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Polk County News - Breakout

Livingston to host community cleanup

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Cleanup STOCK

From Enterprise Staff

City residents who have old bicycles, stoves, refrigerators, furniture, old tires or similar items they need to dispose of will soon have the opportunity to do so. The City of Livingston will sponsor a community cleanup from 8 a.m. until noon on April 22 at Pedigo Park.

Several dumpsters will be in place for City of Livingston residents to dispose of items large and small.

Residential items only will be accepted. No commercial discards will be accepted, nor batteries, chemicals, insecticides, pesticides or household garbage. Old lawnmowers will also be accepted but must be drained of gas and oil. There will be a container available for old tires.

The community cleanup is for city residents only. A driver’s license or other proof of residence within the city limits will be required.

Those with questions may contact the city’s community development department at 936-327-4311.

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Easter activities are plenty

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Bunny Stock

From Enterprise Staff

Sanctuary of Hope will present an Easter Celebration from 10 a.m. to noon on Easter Sunday at its location at 931 S. Washington Ave. in Livingston. There will be an egg hunt, lots of candy and a grand prize of $100 cash or a new bicycle. Must be present to win.

Holy Week is busy at First Methodist Church of Livingston. The Methodist women’s organization will host a bake sale on Palm Sunday. There will be a Maundy Thursday service at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Holy Ground auditorium. “What Wondrous Hope – A Service of Promise, Grace and Life” is the Easter cantata that will be presented at 7p.m. Friday in the main sanctuary. A youth-led sunrise service will be held at 7 a.m. in the parking lot at First Methodist, with gospel/contemporary services at 9 a.m., a children’s Easter egg hunt at 10:15 a.m. and the traditional Easter service at 11 a.m. in the main sanctuary. First Methodist Church of Livingston is located at 2801 U.S. Hwy. 190 West.

First Baptist Church of Livingston will host a city-wide drive-thru egg hunt from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Good Friday. Registration is required and participants will find giant eggs by solving riddles. Once registered, the first riddle will be received via email. Each found egg will have the next riddle on the back. On Easter Sunday, First Baptist will host the same service at three different times – 8 a.m., 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. First Baptist is located at 106 Colt Rd. in Livingston.

Central Baptist Church of Livingston will host its Palm Sunday service at 9:30 a.m. There will be a prayer meeting at 6 p.m. on Good Friday. Worship service on Easter Sunday will be at 9:30 a.m. There will be no Bible studies but there will be an Easter egg hunt at 11 a.m.

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Goodrich cancels upcoming election

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Goodrich ISD Hornet Facing LeftBy Brian Besch
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Goodrich ISD school board canceled the upcoming election, approved an employee compensation plan, and heard an update on a state-issued test in Thursday’s regular meeting for March.

The board approved the cancellation of the May election, as no candidate is contested. The May 6 election, if contested, would have included board members Rigoberto Reyes, Lidia Merino, Rosalie Blackstock and Julie Mack.

The board also approved the 2023-2024 compensation plan. That includes a salary increase for teachers to a starting mark of $45,000. Current teachers and the school nurse will receive a 5.7% increase from their current salary. There will be a 5% increase for support staff and a 10% increase for auxiliary staff from current salaries, while administrative staff will receive a 2% increase. Total salary increases are $109,005, while total projected salary increases with benefits totals $119,306.

The STAAR assessment has changed for the first time this year, and Goodrich Superintendent Daniel Barton said students will be graded in a new way.

“As a result, the accountability system is being changed,” Barton said. “In the month of May, kids are not going to know and parents are not going to know if they passed it or not. They are going to get a ‘they might have passed it or they might not have.’ Once they get all of their cut scores at the state level, they will decide where they want to move passing and not passing. Our district is rated on that, as is every other district in the state. It is everybody in the state that is going through this and I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of parents and kids wondering what is going on. This has nothing to do with us locally and we are just going to have to endure it and make it happen.”

