VOLUME 26, NO. 186 FRIDAY, SEPT. 30, 2011

****************************************************

Night Out: This coming Tuesday is the annual National Night Out Against Crime. This year the Liberty Police Department is doing something different as part of the nationwide crime prevention awareness event. Police officers will be out in city neighborhoods visiting with residents, but the city will host a big block party Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at Liberty City Hall. Refreshments will be provided, and representatives from all of Liberty’s service departments will be involved along with law-enforcement.   

****************************************************

Prostate Screening: The Liberty-Dayton Regional Medical Center and KSHN Radio are teaming up tomorrow for the long-running, free prostate screening clinic. This clinic has not been held for the past two years as the hospital went through reorganization. This year’s clinic is tomorrow from 8 a.m. to noon in the hospital’s outpatient services clinic on North Travis in Liberty. The screenings will include the two recommended tests – a DRE and a blood draw. Hospital Administrator Vicky Gates said no pre-signups will be required; instead, the tests will be done on a first-come, first-served basis. Experts recommend both tests each year for men over age 40. Those experts also say it is even more important for those with a family history of cancer and for African American men to have these tests.

****************************************************

Football Action: Tonight’s high school football games mark the midway point of the schedule for most area gridiron squads. The 4-1 Liberty Panthers and 2-3 Hull-Daisetta Bobcats both reached that halfway point last week and have this weekend off. As for the 2-2 Dayton Broncos, they host the Galena Park Yellow Jackets at 3-1. Kickoff is 7 p.m. today in Dayton. For those who can’t be there, KSHN and kshn.com will broadcast that action. No split channel on FM 99.9 tonight. Also on kshn.com is the Barbers Hill versus Baytown Lee face-off. That game gets under way at 7 p.m. in Baytown. Turning to Hardin, the 2-2 Hornets are on the road at 3-1 Buna. Game time is 7 p.m.  

****************************************************

Tarkington Roundup: The 9th Annual Tarkington Round Up is tomorrow starting at 10 a.m. at the Tarkington Middle School on FM 163 south of Cleveland. The event features talent competition, a 5k run, food, vendor booths and games, all benefiting the non-profit Tarkington Student Foundation.    

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.69 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 185 THURSDAY, SEPT. 29, 2011

****************************************************

Letter Scam: Liberty Police Department has received reports from local citizens about letters notifying them that they have won a cash prize. Liberty police say these are scam letters that have citizens cashing forged checks. The letters are being sent from a company called North American/UK Consumer Compensation Draw. The letter states that the winning recipient has won $85,000 but that a non-resident tax of $1,950 must be paid before the whole prize is delivered. The crooks enclose a check for $3,750 with instructions to cash it and send the supposed tax money through Western Union to a location in Canada. Police say the check sent with the letter is a forged document, and when unsuspecting victims cash that check to send funds to Canada, they have committed the offense of forgery and are responsible for reimbursing the company that cashed the check. If you have questions regarding the validity of a winning notification, call Liberty PD at 936-336-5666.

****************************************************

Boomerang: Boomerang Tube of Liberty continues to grow and make improvements to its facility. We recently reported Boomerang will expand with another $40 million in added investments by the third-quarter of 2012. That will bring on about 50 new full-time job openings. Now, more progress is visible on the property on County Road 3361 in South Liberty. A large stretch of the company’s land in front of their 500,000-square-foot facility is cleared and paved for a new 200 car employee parking lot.

****************************************************

Splash Pad: Unseasonably high temperatures have prompted the City of Liberty to extend the season for the splash pad at Liberty Municipal Park. Avon Moore, the city’s community services director, said the popular water park will remain open every day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. until the weather improves.

****************************************************

Dayton Chamber: Dayton Chamber of Commerce’s monthly noon luncheon is coming up Tuesday at the Dayton Community Center. Speaker is Lynn Barrett, the new City of Dayton city planner. The $10 meal will be catered by The Branding Iron. For reservations, call the Dayton Chamber at 936-257-2393.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Gladys M. Broussard, 75, of Houston. Service is 11 a.m. Saturday at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Raywood.       

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.69 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 184 WEDNESDAY SEPT. 28, 2011

****************************************************

County Budget: Liberty County Commissioners adopted the county’s 2011-2012 fiscal year budget and corresponding tax rate Tuesday morning. The budget projects total expenditures of $33.89 million. That is down $4 million from the 2011-2012 budget of $37.9 million. The new fiscal plans will be funded with a tax rate of .56 cents per $100 in property valuation. That is the same tax rate in the current fiscal year’s budget. The newly adopted budget requires $4.8 million be taken out of the county’s reserves in order to balance. Liberty County’s fiscal year runs from October 1 through September 30, 2012.

