News

Wed
10
Sep

County may decrease tax hike amount

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Limestone County property-owners may only have a 3.4-cent increase in property taxes instead of the 5.4-cent increase previously estimated. Commissioners court members suggested ways to cut several hundred thousand dollars from the budget at Monday’s budget workshop but may also dip into reserves to balance the budget. Also Monday, the first of two public hearings on the tax increase drew only two speakers, both of which basically encouraged the court to do its best to limit the tax increase but acknowledged the difficulty of the budget decisions.
“We were looking at raising the tax rate 3.4 (cents per $100 valuation), and when the cuts were made, there was about a $350,000 shortfall,” said Commissioner John McCarver explaining what the court may do to limit the tax increase. “If you take that out and carry it over, hopefully something good will happen next year.”

Tue
09
Sep

Natural gas lines being replaced in Mexia


Mexia residents have seen these signs lately on Hwy. 14 north of the city since Watkins Construction Company began replacing aging natural gas pipelines for Atmos Energy. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Those who have been wondering about the red “pipeline construction ahead” signs on Hwy. 14 north of Mexia, the many white pickup trucks marked “Watkins Construction Co.” and signs that say “Watkins Access” may be interested to know they are all part of a project to replace natural gas pipelines in this area.
Atmos Energy is having some of their older gas pipelines replaced as part of a larger project that runs through Limestone County. The work is part of two projects just outside Mexia, west of Hwy. 14 and heading back into Mexia, a stretch of 6-inch high-pressure line about 8 miles long, according to Atmos Manager of Public Affairs Chace Murphy, who is based in Bryan.

To read more, pick up a copy of Tuesday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Tue
09
Sep

Mexia VFW remembers fallen, captured military


Leaders of VFW Post 4694 hold the organization’s POW-MIA Empty Chair Ceremony Saturday, Sept. 6, at the Post, on South Martin Luther King Jr. Highway. Shown here, l-r, are Patriotic Instructor Nicole Burns, Junior Vice Commander Jeffrey Scarborough, Post Commander Ray Marsh, Chaplain Carm Hoyne and Ladies Auxiliary President Lynnette Young. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
U.S. military forces still listed as prisoners of war or missing in action were remembered in a solemn ceremony Saturday at Mexia’s VFW Post 4694.
The VFW members performed the POW-MIA Empty Chair Ceremony, which uses many symbols to remind those participating of the hardships of prisoners of war and those missing in action.
Post Commander Ray Marsh gave an introduction on the importance of remembering POWs and MIAs, then narrated each part of the ceremony, explaining to those gathered what the different symbols mean.
“More than 78,000 Americans are still unaccounted for from World War II; 8,100 from Korea; 120 from the Cold War; 1,810 from Vietnam three from the Gulf War,” Marsh said. “These courageous Americans who dedicated their lives to preserving and protecting our freedom will never be forgotten.

To read more, pick up a copy of Tuesday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Mon
01
Sep

Court comparing potential prison operators

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners court went into executive session, which is closed to the public, at its Aug. 25 meeting to compare the proposals of two prison-operating companies vying to run the Limestone County Detention Center: LaSalle Corrections, of Louisiana, and Management & Training Corporation, of Utah.
When the court returned to open session, the members voted to create a committee to meet with the two companies and further discuss their proposals. The committee is composed of County Judge Daniel Burkeen, Commissioner John McCarver, attorney Herb Bristow and Sheriff Dennis Wilson.

To learn more, subscribe to The Mexia News.

