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Posts published in April 2019

Performers set for Crosby Rodeo

Rodeo set for May 31 to June 8

CROSBY – The Crosby Fair & Rodeo has announced their line-up for performers this year. The Rodeo will start with a Cook-Off on May 31 and June 1, and the Rodeo events and Performers will follow the next weekend, June 6, 7, 8. The Acts announced are:

MAY 31 – BAG OF DONUTS

With a flair for kabuki make-up and extravagant costumes, the four New Orleans natives cover songs in a style they have branded as Superpop: Any song popular from any era. In the great tradition of stunning acts, BOD has to be experienced live to fully feel the impact. The universality of their show stems from the idea that everyone likes to have an escape, a release

JUNE 6 – FLATLAND CAVALRY

With their highly anticipated sophomore album, Homeland Insecurity, Texas’s Flatland Cavalry wants to stop and smell the roses. Bandleader and chief lyricist Cleto Cordero is fine with examining and the present. There’s an appreciation for all the sharp detail and high-spirited emotions of today.

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Woman’s body found near San Jacinto River

Deputies reported that a woman’s body was found in the San Jacinto River on April 16, 2019.

Authorities uncovered the body with multiple injuries. The investigation continues and the cause if death is unknown. Deputies do not known if the injuries were sustained before or after the death, reports stated.

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office found the body around 5 p.m. in the 17400 block of River Road.

Authorities said the woman was wearing a striped shirt and had multiple tattoos. She appeared to be in the water for several hours and her body and face sustained visible injuries.

The investigation continues and the Harris County Sheriff’s Office Homicide Unit is asking anyone with information on this case to call homicide unit at 713-274-9100.

EPA sets public meeting May 7

Water samples from the Ship Channel contain at least 9 toxins in an oily slick.

SJRC reviews Superfund status

HIGHLANDS – At its regular monthly meeting, the San Jacinto River Coalition learned that the federal EPA had scheduled a community meeting in Highlands on Tuesday, May 7 from 6:30 to 8:00 pm. This is one of the quarterly public meetings that the EPA promised to have on a regular schedule. They will update information on activities at the Superfund site, according the EPA spokesperson Janetta Coats.

At the same meeting, THEA president Jackie Young discussed the environmental impact that the ITC fire has had on the water quality of the river and ship channel. She displayed a bottle of water from the channel with heavy oil deposits.

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Crosby names new AD

Jerry Prieto and wife, Julie come to Crosby tasked with rebuilding athletic program and coaches.

CROSBY – The new head coach and athletic director of the Crosby Cougars is Jerry Prieto as of April 16 following a unanimous vote by the Board of Trustees of Crosby ISD at a special called meeting.

Like the previous, he comes with a background as Assistant Head Football Coach, and Offensive Coordinator also he adds Recruiting Coordinator. For diversity of coaching experience, he has coached basketball, track, powerlifting and wrestling.

Originally from the Greater Houston Area, Prieto oversaw development of one of the most explosive offenses in South Texas. Prieto helped build Corpus Christi Veterans Memorial High School’s football program and helped lead the team to Regional Semifinals in 2017 with an 11-2 overall record. In 2018, Veterans Memorial made another Regional Semifinals appearance with a 12- 1 overall record and an average over 44 points per game that same season. He has compiled a 23-3 record over the past two years.

He is a 2001 graduate of Cypress Springs High School in Cy-Fair ISD and received his undergraduate degree from Sam Houston State University in 2004 and his Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from Lamar University in 2011.

“My family and I are excited to join this proud community,” said Prieto. “We look forward to contributing to the continued success of Crosby ISD athletics.”

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TxDOT updates I-10 bridge repair

TxDOT workers examine the broken support.

The following is an update from David Lazare, an engineer with TxDOT in regards to the San Jacinto bridge repairs:

This is an update on the Emergency Contract to repair the IH-10/San Jacinto Bridge that was struck by a barge on February 11, 2019.

The permanent repair work officially began on Monday, April 8th, 2019. Over the last week, the contractor has setup the cofferdam and is demolishing the damaged/broken column. They have also begun setting up temporary supports to begin the permanent repairs.

Over the next week, we expect to install the permanent replacement column, permanent structural support and welding.

Early next week, we also expect to open 1 lane on SPUR 330 heading north to allow commuters to access the Crosby-Lynchburg intersection, which is temporarily signalized. This should ease the congestion on Thompson Rd and the intersection of I-10.

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Crosby celebrates mega M.A.G.A.

Trump announced and signed executive orders to cut red tape for the oil and gas industry pipelines. He also introduced Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush, son of Jeb Bush.

Trump greeted by thousands of fans

CROSBY – In an area that enjoys a parade, the most attendance to date was to see the presidential motorcade last week come through from Ellington Air Force Base to FM 2100 down Foley Road.

Micki Rush captured the enthusiasm “We are just here to support our American President coming to our little unincorporated area. The visit from President Trump will bring him to the International facility next door.”

One could see M.A.G.A. (Make America Great Again) posters, vehicles, and displays everywhere and on rare occasions some protesters with different opinions. This reporter counted five in a sea of red, pro-Trump supporters. Veterans lined up before the American Legion and the Crosby Rodeo Fairgrounds was having difficulty keeping their area clear for event participants to enter.

Jeffrey Seat, and Greg Hunter Nason sport out like a football fan for President Trump as the motorcade passes scores of Crosby fans on Foley Road about to turn into the International Training and Education Center last Wednesday about 3:00 p.m. Locals lined the route from U.S. 90 until the destination.