****************************************************

Burn Ban: Liberty County Commissioners also extended the countywide burn ban Tuesday morning with a unanimous vote because of ongoing drought conditions. The U.S. Drought Monitor continues to show Liberty County in the exceptional range, which is the highest category.  The Keetch-Byram Index for our county is now in the 600 to 700 range. Liberty County Commissioners traditionally enact a burn ban when that number hits 545. As of yesterday, 250 out of 254 Texas counties had burn bans in place, including Liberty and Chambers counties.

****************************************************

Life Sentence: On May 3, Paul Best Sr. of Liberty pled guilty to aggravated assault. Last Wednesday, he received the maximum sentence of life in prison from 253rd District Judge Chap Cain. The 50-year-old admitted he was intoxicated when his vehicle hit a truck disabled on the side of U. S. 90 in November 2007. Matthew Kline, age 25, of Beaumont suffered serious injuries in that crash. Best’s previous felony conviction allowed the normal punishment range to be expanded to include the life sentence.     

****************************************************

Blood Drive: Each donation of blood has the potential to save three to four lives – that according to Susan Coulter, a recruiter with Lifeshare Blood Centers. Area residents will have the opportunity to give that gift of life tomorrow from 2 to 6 p.m. at First United Methodist Church of Liberty. For information call Dorothy Nettles at 936-298-2689.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Eric Cordova, 35, of Liberty. Service is 11 a.m. Saturday at Memory Gardens Funeral Home in Corpus Christi. A local reception is Monday from 4 to 7 p.m. at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Liberty.      

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.71 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 183 TUESDAY SEPT. 27, 2011

****************************************************

Employment Numbers: The unemployment rate showed improvement in both Liberty and Chambers counties during August; however, the percentage of jobless locally is still worse than both the national and statewide averages. The national jobless rate held steady at 9.1 percent in August. That is the latest reporting period for employment data. The statewide unemployment rate rose slightly to 8.5 percent. Texas Workforce Commission reports the unemployment rate in Liberty County is now 10.9 percent. That is better – down from 11.4 percent a month ago. The jobless rate for Chambers County is 10.1 percent compared to 10.8 percent the previous month. Incidentally, during the past year, the number of Liberty County residents with jobs increased by 477. That mirrors the number of employees hired at Boomerang Tube in the past 12 months.

****************************************************

Highway 90: One of Liberty County’s heaviest traveled highways has been slated for improvements. TxDOT officials report nearly 20 miles of U.S. 90 will soon be repaired and resurfaced. Crews also will be adding rumble strips in the center of the roadway to improve safety. The $3.4 million project will stretch from East Street in the City of Liberty to approximately 1.3 miles west of the Jefferson County line.

****************************************************

4-H Drill Team: The state-champion Liberty County 4-H Mounted Drill Team is recruiting new members. Kids interested in participating had been invited to attend the club’s annual kickoff business meeting tonight, but that meeting has now been CANCELED. The club is open to those between the ages of 9 and 18 as of Sept. 1, 2011. Participants must have a horse with a negative coggins test. For information, call Tommy Small at 936-402-3902 or the Extension office at 334-3230.

****************************************************

Golf Tourney: First Baptist Church of Liberty will hold its third Jerry D. Johnson Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament this Saturday at Magnolia Ridge County Club. Deadline to enter the four-person scramble is tomorrow. Cost is $75 per person. Hole sponsorships are available for $50. Call the church at 336-6881.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Howard L. Stone, 87, of Dayton. Service is 11 a.m. today at First United Methodist Church of Dayton.

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.77 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 182 MONDAY SEPT. 26, 2011

****************************************************

Fatality Accident: A fiery crash between a pickup truck and a concrete truck on U.S. 90 in Raywood Saturday morning resulted in the death of a 35-year-old Liberty man. DPS Trooper Eric Burse identified the victim as Eric Jason Cordova. He is the husband of Liberty County Extension Agent Alexis Cordova. That wreck shut down Highway 90 for nearly eight hours while the fire was extinguished, DPS investigated the accident, crews cleaned concrete off the roadway and the wreck cleared. The cement truck driver, Leonce Monroe, 38, of Beaumont, is in stable condition.

****************************************************

Fire: Firefighters from six volunteer departments battled a structure fire Saturday night up on the Tarkington Prairie. Tarkington Volunteer Fire Chief Dalton Gregory said his department was joined by volunteers from Dayton, Hwy. 321, Cypress Lakes, Plum Grove and Cleveland. He said a shed was completely destroyed. In addition, he said a mobile home is no longer inhabitable. Firefighters were able to save some possessions from inside that home. No injuries were reported.

