Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : September 28, 2014

By Erik Walsh
The News Staff

ATHENS–A burn ban in Henderson County is reactivated.
This time for 28 days, unless the county gets significant rainfall.
Henderson County Commissioners approved the ban 4-1 on Tuesday, after Fire Marshal Shane Renberg warned them of a recent increase in the number of fires calling for emergency service. Precinct 3 Commissioner Ronny Lawrence opposed the move.
The average moisture reading on an 800-point scale is 647 in Henderson County, Renberg said. The county is projected to be at 689 on the Keetch-Byrum Drought Index in two weeks.
Only 19 of Texas’ 254 counties are above 600. Seventy counties are currently under a burn ban, including surrounding Kaufman, Navarro and Ellis counties.
In other action, commissioners:
• approved a contract with Clifford Power Systems to continue to perform the annual inspection on the generators at the Henderson County Justice Center at a cost of $1,347.
• approved right-of-way permits for O’Brien Energy to bore under a road in Precinct 4.
• approved an interlocal agreement with the City of Star Harbor for labor and equipment to repair Land Cove and Hickory Circle.
• authorized payment of bills totaling $251,430.
• renewed liability insurance from the Texas Association of Counties Risk Management Pool.



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : September 14, 2014

Mabank Police Chief Kyle McAfee leaves office Sept. 27.

Mabank Police Chief
Kyle McAfee
leaves office Sept. 27.

Kyle McAfee to join Kaufman Fire Department

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

MABANK–Mabank City Council members regrettably accepted the resignation of Police Chief Kyle McAfee Tuesday. His last day with the department is Sept. 24. He has headed the eight-member staff since 2005.
In a letter submitted to the council, McAfee states that he has accepted a position with the Kaufman Fire Department that will further his growth and passion for serving through fire suppression and prevention. He will also be assisting in the Fire Marshal’s Office, he said.
“I have enjoyed working with the Mabank Police Department and will miss my colleagues,” he writes. “Serving the citizens of Mabank as the police chief and being recognized throughout both Henderson and Kaufman counties as being part of one of the best departments, has been a great experience.”
News of McAfee’s resignation falls hard on the heels of an earlier announcement that Capt. Lee Orr is leaving the department to take up a bailiff post in Kaufman County. Orr’s farewell reception was set for noon, Sept. 11.
McAfee, who also is the Mabank Fire Department clown, called Q2, after the wind-up siren, said he would continue performing with the Fire Safety Clowns and keep his post as assistant fire chief – a volunteer position – with the Mabank Fire Department.
“I hope the city will continue to support the department as it has always done,” he closed his resignation letter.



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : September 7, 2014

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

GUN BARREL CITY–A Tamarack Subdivision resident was not taken in by two men posing as meter readers Wednesday.
The incident is under investigation, Gun Barrel City Officer Ramsey confirmed.
A spokesperson for East Cedar Creek Fresh Water Supply Utility relayed the following.
Two men in an older model white pickup truck represented themselves as meter readers for the water utility told a Tamarack resident that it was likely the residence had a water leak and they could get it fixed for just the cost of parts.
After a brief inspection inside and under the home, the resident was told it would take $175 to get the work done.
The resident asked to see a written work order or a receipt, that’s when the man returned to the truck and drove away.
In addition, the resident noted that the men who were described as likely of Hispanic heritage, were not wearing a distinctive uniform or badge.
That’s when the resident called the police and the utility district.
“Employees who make contact with the public wear a uniform an are in a truck with the East Cedar Creek logo,” utility general manager Bill Goheen said. If there are ever any concerns, residents should call the office at (903) 887-7103, he added. “We’re developing plans to produce photo identification for each employee.”