corporation, and chamber offices. Dayton City Manager David Douglas calls the new 11,000 square foot area doubling the size of Jones Library as the crown jewel of the $14 million building on South Cleveland Street. A 500 kw generator will power areas needed during extended power outages. Work on the facility and its memory garden to honor military is racing to a January 2010 dedication.

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Cases of flu growing. Physicians Assistant Brandon Smith said hand sanitizers work well but nothing beats good ole' soap and water. Type A flu shots are available – Inoculations for H1N1 influenza are expected in Oct. PA Brandon Smith recommends both shots especially for those with chronic medical conditions..

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7th Ann. Tarkington Round-Up is this Saturday Oct. 3rd. Held at Tarkington Middle School on FM163 this family festival and Heritage celebrations benefits a Tarkington Foundation for scholarships. Tarkington's Got Talent is open to all. There will be a car show, book fair, and craft vendors will have booths. There's local history, music, food and games for all who attend Saturday For more call Jay at 281-592-5243.

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Local Football: Liberty Panthers lost to Splendora 20-19 OT..Dayton romped over Goose Creek Memorial 48-14..Hull-Daisetta 25-13 over High Island, al district games.

*************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 12,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 15.23 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 182 FRIDAY, SEPT. 25, 2009

Hospital Auction: Monday October 5 at 10 a.m., fixtures and equipment inside the Liberty Dayton Community Hospital will go on the auction block for unpaid taxes. County Tax Assessor / Collector Mark McClelland said the Internal Revenue Service has agreed to give the county first right to any proceeds from the auction. This does not include the building or grounds. The auction will be at the hospital, 1353 North Travis.

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Liberty City Council: Tuesday night, Liberty City Council agreed to make a change in their EMS billing and collection services contract. For the past several years, the city has had a contract with Health Claims Plus. Council Monday night agreed to issue a notice to terminate the contract with Health Claims Plus. Both Interim City Manager Larry Shaw and Fire Chief Fred Collins recommended the change. The contract requires a 90-day period before it is formally ended. Monday night council approved an agreement with A/R Concepts out of San Antonio, a company specializing in EMS billing and collections.

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Shooting Sports: The Liberty County 4-H shooting sports team took home a sting of medals at the state championships. Jacob Hill paired with Bryant Nugent won the state championship in two-man team American skeet. Also capturing gold was Caleb Hill who won the intermediate division class b trap.

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Baby Parade: Less than two weeks remain to register for the annual Trinity Valley Exposition Baby Parade. Set for Saturday October 10, this year's baby parade, dating back to the early 1900's, will have the theme "Old Westerns". This long running tradition is for kids from birth through kindergarten. The deadline to enter is Thursday October 8. For information, call Becky Brand at 936 334 9687.

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UT and Houston: The University of Texas Longhorns host U.T. El Paso in Big 12 college football action Saturday afternoon with a 2:30 kick off. KSHN will air the game starting with the pre-game at 1:30. On Sunday the Houston Texas are at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Listen to the game starting with the noon kick off on KSHN.

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Funeral: Bobbie G. Moore, 80 of Dayton. Services tomorrow 2 p.m. at Mt. Rose Baptist Church - Liberty.

**************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 12,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 14.57 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 182 FRIDAY, SEPT. 25, 2009

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Hospital Auction: Monday October 5th at 10 a.m., fixtures and equipment inside the Liberty Dayton Community Hospital will go on the auction block for unpaid taxes. County Tax Assessor / Collector Mark McClelland said the Internal Revenue Service has agreed to give the county first right to any proceeds from the auction. The auction will be at the hospital, 1353 North Travis.

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Liberty City Council: Tuesday night, Liberty City Council agreed to make a change in their EMS billing and collection services contract. For the past several years, the city has had a contract with Health Claims Plus. Council Monday night agreed to issue a notice to terminate the contract with Health Claims Plus. Both Interim City Manager Larry Shaw and Fire Chief Fred Collins recommended the change. The contract requires a 90-day period before it is formally ended. Monday night council approved an agreement with A/R Concepts out of San Antonio, a company specializing in EMS billing and collections.

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Shooting Sports: The Liberty County 4-H shooting sports team took home a sting of medals at the state championships. Jacob Hill paired with Bryant Nugent won the state championship in two-man team American skeet. Also capturing gold was Caleb hill who won the intermediate division class b trap.

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Baby Parade: Less than two weeks remain to register for the annual Trinity Valley Exposition Baby Parade. Set for Saturday October 10, this year's baby parade, dating back to the early 1900's, will have the theme "Old Westerns". This long running tradition is for kids from birth through kindergarten. The deadline to enter is Thursday October 8. For information, call Becky Brand at 936 334 9687.

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UT and Houston: The University of Texas Longhorns host U.T. El Paso in Big 12 college football action Saturday afternoon with a 2:30 kick off. KSHN will air the game starting with the pre-game at 1:30. On Sunday the Houston Texas are at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Listen to the game starting with the noon kick off on KSHN.

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Funeral: Bobbie G. Moore, 80 of Dayton. Services tomorrow 2 p.m. at Mt. Rose Baptist Church - Liberty.

