News

Wed
26
Jun

County decides for damaged home acquisitions over buyouts

Last week the Orange County Commissioners’ Court finally made up its mind to apply for $4.042 million in TXGLO/HUD Residential Acquisition or Buyout Program funds that has been set aside for Orange County to acquire or buyout Hurricane Harvey damaged homes. The County Commissioners decided to apply for TXGLO/HUD funds for house acquisitions rather than buyouts.

Wed
26
Jun

Marshal finds stolen trailer in Houston

Photos courtesy/Kenneth Bost

Rose City Marshal Kenneth Bost (inset) was able to find and retrieve this enclosed lowboy utility trailer that was stolen by fraud from a Rose City dealer and returned it to its rightful owner. Marshal Bost used good old-fashioned police work and bit of new-fashioned technology to find the stolen trailer.

Dogged determination and the relentless pursuit of justice were part of Rose City Marshal Kenneth Bost’s attitude when searching for a brand new utility trailer stolen by means of fraud in Rose City. Marshal Bost received a call in mid-May from a Rose City trailer retailer reporting that a brand new 21 foot enclosed utility trailer had been stolen from the retailer.

According to Marshal Bost, “The retailer reported that the thief purchased the trailer by telephone and didn’t even show his face during the entire fraud. The crook used a stolen credit card, before it was reported as stolen, so the purchase seemed legit at first, but then about a week after the purchase, the credit card company refused to honor the purchase.

Thu
20
Jun

2019 Summer Solstice is today

Vidorian staff photo

An area homeowner seals this return air duct that was leaking air in from the outside of his home. It takes a bit of detective work to determine where your house is leaking summer heated outside air into your residence, but the fix can save you big bucks on your Entergy Texas bill and keep you cooler.

Today, Friday, June 21, is the day of the Summer Solstice in the northern hemisphere of our Planet Earth. That means that because of the planet’s tilt on its axis as it rotates around our sun, today is the day when the sun is above the horizon for the longest period of this year. Today the sunrise was at about 6:13 a.m. and the sunset will be at about 8:21 p.m. That’s a full fourteen plus hours of daytime heating that your home air conditioner will have to combat. Weather forecasters are predicting the high temperature today to be in the low to mid ninety-degree range and the heat index will make it feel like it is 106 degrees on Friday.

That means your air conditioner will be working overtime to keep you and your home cool and comfortable. But that also can mean that your electric bill might also be soaring.

Thu
20
Jun

County decides for acquisition of Harvey damaged properties

Photo courtesy facebook.com/VidorPoliceDepartment

Orange County has opted to use federal money to acquire flood-damaged homes from low to moderate-income homeowners at their post storm appraisal value. County Commissioners might be able to acquire as many as thirty Harvey damaged homes.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Orange County Commissioners’ Court finally received the answers to questions they had asked last week about the Texas Government Land Office (TXGLO) Hurricane Harvey Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) grant funds from the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that the county has qualified to receive under the TXGLO/ HUD Residential Acquisition or Buyout Program.

The Commissioners had three questions concerning the individual plots of land that TXGLO/HUD funds would allow the county to acquire through the program.

The Commissioners did not appear to like the all of the answers they received from Heather LeBlanc, deputy to TXGLO Commissioner George P. Bush, but decided to go with acquisition rather than buyouts, primarily because it allows for the acquired property to be put back on the market and, hopefully, eventually returned to the county and other taxing entities’ property tax rolls.

 

Thu
20
Jun

Fire District Board agrees on Ambulance ordinance changes

Photo courtesy Facebook.com/Acadian Ambulance

All Acadian Ambulances serving the Orange County Emergency Services District #1 will be permitted as certified to meet state standards for on-board equipment and supplies. This a new requirement that each city in the fire district should adopt in their ambulance ordinances.

After holding a public hearing on proposed Ambulance Ordinance changes, the Board of Commissioners of the Orange County Emergency Services District #1 voted on Tuesday night to submit their proposed changes to the ambulance ordinance to the City of Vidor, Pine Forest and Rose City for their consideration and approval.

During the Board of Commissioners’ meeting Emergency Services District #1 Attorney Hubert Oxford IV summed up the changes to the Cities’ ambulance ordinance that the Fire District Board was seeking.

“In a nutshell, we came up with changes in the uniform ambulance service ordinance to help with creating more accountability for response times. As you recall, whenever you discussed getting me involved with this process, you were about to terminate your agreement with Acadian and hire this other group.

