News

Thu
11
Jul

Kirk Roccaforte appointed as interim Precinct #3 County Commissioner

Vidorian staff photo

Bridge City City Councilman Kirk Roccaforte was seated in the audience of the Orange County Commissioners’ Courtroom when Orange County Judge Carl Thibodeaux announced that he had selected Roccaforte as his appointee to fill the seat of the Orange County Precinct #3 Commissioner. The unexpired term for that seat recently vacated by John Gothia ends on December 31, 2020.

On Tuesday, interim Orange County Judge Carl Thibodeaux appointed Kirk Roccaforte of Bridge City to be the interim Precinct #3 Orange County Commissioner representing Bridge City, Orangefield and parts of S. Vidor south of the Union Pacific Railroad tracks. The Judge appointed Mr. Roccaforte to serve the unexpired term of the elected Precinct #3 County Commissioner John Gothia, which ends on December 31, 2020. The Orange County Commissioners’ Court also voted on Tuesday to accept the resignation of Precinct #3 County Commissioner John Gothia who is resigning his elected office in order to be considered as a candidate for Orange County Judge. According to state statute, the Commissioners’ Court, when appointing a new County Judge to fill a vacancy in that position, may not consider any of the four county commissioners currently sitting on their court.

 

 

Thu
11
Jul

T.S. Barry’s track moves east

Map courtesy/National Weather Service

Thursday morning’s predictions of the potential forecast error cone track has moved the possible zone of landfall for Tropical Storm Barry to our east and further away from Vidor. But Vidor remains outside the error cone track by only a few miles.

The low-pressure atmospheric area discussed in Wednesday’s Vidorian Shopper, moved south, over the Gulf of Mexico, and developed into Tropical Cyclone Two on Wednesday. On Thursday morning, the National Weather Service reported that Hurricane Hunter aircraft have flown into the storm and have found tropical conditions have further developed to warrant a change in designation to Tropical Storm Barry.

With that data collected inside of the storm by Hurricane Hunter aircraft, the National Hurricane Center has revised the storms potential forecast error cone track to shift towards the east with a possible landfall now projected to come ashore in South Central Louisiana as a category one hurricane.

 

 

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Thu
11
Jul

Orange County Judge resigns but continues to preside

Vidorian staff photo

Orange County Judge Carl Thibodeaux accepts a Certificate of Congressional Recognition from District 36 U. S. Congressman Brian Babin presented to the Judge by Mr. Babin’s Regional Director Laney Brown. Thibodeaux is officially retired from his County Judgeship as of Wednesday of this week, but will stay on as presiding Judge until the Commissioners’ Court appoints a new Orange County Judge.

On Wednesday of this week, the Orange County Commissioners’ Court voted four to zero with one Commissioner, Theresa Beauchamp, absent, to accept the resignation of interim Orange County Judge Carl Thibodeaux. But despite his desire to return to his interrupted retirement, Judge Thibodeaux continues to preside over the Court and serve as our County Judge, for at least a few more weeks.

“Yes, it looks like I’m going to go through yet another storm,” said Judge Thibodeaux after Tuesday’s Commissioners’ Court meeting ended. “It looks like I’ll be here for two more weeks, at least; until the Court selects and appoints my replacement and that person swears-in and posts his bond.”

 

 

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Wed
10
Jul

Phelan annouces early for March 2020 primary

Vidorian archive photo

Texas House District 21 State Representative address the Texas House of Representatives during the 2017 session of the Texas Legislature.

On Monday of this week Texas House District 21 Representative Dade Phelan of Beaumont announced that he would seek re-election to represent House District 21 in the Texas House of Representatives.

Representative Phelan is currently serving his third term in the Texas House of Representatives. He serves House District 21, representing both Jefferson and Orange Counties. He also serves in that chamber of the Texas Legislature as the Chairman of the House Committee on State Affairs.

The first day to file officially as a candidate for either political party’s primary election, the next one is scheduled to be held on March 3, of the year 2020, is on Saturday, November 9th, 2019, some four months from now.

According to Phelan’s news release, “Since being elected in 2014, Phelan has remained true to his conservative values and has maintained a reputation of being an effective and principled leader.

 

 

Wed
10
Jul

Potential for tropical disturbance forming in Gulf is high

Graphic courtesy/NationalWeatherService.gov

Regardless if the low pressure area moving towards the Gulf of Mexico from Georgia becomes a tropical weather system or not, forecasters believe there is a increase chance for lots of rain this weekend. From eight to ten inches of precipitation may fall on Vidor between now and Sunday.