**************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 12,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 14.57 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 181 THURSDAY, SEPT. 24, 2009

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Mother Guilty: The capital murder trial of a Cleveland woman for the death of her one-year-old daughter ended yesterday with a guilty verdict. 75th District Judge C. T. "Rusty" Hight found Charlsy Spencer, 27, guilty of inflicting injuries that resulted in the death of Kiyani Lashay Lewis in October 2008. The conviction carries a sentence of life without parole.

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TVE Clean-up: The 2009 Trinity Valley Exposition is almost here, and volunteers are gathering this Saturday at 8 a.m. for a clean-up weekend at the fairgrounds. If needed, they will return on Sunday. TVE President Donny Smith said volunteers will help with painting, ground work, shoveling, mowing, welding and just sprucing up for the annual livestock show, fair and rodeo. For information, call the TVE office at 936-336-7455.

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Doctor Khine: Internal Medicine Specialist Dr. Danny Khine has arranged for all of the local pharmacies to refill his patients' maintenance prescriptions for the next six months. This does not include narcotic medications. Dr. Khine and Dr. Khan both practiced medicine at the now closed Liberty-Dayton Community Hospital. Dr. Khan has accepted a position elsewhere but Dr. Khine is trying to stay in the community.

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Golf Tourney: First Baptist Church of Liberty is honoring the memory of its former pastor of 24 years, the late Jerry Johnson, with the establishment of a scholarship fund. To help raise money, they are holding the Jerry D. Johnson Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament on October 3 at Magnolia Ridge Country Club. The four-person scramble is $75 a person, and all ages are welcome. Hole sponsorships at $50. For information, call Ron Davis at 936-336-6881.

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Football: The Liberty Panthers open district play at Splendora tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. Dayton has a 7 p.m. kick off at home against Baytown Memorial. Hull-Daisetta hosts High Island at 7:30 p.m. Friday. Tarkington is at home against Shepherd, also 7:30. Anahuac is at Deweyville at 7:30. Barbers Hill hosts C. E. King at 7 Friday night. Hardin and Cleveland are off.

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Funeral: Joyce Ann Parmer, 66, of Hardin. Service today at 2 p.m. at Allison Funeral Service in Liberty.

**************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 12,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 13.22 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 180 WEDNESDAY SEPT. 23 2009

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Hospital District: More than 30 people attended the Liberty County Hospital District board meeting Monday night. Board President Bruce Stratton said the board was exploring every option to see what can be done about a hospital facility in the area, with the continuing long term goal of building a new facility. Yesterday afternoon some 25 to 30 former employees of the hospital showed up at the old emergency room door with the understanding they would be receiving their final pay check. Hospital administrator Dan Yancy told employees and KSHN radio he was "the captain of nothing" and didn't have answers for the employees.

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Commissioners: Liberty County Commissioners again tabled the adoption of a county ethics policy. Karen McNair, Assistant County Attorney said they do have a rough draft however a workshop was in order to hammer out the details. Commissioners agreed they would soon schedule one and the matter was tabled.

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LCSO Grants: The Liberty County Sheriff's Department has been awarded two technology improvement grants totaling more than $87,000. Community Development Coordinator Dennis Odell said the money was used to buy five 700-800 megahertz radios and 17 digital dash cams. In addition, the sheriffs department has applied for another grant for additional dash cams plus a digital fingerprint and palm scanner.

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Global Tubing VP: DPS reports indicate Rodney G. Bond may have been traveling at an unsafe speed last Friday morning when he lost control of his vehicle on FM 565 in Chambers County. The car crashed and caught fire. Bond - the Vice President of Operations for Global Tubing in Dayton- was pronounced dead by Chambers County Justice of the Peace Larry Cryer. The accident remains under investigation.

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Funeral: Marcille Elizabeth (Benton) Broussard, 96 of Dayton. Services 10 a.m. Friday at Sterling Funeral Home in Dayton. Cheryl Ann Bridgeman May, 51 of Hardin. Graveside services Saturday 2 pm at East Sandy Cemetery in New Waverly. Rodney G. Bond, Services at 2 p.m. Thursday at Rosewood Funeral Home in Humble.

**************************************************** *LAKE RELEASE: 12,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 11.22 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 179 TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 22 2009

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Hospital Repercussions: Several issues became public knowledge with last Friday's hospital closure that prompts the question of possible criminal implications for the owners of the facility. It is alleged; that for several months, federal income taxes and social security money have been withheld from employees' pay yet not paid to the IRS. The IRS, under employee tax penalty and fraud procedures says; fraud may exist where a taxpayer willfully attempts to illegally under report or does not pay taxes. It says for a taxpayer to be guilty of a crime, that person must have acted deliberately with specific intent to violate the law. Whether or not the actions of Frontier Health Care were willful or simply poor management is a question the Internal Revenue Service will determine.

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Clean Up: The Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge will sponsor its annual clean up event at the Highway 105 bridge this Saturday morning from 9 to 11. This local event is held in conjunction with the 16th Annual National Public Lands Day. Refuge Manager Stuart Marcus said the event is designed to remove trash and educate participants about the environment and recycling. Volunteers are encouraged to bring their own work gloves and closed toe shoes.

