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Posts published in September 2019

Rotary holds another successful Washer Tournament

25 teams competed last Saturday for prizes and the chance to win bragging rights for best washer throwing skills. Participants included local and district Rotarians, and teams from the public, some of whom have played each year of the tournament in a traditional competition.

Proceeds benefit Polio Plus, R. I.

HIGHLANDS – The local Rotary club held a fund raiser, their 13th Annual 3- Hole Washer Board Charity Tournament last Saturday, Sept. 14 at Charlie’s Ice House. About 25 two-person teams competed for the top three places.

The event also included a live and silent auction and raffle, and the club was able to raise about $7000 thanks to the support of the community.

Polio, once a disease that attacked children and adults all around the world, leaving them crippled, has been almost eradicated through the efforts of the Rotary International. Only Afghanistan and Pakistan have a few active cases, but inoculation with the vaccine continues throughout the world.

Since 1985, Rotary has raised $1.7 billion for mass vaccination, immunizing more than 2.5 billion children in 122 countries.

The Highlands Rotary Club, along with thousands of other Rotary clubs around the world, support this effort to eradicate polio as one of their primary charities.

This year the Washer Tournament was able to raise about $7000, of which half will go directly to the polio effort, and the other half to R.I. for national programs. In the future, Highlands can apply for a grant that will fund a local project.


Crosby ISD 2020 budget approved

Bailee CoVan, a Crosby High School Senior, daughter of the Newport Elementary School Principal, was named a National Merit Scholar Semifinalist. Pictured with CoVan are her parents, and the Crosby School Board and Superintendent Scott Davis at left.

CROSBY – The local school board fixed a tax rate for the school year, limited finances, and heard a yearly report on accountability last Monday.

The 2019-2020 budget and proposed tax rate is centered on the new tax rate. The Interest and Sinking tax rate is $0.48. It is higher than the additional published notice and public meeting rate of $0.42 per $100 valuation.

The difference is due mostly to the value year lag used in the calculation of state aid. Crosby state aid for debt service decreases under HB 3 due to the increase in local property values for 2019. For maintenance and operation is $1.06835 per $100 valuation and reflects the maximum House Bill 3 compressed rate. And is a decrease from the previous $1.09 rate prior to House Bill 3.


SJRC monitors continued pollution

Carolyn Stone, Channelview resident

EAST HARRIS COUNTY – The San Jacinto River Coalition met last week in Highlands, and reviewed activities at the Waste Pits, and heard of other environmental concerns.

Jackie Young announced that the Dallas Region 6 of the EPA had a new administrator, Ken McQueen, replacing David Gray, who remains with EPA. In a surprise announcement, the public learned this week that the EPA had met on the site on Monday with other involved parties, reviewed progress, and issued a statement as follows:

“The work of the Superfund Task Force brought significant progress to addressing contamination at the San Jacinto waste pits site,” said Regional Administrator Ken McQueen. “EPA will continue working with our partners toward a permanent clean-up for the benefit of the Highlands community.”

“The TCEQ appreciates EPA’s efforts on the Superfund Taskforce recommendations,” said Executive Director Toby Baker. “We look forward to our continued successful partnership with EPA to ensure proper and timely cleanup of Texas federal Superfund sites.”

“Harris County’s work with the EPA and TCEQ on the cleanup of the San Jacinto Waste Pits is a great example of how government, at all levels, can work together for the common good,” said Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan. “The announcement on October 11, 2017, that the EPA’s cleanup remedy will include the removal of 212,000 cubic yards of dioxin-laden waste from the beds and banks of the San Jacinto River has been a highpoint in my administration. Today’s announcement furthers my commitment to work together as we get closer to the goal.”

Jackie Young said at the meeting that the clean-up had entered Phase 2 PreDesign, which would last up to 10 weeks. At this time she is requesting from EPA Region 6 that work on the site have a third-party overseer, and a dive-team inspection. The work is being conducted by a contractor for the PRP (Potentially Responsible Parties) under an agreement with the EPA. Essentially they are examining conditions to verify the Pre-Design.


Jared Jamail benefit set October 5 at Stonebridge

Al Jamail at the Crosby Education Foundation benefit last weekend.

CROSBY – Jared Jamail of Crosby passed away in May 1999 at the age of 16, and for the last 21 years consecutively, his extended family has held a fund-raiser golf tournament in his honor to memory and raise scholarship money for his fellow Crosby ISD students.

