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Trinity County News 2

Born to Be Wild (GALLERY)

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IMG 9321PHOTOS BY PHILLIP SCHMITTEN Rocky Raccoon here is waiting to grow up and be released back into the wild.

By Philip Schmitten
TCNS Correspondent

GROVETON — Ever wonder what happens to the animals in the wild who are sick, crippled or abandoned? They end up at Circle B Farm & Wildlife Rehab in Groveton.

This single-family crusade to care for orphaned, abandoned and injured animals from the wild is totally paid for by the Bergman Family, who takes care of the daily routine of providing and care of the 76 animals in their care now.

They have had more than 100 wild animals to take care of in the past. Donations are always welcome from the public and much needed.

Shasta, Rodney, Hanna and Mattie Bergman are responsible for the daily care of these animals. With Shasta working full time as the Trinity County Clerk, Hanna and Mattie pull a lot of the day to day duties.

All wildlife belongs to the State of Texas, so if you spot an animal who seems to be lost or in trouble, call the local Game Warden and they, most likely, will contact Circle B for the rescue.

“We are licensed by the State of Texas to care and house these wild animals, with the goal of returning them to the wild when they are ready,” Shasta said.

They care for just about all wild animals; they have had foxes, skunks, possums, rabbits, squirrels, deer and raccoons. The care and feeding of these animals takes some effort, but the Bergmans love what they do. Their goals are to have a sanctuary where the public can visit to see and learn about animals in the wild.

They rescue animals from all over the area, going as far as Texarkana. At the present time there are a lot of animals going hungry due to overpopulation —the deer, rabbits and squirrels are fighting for food and starving from lack of nourishment.

Shasta Bergman summed to up when she said, “Circle B Farm & Wildlife Rehab is dedicated to caring for orphaned and injured wildlife, with the sole intent of being able to release each animal back into the wild, where they belong.”

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Groveton school board OKs improvement plan

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Groveton ISD logoFILE PHOTO - Groveton ISD logo

TCNS Staff

GROVETON — The Board of Trustees for Groveton ISD again approved an improvement plan for the elementary school.

The need for the approval was because the submission form had changed; the state requires a three-year plan be in place.

One part of the plan includes using test scores to drive instruction. Also, items were adjusted because of the affect of COVID-19.

In a separate matter, the council denied a request for appeal from a resident of the district over a decision made regarding a student.

No details about the incident, including the student’s name, were revealed because of privacy laws.

The appeal was rejected because it was not filed in a timely manner, according to Board President Mark Folds.

The decision was first appealed to the High School principal, who upheld the decision; then to Superintendent Don Hamilton, who also denied it.

In other business, the board:

  • approved a missed school days waiver, as the district missed more days than were allowed for on the previous calendar; and
  • approved the Dec. 17 board meeting to be the date for the superintendent’s evaluation.
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Trinity to replace some sewer lines

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111920 trinity 1TONY FARKAS | TCNS Justice of the Peace Hayne Huffman (right) swears in (from left) Clegg DeWalt, Wayne Huffman and Chris Dennis at the Nov. 12 Trinity City Council meeting. The three were re-elected to their posts on Nov. 3.

By Tony Farkas

TRINITY — Christmas came early to the Trinity City Council in the form of a $275,000 no-match grant that will help replace some aging infrastructure.

At its regular meeting on Nov. 12, the city discussed a grant that Police Chief Steven Jones said was initially denied.

“Council Member Bubba Smith and I were in Lufkin to discuss it, and we were told that we did not get the grant,” Jones said. “… I got a call out of nowhere recently that said we did get the grant, and we have a confirmation email.”

Engineers will now begin work on replacing a sewer line that runs between Trinity Memorial Hospital and Rockdale Street. He also said it has zero match.

In other business, the city:

  • •approved the canvass of votes in the Nov. 3 election of city officials, and swore in returning council members Smith, Clegg DeWalt and Chris Dennis, Mayor Wayne Huffman, and Municipal Judge Lyle Stubbs.
  • •re-appointed Billy Goodin as Mayor Pro Tem;
  • •approved changes to persons allowed to handle the night depository bag;
  • •approved $1,500 in Hotel/Motel funds for the Christmas at the Crossroads event; and
  • •approved receipt of the city audit for the 2018-19 fiscal year. Auditor Dianne Sollock informed the council that the audit has an “unmodified opinion,” which is the best outcome, and also said that the city’s financial picture is improving year to year.
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Trinity Schools affected by COVID

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trinity isd logoFILE PHOTO - Trinity ISD logo

TCNS Staff

TRINITY — The High School and Junior High in Trinity are now going through the state required procedures of quarantine and contract tracing as one student and one employee have tested positive for COVID-19.

Letters were sent out Thursday to parents.

Superintendent John Kaufman said these are the first positive cases in the district this year.

“We have completed our contact tracing on the two individuals and notified the appropriate parents,” Kaufman said. “A deep cleaning was conducted on all classrooms and common areas associated with the two positives.”

Kaufman said TISD will continue to follow the protocol established in its reopening plan and CDC guidance.  

“Trinity ISD is committed in providing a safe environment for all our students,” he said.

Due to privacy requirements, the district did not release the names of the individuals or any identifying details.

According to the letter sent out to the district, based on the information that was gathered, it has been determined the end of the 14-day incubation period for anyone possibly exposed on campus to the student/staff member is Nov. 25.

The release also states that while the district does not have reason to believe that those who were not in close contact with the infected individual have reason to be concerned, residents are admonished to watch for symptoms of COVID-19, and to follow district guidelines regarding contact with any positive-testing person.

Anyone within the Trinity ISD community that begins experiencing any symptoms in a way that is not typical is encouraged to contact a physician. Anyone who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 is requested to notify the school nurse at (936) 594-2090.

The release states the district continues to monitor the situation and will provide additional information as needed. Questions or concerns can be directed to (936) 594-2090, or information will be available at Trinityisd.net.

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Trinity County approves contract with Groveton EMS

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trinityFILE PHOTO - Trinity County courthouse

By Tony Farkas

GROVETON — The Trinity County Commissioners Court now has a new contract with Groveton EMS for ambulance services, but not without some discussion as to the nature of the $1,500 monthly payment.

While both the county and Groveton EMS agree that ambulance service is needed, the county on Nov. 10 approved a $1,500 monthly stipend, while the EMS service sought a contract that was based on a fee for services.

Grover Worsham, who owned the service and sold it to current owner David Robison, said he understood Robison’s position, but the real issue was getting the ambulances to run.

Robison initially asked for the contract to read fee for services as it would benefit the organization in the long run; his argument was that the language made the difference between a vendor relationship and a dependent relationship. However, County Judge Doug Page said the contract will read subsidy based on advice from County Attorney Joe Warner Bell.

In the end, both sides agreed that it would be best to end the negotiations and approve the contract. The previous contract expired in December 2019. This contract will last seven years with a 90-day right of termination.

In other business, the county:

  • canvassed the county votes from the Nov. 3 General Election;
  • approved $332,106 from the October check register;
  • approved a budget amendment moving $7,952 into the general fund;
  • approved issuing a county credit card to Sheriff Woody Wallace;
  • approved disbursing Family Protection Fee funds to three county agencies;
  • approved the sale of surplus equipment;
  • approved bids for the sale of tax resale properties from the County Appraisal District; and
  • approved a resolution authorizing $35,000 in county funds as part of a Community Development Block Grant, a project sponsored by the Deep East Texas Council of Government, for the improvement of regional radio communications infrastructure.
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