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College Day: Liberty High School is sponsoring a "Knowledge for College" night this Thursday from 6-8 pm in the high school cafeteria. LHS Counselor Charlotte Goudeau said representatives from about 15 different two and four-year colleges would be on hand along with military recruiters. Ms. Goudeau said students from all area school districts are invited.

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Police Academy: The Liberty Police Department will hold a citizen police academy beginning Tuesday September 29. Classes will meet at the Liberty Center Tuesday evenings from 6-9 pm. According to academy coordinator Liberty Police Officer Hugh Bishop, the academy is a chance for those who live or work in the city to get a better understanding of the mission and operations of the Liberty PD. For information, call Academy Coordinator Hugh Bishop at 936 336 5666.

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Funeral: Joseph R. Zimmerly, 71 of Dayton. Memorial service tomorrow 10 a.m. at Pace-Stancil Funeral Home in Dayton.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 9,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 7.75 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 178 MONDAY, SEPT. 21, 2009

Hospital Closes: Liberty-Dayton Community Hospital has closed after nearly 60 years of service in Liberty. Frontier Managing Partner Albert Schwarzer made the announcement on KSHN just hours before closing its doors at 5 p.m. Friday. He cited debt in excess of $3 million. Liberty Hospital District Board President Bruce Stratton said the local board is already working to provide a transition hospital facility in Liberty. The district board will meet at 6 p.m. today at their offices on Fannin. Quality Health Care at 2718 Main Street has extended its hours from 8 a.m. to midnight to help meet some of the local health needs necessitated by the closing. Their number is 336 -3616.

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Businessman Dies: Liberty businessman Wesley John Dossey, the 45-year-old owner of Barrett's Upholstery in Liberty, died Saturday. Wes reportedly was riding on a golf cart with his wife, Kathleen, and two friends on Industrial Road when he fell and struck his head. The injury wasn't thought to be serious, but when he later collapsed, Wes Dossey was taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital where he died around 4 a.m. Saturday.

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LISD Elections: Liberty ISD trustees are considering changing the way board members get elected. Currently, LISD trustees serve at-large, but during their upcoming Oct. 20 meeting, members will consider action to start the process of electing members by position. Liberty trustees up for reelection in May of 2010 are President Lloyd Pierce and long-time board member June Jackson. LISD Legal Counsel Randy Gunter told trustees if they change the system, it is permanent and future boards would not have the option of going back to at-large voting. Any change must receive U.S. Department of Justice approval.

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Football Results: Kirbyville topped Liberty Friday 37-0. Now, the 1-3 Panthers travel to Splendora this Friday for their first District 22-3A contest starting at 7:30. Dayton pounded Kingwood Park Saturday 48-12. Next up for the 2-1 Broncos is homecoming this Friday against Goose Creek Memorial. Kickoff is set for 7. Also last Friday, Hardin beat Trinity 48-6. Kountze eked by Hull-Daisetta 10-7. Little Cypress Mauriceville beat Cleveland 39-36, and Orangefield shutout Tarkington 52-0.

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Funeral: Wesley John Dossey, 45, of Liberty. Service Tuesday at 2 p.m. at FUMC. Visitation today, 5-8, at AFS Liberty.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 7,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.29 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 177 FRIDAY, SEPT. 18, 2009

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Raid: The Dayton Police Department working with several other law enforcement agencies raided two Dayton convenience stores yesterday and arrested three men for the promotion of illegal gambling. Dayton Police Sgt. John Coleman said they would disable the machines rather than seize the eight gambling devices. Arrested at the Dayton Drive-Thru was John Pittapilli-Varkey, age 66. Two men were arrested at the Exxon station and they were Mohammad Azam, 29 and Lakhvir Singh, 24. Both stores have reopened.

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Discovery: Former Dayton student and current Lamar University Geology Student Jordan Mika, along with James Burnes of Fred, Texas recently discovered a rare rhino calf jaw fossil while on what is called 'a half ton test sample excavation" at Texas Memorial Museum fossil site in Laredo along the south Texas border. Jim Westgate, Lamar University Professor estimated the remains are 40-46 million years old. He said the find is considered quite rare. It is only the second jaw of its kind found in North American coastal plain sediments.

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Hornet Stadium: The Hardin Independent School District is holding a ribbon cutting this evening for their newly renovated Hornet Football stadium. This special event will be this evening starting at 7 pm. The dedication and ribbon cutting will be followed by kick off for the Hardin Hornet / Trinity Tigers game. Following the game there will be a fireworks display. The public is invited to attend.

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Football Broadcasts: The Liberty Panthers are at home for the first time this season tonight as they host the Kirbyville Wildcats. That game kicks off at 7:30 with our broadcast team taking to the airwaves at 7:20 this evening on KSHN. The Hull-Daisetta Bobcats travel to Kountze. That game can be heard live online. Go to www.kshn.com, click on the Bobcats link. The Dayton Broncos play tomorrow night in Kingwood in a game that will be broadcast live on KSHN 99.9. Kick off is at 6 p.m.