According to his aunt, Pam Johnson, “Jared’s death was a sudden, devastating shock for his family and friends. We, his family, didn’t want Jared’s memory to be about his death, but about his life. The Jared Jamail Memorial Fund was established to celebrate his life by helping others. As a result, family and friends of Jared have been able to help others by providing scholarships to graduating Crosby High School students. For those of you who have helped us, a heartfelt thank you.


CONGRESSMAN CRENSHAW IN CROSBY: Solutions for terrorism that keep due process

Dan Crenshaw explained his support of TAPS and problems with red flag laws but could not cite legislation that would effectively shut down domestic terrorism. (PHOTO BY LEWIS SPEARMAN)

CROSBY – Dan Crenshaw R. 2nd U.S. Congressional District was inside Crosby Church last Saturday, Sept. 7, for a town hall style meeting to answer questions about what he reportedly said about “red flag laws” and the T.A.P.S. act, a grant program to enable law enforcement to focus on probable threats rather than chase after silly exaggerations.

Having defined the TAPS act as a resource for law enforcement that does not change due process, he indicated that it is legislation he supports, he moved on to “red flag” laws.


Channel 13 plans program about Crosby


CROSBY – Television Station ABC13 has a recurring news program feature about neighborhoods around the city of Houston. They are now working on a program about Crosby, which will feature well known landmarks, eateries, and people.

A group of citizens familiar with Crosby met a few weeks ago with the production staff of ABC13, to exchange ideas about what should be included in the show, which will air at the end of September on various news programs, and occur over several days.

The planning group consisted of Keenan Smith of Crosby Church, Scott Davis Superintendent of Crosby ISD, Kim Harris and Stephanie Walden of the Crosby/Huffman Chamber, and Gilbert Hoffman, publisher of the Star Courier. ABC13 representative included Anchor Cynthia Cisneros, Producer Chris Nocera, and six other production assistants. The on-air host for these series is Pooja Lodhia.

It is expected that the program will feature landmark restaurants such as the Crawfish Shack, schools and churches, historical markers at Humphrey Jackson Cemetery, outstanding individuals and sports teams, key industries such as the turf farms, recreation on Lake Houston, history of Barrett Station and more. The program is meant to emphasize the best features of the community.

Suggestions on what to include in this presentation are welcome, and can be directed to Chris Nocera, producer, 713-218- 2870.

Locals dash in 9/11 Hero’s Run


Reyna Rankin, aunt Penny Rankin, and Carys Murray last week participated in the Travis Manion Foundation 9/11 Hero’s Run.

The Rankin ladies have participated for 4 years in the ideal race to honor fallen Army hero’s sacrifice, unite communities to strengthen America’s National Character, and to measure the health benefits of the participating members.

Although Reyna has medaled each year she participated, this year she came in First Place in her category.

AMTRAK hits truck; 20 injured

The Semi ended up in the ditch after it was hit by the AMTRAK train.

FM 686 at FM 621 – The Sunset Limited an AMTRAK passenger train struck a semi-truck (18 wheeler) last Friday at about 4:00 p.m. causing a “minor derailment” (the front wheels left the track) and split the truck in half.

The train traveled all the way through the intersection in total before stopping. There are no cross arms at the intersection. Neighbors say they heard no horn or sound warning of the train’s approach.

The AMTRAK was out of Los Angeles bound for New Orleans via Beaumont.

Crosby’s ESD#5 took the truck driver to the hospital, Liberty County transported seven people to Dayton Regional Medical Center and 12 people were transported by A Mass casualty bus to the hospital. The injuries of train passengers were said to be consistent with a bump on the head as the train hit brakes.


Eagleton campaign starts strong

Greeting from a 1/4 room away. Eagleton smiles a welcome.

BAYTOWN – The local fairgrounds jammed with trucks and a few tailgate trailers as Sherman Eagleton hosted the first of his campaign’s fundraisers last Thursday.

There were folks of all walks of life with one thing in common: they support the Harris County Precinct 3 Constable for another term. Precinct 3 has a history of being contested going back for decades. And Eagleton, it seemed spoke with everyone attending. It looks as if Eagleton faces several opponents in the March 2020 Democratic Primary.