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By Tony Farkas
COLDSPRING — A 275-acre forest fire was quelled last week behind the efforts of seven different departments.
Two firefighters were injured battling the blaze, and a third suffered heat-related illness while working to extinguish the fire, which broke out in the early afternoon on Aug. 2 on FM 946 near Willow Springs, between Coldspring and Oakhurst.
San Jacinto County Emergency Management Coordinator Emmitt Eldridge said that the cause of the blaze, called the Snowhill Fire, is under investigation by the Texas Forestry Service.
Firefighters from Coldspring VFD, Shepherd VFD, Bear Creek VFD, Point Blank VFD, Oakhurst VFD and Onalaska VFD assisted, with help from the U.S. and Texas forestry services.
Texas Forestry Service crews walked the woods to ensure the fire was completely out, and the local volunteer fire departments have been on rotations monitoring the fire.
The two TFS firefighters were released after being checked out at area hospitals for first- and second-degree burns. The third member was released by EMS crews on location.
Special to the News-Times
AUSTIN — Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar is reminding shoppers they can save money on clothes and school supplies during the state’s sales tax holiday on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 11-13.
State law exempts sales tax on qualified items — such as clothing, footwear, school supplies and backpacks — priced below $100, saving shoppers about $8 on every $100 they spend. The dates of the sales tax holiday and list of tax-exempt items are set by the Texas Legislature.
“As Texans prepare for the back-to-school bell, this is the perfect time to take advantage of the opportunity to save money on everything from blue jeans to ballpoint pens,” Hegar said. “As the father of three, I know how these expenses can add up.”
The Comptroller’s office estimates that shoppers will save $136 million in state and local sales tax during this sales tax holiday.
Apparel and school supplies that may be purchased tax free are listed on the Comptroller’s website at TexasTaxHoliday.org.
During the annual sales tax holiday, qualifying items can be purchased tax free online or by telephone, mail, custom order or any other means (including in-store purchases) when either:
•the item is both delivered to, and paid for by, the customer during the exemption period; or,
•the customer orders and pays for the item, and the seller accepts the order during the exemption period for immediate shipment, even if delivery is made after the exemption period ends.
Texas’ sales tax holiday weekend has been an annual event since 1999.
Special to the News-Times
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Nuevo Garcia Foods, LLC, a San Antonio, Texas establishment, is recalling approximately 4,784 pounds of pulled pork product due to misbranding and an undeclared allergen, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service announced.
The product may contain soy lecithin, a known allergen, which is not declared on the product label.
The fully cooked, pulled pork product was produced on May 15, and is the 2-pound package containing “H-E-B SMOKEHOUSE FULLY COOKED SMOKED SEASONED PULLED PORK WITH BBQ SAUCE” with lot code “3135” on the label, and best by dates 8/18/2023, 8/25/2023 and 9/1/2023.
The products subject to recall bear establishment number “13205-A” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to an H-E-B warehouse for distribution to retail locations in Texas.
FSIS inspection personnel discovered the problem during routine label verification review and determined that soy lecithin was not listed on the pulled pork product label when it was used prior to the cooking process.
There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.
FSIS is concerned that some of the product may be in consumers’ refrigerators or freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.
FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.
Consumers with questions about the recall can contact Julie Morrison, VP of Operations, Nuevo Garcia Foods, LLC, at 210-349-6262 Ext. 3102. Members of the media with questions about the recall can contact Bobby McGee, President and CEO, Nuevo Garcia Foods, LLC, at 871-235-9060.
Consumers with food safety questions can call the toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 888-MPHotline (888-674-6854) or live chat via Ask USDA from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday.
CLEVELAND —Texas Department of Public Safety troopers are investigating a fatal crash on Farm-to-Market Road 2024, approximately five miles northwest of Cleveland, that occurred Friday.
The pedestrian, 38-year-old Olgae Cruz De Granados of Cleveland, was pronounced dead at the scene by a Justice of the Peace.
Reports indicate that at approximately 6:51 a.m., a 2000 Chevrolet van was traveling south while a pedestrian was walking south on the southbound shoulder. It is reported that the driver fell asleep and drifted onto the south shoulder and struck the pedestrian.
The driver, identified as 17-year-old Lincoln Earl Payne of Coldspring, was not injured.
The investigation in continuing.