Posted by : January 8, 2016
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Approves paid holiday schedule, annexes property, begins sewer line replacement
By Emmalee Doss
MABANK–The Mabank City Council approved nine paid holiday days for city employees for 2016, when they met Jan. 5. They also agreed to annex three properties north of U.S. Highway 175 and entered into two contracts related to a wastewater improvement project.
Council members approved the same paid holidays the city has supported for many years, including: New Year’s Day, Good Friday, March 25; Memorial Day, May 30; the Fourth of July, Labor Day, Sept. 5; two days for Thanksgiving, Nov. 24-25; and three days around Christmas, Friday-Monday, Dec. 23-26.
Councilman Larry Teague noted that New Year’s Day had already been observed and suggested approving the 2017 holiday.
Two property owners petitioned the city for annexation. Robbypop Investments presented two neighboring properties, both less than half a mile in width and contiguous to the City of Mabank. This was approved with Teague abstaining on the vote. David and John Chappell own the third property. Their three-tenths of an acre is also located northeast of the city limits but touching the city boundary. Its annexation was also approved.
The city plans to replace the old clay tile wastewater line along Walnut Street, one of the main sewer pipes going to the treatment plant, utility supervisor Steve Barley confirmed. Councilmembers named Grant Administration Services to Public Management to oversee the Texas Community Development Block Grant program that will help pay for the necessary improvement. The award of $275,000 was granted in October, 2015 and the city has two years to complete the work and provide a matching $40,000 or so, Barley explained. The council also named KSA Engineers out of Longview to spec the project, oversee the bidding process and plan the work. The replacement will go from Second to Eighth along Walnut Street, Barley said.
In other business, council members:
• heard new police cars are nearly ready to be put into service.
• approved the purchase of dual band radios for the police department.
• heard the city court issued 12 arrest warrants in the month of December.
• heard repairs to city property on Market Street, involving restrooms, were underway.
Posted by : January 6, 2016
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By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
GUN BARREL CITY—The new year started off with the break-in of a church and theft of the pastor’s and church’s guitar collections and gaming systems from the church’s youth center. Pastor Barry Boatright of the Christian Life Center is taking it all in stride. “I just wish whoever did this would have sat down with me. If they needed some help, we would have helped them,” he said.
Boatright enjoys buying and trading guitars, which he keeps on display at his office. Besides some recent acquisitions, considered quite valuable, the thief or thieves also took a beat-up banjo, a mandolin and a guitar that were given to him by family members who have since passed on. “These had great sentimental value to me,” he said.
Boatright discovered the theft late Saturday afternoon. He had come in early to prepare for the Saturday night service and found many offices at the church ransacked, the back door wrecked and the Youth Center burglarized. In addition to the guitars taken, Boatright reported a collection of gift cards kept on hand to assist the needy and the petty cash taken.
“This is the fourth time it’s happened,” he said. The latest occurred in 2013, he said. “I collect, buy and sell guitars.” He also keeps a photographic record of his acquisitions, which the police now have. “I had just gotten a couple of new ones and on Friday morning took photos of all of them, again,” he said. The last time, they found the guy who took them. And the first time, they found one of the guitars about a year later,” he said. “It could have been much worse,” he added.
The church is planning to install video surveillance in light of this latest break-in, and Boatright has moved many of his remaining instruments to another location. “I’m sure it will come out better in the end. You live and learn through things like this,” he said.
“I love to play them and have been blessed from collecting and trading them. I’ve given away 20 to 25 guitars and have never lost in the long run. It’s crazy how God has opened doors for me through my guitar playing and trading,” he reflected on Monday. “But it sure was discouraging to walk into this mess on Saturday. It was a little distracting.”
Posted by : December 31, 2015
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Special to The Monitor
HENDERSON COUNTY–Henderson County Sheriff’s Office Deputy John Daniels took a burglary report from the XTO Energy Company on Dec. 27. The central office of the Opelika gas plant was broken into and the offices rummaged through. The suspect removed a set of vehicle keys and then drove off in a service truck that was parked outside the office. The vehicle was a 2008 Chevrolet Silverado Z71.
Later the same day, Deputy Daniels was traveling westbound on SH 31 E. in Browsboro, when he noticed a white colored Z71 pick-up sitting on the north side of the roadway near the Brownsboro Fire Department. He noted that the license plate matched the vehicle from the XTO burglary. He made contact with the driver, the only occupant of the vehicle, Eric Dean Dockery, who could not provide a valid reason for being in possession of the vehicle.
The 28-year-old was then placed under arrest for the offense of Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle and transported to the Henderson County Jail.
The charge is a state jail felony that carries a punishment term from 180 days to two years in jail .
He is being held on a $15,000 bond.