News

Wed
18
May

Homemade bomb found in Kosse

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Investigation continues into the origins of an incendiary device found Tuesday morning in a vacant house three miles north of Kosse on Hwy. 14.
According to Limestone County Sheriff Dennis Wilson, a deputy found the device after a confidential informant tipped off the Sheriff’s Office about the homemade bomb the morning of May 17.
When an investigator confirmed the presence of a propane tank in the house matching the tip, Wilson had him contact the McLennan County Sheriff’s Office to send a bomb squad.
Specially trained McLennan County personnel used a robot to investigate the device and verify it was a bomb then disable it.

Wed
18
May

Lovely day for a stroll

Gwen Bartsch, right, of Lake Mexia, hands a basket of goodies to fellow Mexia Garden Club member Marjorie Parks, of Mexia, in front of Gibbs Memorial Library. They and other Club members sold plants and other items as part of the first step of the Club’s Backyard Garden Stroll on Sunday, May 1.
Robilyn Reed, at rear left, her daughter, Valarie Friday, and granddaughters, Kaytavee, 2, and Gracilyn, 8 months, all of Mexia, explore a berm covered with flowers and other shrubbery at the home of Asa and Debrah Burgess, on LCR Cedar A-2, at Lake Mexia. The occasion was the Mexia Garden Club’s biennial Backyard Garden Stroll, held Sunday, May 1.
Jake Ash, 8, of Groesbeck, helps his little brother, Jadon, 2, as the toddler explores a flowerpot at the home of Mexia’s Troy and Jan Miller during Sunday’s Backyard Garden Stroll.
Homeowner Jan Miller, left, shows guests Robert Mortimer and Bobbie Barham, both of Mexia, how she and her husband, Troy, built a deck as part of their backyard retreat.
Charlotte Elrod, of Temple, left, and her friend Karen Nalley, of Belton, admire a flowerbed at the home of Ann Pendleton on South Ross in Mexia, part of the Mexia Garden Club’s Backyard Garden Stroll, held Sunday, May 1.
Homeowner Debbie Hullum, left, directs the attention of visitors Brenda Ballew, center, and Jean Shields, both of Teague, to one of the features of the backyard of the home she shares with husband Glen on Redbud A, on Lake Mexia.
Mexia Garden Club member Laura Rothrock examines the raffle prizes in Gibbs Memorial Library’s community room at the Club’s Backyard Garden Stroll on Sunday, May 1. Part of the event included speakers, seen at rear, teaching on butterfly gardens and container gardens.

Gwen Bartsch, right, of Lake Mexia, hands a basket of goodies to fellow Mexia Garden Club member Marjorie Parks, of Mexia, in front of Gibbs Memorial Library. They and other Club members sold plants and other items as part of the first step of the Club’s Backyard Garden Stroll on Sunday, May 1.

Wed
18
May

Historic Point Enterprise bell knocked down

The bell at Point Enterprise’s historic church was found knocked off its stand and lying on the ground early Sunday, May 15. The bell dates to 1856, when it was made in Troy, NY. Contributed photo/Helen Matthews

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Residents of Point Enterprise found the bell of their historic community church knocked off its display stand near the building and lying on the ground Sunday morning, May 15, and they would like to know who did it.
Point Enterprise Community Association President Helen Matthews said she believes someone attempted to steal the bell but found it too heavy.
“The bell weighs too much to lift and was still attached with bolts to the old frame,” Matthews said.
Some early-rising residents found the bell, and since Point Enterprise has no police department, Matthews reported the vandalism to the Sheriff’s Office.
The bell itself appears undamaged, but the cast iron stand that held it, believed to be as old as the bell, was broken in one corner, she said.

Mon
16
May

Reburial ceremony honors Powell family ancestors

On April 20, a memorial service for William James Powell and Florence Florinda Powell was held at the Ferguson Cemetery near Oletha.
William and Florence, who died and were buried on their family’s farm in 1872, were the children of Joseph Henderson and Caroline Matilda Herod Powell. William was born in November 1869 and died in November 1872. Florence was born in March 1871 and died in August 1872.
The Powells were early settlers of Limestone County. Joseph Powell was born in Robertson County, Tenn., in 1824 and arrived in Limestone County prior to 1850 when he began teaching school in the Eaton community. Caroline Herod was born in Mississippi in 1833 and came to Limestone County with her family in 1852. Joseph and Caroline were married Dec. 25, 1862.

