By Jan White
CROCKETT – Due to the continued dry weather, the Commissioners Court voted to extend the burn ban in Houston County.
Among other agenda items approved were authorizing the distribution of the county-funded Essential Worker Premium Pay Order approved on Sept. 27, the holiday schedule for 2023, awarding of a $1,000 Hotel Occupancy Tax Fund allowance to The Loft for the Thomas Starkey Concert on Dec. 3, the purchase of pepper guns and training for the Houston County Sheriff’s Office and boiler repair for the Houston County Justice Center.
The Buckhorn Creek Subdivision submitted the names of several roads in Precinct 2 that were to be added to the 911 Emergency Addressing list. These names included Buckhorn Creek Drive, Buckhorn Creek Lane, Buckhorn Creek Trail, and Lakeside Court.
The subdivision is west of Crockett on Highway 21. The subdivision has already sold thirty-five tracts out of the seventy that have been set aside for development.
The court received a Letter of Intent for Nutrition and Support Services from the Deep East Texas Council of Government – Area Agency on Aging for providing nutrition and support services for the fiscal year 2023. Anticipated funding is for Home Delivered Meals of $49,303 (9,285 meals x $5.31 per meal) and Senior Center Operations for twelve months at $1,826.19, totaling $27,626, for a grand total of $76,929, subject to change depending on funding.
Of interest to pet owners was the approval of $5k towards the cost of spaying/neutering pets. Applicants will be required to fill out an application. Houston County will issue one hundred vouchers for the year, regardless of income, and only one voucher will be available per household. The application will require proof of residency and a current driver license.
Once approved, the applicant will schedule an appointment with the vet of their choice – either Crockett Veterinary Hospital or South Pine Animal Hospital. Each clinic has offered a 10% discount off the regular price of services. Vouchers will be good for thirty days from the date of issue. For more information regarding the voucher program, call Sharon Luker, Commissioners Assistant, at (936) 544-3255, extension 279.
Although several commissioners had questions regarding the increase in the Houston County Appraisal District proposed budget for the fiscal year 2023, their responsibility was only to receive the information. The court itself is not allowed to recommend or make changes to the budget.
Other actions included approval to hire Abbey Vickrey as a part-time Deputy Clerk, a change in the status of Gene Osborn from Patrol Sergeant to Sheriff’s Deputy, and renewing service contracts with the Texas Department of Public Safety, QT Pod, LLC, Vista Comm, and non-exempt license plates for an unmarked patrol car.