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Posts published in August 2009

Protesters greet Green at Town Hall

BAYTOWN — Congressman Gene Green is used to attending town hall meetings with low attendance. Last week was an exception.

Over 400 people turned out for a town hall meeting hosted by the congressman at Sterling Municipal Library in Baytown. The majority was not silent, with many of those in attendance protesting Green, President Obama or the government in general either by voice or sign.

Among the complaints was that Green’s office was checking the ID of those attending, and allowing only those who reside within Green’s Congressional District into the meeting room. One protester questioned why Green was opposed Voter ID, but required an ID at what was supposed to be a public meeting.

When Green arrived at the site, he welcomed with boos and catcalls. One constituent, however, congratulated Green on having the backbone to show up at the meeting.

“I have been doing these meetings for 20 years,” Green replied, “And I’m not going to stop now.”

Security was also heavy at the meeting, with the sheriff ’s office, constable’s office and local police department represented in uniform.

Despite the large crowd that gathered for the meeting only about one fourth actually got in to hear Green speak. The meeting room has a maximum capacity of 100 people and a representative from the fire marshal’s office was there to make sure the crowd did not exceed to the 100-person limit.

Green apologized for the size of the room, saying he had used the room many times in the past and it had never been a problem before. When he reserved the room in June, he added, he had no idea the attendance would be so large and once he realized he would need more space it was too late to find another meeting place.

Green defended his decision to only let constituents into the meeting. “They (the protesters) come from outside the district and monopolize the time of the people in the district.” Before the ID checks began, Green said, some 60% of the attendance lived outside the district.

Green started the meeting voicing his support of the Cap and Trade program, which allows chemical plants to purchase “carbon credits” rather than reduce emissions in order to comply with EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) standards. Green admitted the bill was not perfect but it was the best they could do, considering the amount of compromises required to bring the bill up for a vote.

Green did not back down from the Health care issue.

After “untold public hearings” and “30 to 40 times it was amended” Congress had a health care plan, which Green says will not affect public debt. The bill, he said, will be paid for “by tax increases and other cuts.”

Green also took the time to take jabs at the Bush Administration, suggesting that the nation’s financial situation was because of tax cuts and big business bailouts.

The question and answer period was when the anger came out, and the shouting began. The first question posed to Green was “Why are you and every other politician in Washington exempt from the Health Care Bill?”

Green explained that anyone with employer-provided health care is exempted from the bill, and that congressmen, like all federal employees, receive employer-provided health care.

Green was also asked, “why should we back something that is being pushed by someone who has not proved they are a U.S. citizen?”

The question referred to Obama opponents who say that he was not born in Hawaii as he claims, but rather in Africa and that he is ineligible to serve as president.

Green responded that the health care plan does not provide services for non-citizens.

Phil Morris, new chamber president, outlines goals for year

HIGHLANDS – Phillip Morris has been elected the new president of the Highlands-Lynchburg Chamber of Commerce, to fill the remaining term of Stefe Cochran. Cochran has relocated to Costa Rica, so his term will be completed by Morris.

At the August luncheon of the Chamber, Morris outlined an ambitious program to give the group new relevance, new spirit, and a new organizational structure to accomplish this.

In his remarks, Morris emphasized the idea of Commerce, and that the Chamber should have programs and committees that helped the members in their business endeavors. Morris outlined a new committee structure, with achievable goals, as follows:

Membership Committee, with an increase to 150 members from the current 100;

Ambassador Committee, to engage members in activities and financial support;

Sheriff’s Storefront;

Game Rooms;

Bus Route from Highlands to Baytown;

Beautification Committee, to address the need for a good impression when entering the town.

Morris reminded the group of the Chamber’s two main fundraising methods, the annual Jamboree and memberships. The Jamboree will be held Saturday, Oct. 3, and a new event this year will be a Car Show.