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Funerals: Patrick Christopher Hughes, 36 of Thicket. Services tomorrow 2 p.m. at Votaw Worship Center. John E. Spellman, 49 of Dayton. Services today 10 a.m. at First Baptist Church in Dayton.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 9.44 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 176 THURSDAY, SEPT. 17, 2009

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Reinstated Cases Upheld: A visiting judge in the Liberty County Court at Law has denied at least one motion to dismiss controversial DWI cases. The cases pending against Glenn Vickery and Shaun Lane, initially dismissed by County Judge Phil Fitzgerald in December 2008, were later reinstated by County Court at Law Judge Don Taylor. Attorneys for Vickery and Lane had argued the prior county attorneys office reached an agreement, and the law prohibited new county attorney Wes Hinch from taking further action. Motions to dismiss the two DWI cases were filed for Judge Patrice McDonald to review. Yesterday, Judge McDonald ruled in pre-trial action to deny the motion to dismiss the DUI case against Glenn Vickery, and though not confirmed, it appears the motion to dismiss for Shaun Lane was also quashed. Pre-trail appearance date is s set for Oct. 5th with a tentative trial date of October 12th.

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LISD First Rating: The Liberty Independent School District has earned a superior rating through the Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas – known as FIRST. LISD Scored 80 out of 85 on the 24 different indicators used to evaluate the financial systems and practices of all districts across the state. The superior rating is the highest under the statewide financial accountability system.

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Family Dollar Move: The Family Dollar variety store of Liberty is now in its new location, just doors north of their old spot in the North Main Shopping Center. Family Dollars' new space sits between Thrif-Tee Food Center and Rent-A-Center on North Main in Liberty. Store Training Manager Dana Deville called the new, larger location a concept renewal store. Family Dollar will have its official grand opening October 3.

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Football: Tomorrow night, the Liberty Panthers host the Kirbyville Wildcats in their first home game of the season. Hardin will host Trinity and Hull-Daisetta is on the road at Kountze. Cleveland will host Little Cypress Mauriceville while Tarkington travels to Orangefield. Barbers Hill is at Galena Park and Anahuac hosts Hitchcock. The Dayton Broncos take to the field Saturday at 6 pm @ Kingwood Park. Saturday the University of Texas takes on Texas Tech and on Sunday, the Houston Texans are on the field against the Tennessee Titans.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 9.44 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 175 WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 16, 2009

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Bank Expanding: Security State Bank of Anahuac is opening a branch location in Liberty. Bank President and CEO Gary Vandeventer said the family-owned, community bank has purchased a 2.5 acres tract of undeveloped land from the old Liberty-Dayton GM Autoworld at 1302 N. Main St. in Liberty. Plans call for raising the elevation before locating a temporary modular building, which includes drive-thru services, at the location until a permanent facility can be built. The new branch already has received approval from state and federal regulators. Security State Bank has deposits totaling about $72 million.

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Dayton City Council: The Dayton City Council met Monday night and made short work of a lengthy agenda. Council handled several maters of routine business, including reappointing Mayor Pro-Tem Frosty Pruitt as the city's representative to the Houston-Galveston Area Council General Assembly. Councilman Felix Skarpa was named as the alternate delegate. Council also voted to re-nominate local farmer and businessman Buddy Janacek to another term on the agricultural advisory board of the Liberty County Central Appraisal District. The CAD board of directors will make the final determination on who serves on the AG advisory board.

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School Enrollment: The post Labor Day school enrollment numbers from districts in Liberty County show 14,758 students in attendance countywide. That is an increase of 329 students from the same period last year. The biggest change is within Cleveland ISD, which had 3,739 students on Monday. That is up 124 kids from the same day last year. The largest school district in the county is Dayton with 4,870 students. That is an increase of 77 from last year. Tarkington enrollment numbers show an additional 63 students, while Hardin is also up by 42 from last year. Liberty ISD has an increase of 32 students from last year's post Labor Day tally. Hull-Daisetta which had a drop of 36 students.

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Power Outage: A problem at Sam Houston Electric Cooperative's Hardin Substation caused a four-hour power outage in that area Monday evening. Mary Kay Scott, spokesperson for Sam Houston Electric said the company is still trying to determine the exact cause.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 9.66 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 174 TUESDAY, SEPT. 15, 2009

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Debris Removal: Comparing the cost for Hurricane Ike debris removal in four area counties, Harris County paid the least at $15.78 per cubic yard while Chambers County paid the most at $30.97. Galveston County paid an average of $22.40, and Liberty County was charged an average of $23.75 per cubic yard. Dennis Odell, Liberty County liaison to FEMA, said Harris County benefited from having a debris removal contract in plac having a debris removal contract in place prior to last September's massive storm. Now, Liberty County Attorney Wes Hinch's office is developing a contract so Liberty County can get a more favorable rate after the next natural disaster strikes.

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Chamber Luncheon: Tomorrow's monthly luncheon of the Liberty Dayton area Chamber of Commerce will feature officials with the Trinity Valley Exposition. They will highlight the upcoming 101st Liberty County Fair set for October 9th – 17th. Los Compadres of Dayton will cater Wednesday's $8 Chamber meal. For information or reservations, call 336-5736.

