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Northeast News

Lone Star’s East Aldine campus tops 1000 students

Entrance to the new Lone Star College East Aldine Center

ALDINE (April 1, 2021) – In September, when Gloria Villa registered for her classes at Lone Star College-East Aldine Center, no balloons or confetti fell, but she set a milestone for the satellite center by becoming its 1,000th student enrolled.

Opened during the fall 2019 semester, it took just four semesters for LSC-East Aldine Center to surpass triple-digits for students enrolled.

The center, much like the main campus at LSC-North Harris, is home to a variety of students such as high schoolers, workforce, and in Gloria’s case, transfer students.

“I see LSC-East Aldine Center helping me achieve my goals by showing me the college experience, and all the help I receive from here will always benefit me in the long run,” Villa said. “The college offers so much help through the tutors and advisors to help me along the way.”

Garcia’s motion will bring $3 million to fight violent crime

HARRIS COUNTY – By a vote of 5-0, Harris County Commissioners Court approved an item presented by Precinct 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia which adds $3 million to the Sheriff Department’s budget to fight specific aspects of violent crime. Remaining Federal CARES Act money is being used to fund this initiative. The funds will be used to protect victims and reduce violent crime, stemming from the pandemic.

The additional $3 million will be restricted to the following areas of investigation:

Murder
Sexual Assault
Aggravated Robbery
Child Abuse
Domestic Violence
Warrants

“While others’ rhetoric on crime usually focuses on making political statements solely to sell fear, I’d rather my office concentrate on action. All too often, the loudest voices you hear on TV would prefer to see themselves acting tough on the 10 o’clock news, rather than do the hard work that actually might make a difference,” said Commissioner Adrian Garcia. “I choose to invest in programs that will actually keep people safe and hold evil-doers accountable. This is a smart use of these funds and even though the full extent of this plan can’t be captured with three words on a posterboard, I’m glad to have sponsored the item.”

AOC helps distribute water in East Aldine

Brings $5 million in Freeze Relief

After the Deep Freeze and subsequent Power and Water outages of early February, many individuals and organizations contributed to help those needing water, food and heat. In East Aldine, on February 20, New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) joined with State Representative Armando Walle, Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia, State Senator Carol Alvarado, BakerRipley CEO Claudia Aguirre, and many others to distribute water to local residents that were unable to get water in their homes or stores. In addition, AOC raised $5 million to help in the Relief effort.

THE POSTSCRIPT: Out Like a Lion

By Carrie Classon

March is winding down and my sister-in-law, Lori, is going with it.

There is too much food and too many flowers because that is what we do when someone is dying, when we don’t know what else to do as, gradually, the unthinkable becomes accepted and even ordinary. We make more food and bring more flowers. But there is too little time. There is always too little time.

Lori is spending most of the time she has left sleeping, which means she is not in pain but also that no one can talk with her and we miss her already, while she is here among us.

There are circles of grief, as I’ve heard it explained. Her husband, Robert, is at the center, and one ring out are her children and my husband, her brother. I am a bit further out in orbit, in Lori’s solar system of sorrow, missing her ready laugh and irreverent observations.

State opens COVID shots to everyone

HARRIS COUNTY – All adults will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine in Texas beginning Monday, March 29. The Texas Department of State Health Services expects vaccine supplies to increase next week, and providers in multiple parts of the state have made great strides in vaccinating people in the current priority groups. The state’s Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel recommended opening vaccination to everyone who falls under the current Food and Drug Administration emergency use authorizations to protect as many Texans as possible.

“As a matter of fact, we in Houston had pretty much exhausted our waitlists and we wanted to have more real-time appointments available,” said Houston Health Department director Stephen Williams. Texans can continue to find vaccine providers throughout Greater Houston and sign up on waitlists through the DSHS Vaccine Information page at dshs.texas.gov/covidvaccine.

Houston Methodist, consistently one of the area’s largest vaccine providers, will allow anyone to sign up on its waitlist but will prioritize those 50 and older for now.

Construction to start on Northwood Apartments

Northwood Apartments, a Multifamily Housing Community, to Replace Housing Lost During Hurricane Harvey

HOUSTON, TX (Tuesday, March 23, 2021) – The Harris County Housing Authority (HCHA), Harris County – Community Services Department (HCCSD), Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis, the Texas General Land Office (GLO), and the development partner LDG Development (LDG) celebrate the groundbreaking of Northwood Apartments, a multi-family development located at 12620 Eastex Freeway to replace housing lost during Hurricane Harvey. The development is financed with Harris County’s Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery (CDBGDR) funds in conjunction with private financing from Citi Community Capital and AEGON USA Realty Advisors, LLC.

This $53.9 million community’s groundbreaking will commence the development of 288 beautiful new apartment units for families seeking quality housing near the Eastex Freeway in the Shelvin Acres community. A virtual groundbreaking ceremony will be held on Thursday, March 25, 2021, at 11 a.m. CT. Access to the virtual ceremony is available upon request at melanie.fahey@hchatexas.org.

“We are honored to partner with LDG Development to build much-needed quality housing that is affordable for working families,” said Horace Allison, AIA, Executive Director and CEO of Harris County Housing Authority. “Northwood Apartments will replace housing resources lost during Hurricane Harvey and provide not only a place to live but the facilities and services to improve the lives of the families who will call this community home.”