To improve the finances of the Chamber, Morris proposed an internal audit to make sure all members are paid up, and he proposed a one year in advance payment on lunches of $100, which will cover 11 lunches at a discount. Lunch prices will be increased, from $10 on the web, $12 at the door, and $13 if a bill is sent.

As an incentive to businesses, Morris’ proposed Ambassador committee would hold quarterly evening mixers at a host business. New businesses would also be welcomed and introduced to the Chamber. A membership drive will be planned, probably after the holiday season in January. Members heard of a proposed bus route from Highlands to San Jacinto Mall, where connections could be made to three other loop routes. Funding for this service is being investigated by the County now.

The Beautification Committee will be working under the direction of Michelle Fenner, and include Business and Residential Yard of the Month awards. Ugly businesses will be noted, and asked to improve, Morris said.

In other business, ballots were distributed for the Terry Davis Outstanding Citizen Award, and the other Annual Awards to businesses and Public Safety officials. In Jamboree business, corporate sponsors were asked to sign up by Aug. 20th.

GC Memorial Patriots

Patriots Varsity 2009

Aug. 28 at Pasadena
Sept. 3 vs. Pearland Dawson
Sept.11 at Bellaire Episcopal

District Schedule
Sept. 18 vs. North Forest
Sept. 25 at Dayton
Oct. 2 at Crosby
Oct. 9 at Barbers Hill
Oct. 16 vs. Galena Park (Homecoming)
Oct. 23 at C.E. King
Oct. 31 vs. Kingwood Park, 2 p.m.
Nov. 6 Open Week

All games begin at 7 p.m. except where noted
Home Games are at Stallworth Stadium

2009 Varsity Roster


Crosby Cougars

Cougars Varsity 2009

Aug. 29 at Ennis (Waco ISD Stad.)
Sept. 4 at Port Neches-Groves, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 11 Bye Week

District Schedule
Sept. 18 at C.E. King
Sept. 25 vs. Kingwood Park
Oct. 2 vs. GC Memorial (Homecoming)
Oct. 9 vs. Dayton
Oct. 16 at North Forest
Oct. 23 at Barbers Hill
Oct. 30 vs. Galena Park
Nov. 6 vs. Bay City (Parent’s Night) (Non-District Game)

All games begin at 7 p.m. unless noted
Home Games are at Cougar Stadium

2009 Varsity Roster

1 Forrest Tyler
2 Zack Benjamin
3 Neco Isaac
4 Ashton Martin
5 Donnie Stark
6 Gage Larkin
7 Emmanuel Colon
8 Dominic Merka
9 Torre Manuel
10 Zane Harber
11 Jacoby Scott
12 MJ Mathis
14 Sam Fowler
15 Brad Clark
17 Kelvin Holmes
18 Wesley Holloway
20 JaKacy Evans
21 Marchael Bryant
22 Luke Porter
24 Dylan Judy
26 Johnny McKinney
27 Cameron Trench
28 Tye Burris
30 James Harris
32 CJ Hammond
33 Dylan Hammers
35 Braelon Green
40 Justin Duhon
44 Donnie Webster
45 Anthony Nelson
46 Jonathan Marek
47 Arthur Vega
50 Joe Jack
51 Cooper Hall
55 RayStutts
56 Clayton Calicutt
60 Preston Harvey
61 Michael Mangum
66 Kyle Lewis
69 Jorge Gil
71 James White
76 Craig Winn
77 Justin Walker
78 Jesse Blackburn
81 Evan Babineaux
83 Paul Erwin
84 Jacob Bartholow
85 Ray Mendez

Hargrave Falcons

Falcons Varsity 2009

Aug. 28 vs. Willis
Sept. 5 at Kashmere 6 p.m.
Sept. 11 vs Santa Fe
Sept. 18 vs. Hamshire-Fannett

District Schedule
Sept. 25 at Coldspring
Oct. 2 vs Splendora
Oct. 9 at Cleveland (Homecoming)
Oct. 16 vs. Liberty
Oct. 23 Open
Oct. 30 at Sheperd
Nov. 6 vs. Tarkington