****************************************************

Gambling Bust: Law enforcement raided three convenience stores Friday night. Daisetta police suspected gambling devices were in operation at all three. Those businesses raided include Daisetta Food Mart on Main Street in Daisetta. Also, Raywood Grocery Store at the corner of 160 and 770 plus Raywood Exxon on Highway 90 at 770. Fifteen arrest warrants were served for gambling charges. They also seized $12,000 in cash along with 12 mother boards, rendering the alleged gaming devices inoperable.

****************************************************

Football Recap: It was a tough start to their district gridiron schedules for both the Liberty Panthers and Dayton Broncos. Huffman-Hargraves beat Liberty 40-20. Barbers Hill toppled Dayton 31-24. Hardin won their Homecoming contest over Kountz 48-34. Deweyville downed Hull-Daisetta 42-16. Coldspring blasted Tarkington 68-8 while Cleveland beat Shepherd 38-15. It was Anahuac over Warren 48-13, and East Chambers was victorious against Woodville 21-9.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Fred Meek Calloway, 76, of Liberty. Services today at 3:30 p.m. in First United Methodist Church of Liberty.

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.79 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 181 FRIDAY SEPT. 23, 2011

****************************************************

Free Prostate Screening: The Liberty Dayton Regional Medical Center and KSHN Radio announce the long running free prostate screening clinic will resume October 1st. This clinic has not been held for the past two years as the hospital went through reorganization.  The clinic will be held October 1st in the hospital’s outpatient services clinic on North Travis in Liberty.  The clinic will include the two recommended tests. The screening will be offered from 8 am until noon. Hospital Administrator Vicky Gates said no pre-signups will be required.  The tests will be done on a first come first served basis. Experts recommend the tests each year for men over age 45. Recommendations are that it is even more important for those with a family history of cancer and for African American men to have these tests.

****************************************************

New Law: The term ‘sexting” refers to the sending and receiving of sexual images via communication devices. District Attorney Mike Little said a new law is intended to differentiate a type of behavior among juveniles from conduct that is similar by adults.  He said the new law protects minors from being prosecuted under the much more serious child pornography charges for “sexting” that an adult offender would face.

****************************************************

Football: It’s a big night for high school football teams in our area. Tonight’s games mark the start of the district portion of the schedule for most of the squads we cover. Tonight’s Dayton vs. Barbers Hill game will be broadcast both on 99.9 and online as will the Liberty vs. Huffman-Hargraves game. Broadcast on www.kshn.com via Teamline, will be Hardin vs. Kountze, Hull-Daisetta vs. Deweyville.

****************************************************

Searching for a Pup?: For those wanting to adopt a new pet, don’t forget the Liberty Animal Control Shelter. There are currently a number of dogs in need of good homes.  There are a variety of mix breeds in all sizes. There are also plenty of cats and kittens also looking for loving homes. The Liberty Animal Control Shelter is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday on Lakeland Drive behind the Liberty Fire Station. For information, call the Liberty Police Department at 336-5666.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Casey Wayne Senter, 23 of Cleveland. Services today at 2 p.m. in Calvary Baptist Church in Cleveland.

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 6.96 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 180 THURSDAY SEPT. 22, 2011

Warren No-Billed: Liberty County Assistant District Attorney Joe Warren was no-billed by the Liberty County Grand Jury yesterday.  Special Prosecutor Kelly Siegler presented the case against Joe Warren that included the charges of deadly conduct, aggravated assault, tampering with a witness and terroistic threat to the grand jury yesterday, and they returned the decision to no-bill the ADA. We reported at the time the charges were first filed by the Liberty County Sheriffs Department that their probable cause affidavit differed greatly from the reports taken by the Liberty Police Department at the time of the April 2010 incident.

****************************************************

LISD Bonds: Tuesday night, the Liberty ISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously to issue bonds in the amount of $2.5 million to use for district-wide renovations. These LISD M & O notes will be issued in coordination with the state’s qualified school construction bond program that is federally subsidized.  The total interest rate is 5.015 percent through the Royal Bank of Canada, who has agreed to buy the Liberty school bonds.  However, the federal subsidy pays the first 4.58 percent of the interest, meaning the remaining borrowing cost for LISD is about ½ of one percent.

****************************************************

Loser Pays: State Representative John Otto said the “loser pays” law allows judges to dismiss truly frivolous lawsuits early-on, before they tie up the court system and hopefully avoid some of the expense.  The legislation affects lawsuits filed for under $100,000 and after September 1st this year. 

****************************************************

Hunter Safety: The Liberty Police Department is offering a traditional hunter education course. The class dates are tomorrow from 7 to 10 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For information, contact Officer Josh Cummins at (936) 336-5666.