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T.V.E Rodeo Pageant: Entries are being accepted for this year's T.V.E Rodeo Pageant for girls ages 3-14. Registration is $30 or $45 for girls also entering the photogenic contest. Entry forms and rules are available on the T.V.E. website. Go to www.kshn.com and click on upcoming events.

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Inmate Phone Scam: An inmate collect call scam is again making the rounds. A person calls the victim collect, often claiming to have information about an inmate, when the call is accepted; the crooks can then capture the victim's phone number. They then make personal calls that will be charged to the victim. Experts say if you receive a collect call from someone you do not recognize, do not accept the call.

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Burn Ban Expires: The countywide burn ban signed by Liberty County Judge Phil Fitzgerald in June expired at midnight Sunday. However, those who wish to burn in unincorporated areas of Liberty County are urged to use caution, as the recent rains have not significantly reduced the fire danger.

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Funerals: Raymond Arvil Waldrop, 92 of Liberty. Services tomorrow at 10 a.m. at Pace-Stancil Funeral Home in Dayton.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 9.84 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 173 MONDAY, SEPT. 14, 2009

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Burglary Suspects: Police say two Dayton residents arrested on drug charges over the weekend may be responsible for a recent string of burglaries involving theft of cigarettes. Dayton Officer Shane Burleigh arrested Dayton residents Gary Smesny, 47, and Amber Reynolds, 23, for possession of a controlled substance, cocaine, following an early Saturday morning traffic stop. Police say the pair had burglary tools in the vehicle and are considered suspects in a string of burglaries in Liberty and Dayton.

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Tax Revenue Down: Sales tax collections across Texas are down for the seventh month in a row as the recession continues to deepen in the state. Texas Comptroller Susan Combs reports collections across the state in August were down a whopping 12.5 percent. Summing up the situation in Liberty County, the cities of Cleveland, Liberty and North Cleveland have all experienced increases in sales tax allocations this year while all the other Liberty County towns are down.

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Roadwork: Rainy weather in recent days has interrupted efforts by Texas Department of Transportation to do roadwork near the intersection of U.S. 90 and S.H. 146 in Dayton. That work is now set for today and tomorrow from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. If the weather cooperates, road construction will take place on a two-mile stretch of S.H. 146 from the intersection of U.S. 90 south past Woodrow Wilson Junior High School. Drivers should expect traffic flow to be interrupted since there will only be two-way traffic with no turn lane. TxDOT officials say to watch for flagmen and proceed with caution.

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Football Results: Liberty fell to Orangefield 48-27 Friday night. Now, the 1-2 Panthers will play their first home game this Friday against the Kirbyville Wildcats. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. The 1-1 Dayton Broncos had this past weekend off. Now, they travel to Kingwood Park for a Saturday night game starting at 6. KSHN will broadcast that game, then pickup the Texas Longhorns in progress. Hull-Daisetta also had this past week off. In other action, Shepherd topped Hardin 41-20. Cleveland pounded Huntington 45-2 while Buna defeated Tarkington 35-7.

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Funerals: Nelda Ruth Cantrell, 77. Graveside in Sweeney, Texas. Visitation today from 6 to 8 p.m. at AFS in Liberty.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 9.96 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 172 FRIDAY, SEPT. 11, 2009

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Water Restrictions: The City of Anahuac has enacted what they describe as "stage one" of its water rationing policy. City administrator Mary Chambers said residents should not use water for non-essential purposes. Residents should not fill swimming pools, water lawns or wash cars. Ms. Chambers said this is necessitated by long running drought conditions and will be in effect through Sunday.

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Comp Time: Liberty County Sheriff Henry Patterson said one of the big issues his department is dealing with is accumulated compensatory time. That is the amount of money owed employee's of the sheriffs department for accrued overtime, vacation leave and sick time. Sheriff Patterson said when he took office January 1 there was more than $341,000 owed his staff that the county is obligated for either with time off or pay.

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City Website: The City of Liberty has introduced a new and improved website that is full of useful information on the city and its services. Matt Lanier, with A-1 Tel-Com of Liberty developed the site. He said this updated site contains about three times the information of the previous version. To access the new site go to our homepage www.kshn.com and click on the government link to find the city's logo.

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Local Kids Doing Well: Former Dayton Bronco AJ Dugat in his first ever collegiate game, caught two passes at his wide receiver post for the Houston Cougars, picking up 42 yards for the Cougars in the 55-7 victory. Cody Green, picked up some quality playing time in the fourth quarter as backup quarterback for the Nebraska Cornhuskers. In that appearance the former Bronco went 2 for 3 passing and picked up 50 yards rushing on two carries. He was brought down on the 16 yard line and ended up diving in for his first of what some think will be many college touchdowns.

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Friday Night Football: The Barbers Hill Eagles are at home hosting Cypress Ranch. That is a 7 p.m. kick off. The Liberty Panthers are on the road against Orangefield.