Northwood Apartments will provide a wide array of amenities to the families it serves, including a swimming pool with a sun deck, a playground, and picnic/grilling areas.

Texas House considers Deep Freeze bills

REPRESENTATIVE ANA HERNANDEZ

Report by Rep. Ana Hernandez

On March 8, Speaker Dade Phelan announced the first phase of the House’s legislative reforms to protect consumers and strengthen our state’s electric grid in the aftermath of the recent, unprecedented cold weather event. Speaker Phelan highlighted the following key legislation filed by members of the Texas House of Representatives:

HB 10 – Reforming Energy Reliability Council of Texas Leadership

HB 10, filed by Representative Paddie, restructures the ERCOT board, replacing the unaffiliated members with members appointed by the Governor, Lt. Governor, and Speaker of the House. HB 10 also requires all board members to reside in the state of Texas and creates an additional ERCOT board member slot to represent consumer interests.

HB 11 – Protecting Consumers and Hardening Facilities for Extreme Weather

Street Racing Arrests top 200, some cars confiscated

Deputies confiscated and towed 12 cars.

HARRIS COUNTY – More than 200 people were arrested on charges ranging from DWI to reckless driving during a countywide crackdown on illegal street racing this past weekend, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced Thursday.

The arrests were the result of a joint initiative including the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, the District Attorney’s Office, the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Houston Police Department and other law-enforcement agencies.

Twelve vehicles were also seized.

“Fly-bys are being prosecuted. Street takeovers are being prosecuted. Street racing is being prosecuted. All of these crimes can land you behind bars because these actions can turn deadly,” Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said. “It’s wrong to put innocent people’s lives at risk just for an adrenaline rush. This initiative saved lives.”

The initiative focuses on arresting dangerous drivers to save lives on Houston’s roads and highways.

We are so close to beating the virus

Harris County Judge Hidalgo

We are Texans, and the concept of freedom is an essential piece of our identity. We all want the freedom to go out to eat and to socialize, the freedom for our economy and our schools to open without the fear of getting deathly ill, the freedom to use amazing science and vaccine developments to our full advantage. But taking away critical public health interventions that we know are working in the name of personal freedom won’t make our community safer, nor will it hasten our return to normalcy. The state’s decision on Tuesday to end the statewide mask mandate and increase business capacity to 100% is a threat to all of the sacrifices and progress we’ve made, as well as to everyone who has not yet received a vaccine. At best, Tuesday’s decision is wishful thinking. At worst, it is a cynical attempt to distract Texans from the failures of state oversight of our power grid.

Every time COVID-19 public health measures have been pulled back, we’ve seen a spike in hospitalizations.

Aldine ISD names Top Educators of the Year

Breanna Jagodzinski, center, was named Aldine ISD’s Elementary Teacher of the Year during the Aldine ISD Educator of the Year Breakfast, held Friday, March 12 at the M.O. Campbell Educational Center. Pictured with Breanna are, (l-r): Pastor David L. Smith, Past President of the Aldine Education Foundation (AEF), Elementary School Assistant Superintendent Dr. Crystal Watson, Aldine ISD Superintendent Dr. LaTonya M. Goffney, Aldine ISD Board President Paul Shanklin and Paul Griffin with Amplify.
Jaime Luna, center, was named Aldine ISD’s Secondary Teacher of the Year during the Aldine ISD Educator of the Year Breakfast, held Friday, March 12 at the M.O. Campbell Educational Center. Pictured with Luna are, (l-r): Todd Lindeman, School Assistant Superintendent of High Schools, Aldine Education Foundation Past President Pastor David Smith, Aldine ISD Superintendent Dr. LaTonya M. Goffney, Aldine ISD Board President Paul Shanklin and Paul Griffin with Amplify.

Breanna Jagodzinski, Jaime Luna named AISD’s top educators: Shauna Showers, Heather Peterson named district’s top principals

Aldine ISD celebrated its top teachers and principals at the Educator of the Year Breakfast on Friday, March 12 at the M.O. Campbell Educational Center. This year’s theme was “Adventure Awaits.”

Aldine ISD Trustees, district administrators, campus administrators, teachers and business partners donned their best travel wear to celebrate Aldine ISD teachers and campus administrators.

Breanna Jagodzinski of Houston Academy was named the district’s Elementary Teacher of the Year, while Jaime Luna of Davis High School was named the district’s Secondary Teacher of the Year.

The four Teacher of the Year finalists were Cindy Nguyen of Carmichael Elementary School, Oscar Acuna of Stehlik Elementary School, Christopher Ceaser of Nimitz High School and Jarrod Fredericks of Victory Early College High School.

For the second consecutive year, the district also announced its Rookie Educators of the Year. Reagan Burns of Hinojosa Primary School was named the Rookie Elementary Teacher of the Year and Leon Hunt of Davis Ninth Grade School was named the Secondary Rookie Teacher of the Year.

In addition, AISD’s Principals of the Year, and Rookie Principal of the Year were announced.

Shauana Showers of Stephens Elementary School was named the Elementary Principal of the Year and Heather Peterson was named the Secondary Principal of the Year. Kimberly Dussette of Teague Middle School was named the Rookie Principal of the Year.