While discussing curriculum, Barton said there is a possibility of the school moving from 26 credits to 28 in order to graduate. The superintendent said the reason for the change would be that Goodrich ISD is now on an eight-period school day. With the increase in classes, Barton said the 26 credits to graduate is not consistent with surrounding school districts. The change would impact incoming freshmen.

Goodrich ISD Business Manager Sarah Fulcher gave the board an update on taxes collected for the current year.

“Our current taxes, we are at 87.94%,” she said. “We are doing really well on our tax collections. When we talk about taxes, we usually don’t budget 100%, because you are never going to get 100%. We usually do about 95-97%. That is a more obtainable goal.”

There has been $1,663,369 in taxes brought in to this point, while $228,099 remains to be collected. 

In maintenance, the district is still working to collect bids for doors. There is a $200,000 school safety grant that the school will put to use for the doors. Barton said a few different companies are working toward submitting a bid.

There is a leak in the old gymnasium and the superintendent has called both the roofing company and solar panel company to determine the source of the problem.

The school district is in search of a special education bus. Barton said he is in search of something that is 15 seats or less, as to not require a CDL to drive. He has looked into used vehicles as well as a new one, but the item has been tabled for now.

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Rotarians participate in ‘humanity’s greatest achievement’

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Rotary STOCK

By Ray Gearing
Contributing Writer

At a recent meeting of the Rotary Club of Livingston the club heard the efforts of Rotary International to be a part of what has been described, when it has been accomplished, as “humanity’s greatest achievement,” the eradication of polio from the face of the earth.

Terry Zeigler, owner of the Big Z Lumber Company, former president of the West U Rotary Club in the Houston area, and the producer of a Polio Eradication Update which is emailed weekly to more than a thousand Rotarians around the world, told of the international effort to get rid of polio world-wide. Governments around the world, the World Health Organization, along with Rotary International have been working to achieve this goal for several decades and now are very close to doing it.

Since the polio vaccine was developed, more than 20,000,000 children have been saved from getting the disease. The program immunizes 400,000,000 against polio every year. The International Rotary Club has committed $1,500,000 in the next three years and the Gates Foundation will match two-to-one for every dollar Rotary commits to polio eradication.

Bill Gates has said, “We are achingly close to getting rid of polio – more than 99% of the way there. Finishing the job is a big challenge, but it is very doable if we keep up the effort.”

Currently there are only two countries where polio is endemic, Pakistan and Afghanistan. When Zeigler presented the program to the local Rotary Club there had been no new cases for the last six months. Since then, there has been one new case reported in Pakistan. The world will be considered polio-free when there are no cases reported for three years.

Local Rotarians, along with others around the world, have the high privilege of being a part of this endeavor and when it is accomplished will be able to say, “I helped wipe out polio from the face of the earth!”

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Local American Legion Post #312 to sponsor Texas Boys State delegates

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AmericanFlags Stock

From Enterprise Staff

How would you like to gift a young man with an opportunity of a lifetime? The Texas American Legion will host Texas Boys State on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin June 11-16 and the local Post #312 is searching for five young men to send, all expenses paid.

To be eligible, the young men must: be male high school students; have successfully completed their junior year; be recommended by their high school; and demonstrate strong academic performance, keen leadership skills and excellent interpersonal skills.

American Legion Boys State is among the most respected and selective educational programs of government instruction for high school students. It is a participatory program where each student or delegate becomes a part of the operation of his local, county and state government. Delegates are exposed to the rights and privileges, the duties and the responsibilities of a franchised citizen. The training is objective and practical, with city, county and state governments operated by the students elected to the various offices.

If you know of a young man who meets these qualifications and would like to attend, please contact your school counselor or Post #312 at 936-327-7601. The post deadline for submission is April 20 and is first come first served. For more information, contact Post Commander Jeanette Jackson at 832-444-6595.

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