Mon
16
May

Early voting is this week only

Mexia News Staff Report

Mon
16
May

Groesbeck embezzler takes plea

Mexia News Staff Report

Mon
16
May

Celebrating Cinco

Mexia News photos/Roxanne McKnight
Busy Mexia mom Marisela Hernandez, left, holds her son Alexander, 1, while his twin, Christopher, watches Rosa Hernandez, also of Mexia, make gorditas, or thick, little tortillas that are later filled like tacos. Their interactions were part of the Cinco de Mayo festival held Saturday, May 7, in downtown Mexia.
Eugenio and Maria Lara, of Mexia, take a break for Maria to eat corn while they listen to the bands play at the Cinco de Mayo festival held Saturday, May 7.
Zack Beechum, of Mexia, gives his niece, Adriana Walker, 5, a piggy-back ride around the Cinco de Mayo festival on Saturday, May 7, in downtown Mexia.
companied on vocals by Carlos Escudero, left, while Martinez’s son Joshua Martinez plays electric guitar at rear. The three were part of Christian Tejano band Nuevo Inspiracion, of Austin.
 Russell Martinez, left, on keyboard, and Isaac Paiz, right, on bass guitar, appear intent on the song they are performing as part of a larger group called Nueva Inspiraction, a Christian Tejano band from Austin.

Selena Buentello, 13, gets a laugh as Lazaro Perez shows her some of the freshly boiled corn he made at the Cinco de Mayo festival in Mexia. Downtown church Nueva Vida Assembly of God hosted the annual celebration on Saturday, May 7. See more photos from this event, pick up a copy of Tuesday's edition of The Mexia News, or subscribe to our online edition.

Mon
16
May

County settles with Labor Board on infraction

Attorney Mike Dixon, who represents Limestone County commissioners court in legal matters, speaks to the court on a settlement with the Labor Department when the commissioners return to open session at their May 10 meeting.

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners court agreed to pay $55,629 in overtime pay to about 20 Sheriff’s Office employees after a recent review by the U.S. Labor Department revealed non-standard payment practices that amounted to employees working more than 40 hours a week without receiving overtime pay.
For the past three years, the dispatchers and some jailers were allowed to work the 80 hours within a two-week period in unequal amounts, such as working 56 hours one week and 24 the following week.
“That way the employees could get long weekends and time off, and they loved it,” said County Judge Daniel Burkeen.
He said allowing employees flexible hours cut down on turnover, which had been a problem before the Sheriff’s Office had began the flexible-hour policy, resulting in their constantly having to train new employees.

Fri
13
May

County Auditor Watson describes her work

Limestone County Debbie Watson tells the Rotary Club of Mexia at a recent meeting about her duties.

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
When large amounts of cash are involved, an important step to ensure the money is used correctly is having checks and balances, and an auditor who has the staff and skills to review, analyze and reconcile expenditures.
For Limestone County, that auditor is Debbie Watson, who has been in her current position for 12 years. She recently spoke to the Rotary Club of Mexia about her job, and especially some of the things the county does to ensure its money is accounted for properly.
She was introduced by District 77 Judge Patrick Simmons, who is responsible for hiring the county auditor.

Fri
13
May

Limestone County rebates fairly stable in April

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor
The city of Mexia's sales tax rebates for April are up by a bit, by .74 of a percent compared to this month last year, in spite of the state’s economic slowdown due to a decline in the oil and gas business.
Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced he will send cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts $591.4 million in local sales tax allocations for April, 2.6 percent more than in April 2015. These allocations are based on sales made in February by businesses that report tax monthly.
“The cities of Dallas, Austin, Sugar Land and Fort Worth saw substantial increases in sales tax allocations that helped stop a four-month streak of declining sales tax allocations for the state overall,” Hegar said. “Energy-centric cities such as Houston and Midland continue to see decreases in sales tax allocations.”

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