News

Mon
12
Aug

New superintendent out meeting parents


Sharon Ross, Ph.D., right, new superintendent at Mexia ISD, meets Julia Riojas, who has children in Mexia schools, at the foyer of Mexia’s H-E-B Saturday as part of an event for Ross to meet with district parents. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

Mexia Independent School District’s new superintendent Sharon Ross, Ph.D. was at H-E-B Saturday morning to introduce herself to district parents and encourage them to become familiar with the district’s vision for its students.

She has scheduled two additional similar events for the next two Saturdays, and is encouraging parents to attend.

This is the first school year at Mexia for Ross, who started working with the district in June, replacing retiring superintendent John Turpin.

At H-E-B Saturday, she had a table in the foyer and stacks of flyers listing the district’s core vision, mission and beliefs, which were distilled by a committee about a year ago.

Mon
12
Aug

Seven fire departments respond to Mexia grassfire


Mexia Fire Department Training Officer Mike Clements, right, and other firefighters confer with Teague Fire Department personnel on a grassfire 2 miles west of Mexia Friday afternoon. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

A grassfire 2 miles west of Mexia Friday afternoon burned about 20 acres and saw seven area fire departments respond.
The initial call to the Mexia Fire Department came in about 12:10 p.m. according to MFD’s Officer Trainer Mike Clements.

The fire was on a triangular piece of land bounded by U.S. 84 on the north, County Road 481 on the west and County Road 474, which angles southwest from U.S. 84 to CR 481.

“The Mexia Fire Department was first on the scene,” said Matt Groveton, director of emergency management for the county. “When they arrived, they realized the fire had spread into a thick, wooded area … firemen couldn’t really penetrate that to get in and fight the fire.”

MFD called for other fire departments to assist them, and the fire departments of Lake Mexia, Mexia State Supported Living Center, Tehuacana, Wortham, Shiloh and Teague soon joined the effort. About 15 personnel were involved.

Mon
12
Aug

Sales tax rebates dip this month, ahead for year

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor

Sales tax distributions to Mexia were down a bit last month, but remain slightly ahead of rebate totals at this time last year.
According to figures released by Texas Comptroller Susan Combs in early August, July state sales tax revenue was $2.2 billion, up 7.3 percent compared to July 2012. Combs will send June local sales tax allocations totaling $671 million to cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts, up 6.2 percent compared to August 2012.

The city of Mexia received $224,467 this period, down 3.6 percent from the $232,854 reported sent in this month in 2012. Year-to-date, Mexia has received $1,725,149, up 1.38 percent from the $1,701,605 year-to-date total 12 months ago.

Revenues this month were down 6.72 percent in Groesbeck, with that town set to receive $71,345 this period compared to $76,491 a year ago.

Fri
09
Aug

Summer program instills reading habit in Mexia kids


While Gibbs Memorial Librarian Shein Dee Pullman looks on at left, library volunteer Lynn Drake presents Diego Garcia with a certificate of participation for being in the library’s Summer Reading Program and also a book bag for achieving his reading goals. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

If a habit takes 21 days to establish, then some Mexia children now have a reading habit after completing Gibbs Memorial Library’s Summer Reading Program.

With students out of school and parents looking for activities for their children to do, the program was the logical choice for many families.

The goal of the four-week program, which ran July 2-30, was for children ages 3-7 to read 100 books and children 8 and older to complete 12 hours of reading.

An awards ceremony on Wednesday, Aug. 7, was the grand finale for the program. Those who reached their goal were presented with a complimentary book bag. Those who did not reach the goal still received a certificate of participation.

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

Fri
09
Aug

Commissioners to plan for budget, elections

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

Limestone County commissioners court will make plans Monday for making the upcoming budget that precedes the new fiscal year and also will make plans for next year’s elections.

County Tax Assessor-Collector Staci Hall is expected to present the commissioners the 2013 Appraisal Roll and Tax Rate Calculations, which is used to determine how much money the county can probably count on receiving next year as they prepare for the upcoming budget talks. The county’s various department heads usually present their proposed departmental needs later in August, and the county usually holds budget workshops for residents to provide their input in early September. The final budget is then voted on in mid-to-late September, as the new fiscal year begins Oct. 1.

Fri
09
Aug

The long arm of the lawn

City road maintenance worker Horace Carter peeks out of the air-conditioned cab of his roadside mower as he cuts the grass on Fannin Street in Mexia recently.
Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

Fri
09
Aug

Northland apologizes for service outages

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor

Northland Communications has issued a press release apologizing for two recent regional outages including one Wednesday.

"Northland Communications customers within the Mexia, Groesbeck, Teague and Fairfield areas have recently been affected by area-wide Internet and phone service outages due to damages to a fiber optic cable on two separate occasions," the release stated.

"The recent outage on Wednesday, Aug. 7 was an area-wide issue not only affecting Northland customers, but residents and merchants of other service providers as well. As of late Wednesday afternoon service was restored by AT&T technicians."
A highway shredder severed a fiber optic cable west of Mexia Wednesday morning, cutting off cell phone, long distance and Internet service to the Mexia and other nearby cities, and even impacting 911 service.

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

Wed
07
Aug

Sales tax holiday for everyone this weekend

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor

The savings begin Friday on back-to-school and related shopping as the annual sales tax holiday begins.

Moved up by the state to a week earlier than usual, the holiday allows shoppers to save up to $8 on every $100 they spend on everything from pens, jeans and shoes to backpacks and other items priced under $100 during the state’s annual event, scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 9 -11.

In the past, the tax holiday weekend was the second weekend of August, but the state bumped up the date this year.

“Texas families can take advantage of the sales tax holiday when doing their back-to-school shopping,” Texas Comptroller Susan Combs said. “The tax holiday applies to a variety of items ranging from pens to jeans to help shoppers around Texas save some of their hard earned money.”

Wed
07
Aug

Airport’s weather tower going up this week


Lucas Schultz, a field service engineer with Vaisala, the company that manufacturers the Automatic Weather Observation System towers, installs one such tower at Limestone County Airport earlier this week. The tower is to be commissioned Friday, and weather information will begin to be available over the Internet as soon as the National Weather Service begins accepting the data. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

It’s been years in the planning, but the weather tower at the Limestone County Airport is expected to begin transmitting the county’s weather conditions online within the next week or so.

The Automatic Weather Observation Tower, called simply AWOS, will measure and record the first official weather records for Limestone County in its history.

The National Weather Service will use the weather information from the AWOS tower to chart and predict weather more accurately.
Pilots will be able to check weather conditions at the airport to make landing and take-off safer; and they can make plans based on the information the tower will provide.

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

Wed
07
Aug

Cable cut puts hush on Mexia communications


AT&T technicians confer after finding the location of a severed fiber optic cable about 6 miles west of Mexia Wednesday morning. Internet, long distance and cell phone service was out most of the day, affecting business and personal activities. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight and Brenda Sommer

A highway shredder severed a fiber optic cable west of Mexia Wednesday morning, cutting off cell phone, long distance and Internet service to the city and even impacting 911 service.

The outage occurred just before 9 a.m. AT&T personnel determined the cut was between Mexia and Waco but had to search to find the exact location.

Splicers found the cut wiring by noon. It was clearly visible above ground in the newly cut grass beside U.S. 84 at its intersection with FM 2681, about 6 miles west of Mexia just past the old Farm House Restaurant.

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

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