All games begin at 7:30 p.m. unless otherwise noted
Home Games are at Falcon Stadium

2009 Varsity Roster

1 Michael Berry
2 Austin Potter
3 Desi Tchussen
4 Casey Martin
5 Eti Vital
7 Joel Witwer
8 Cody Warren
9 John Hansard
10 Garrett Jones
11 Cole DeBerry
20 Anchor Ebanks
21 Ashton Hunt
22 Shawn Barnes
24 Nathan Schwertner
25 Tyler Franklin
32 BJ Rice
34 Justin Hobbs
40 Taylor Quin
47 Brian Hoover
50 Kolton Keith
54 Brock Warren
56 Travis Driver
60 Ricky Forbes
65 Brandon Waltman
64 Tyler Hall
72 Alex Kendrick
75 Clint Moronko
76 Norman Rankin
77 Kurtis Frazier
79 DJ Vanderpool
80 Matias McCloskey
81 Nathan Burke
82 Tyler Moore
85 Conner Lamphier

Thank you for being a conscientious citizen

To The Editor,

While traveling to the office on Monday August 24th, I encountered heavy traffic on Hwy 146 near the Hardin Elementary School. It was the first day of school and as one would expect, traffic was moving slowly. While sitting in line, I heard a knock on my passenger window and looked over to see a school age child standing outside my vehicle. The youngster, who I believe was a passenger in a car traveling behind me, advised me that there was a large amount of gasoline leaking from my vehicle.

I immediately pulled to the side of the highway and got out, noticing that there was indeed a serious leak at which time I called for a fire department unit to stand by until the fumes dispersed. My vehicle was towed and it was determined that a fuel line had ruptured.

I wanted to take a moment and thank the young person that was kind enough to bring the leak to my attention. I believe it was a male, however, in my haste to get the vehicle off the roadway as quickly as possible, I did not notice for certain if the young person was a male or female.

Regardless, I appreciate their taking the time to get out and notify me of the leak. This could have been a very dangerous situation had the gasoline ignited. Thank you for being a conscientious citizen, I really appreciate your help.

Tom Branch
Emergency Management
Liberty County

Fall brings festivals and hummingbirds

Fall is in the air, you might not be able to tell it but it will be here this time next month.

The big city paper has already published their edition of FALL BAZAARS & FESTIVALS. Bazaars are fun things to do should you have the desire to get out of the recliner and stay on your feet.

It is time to plant your fall crop if you are a gardener. The garden of weedin already has tomatoes in the ground and hopefully there will at least be some nice green tomatoes before first frost. Not my idea of fun back there picking tomatoes with the wind whooping and the temperature is in the thirty’s and forty’s.

It is hummingbird migration time, now thru September. We have about six hummers buzzing around out front in and around the sugar water feeders. Only have five feeders out now although in the past there have been over a dozen scattered around the house. Those feeders need to be washed out once a week and in the peak time of the season; we have put out a gallon a day of the sugar water mixture (4 to 1).

Tried to make a bet with the Mrs. this morning saying I would catch a hummingbird this year. She would not bet as she knows one of the little things will fly in the garage and ain’t got enough sense to fly down a foot or so and go back out the garage door. They will continually fly upwards bumping into the ceiling until they get so tired they can no longer fly.

That is where I come in; I pick up the little thing and take it out the garage and release or set it in the tree to rest. The garage door is now kept down during hummer migration time.

Caught a hummingbird and showed it to the neighbor kids last year and they wanted to know how I caught it; told them I am quick. Put a couple feeders out with sugar water, it does not have to be colored red. They are fun to watch and they will not harm you as their long beak is as flexible as a straw.