 

 

Wed
19
Jun

Orange means Safety for summer road trips

Vidorian staff photo

A snake wrangler from Shangri La Botanical Gardens in Orange displays two snakes for visitors at the Texas Travel Information Center in Orange during the Orange Means Safety event last Friday.

Last Friday, freeway travelers stopping at the Texas Travel Information Center in Blue Elbow Swamp on I-10 near Orange were greeted by a host of people welcoming the visitors to Texas and urging them to drive safely, drive rested, keep their Heads up, Texas, Click It or Ticket and not to Mess with Texas.

“Basically, Orange Means Safety signifies that we at the Travel Information Center are focusing on the traveling public throughout the summer”, said Manuel Ramon, Texas Travel Information Supervisor. “We want travelers to be aware of all of the Texas Highway Safety campaigns that are out there, and to stop at a Texas highway rest stop, to stretch their legs, take care of driving distractions while they are stopped, get some coffee and rest a bit before getting back out on Texas Highways this summer.”

Wed
19
Jun

Croak Field won’t dry out for compacting

Vidorian staff photo

Edgar Croak Field at Pirate Stadium won’t dry out enough for the necessary compacting of its soil base that is an absolute requirement for the installation of the turf replacement playing surface. The contractor needed more money to add a soil stabilization agent to the soil to dry it out before the next phase of the project.

The Pirate Stadium Turf Replacement Project has stalled for more than two weeks. During Monday night’s Vidor I.S.D. School Board of Trustees meeting Assistant Superintendent of Business and Operations, David Croak, told the School Board that the Turf Replacement Project was two weeks behind schedule because the soil base would not dry out for compacting.

“They can’t get it compacted, the soil, because of the water that is saturating the field,” said Mr. Croak. “And at this point, their (the project contractor) recommendation is to bring in a soil stabilization agent as change order #1.”

Croak went on to explain that the soil stabilization agent would act like a cement to soak up 70 percent of the water in the soil base and then harden to act as the bridge between the water table and top layer of the turf replacement.

 

 

Wed
19
Jun

Date set for demo of Oak Forest Elementary

Vidorian staff photo

Oak Forest Elementary School will meet the wrecking ball starting next month. The Hurricane Harvey flood damaged school building will be razed down below its foundation in order to make room for a brand new Oak Forest Elementary School to be built on the same site.

The first Vidor school building to be designed with no windows for air conditioning purposes will be coming down starting next month. Oak Forest Elementary School on Highway 12 will meet the wrecking ball possibly as early at Monday, July 1st when C & C Works, Inc. begins tearing down the Hurricane Harvey flood damaged building. On Monday night, the Vidor I.S.D. School Board of Trustees selected C & C Works’ bid of $153,770 to raze the damaged school building to the ground.

“They are finishing up the asbestos abatement right now and we will notify them tomorrow to start setting up for the demolition,” said Assistant Superintendent for Business and Operations, David Croak.

Thu
13
Jun

Sign your cell phone up for STAN Alerts

Image courtesy/Southeast Texas Alerting Network

The City of Vidor recommends that all of its citizens register their smartphones with the Southeast Texas Alerting Network (STAN) as soon as possible. Vidor is now using STAN Alerts to notify its citizens of emergencies and outreach messages, but it doesn’t work as well if you don’t take action to register your cellular phone with the network.

The City of Vidor is asking all residents to register their cellular telephones and landline telephones with the Southeast Texas Alerting Network (STAN) as soon as possible.

“STAN has become our preferred vehicle for getting emergency and outreach messages out to all of our citizens inside of Vidor and to all of our neighbors outside of the city,” said Captain Aleta Cappen, the City of Vidor Emergency Management Coordinator. “The system is versatile enough that it can phone you with a recorded voice message about an emergency or it can send you a text or even an e-mail if you request that option.”

Thu
13
Jun

Sales showing increase locally

For details on June sales tax allocations to individual cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose districts, visit the Comptroller’s Monthly Sales Tax Allocation Comparison Summary Reports.

Local retail sales are showing slight improvement

Retail sales in Orange County are up slightly with sales tax allocations increasing an average of almost four and three-fourths percent compared to April 2018 according to figures released this week by the state comptroller’s office. Year to date, the allocations are more than three and one-quarter percent less than the same time in 2018.

Of the seven municipalities in Orange County, Vidor showed the largest percentage monthly increase at nearly 18.5 percent while Bridge City was the lone entity recording a decrease at 7.32 percent.

 

 

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