Mon
01
Sep

Welcome rains bring relief to parched region


Mexia Lion Don Beene braves heavy rain to deliver hot pancake breakfast plates to Mexia businesses Friday, part of the Lions Club’s annual Double Whammy Pancake Breakfast, served the morning and evening of the Blackcat’s first home football game. Mexia News photo/ Roxanne McKnight

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor
Rain gauges finally got a chance to strut their stuff after heavy showers pelted many parts of the Bistone region yesterday.
Mexia recorded 1.52 inches of rain between 6:45 and 8:35 a.m., causing roadway flooding in areas that tend to fill early, including the railroad underpass at North Ross Avenue, the outside lanes of Milam Street between Ross Avenue and McKinney Street, Bonham at Hopkins Street and the intersections of U.S. 84 and Hwy. 14, and Hwy. 14 and Hwy. 171. Stalled vehicles were reported to police at the 14/171 intersection and on East Palestine.
At 9:15 a.m., after rainfall had ebbed in Mexia, the National Weather Service issued an Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory for Freestone County, southeastern Limestone County, northwestern Anderson County and Henderson County until 12:15 p.m.

To read more, subscribe to The Mexia News.

Wed
27
Aug

MISD approves budget

By Mike Eddleman
Publisher
The Mexia ISD Board of Trustees approved the district budget for 2014-15 Monday, but it didn't come without questions.
The $16.28 million budget passed 4-1, with board member Ron Fowler voting against. Board members Kim Williams and Culetta Beachum were absent.
The $16.28 million Mexia ISD budget is for the general fund, but the total budget is $19.4 million with federal programs included.
The tax rate will remain unchanged from the current year, with the maintenance and operations (M&O) rate at the maximum $1.04 and the interest and sinking (I&S) – or debt service rate – at $.0716, for a total rate of $1.1116.

To read more, pick up a copy of Thursday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Wed
27
Aug

Walkers circle Mexia schools in prayer


About 75-80 people turned out for the seventh annual prayer walk around Mexia schools Wednesday, Aug. 20, an effort by several local churches. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Well-wishers of Mexia students walked the perimeter of Mexia schools Wednesday evening, Aug. 20, despite temperatures in the mid-90s – that felt more like mid-100s – to ask for divine intervention in the upcoming school year.
This is the seventh year for the prayer walk, according to event organizer Bryan Hallmark, pastor of Mexia First Assembly of God and a Mexia teacher himself.
“We do it every year because we believe in everything starting in prayer,” he said. “If you put God in it, we believe that He can work a lot of things out. We want our school year to be great, our new teachers coming in and the old teachers having unity. We want our schools to function great, and we want to coat them with prayer so that God can do great things this school year.”
Hallmark does not consider the prayer walk an event of the church he pastors but something in which he encourages members of any church to participate.

Wed
27
Aug

Making court payments to become easier

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Paying Limestone County court should be much easier in the near future, since commissioners agreed at their Aug. 25 meeting to sign a court payment credit card processing agreement with Tyler Technologies.
The move is part of the e-filing requirement that will be mandatory in about a year, said County Judge Daniel Burkeen. County Clerk Peggy Beck said she hopes to have the system operational in October.
In two other significant agenda items, the court made no changes: The judge and commissioners agreed not to lift the burn ban and not to change the county and district’s 2015 retirement plan.

To read more, pick up a copy of Thursday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Fri
15
Aug

What's the scoop?


Mexia News photo/Stephen R. Farris

It’s hard to tell in this photo if junior varsity football player Oscar Mares is trying to decide which ice cream he wants next, or if he’s simply star struck because the cheerleaders are serving up the frozen treat. As you can see, players were lined up end-to-end to fill their bowls up with all the different flavors of ice cream at the Meet the Blackcats night/Ice Cream Social held at Black Cat Field Thursday evening. See more photos from Thursday’s ice cream social on Page 10.

Fri
15
Aug

MISD making final budget choices

By Mike Eddleman
Publisher
The Mexia ISD administration and board of trustees is entering the home stretch in budget preparations.
The board will meet at 6 p.m., Monday, Aug. 18 for its regular monthly meeting, then again the following Monday, Aug. 25 to vote on the budget.
The limited budget discussion at this week's meeting will center on how raises will be handled for non-teaching positions.
“The major concern and the big question for us is whether or not we will be able to give raises,” said Superintendent Sharon Ross.

To read more, pick up a copy of Saturday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

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