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Harvey Recovery Program starts in Barrett Station

JUDGE LINA HIDALGO announces the start of the Recovery program, as Malcolm Barrett and Adrian Garcia look on.

BARRETT STATION – The new leadership of Harris County turned out in force to announce Harris County Project Recovery-Harvey Program at the Harris County Barrett Community Center last Saturday.

Lina Hidalgo, Harris County Judge, Adrian Garcia, Precinct 2 Commissioner, Daphne Lemelle, Harris County Community Services Director and a host of county community workers from varied agencies were present to share their expertise enabling residents to get help for their houses, the services they need to recover from Hurricane Harvey.

Harris County Project Recovery-Harvey is for homeowners outside Houston to apply for home repair, reconstruction or reimbursement.

The new Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo indicated that the county is giving out about $200 Million in this program.

“Harvey was an especially difficult disaster because it got to the core of people’s lives because it reached into their homes, in their housing. People’s homes are anchors for them and their families. When people lost their homes and were forced to leave and live somewhere else, they were still forced to watch and wait until they could rebuild and return. That destroys and disrupts the rest of their lives and the fabric of our community.”

“For the first time we are making a massive investment in housing around Harvey,” said Hidalgo, indicating that the program was to be the largest investment a region has made in the area of housing repair.

“It helps us build a stronger community and a more resilient community in all of Harris County,” the Judge concluded.

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Arkema faces new charges

CROSBY – According to Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg a grand jury has indicted Arkema Inc. and Mike Keough, the company’s vice president of logistics, on a felony charge of causing bodily injury to two sheriff’s deputies by withholding critical information needed by first responders to protect themselves and the community from chemicals released when Arkema’s Crosby Plant caught fire after Hurricane Harvey in 2017.

Said Ogg on April 10, “The facts show Arkema knew of the dangers, withheld vital information, and unleashed harm on first responders and the community. This felony indictment is a wake-up call to companies that would pollute our air and waterways, ignore best practices in safety, and put our communities at risk.”

Rusty Hardin has been retained by Arkema as attorney and answered the charges on the company’s website.

“Harris County prosecutors are doubling down on an unprecedented and outrageous attempt to criminalize a natural disaster,” Hardin said in the statement.

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PRESIDENT TRUMP IN CROSBY WEDNESDAY

President Donald Trump generates excitement among his supporters.

CROSBY – “It’s like the circus is coming to town!” exclaimed one Republican resident of the combined excitement and trepidation of having the presidential motorcade come to an unincorporated area that voted for him in the Presidential election by a whopping 74%.

A flurry of questions poured into the Star-Courier concerning where folks could get a view or when traffic could be expected to be stopped on FM 2100 or Foley Road.

Arrival at the International Union of Operating Engineers International Training and Education Center comes in controversy. Presidential executive orders to facilitate making petrochemicals and speed up pipeline construction in the wake of four petrochemical fires in less than one month and the union facility recently became non-profit, thus reducing taxes paid to local first responders. White House officials announced the orders will grant incentives for investors to make an energy infrastructure, streamlining pipeline projects. Last May Trump issued a permit to initiate the delayed Keystone XL Pipeline.

The International Training and Education Center is about 266 acres between Newport and Foley Road.

President Trump indicated reducing red tape around pipelines would allow the US to remain undisputed leader of the world in natural gas and oil in the future.

Of course, the new permit is under court challenge, environmentalists sued over the issue of Congress, not the executive branch, is granted constitutional rule over federal lands.

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Another pipeline fire at Crosby oil facility

Only one day after the major fire at the KMCO plant in Crosby, the Crosby fire department was fighting another oil facility fire on Sralla Road. Crosby and Highlands fire departments were called out Wednesday night, May 3rd, after lightning struck storage tanks. Highlands Fire Chief Harvey Little said that the three storage tanks were completely destroyed by flames. He responded with a brush truck, because the facility is far from the road over unpaved fields. This is the same oil well that had a fire about one year ago. See page 8 for additional photos. (Photo by Lewis Spearman, Star-Courier).

KMCO status update

Crosby, TX (April 5, 2019) – KMCO, LLC today issued the following update on the status of the incident response at its production facility in Crosby, Texas:

Regarding KMCO’s Most Affected Employees

“Two members of our team are still in critical condition at area hospitals and the entire KMCO family is praying for their rapid recovery. We remain in close contact with all the families and are providing support for their special needs during this challenging time,” KMCO CEO, John Foley said.

Out of respect for the families and their request for privacy, the company will not release further information on their status.

Regarding the Status of the Ongoing Post-Incident Response and Investigation

“The Harris County Fire Marshals have completed their initial scene examination. Investigative teams from the Fire Marshals, OSHA, CSB and KMCO are all working cooperatively to track down the cause of this tragic incident. KMCO has been cleared to continue remediation of the site,” KMCO VP of Operations Keith Terhune said.

The company is continuing its water containment and collection efforts. Additional precautions are being taken to manage anticipated rainfall and prevent any uncontrolled runoff. Residents should be aware that mobile water pumping equipment and tank vehicles deployed on adjacent roads are removing water runoff from the site. No hazardous compounds have been detected in any offsite samples.

We are continuing to systematically assess the facility to verify the extent of any structural damage.

Important note

The fire suppression foam used by emergency responders at the Crosby site is not hazardous to people or groundwater. If residents should see foam in their yards, it is safe and will not hurt trees, shrubs, lawns or pets.

The EPA continues its aerial and ground level air monitoring using their highly sensitive monitoring equipment. TCEQ is also conducting air monitoring. To date, there have been no findings that would raise community health concerns.

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