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HCHD decides on tax rate

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Houston County Hospital District LogoBy Jan White
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CROCKETT – At its called meeting on Tuesday, September 6, the Houston County Hospital District Board voted to keep the tax rate the same as last year, at $0.13 per $100, based on property valuations determined by the Houston County Appraisal District. 

After listening to several public comments during the Public Tax Rate Hearing, Board President Barbara Crowson closed the open session and dove directly into the called meeting agenda. 

“At our last meeting, we did declare our intent to set a rate for the 2023 Fiscal Year of $0.13. Do we have a motion?” The motion was immediately made and seconded, then opened for discussion. 

Arguments were heard on both sides of the rate issue, from those hoping to lower the rate to $0.11 and those who were determined to keep it at $0.13. Supporters of reducing the rate felt it was their duty to the taxpayers not to burden them with an increase. They also voiced concerns over how the previous finances were handled and questioned the need for what they feel are excess funds generated from the increased tax revenue. Those advocating the $0.13 rate see the additional funds as a safety net for unknown expenditures. They hope to maintain to meet current budget expenses and still leave room for contingencies such as roof repairs or replacement and negotiations with the current tenant, who wants to enter into service contract talks before renewing his lease to continue operating the hospital.    

Several members suggested that the opposing sides meet halfway and amend the motion to a tax rate of $0.12, but that agreement was not reached.

When it came time to vote for the tax rate of $0.13, Rhonda Brown, Harvey Bruner, Dina Pipes and Roy Langford voted against the proposal, while Pam Ainsworth, Carol Dawson, Debbie Kelly, Dr. John Stovall, and Crowson voted for, passing the motion by one vote. 

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Hay show deadlines approaching

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Hay Graphic

The 2022 Hay Show and Judging Contest sponsored by the Davy Crockett-Trinity Soil and Water Conservation District will be held Nov. 9 at the Porth Ag Arena in Crockett. 

Hay samples are now being taken and the deadline to submit hay samples is Sept. 30. Hay samples may be taken to the NRCS office at 1032 S 4th St in Crockett, the Houston County Extension Office, or the Trinity County Extension Office.

A sample consists of one (1) feed sack full of hay.  All entries must show physical evidence of having gone thru a mechanical baler. 

Fifty percent of the score will be on physical characteristics and appearance, and 50% will be on the chemical analysis.  Hay entered must have been produced in Houston or Trinity County or a producer who lives in Houston or Trinity County.

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Museum hosting open house

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Museum GraphicBy Chris Edwards
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CROCKETT – The Mary Allen Museum Heritage House will host an open house event on Saturday, Sept. 10, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Attendees are invited to come out and tour the newly reopened museum, which is located in the historic Westbrook Heritage House.

The museum is located at 1503 South Fourth Street in Crockett. At the open house, light refreshments will be served.

The Mary Allen Museum has largely been inactive during all of the pandemic-related shutdowns, however, recently, with the restrictions lifted, the museum’s board announced its reopening and some new activities coming for the community to enjoy.

Many volunteers recently took part in a clean-up effort to restore the Westbrook Heritage House. Below is a list of activities slated for the museum:

•September 10- the Museum will celebrate its reopening with an open house. The community is invited to attend. Light refreshments will be served. 

•September 17 – “Movement at the Museum” A certified Zumba instructor specializing in African dance will be the instructor for a unique Zumba experience

•September 24 – “Painting with a Muse(em)” Local artist Alexandria Hubbard, Artist in Residence and Activity Director for the Mary Allen Museum, will host a step-by-step painting class. 

October 8 – “Movie Night” Films will be shown on the lawn at the Westbrook House. Bring your lawn chairs, coolers, or blankets along with the whole family and enjoy a movie under the stars

Other events will include a tea party that is sure to be a memorable experience. And look for an exciting “Open Mic Night” where musicians, singers and poets can share their talent with the community. 

If you would like more information about Mary Allen Museum or for more information about the upcoming events, please contact Dr. Thelma Douglass at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Day in Crockett

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Hispanic dancers

By Jan White
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Many people think that Mexican Independence Day and Cinco de Mayo are the same. 

But they would be wrong.

Cinco de Mayo celebrates a victory when the powerful French militia was defeated during the 1862 Battle of Puebla by an outnumbered Mexican army. Mexican Independence Day was the culmination of over a decade of war against Spain.

Mexico was once known as New Spain and had been ruled under the tyranny of the Spanish empire for over three hundred years. The Mexican population was oppressed, farmland and personal wealth were confiscated, and only Spaniards were allowed to hold political posts. 

On Sept. 16, 1810, a Catholic priest had enough. In the town of Dolores, the priest,  Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, rang his church’s bell and delivered a speech now known as the Grito de Dolores (Cry of Dolores), demanding the end of Spanish rule. It marked the violent Mexican War of Independence that lasted over a decade. On August 24, 1821, Spain withdrew and officially recognized Mexico as an independent country. Today, Father Costilla is known as the Father of Mexican Independence, and Mexican Independence Day has been celebrated every year on Sept. 16.

The day of independence has developed into a nationwide celebration over the past two hundred-plus years. The occasion is celebrated much like the United State’s Independence Day, with festivals, fireworks, patriotic speeches, flag-waving, parades, live music, dancing, and home-cooked feasts. Red, white and green — the colors of the Mexican flag — are seen everywhere across Mexico and many cities the United States. 

This year, Crockett will celebrate Mexican Independence Day on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 6-9 p.m. in the park across from City Hall. The event, organized by Rebecca Huff, will feature traditional Hispanic dances, music, food, and shopping. For more information, contact Ms. Huff at Crockett City Hall (936) 544-5156.

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Schools wear Uvalde CISD colors in show of support

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TexasHeart GraphicBy Chris Edwards
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HOUSTON COUNTY – School districts across the state showed solidarity with Uvalde CISD on Tuesday with an urging for faculty, staff and students to sport the district’s school colors.

Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District’s students returned to the classroom on Tuesday, Sept. 6, and it was the first time the students had been back to school since the events of May 24, when a mass shooting at Robb Elementary claimed the lives of 21 people.

Many school districts across the state spread word through social media channels asking their faculty, staff and students to wear maroon and white, which are the Uvalde CISD school colors; a showing that “our hearts are with Uvalde.”

All of Houston County’s five school districts encouraged their populations to do the same. 

Crockett ISD announced on its Facebook page for its Bulldog family to wear maroon and that the district’s prayers and support are with the community of Uvalde.

The Latexo ISD Athletics Booster Club posted that “Uvalde ISD has been heavy on everyone’s hearts,” and encouraged everyone in the district to wear maroon and white.

Grapeland ISD posted a graphic encouraging everyone to join in and “Maroon Out with Uvalde”

For Kennard ISD, on its social media page, the district stated its prayers and support are with Uvalde.

Lovelady ISD did not advertise the maroon-wearing on its social media presence, but a representative from the district said there was “quite a bit of maroon” seen on the high school campus Tuesday.

According to an Associated Press story, many Uvalde CISD students did not want to return to school. Uvalde CISD superintendent Hal Harrell said in June that students would not return to the campus of Robb Elementary. Instead, the students were to be relocated to other campuses within the district.

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