****************************************************

Lady Panthers Volleyball: The Liberty Lady Panthers Volleyball team defeated the Coldspring Lady Trojans Tuesday night. Liberty won that match in three straight games. Next up, the Lady Panthers host the Huffman-Hargrave Lady Falcons this Friday with varsity starting at 4:30.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Ora Gertrude Vanderhider, 97 of Abilene, formerly of Liberty. Graveside services today at 2 p.m. in Fairlawn Cemetery in Liberty.

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 7.01 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 179 WEDNESDAY SEPT. 21, 2011

****************************************************

Dayton Drops Tax Rate: The Dayton Council met Monday night and voted to approve a budget and property tax rate for the 2011-2012 fiscal year.  The Dayton council approved a budget of just under $8 million for the coming year while approving a significant drop in the tax rate. Dayton City Manger David Douglas said it was council’s intention to keep the city’s tax rate in line with the increase in property values.  The Dayton council approved lowering the tax rate from last year’s roughly 72 cents per $100 of assessed value to around 63 cents per $100 of assessed value.

****************************************************

Boomerang: We have already reported on the planned $45 million expansion of Boomerang Tubing in Liberty. Frank Jordan, past President of the Liberty Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce, reminds us the company only set down roots in Liberty in March 2010.  As of August 31st, there were nearly 500 employees in Liberty, and 72% of those were from the Liberty-Dayton area. That includes Hardin, Hull, Daisetta, Cleveland and other immediate surrounding communities. According to Frank Jordan, once the additional $45 million investment is completed, the company will have invested some $250 million in Liberty, making them both the largest property tax payer and largest electrical customer in the city.

 ***************************************************

Eversole Resigns: Harris County Pct 4 Commissioner Jerry Eversole has submitted his resignation effective October 1, after serving 20 years in that elected position.  That former Liberty County resident’s resignation comes as a second federal trial on corruption charges nears. Eversole’s first trial ended in a mistrial back in March.

****************************************************

Chamber: Today is the Liberty Dayton area chamber’s monthly luncheon.  Speakers will be from the upcoming TVE. Call the chamber office for reservations at 336-5736.

****************************************************

Obituaries: Alma Irene Lilley Alexander Jordan, 82 of Silsbee. Graveside services today at 4 p.m. in Big Sandy Cemetery. (F&F) Bobby Allen Lott, 59 of Dayton. Services tomorrow at noon Sterling Funeral Home – Dayton. Lois Janet Madden, 83 of Hardin. Services Saturday 10 a.m. Sterling Funeral Home – Dayton.

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS - LIBERTY BRIDGE: 7.03 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 178 TUESDAY SEPT. 20, 2011

****************************************************

Search and Rescue: The Liberty County Sheriff’s Department was involved in a search and rescue mission that began Sunday afternoon and continued until early Monday morning.  Sheriff’s Captain Rex Evans said it was around 4 p.m. when two boys, Johnny Whitehead and Aaron Lloyd, both age 12, were reported missing.  The two had been 4-wheeling in the woods along FM 1409 south of CR 417, just north of the Chambers County line. A sheriff’s deputy, Samuel Marks, found the lost kids, however, then came the hard work of getting all of them out safely.  That more than 8-hour search ended as the Liberty County sheriffs deputy and two missing boys walked out of the woods, thanks to overhead light provided by two helicopters and a path cleared by a fellow deputy and two Westlake Volunteer Firefighters. ****************************************************

Rye Grass Forum: This Thursday night, the Liberty County Agri-Life Extension Office will host a Rye Grass and Winter Forage Forum starting at 6:30 p.m. Ag Agent Ron Holcomb said with the continuing drought, this will be important information for producers. There is no cost, and the program will be presented with Dr. Larry Redmond, Professor and Forage expert with Texas A & M University. For information, call 334-3230.

****************************************************

Tax Collection: During the first week in October, Liberty County property owners will be receiving their new tax bills. Interim Tax Assessor/Collector Ricky Brown said tax collections for the previous fiscal year is at about $56.7 million of a total tax levy of $60.6 million. He added, many people don’t seem to understand the importance of paying their property taxes before the January 31st deadline. Failure to do that can result in as much as an additional 32% in penalties and interest on the amount owed in back taxes.

****************************************************

Cross Country: The Liberty Cross Country team is doing well in the young season.  Last Saturday the Panthers boys cross country team made a strong second place showing with a trophy as proof.  LHS girls finished well but do not have the required number of runners to be eligible for a team trophy.  Coach Joe Roberts was obviously pleased with his runners. Eight boys finished in the top 25 of the 70 runners in the varsity boys 5 K run at Tarkington.  There were also 70 runners in the girls two mile run, with Liberty’s Gabie Forames finishing 7th.

****************************************************

*LAKE RELEASE: 1,500 CFS LIBERTY BRIDGE: 7.00 ASL*

 

VOLUME 26, NO. 177 MONDAY SEPT.