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Posts published in “Day: April 25, 2013

Methodist Hospital tells Crosby Rodeo of use of funds for cancer survivors

CROSBY – San Jacinto Methodist Hospital’s Director of Cancer Services came to a meeting with the Crosby Fair & Rodeo Board and the Tough Enough To Wear Pink Committee on Monday night to talk about where the funds the Rodeo donated were spent.

By the time of the meeting adjournment, the Cancer Services had received ringing endorsements and pledges for future support from the active rodeo members.

Denise Martinez, an oncology registerCed nurse, at San Jacinto Methodist Hospital is directing cancer care for the hospital and described in detail how two checks were used for patient care that the Crosby Fair & Rodeo wrote through their efforts to the hospital. One of the checks was for about $5,000 that went to the San Jacinto Methodist Cancer Center Pink Heals Endowment from the first Bras for the Cause Donation. The second check was for $30,087 and went to 15 patients from the Pink Heals Endowment Fund 2011-2013.

Martinez told the group that when she became an oncology nurse she expected to hear folks that had just been told they had cancer say, ‘How can we treat this?’ ‘What is going to happen to my family?’ but instead heard, “I don’t have time for this.” and “I need my job to pay bills.” At San Jacinto Methodist Hospital the Navigation Nurse for the Oncology patient enables the access for local recipients.

As director, she has been enabled though the endowment to tell patients “You go take care of yourself and we will handle the bills.”

The funds break down such that none of these funds however go to the doctors or health facilities providing the medical service but go to handle bills. Five grand for one patient means $890 for the car note, $1,969 for medication, $1,350 for the mortgage and about $891 for utilities to assist the patient as the patient can concentrate on getting medical services.

Some $10,034 went to Cobra Insurance from the second check, $2,790 went to dental care, some $5,665 went to utilities, mortgages accounted for $7, 543, car notes took $1,943 and medication accounted for $2,112.

American Cancer Society expenses in 2010 were broken down into 15% for adult cancer research, some 21% goes to fund-raising, about 7% goes to administering the program, one percent goes to childhood research, 15% goes to public awareness, education and legislation, some 21% goes to grants for screening and mammograms and finally about 29% goes to patient support including on-line support network, transportation to medical services, navigation (telephone resource for access to resources,) appearance aids, like wigs, prosthesis and finally lodging or those needing to travel for services.

So, Saturday, June 22, when your neighbors and friends ask you to wear pink to the Crosby Fair & Rodeo so the American Cancer Society can get funds from sponsors for those that care enough to be tough enough to wear pink, now you know what difference it makes.

Goose Creek bond issue to benefit Highlands students

HIGHLANDS – Speaking at the weekly Rotary Club luncheon, Gilbert Santana, spokesperson for the Goose Creek Facilities Planning Committee explained the need for a new bond issue, and the benefits that will accrue to the school district and its students.

Voters will be asked on May 11 to consider and approve two bond referendums, totalling $267.54 million dollars and providing for new construction of three elementary schools, a new technology center, and a new transportation center. Also the funds will be used for maintenance upgrades on all Goose Creek schools, and implementation of comprehensive technology and safety improvements.

The bond proposal is a result of a study made last fall by an ad hoc Facilities Planning Committee. This group, with the help of demographic and architectural consultants, decided that the projected growth of students in the district required the construction of new schools, and at the same time suggested upgrading of all facilities to keep up with eductional standards and to prepare Goose Creek students properly to compete in the future.

The district currently has about 21,500 students, makeing it the 58th largest in the state. Growth is currently occuring at between 1 and 2%, and will continue at this pace or greater. This means that in the next ten years, the district must accommodate another 4,500 students, Santana said.

In addition to meeting the needs of population growth, the committee saw the need for modernization of existing facilities, the need to add up-to-date technology, new facilities, and safety improvements at all campuses.

The committee recommended a total of $340 million in improvements to the GC CISD board of trustees, but the board decided to split the proposal into three parts. Propositions I and II are the subject of the $267.54 million bond referendum, and a remaining $70 million will be accomplished with other funding.

Highlands students will benefit directly, with the following funds scheduled for their schools:

— Goose Creek Memorial HS will get a $7.348 million addition for new programs, $4.3 million for technology, and $600,000 for safety and security

— Highlands Jr. School will get $400,000 for a STEM laboratory (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math), and another $765,000 for maintenance, safety and technology upgrades

— Highlands Elementary will get $1.5 million for facilities upgrades and technology — B.P. Hopper will get $2.89 million for facilities upgrades, safety and technology

Safety and Security improvements, which seem necessary in today’s environment nationwide, will include controlled access vestibules, fencing, and cameras in all the schools.

The bond proposal also includes other facilities that the district needs. These include a new Data and Technology Center, on a 15 acre site at North Main and W. Archer in Baytown, with a $7.16 million figure.

Also planned is an expansion and upgrade of the Agriculture Center, $5.7 million, upgrades to Stallworth stadium $1.2 million, and a new transportation center and bus garage and maintenance, $10.75 million.

Santana explained that in addition to emphasis on technology and STEM education programs, the district wants to insure that career programs in automotive and air conditioning, welding and related industrial fields are planned, too. Joint programs with Lee College are also being developed for these industrial fields.

Three new elementary schools are planned, each costing about $22 million. Santana said that at this time, no expansion of middle or high schools is required for student population growth.

The bond issue will result in a modest increase in taxes to district residents. It is anticipated that for a homeowner with a $100,000 house, the additional taxes would be $97.80 per year, or only $8.15 per month. For a home valued at $200,000 the increase would be $215.16 per year, or $17.93 per month.

For citizens 65 years or older, with a homestead exemption, there will not be any increase in their taxes.

Santana encouraged citizens to consider early voting, which will run from April 29 through May 7. Central locations for this are the GC CISD Administration Building, and the Lee College Admin Building. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through May 3rd, and May 4th 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., May 5th 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., and May 6th and 7th 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In addition, Temporary Early Voting will be at Harlem Elementary April 30th 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Highlands Elementary May 2nd 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Goose Creek Memorial High School May 3rd 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Highlands Jr. School and Hopper Primary May 7th 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Election Day is May 11th.