News

Mon
17
Aug

County finds lower price on LCDC roof repair

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners have found a better price on repairing the roof of the Laundry Building at the Limestone County Detention Center, the county-owned private prison, near Groesbeck.
At the commissioners court’s July 27 meeting, the court approved a bid of $600 from Lide Construction to apply sealant to the building’s roof, and Lide included a warranty to reseal it if the first application does not work.
At the court’s previous meeting on July 13, the court had tabled a bid of $850 from Centex Roof Systems for the same job and that bid did not include a warranty.
Commissioner Pct. 3 Jerry Allen had held out for a warranty at that time, and had suggested the county get someone to actually repair the roof rather than just apply sealant and hope that worked.

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

Mon
17
Aug

August sales tax rebates up nearly 10 percent

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor
Texas’ sales tax revenue is back on track this month, after seeing its first drop in more than five years last month, and the city of Mexia's sales tax rebates for August rose nearly 10 percent compared to last year. Totals in half of the other four taxing entities in Limestone County were also up for the month.
Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar will send cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts their August local sales tax allocations totaling $760.2 million, which represents an increase of 7.6 percent compared to August 2014.
Hegar also said today that state sales tax revenue in July was $2.4 billion, up 2.7 percent compared to July 2014.

Wed
12
Aug

Slow boil

This massive steam boiler inches its way through the intersection of East Milam (U.S. 84) and North Denton Tuesday around 1:30 p.m., headed to an oil plant in Baytown from Abilene. The vehicle was accompanied by numerous escort vehicles as well as motorcycle police and bucket trucks to lift utility wires clear. Mexia Police helped route traffic around the entire spectacle.

Wed
12
Aug

County property tax rate may go up 3.2 cents

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
A 3.97 percent, or $92.29 million, drop in Limestone County’s property values is estimated to require a tax rate about 3.2 cents above last year’s rate, but county commissioners are poring over budget figures to try to make the difference smaller.
Using figures provided by the Limestone County Appraisal District, County Tax Assessor-Collector Stacy Hall told the court at its Aug. 10 meeting that total appraised values for the county increased from $3.47 billion in 2014 to $3.5 billion in 2015; however, after subtracting homestead, agricultural and other exemptions, the net appraised property values dropped from $2.33 billion in 2014 to $2.23 billion in 2015.
Hall said $71.75 million of the drop is due to the lower value of oil and gas, also called mineral and other industrial and utility property, which decreased from just under $670 million in 2014 to less than $600 million this year.

Tue
11
Aug

Flapper's Delight

Jason and Dee King, of Teague, appear to have arrived straight from the Roaring 20s, the theme of the gala fundraiser Saturday, Aug. 8, that was to benefit the MSSLC Volunteer Council. The event was held at First Baptist Church, Mexia, in the Christian Life Center.
To see lots more photos from the gala, pick up a copy of Tuesday's edition of The Mexia News, or subscribe to our online edition.

Tue
11
Aug

County finds funds for inmates medical needs

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners approved a series of budget transfers at their July 27 meeting to keep an adequate amount of funds available for inmate medical care.
County Judge Daniel Burkeen had noted that only $2,000 remained in the budget for inmate medical care for this fiscal year, which doesn’t end until Sept. 30, but the monthly expense is much higher than that.
County Auditor Debbie Watson said medical expenses for inmates had been averaging about $24,000 monthly.
“We have estimated at least $20,000 a month for medical, so that’s up to $40,000 (for two months),” Watson said, “We did the calculation based on averages for inpatient, outpatient and all that as well. We anticipate it could be up to $46,000.”

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

Tue
11
Aug

County determines winners of annual bids

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
Winners of bids on providing goods and services were accepted at Limestone County commissioners court’s July 27 meeting.
Each year, in the months leading up to preparing the new budget for the upcoming fiscal year, the county advertises for companies to bid on items the county uses year round so a competitive price can be assured.
County Auditor Debbie Watson advertised for bids, and they were opened at the meeting. In some cases more than one bid was accepted for the same item so the purchaser may shop two or more sources to obtain the best price at the time of purchase.
The annual bids accepted were as follows:

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

Wed
05
Aug

Wrong pedal

A Ford pickup was driven through the front wall of Los Pepes restaurant at 924 E. Milam on Monday around 4:45 p.m., rolling over a concrete parking bumper and through a plate-glass window, ending up with the front third of the truck inside the restaurant’s dining room. No one was seriously injured inside the restaurant, although some had cuts from flying glass or were knocked down by the collision. The truck’s driver, 85, said his foot slipped off the brake as he was parking the pickup. Neither he nor his passenger were seriously injured.

Wed
05
Aug

Burn ban declared for Limestone County

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor
It’s just as well grass stops growing ‘round this time of year, because for the foreseeable future, it’s going to be far too hot to work outside. Plus, there’s now a burn ban in effect.
Limestone County Judge Daniel Burkeen issued an emergency burn ban around 1:30 p.m. yesterday. County commissioners will consider the ban at their next meeting, on Aug. 10.
The National Weather Service is calling for high temperatures between 100 and 105 degrees for Mexia through Saturday, with heat indices between 104 and 109 across all of the northern half of North Texas.
“The hot conditions will likely persist Sunday into early next week, with the heat advisory being extended in time in future forecasts,” yesterday’s NWS heat advisory stated.
The prospect of such blazing heat means genuine danger exists for those who become overheated.

Wed
05
Aug

County jail maintenance issues arise

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer
The newness has faded from Limestone County’s jail as county commissioners learn about problems that have surfaced with the passing of its first few years of existence. The court talked about these situations at their July 27 meeting and also approved a budget transfer of $4,000 for the jail security system and $20,000 for jailer overtime pay.
“It seems like the security system is costing us much more than we anticipated,” said County Judge Daniel Burkeen.
Sheriff Dennis Wilson noted that the jail was now over four years old.
“We’ve got some computer issues that are going on,” Wilson said. “We never did a contract for maintenance so now we’re having to face those problems.
“I know you’re aware, but this is about the fourth weekend in a row where we’ve gone all weekend with no air conditioning in our Dispatch. So it’s very hot out there. They’re working with shorts and T-shirts, with big fans blowing.”

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