The National Weather Service office in Lake Charles has been issuing alerts since Monday morning about an area of low pressure centered over southern Georgia that is likely to move south and out into the Gulf of Mexico and developing into a tropical depression and eventually a hurricane. Now all of this potential weather forecast is based upon NWS computer modeling and being models they are subject to change.

NWS Meteorologist Donald Jones of the NWS Lake Charles office said in a weather briefing on Monday night, “We are looking at the possibilities of tropical development in the Gulf of Mexico later this week. It looks like any tropical development is going to be delayed, at least until Wednesday, and more likely on Thursday or Friday is when we are going to see a system start to ramp up.”

Wed
10
Jul

United Christian Care Center gets box fans

Vidorian staff photo

“Glen Ledger, Executive Director of the United Christian Care Center of Vidor, picks up a pallet of brand new box-fans off a flat bed truck trailer with the Care Center’s forklift. The pallet, with thirty brand new box-fans, is a donation to the people of Vidor from Entergy Texas.

It’s become an annual tradition that our electric utility company, Entergy Texas, makes a donation of box fans to area social services organizations at the beginning of every summer. And this year is no exception. On Monday morning, flat-bed trucks departed Entergy Texas Service Centers to make the drive to thirty-one Texas communities in twenty-seven counties to deliver some 1,300 brand new, still in the box, box-fans to non-profit and governmental social service agencies for distribution to their clients in need.

In Vidor, the Entergy Texas truck made a stop at the United Christian Care Center at 293 Wilson St. to drop off a stack of thirty new box-fans.

Wed
10
Jul

Pine Forest Mayor Cathy Nagel resigns

Vidorian staff photo

Pine Forest Mayor Cathy Nagel takes her oath of office on May 9th of this year after defeating her opponent in May’s City and School Election by a large majority. Mayor Nagel gave no reason for her resignation in her resignation letter.

The City of Pine Forest City Council accepted the resignation of Mayor Cathy Nagel on Monday night during their regularly scheduled July city council meeting. There was no comment about the Mayor Nagel’s resignation nor did her letter of resignation offer a reason for resigning.

“I believe she had personal reasons that she wanted to keep to herself,” said Pine Forest Mayor Pro-tem Wesley Brown.

Mayor Cathy Nagel was just re-elected to office during the May 4th, 2019 City and School Board election when she defeated former Pine Forest City Councilperson Brian Elliot with 72.88% of the vote of the small town. Since only fifty-nine registered voters who are citizens of Pine Forest actually cast ballots in the Mayors race, Nagel won her seat back with the votes of only 43 people, but that was enough to put her back in office without a runoff.

Thu
04
Jul

Over objections, council moves toward airsoft field approval.

In spite of the objections of two neighboring landowners at their previous meeting, Vidor City Council took the first step toward approving changes to the city’s firearms ordinance that would allow an indoor airsoft gallery and an airsoft field to begin operations in the city.

The airsoft shooting gallery is proposed for the Highway 12 location of the Maze of Terror and has raised no objections, but the airsoft field proposed for an Old Highway 90 property just west of the Little League Park drew complaints from two neighbors of the property at the June 13 council meeting where council members directed city attorney Chris Leavins to draft changes to the firearms ordinance to include provisions for airsoft fields and shooting galleries.

 

 

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Thu
04
Jul

Sheriff gets money to replace wrecked patrol cars

Orange County Sheriff Keith Merritt came hat in hand to ask the Orange County Commissioners’ Court for $90,714 to buy two new Sheriff Office patrol cars to replace four wrecked Sheriff’s Office patrol cars that have been declared total losses in the past two years.

In reality, the court only spent a total of $21,655 out of their contingency money to buy two new patrol cars. The rest of the $69,059 purchase cost for the two new patrol cars came from insurance proceeds on claims for all four wrecks.

We asked the Sheriff about those four wrecks in two years.

 

 

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Thu
04
Jul

Carl Thibodeaux to resign as interim County Judge

Vidorian staff photo/George Garza

Orange County Judge Carl Thibodeaux announces that he will resign as Orange County Judge on July 10 during this week’s meeting of the Orange County Commissioners’ Court. On his left, in the blue shirt, Orange County Precinct #3 Commissioner also announced later in this meeting that he would be resigning as Commissioner so that the Commissioners’ Court could possibly consider him as a replacement for Judge Thibodeaux.

While some may been aware of the impending announcement, most visitors in the Orange County Commissioners’ Courtroom were taken back by the surprise announcement from Orange County Judge Carl Thibodeaux would be retiring as interim Orange County Judge on July 10th, 2019.

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