Rotary Exchange student arrives from Sweden

HIGHLANDS ROTARY CLUB will host an Exchange Student this year, from Sweden. Above, a welcoming party was held with Rotarians and the host families. L to R, Kathryn and David Dunlop, Jacob Nordin, and Weston and Delene Cotten. Jacob arrived in the U.S. on Thursday, by way of Chicago. He is from Hoor, Sweden (pronounced HER). This is a village about the size of Highlands, and located in the Southern part of Sweden, about an hour from Malmo and the sea. Jacob and his family have been to the U.S. one other time, visiting Atlanta and the Orlando area. His father is a corporate recruiter, and his mother is an English teacher. Rotarians were surprised at his English, which sounds quite American, due to the fact that his mother was an exchange student in her youth, and picked up the American accent while here. Jacob, 16, has two sisters 9 and 19, and he will be attending Memorial High School while in Highlands. He will also travel to other parts of the United States with a group of Rotary exchange students during the year.

Thank you for your support

To Our Community of Friends:

Words simply can not adequately express how truly grateful Joe and I are to each and every one of you for your acts of kindness shown towards our family, as we daily deal with Devinn’s illness. You may have thought we were not looking or paying attention, but we saw you extend to us love that was unimaginable.

Each of you know what you did, and we feel like you were representative of God’s help in time of need. You knew when we needed to talk, so you called us to remind us that you were thinking and praying to God on our behalf, because we needed His touch and guidance.

We were faced with something that we had no idea was to be a part of our lives – Cancer. You, our Community of Friends, extended your tremendous love for us with prayers, meals, drinks, snacks, books, monetary gifts, garage sales, BBQ dinner sales, the silent and live auction, raffle ticket sales and so many other ways, which have left the LaRive Family speechless.

Every tear you shared and every phone call you made, the hours you labored and the time and sweat you spend preparing, and attending all of the functions on our behalf – is so dearly appreciated, humbly accepted, and will forever be remembered.

We never could have made it this far without God and each of you! We have a long road ahead of us and know the strength we receive from God and the prayers you have spoken will get us through.

It is our prayer that God would bless each of you bountifully, for the services given to us, and that he would supply all your needs according to His riches in glory.

In God’s Love,
Joe, Carrie, Devinn and Mattie LaRive

N.P.O.A.N. clarifies facts in fire article

Seven Oaks is a section of Newport that was being developed by Modelo Development L.P. At the time it was purchased by Modelo, there were no deed restrictions in place that could be enforced by the NPOAN. Modelo had the sections platted through Harris County and agreed to impose restrictive covenants upon the platted lots in exchange for the agreement of NPOAN to accept Seven Oaks as a section of Newport.

Prior to the utilities being connected in Seven Oaks, Kara Custom Homes (on behalf of individual owners) submitted requests to the Architectural Control Committee of NPOAN to construct four homes in Seven Oaks. The Architectural Control Committee of NPOAN approved the elevations for the homes and advised Kara that there were no utilities and suggested that they not commence construction at that time.

The NPOAN did not approve the “development”. Prior to occupancy of homes in Seven Oaks, the NPOAN only has the responsibility of approving elevations for new home construction and other structures. The NPOAN also has no authority or involvement with arrangements for utilities to be provided to this section. Water and sewer are provided through Newport MUD.

On December 2, 2008 Woodforest National Bank foreclosed on all of Seven Oaks except for twelve lots which had previously been sold by Modelo to individuals (four of these lots contain homes including the one which burned). Newport Development Joint Venture is the “developer” of Newport and has no connection whatsoever with Seven Oaks or Modelo Development.

On January 23, 2009, Modelo Development filed for bankruptcy in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Texas, Austin Division.

Any questions regarding the water supply should be directed to Newport MUD. Their attorney is Lori Ayett and her telephone number is (713) 652-6500.

On behalf of the NPOAN Board of Directors and NDJV the developer of Newport, thank you again for agreeing to print a correction to your article.

Carol Jones

Publisher’s Note: The Star-Courier would like to thank the NPOAN for their clarification and correction of statements made in the article about a fire in an abandoned house structure in Newport, that ran in the newspaper last week.