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Posts published in “Day: August 23, 2018”

Crosby ISD hears report on “spending beyond its means”

The Crosby ISD Board of Trustees presented a plaque to Dan and Jennifer Meaux of Crawfish Shack for being Recognized by the Texas Association of School Boards Business Recognition Program for Businesses that exceed standards for generosity.

CROSBY – At the Monday Board of Trustee’s meeting of Crosby ISD as promised Dr. Scott Davis, new superintendent of the district presented his findings in a report.

About 60 community members who were in attendance. The report included information on recently discovered financial issues and he stated, “The district has been spending beyond its means.”

Later during the meeting the board concerned with the safety of the children held a discussion on school safety and security measures, specifically, the hiring of three additional school resource officers. At $98,000 to $99,000 each per school year.

This reporter checked with law enforcement from throughout the area and learned that about $40,000 of that is for a deputy’s yearly salary.

Sherman Eagleton at his fundraiser on Thursday stated to this reporter that he did not know what decisions the schools were going to have to make because funds are tight but “I am going to see after the well-being of these kids, that is a priority.”

According to the school district’s officials, “Dr. Davis and new Chief Financial Officer, Lesa Jones, discovered a cash flow issue that appears to date back to the Spring of 2017. This cash flow problem resulted in the district partaking in a short-term loan and internal fund borrowing from the district’s Debt Service and Construction Funds to cover operational needs and the district’s payroll obligations. Prior to Davis’ arrival, $5.65 million had been borrowed from the Construction Fund to cover the district’s payroll obligations. When Davis arrived in late June, he had to borrow an additional $1.99 million from the Construction Fund to cover expenses for the July 15th payroll. To date, the total amount borrowed from the Construction Fund stands at $7.64 million. Davis stated that the plan is to repay the $1.99 million he had to borrow by the end of November 2018. He and Jones worked closely with the district’s bond counsel to determine if there were any qualifying expenditures made in 2017-2018 that could be subtracted from the total amount due to the Construction Fund. Approximately $2.25 million of capital expenditures have been identified as potential qualifying expenses leaving $3.4 million outstanding that the District intends to repay by December 2018.

Recovery from the financial issues is expected to take 3-5 years. While additional short-term loans, also known as Tax Revenue Anticipation Notes (TRAN), will be required to subsidize the cash flow shortage, the plan will be to create a diminishing dependence on these loans over the next several years by implementing cost-saving measures including a 10-20% budget cut, absorbing staff positions through attrition and potentially a reduction in force, if necessary.

Fund Balance (more…)

Rotary meets JP candidate Lucia Bates

Lucia Bates

HIGHLANDS – This year’s general election, set for November 6, will see a change in the Justice of the Peace in Baytown’s Pct. 3 Position 2. This is the position currently held by Judge Don Coffey.

Marketing Executive Lucia Bates, a life-long resident of the North Shore area, will become the next JP in that jurisdiction, since she is running with no opponent on the Republican ticket.

Bates spoke about her life and qualifications at a recent luncheon held by the Highlands Rotary Club. Rotary has had a special relationship with all the JP’s in recent years, Tony Polumbo, Mike Parrott, Don Coffey, and Joe Stephens. It was only natural that they wanted to meet and greet the next JP, Lucia Bates.

She spoke having been born in the Caribbean island of St. Lucia, and moving to the U.S. as a child. She originally worked for GTE in Baytown, so she knows the area well. After that, she moved into advertising and marketing, first for the Houston Chronicle, and later for Houston Community Newspapers. She currently has her own business, LB Marketing Solutions. In many of these positions, she has won awards for outstanding performance.

Bates said her motivation to be a judge came from her passion to give back to the community. Her resume is full of public service positions, as a Rotary director, Chair of the North Channel Chamber, president of her HOA, and former board members of the YMCA, Pilot Club, Top Ladies of Distinction, Advisory Panel to LyondellEquistar, and much more.

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31st Annual New Educators’ luncheon marks start of School

Crosby Church hosted the Crosby-Huffman Chamber of Commerce as they provided the 31st Annual New Educator’s Luncheon sponsored by Community Resource Credit Union on August 15.

See Page 2 to see the New Educators.

There were speeches by David Frazier of Community Resource, Dr. Benny Solieau and Dr. Scott Davis, and Chamber CEO Rev. Larry Koslovsky.

12th Annual Rotary Washer Tournament Sept. 15th

Team competition at the Rotary
Washer Tournament last year.

HIGHLANDS – The Washer throwing tournament, held every year at Charlie’s Ice House, has become a city-wide mustdo for many District 5890 Rotarians, as well as local folks from the greater Highlands area. Proceeds from this charity event are sent to the national Rotary program Polio Plus, which has almost eliminated this dread disease from the whole world. Highlands Rotarians are able to give one of the highest contributions, per capita, of any club in the world due to this event.

The Public is invited to participate. It will be held Saturday, September 12 from 2pm to 6pm at Charlie’s Ice House, 906 N. Main St. in Highlands. (more…)

Heart Screening sees big turnout in Crosby

CROSBY– The annual Community Heart Screening at the Crosby Community Center was August 18. Over 500 students were screened from nine until noon last Saturday. August 25 tickets are still available for the Cody Stephens Memorial Fundraiser to provide heart screenings across Texas. Call (713) 451-3600 for ticket information.