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Funerals: Billy James McClung, 84 of Anahuac. Services Monday 11 a.m. at First United Methodist Church in Liberty.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.77 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 171 THURSDAY, SEPT. 10, 2009

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Remains: Skeletal remains were discovered in southern Chambers County shortly after 3 p.m. Tuesday. Chambers County Sheriff Joe Larive said officials believe the remains are those of one of four people still missing from the Bolivar Peninsula after Hurricane Ike. A medical examiner will have to determine whether the victim was a male or female due to the extensive decomposition. The only immediately identifying trait indicates the deceased had previously suffered a skull fracture in the area of the left eye because those bones had been pieced back together with surgical wire. Anyone with information on these remains, thought to be those of a victim of Hurricane Ike, should call the Chambers County Sheriff's Office at 409-267-2518.

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Child Safety Seats: Both the Liberty and Dayton police departments will hold child safety seat check-up events in coming days. The purpose is to check for proper installation of child safety seats and provide hands-on education from a Certified Child Safety Seat Technician. They will also check seats for recalls and expiration. The Liberty child safety seat check-up is Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at Wal-Mart on the bypass. The Dayton check-up is next Wednesday, Sept. 16, from 9 to noon in the Thrif-tee Food Center parking lot.

***************************************************American Legion: The longtime home of Dayton American Legion Post #512 on FM 1960 has sold, and a new facility for the Legionaries will be built on approximately 4.5 acres just north of Palms Memorial Park on State Highway 146. The land was donated by the Sterling Family Trust, and plans for a new building are in the design phase. A groundbreaking ceremony for the new post is set for Veteran's Day, Nov. 11, at 4 p.m.

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Football: This Friday night, the Liberty Panthers travel to Orangefield. Hardin is at Shepherd. Cleveland goes to Huntington and Tarkington hosts Buna. Anahuac is at Concordia Lutheran and Barbers Hill hosts Cypress Branch. Listen to the Panthers on KSHN 99.9 or online at www.kshn.com. The Dayton Broncos and Hull Daisetta Bobcats have the week off.

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Funerals: Gary Gene Anderson, 58 of Huntsville. Memorial service Sunday at 2 p.m. at Allison Funeral Service. Hazel Marie Thomas, 87. Arrangements private through AFS.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.67 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 170 WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 9, 2009

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Fireworks in Courthouse: Liberty County Judge Phil Fitzgerald and 253rd District Judge Chap Cain had a very public disagreement yesterday morning over the proposed 2010 county budget. The county judge is the budget officer and proposes the budget for operating the county. In the case of Liberty County, the fiscal year budget is October 1 through September 30. Judge Cain objected to what he considered a cut in the pay for his staff, while Judge Fitzgerald said, in the case of the bailiff; it was simply moving money from one line item to another. The disagreement got so contentious at one point Judge Fitzgerald told Judge Cain he would have the sheriff remove the district judge from the courtroom. However, that threat was not tested by either party.

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Liberty Library Computers: According to Library Director Dana Abshire, one of the benefits of the expansion of the library will be the addition of more computers. Since 2000, the library has provided public access computers, and those computers have proven to be very popular. The head librarian said for the month of July this year, 1,119 people used the computers and logged in 1,033 hours of use. Once the expansion is completed, the library will more than double the number of computers from 10 to 27.

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Archery Hunt Lottery: The deadline to enter the Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge's lottery drawing for the 23-day archery only season for big game is this Saturday, September 12. To register or view other hunting opportunities go to our homepage www.kshn.com and click on the Trinity River Refuge logo on our front page.

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Liberty ISD Computer Classes: The Liberty School District will have evening community computer classes for anyone interested. The classes will be broken up into two sessions, the first starts Monday Sept. 21 and is held five consecutive Monday evenings. The second session starts Oct. 26, taking four Mondays evenings. For information, call 336-6483 ext. 244.

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Funerals: Wallace Lee Herndon, 83. Services today 2 p.m. at Allison Funeral Service in Liberty. Mary Ruth Osburn Webb, 88 of Dayton. Services tomorrow 10 a.m. at Pace-Stancil Funeral Home Chapel.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.63 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 169 TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2009

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Hardin Meeting: Liberty County Judge Phil Fitzgerald said Thursday's town hall meeting should clear up misunderstandings involving the proposed 60-unit apartment complex planned off Hwy 146 North. Judge Fitzgerald said economic concerns prompted changes in the original plan to build an assisted living facility for senior citizens there, but rumors the complex would be for low-income residents only are untrue. The meeting is at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Hardin High School Cafeteria.

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Burn Ban: As we regularly report, Liberty County remains under a burn ban, and Sheriff Henry Patterson says his deputies are issuing citations. The Keetch-Byram Fire Threat Index for Liberty County is considered high, ranging from a low of 600 to a high around 700 as of Monday. Historically, commissioners have enacted a burn ban when that index is above 595. A reminder, you can be held liable for damage caused to your neighbor's property if a fire you started gets out of control.

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Employment Outlook: Employers in the Houston-Baytown region expect to hire at a moderate pace during the fourth quarter of 2009 - that according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey. The situation is less favorable in the Beaumont-Port Arthur area where hiring at a slower pace is expected. Job prospects are best region wide in nondurable goods manufacturing plus business and professional services. Industries with the dimmest prospects include construction, transportation and utilities, plus wholesale and retail trades.

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Citizen Police Academy: The Liberty Police Department plans a new 10-week Citizen Police Academy beginning Tuesday, September 29. Classes will meet at the Liberty Center Tuesdays from 6 to 9 p.m. Officer Hugh Bishop said in addition to helping citizens increase their knowledge of the police department, the academy will help the department better understand citizens and their concerns. The academy is open to those who are least 21 years old who live or work in Liberty. Applications are available at Liberty PD or City Hall. For information, call 936-336-5666.

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Funerals: Kathryn Eloise Miler, 94, formerly of Liberty. Graveside at 10 a.m. Wednesday in Fairlawn Cemetery. Visitation 5 to 8 p.m. today at Allison Funeral Service.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.57 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 168 FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 4 2009

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Cell Phone Signs: A check with all seven school districts in Liberty County revealed there are currently no signs posted anywhere warning of the law banning use of hands free cell phones in school zones. House Bill 55 allows a defense to prosecution if the required signage was not posted at the entrance of the school zone. Nevertheless, it is always safer to put the cell phone down, especially in school zones.

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Dayton Civic Center: The Dayton Civic Center construction project is rolling right along with a projected completion date of early next year. The more than 45,000 square feet is under roof and walled in. During a recent tour for the Dayton Rotary Club, Mayor Steve Stephens said the 500 kw generator will allow for the building use during disaster situations. The generator will power the senior citizen center, a couple of smaller rooms, and the bath and kitchen area so law enforcement, national guard and other groups and organizations can be air conditioned with a level of comfort while helping citizens.

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New City Hall: Recently a ribbon cutting was held in Daisetta for the new city hall. A metallic building of 2500 square feet, the new facility is across FM 770 from the old one that was heavily damaged by Hurricane Ike. Inside the new Daisetta City Hall visitors will find an attractive and well-furnished building, with council chambers, city court, and police department offices.

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Tuesday Speech: Liberty ISD and Dayton ISD have indicated they will post the Tuesday speech to school children by the president online for parents to decide whether or not to view the remarks with their children. It will not be carried live in either district. LISD said they would have it available on their website on Wednesday September 9th, the day after the speech.

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Closed for Labor Day: Monday is Labor Day and the Liberty County Courthouse as well as city office in Liberty and Dayton will be closed for the holiday. Waste management garbage service will not run Monday and banks and post offices will also be closed.

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Funerals: Brennon Bellard, 46 of Athens. Graveside services today at 11 a.m. in Magnolia Park Cemetery in Dayton.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.57 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 167 THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 3 2009

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Liberty City Council: Liberty City Council Tuesday night held two very brief public hearings on the new budget and new tax rate. No one from the public attending the hearings. Council afterward went into another budget workshop meeting. They are scheduled to adopt the budget and tax rate at their next meeting on Tuesday September 8. After an executive session of around 50 minutes discussing applicants for the office of city manager, council in open session took no action.

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Parent Connect: The parent information system for Dayton ISD, Parent Connect, has been discontinued by the district. Director of Technology for DISD Suzanne Chacere said they are going to the Skyward system instead. Some issues with transferring the information from one system to the other has delayed the program being implemented, however, once the system is in place, parents will again have secure access to information about their children in the Dayton School District.

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Texas Gatorfest 2009: Cancelled last year due to Hurricane Ike, this year the Texas Gatorfest is back better than ever. Sara Cerrone said the event kicks off Friday September 11, runs through the 13 with carnival rides, petting zoo, and assorted vendors with foods of all types, airboat rides, live entertainment and much more. Tickets are $10 for adults $5 for students, seniors and members of the military. You can get them at the gate or online. Go to www.kshn.com and click on the upcoming events link for a link to Texas Gatorfest 2009.

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High School Football: This Friday night has the Dayton Broncos at home for a match up with Friendswood with a kick off at 7 p.m. Meanwhile the Liberty Panthers are back on the road traveling to Hamshire Fannett for a battle with the Longhorns. That game kicks off at 7:30. Both games will be broadcast live on KSHN via our split channel sports. The Hull Daisetta Bobcats are hosting the Tenaha Tigers at 7:30. That game will be broadcast online. Go to www.kshn.com and click on the Bobcats' logo on the top of our front page.

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Lady Broncos: The Dayton Lady Broncos Volleyball team Tuesday, downed the Liberty Lady Panthers 25-13, 25-12, and 25-12. They face Santa Fe in tournament play today - Saturday.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.59 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 166 WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 2 2009

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Hardin Special Meeting: The public is invited to a town hall meeting Thursday September 10 at 7 p.m. at the Hardin High School Cafeteria for information on a proposal to build a 60 unit apartment complex off Hwy. 146 in Hardin. The proposed complex has apparently generated many questions among Hardin citizens and Hardin officials. County Housing Authority Director Willie Carter, had told Hardin officials for some time that plans were to locate an assisted living facility for senior citizens on property adjacent to the Kids Etc. Day Care Center. However at a meeting with Hardin City Council, he said those plans had changed, and the complex would be at least partly to provide for low-income housing. That town hall meeting is Thursday September 10 in the Hardin high school cafeteria starting at 7 p.m.

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School Numbers: The most recent numbers from school districts across Liberty County show 14,521 students in attendance countywide. That is an increase of 125 students from the same period last year. School districts across Liberty County with increases include Cleveland, Dayton, Devers, Hardin and Tarkington. Liberty ISD and Hull-Daisetta ISD both show slight declines in attendance compared to last year.

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Cash for Clunkers: Consumers quickly gobbled up the $3 billion available through the federal government's Cash for Clunkers program. The 30-day incentive to trade older vehicles on new fuel-efficient models lasted July 25 through August 24. Now, dealerships across the nation and locally are waiting on the government to reimburse these allowances. The government originally said that process would take 10 days, but that timeline has been extended to 30 days. Liberty-Dayton Chrysler has been reimbursed for 10 percent of the deals it handled. BJ Ford has not received any government reimbursements so far. Combined, the dealers are still waiting on more than $100,000 from the federal government's Cash for Clunkers program.

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Email Virus: Be careful opening your email. An email making the rounds has attached a Trojan virus. It says it is from Western Union about a money transfer, but when you open the attached document for instructions on claiming your funds, a Trojan horse virus can be released into your computer. A Trojan virus can allow a hacker access to your computer files.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.63 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 165 TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 1 2009

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Burn Ban Continues: Liberty County remains under a burn ban after commissioners voted unanimously Monday morning to continue prohibiting outdoor burning in unincorporated areas. Liberty County Fire Marshal Jim Wilson provided commissioners with a map from the Texas Forest Service that showed as of Monday morning, the Keetch-Byram Fire Threat index for Liberty County is considered high, ranging from 617 to 737. Historically, commissioners have enacted a burn ban when the index goes above 595.

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Electrocution Kills Saratoga Man: Hardin Co. Justice of the Peace Kenneth Enloe said it appears Michael Stanley was electrocuted Sunday morning while working on an oilfield pump in Batson. Passers by found the 27-year-old dead around 10:20 Sunday morning. Hardin County Sheriff's Department conducted the investigation. Michael Stanley was an oilfield worker with B.H.B. Operating of Batson.

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No Cell Phones: Here is a reminder. As of today, it is illegal to use hand held cell phones or any type of hand held wireless communications device in a school zone while operating a motor vehicle. This new class C misdemeanor can result in a fine up to $200 and the law includes drivers sending text messages as well as talking on cell phones. This applies only to hand held not hands free devices.

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Hunger Buster: The Liberty ISD's summer meal program "Hunger Buster" was a big success, serving more than 21,000 lunches to hungry kids in Liberty over the summer months. The federally funded program was implemented through a partnership with the Liberty Independent School District, area churches and the Texas Agri-Life Extension agency. Doreen Charlton, Director of Food Services at LISD said the program served an average of about 450 meals each day with a daily high of more than 700 free lunches passed out to hungry kids.

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Funerals: Michael Dewayne Stanley, 27 of Saratoga. Services tomorrow at 2 p.m. at Faith and Family Funeral Service in Batson. Heaven Leigh Nichols, Infant daughter of Patrick and Paula Nichols. Services tomorrow at noon at Faith and Family Funeral Service in Batson.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.69 ASL*

VOLUME 24 NO. 164 MONDAY AUGUST 31 2009

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DWI Cases: KSHN has reported on several DWI cases dismissed the final day of 2008 by County Judge Phil Fitzgerald. The cases were reinstated earlier this year by Judge Don Taylor. On Friday, visiting Judge Patrice McDonald heard arguments from the lawyers of Glen Vickery and Shaun Lane. The defendant's lawyers argued that the law precludes a new county attorney from prosecuting a case that a prior administration dismissed through an agreement. Judge McDonald is reviewing the arguments before issuing a ruling on the motion. Pending that ruling, the cases are set for pre-trial Sept. 16.

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Workforce Academy: The heralded Liberty County Workforce Academy continues to grow in number and success. Academy Director Tim Gassiott said the program, now in its third year, has enrolled a record 360 students for the fall. The academy offers night classes for juniors and seniors in high school plus adults looking to expand their career opportunities. Although the fall semester is under way, there are still openings in the welding class and the criminal justice class. For information, call Tim Gassiott at 258-2510, ext 4115.

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Survivor: A Dayton man is among the 20 contestants on the upcoming television season of Survivor. According to the CBS website, 36-year-old Russell Hantz is the owner of an oilfield company in Dayton. The new season of the television reality show begins Sept. 17 at 7 p.m Central Time on CBS.

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Pine Trees: Liberty County Extension Agent Ron Holcomb said ongoing dry conditions in southeast Texas are stressing and killing pine trees. The extension agent is urging homeowners to water their pine trees with a soaker hose at the drip line each week. For information, call 936-336-4558, ext. 221.

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Football Scores: The high school football season opened last Friday. The Dayton Broncos downed Bay City 42-20 while the Liberty Panthers fell to Bridge City 23-15. Hardin won its home-opener 48-17 over Hull-Daisetta. Cleveland toppled Hardin-Jefferson 35-7, and Tarkington beat Huntington 14-7.

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Funerals: Patsy Ruth Baggett Davis, 76. Service today at 10 a.m. at Fairlawn Cemetery under direction of AFS.

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*LAKE RELEASE: 1,000 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 5.72 ASL*

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