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Posts published in June 2018

Joe V’s Supermarket coming to East Aldine

The new Joe V’s Supermarket, to be built in East Aldine’s Town Center project on Aldine Mail Route, will look similar to this market built earlier in Houston.

Major addition to Town Center

The East Aldine Management District voted last Tuesday night to enter into a contract with HEB Grocery Company, LP, to purchase 7.53 acres of land in the new Town Center for a Joe V’s supermarket.

HEB plans to build a store of about 55,000 square feet, offering a complete line of food, and with three additional in-store vendors. Joe V’s is known for its fresh produce, quality meats, and low prices.

HEB agreed to pay East Aldine Management District a sum of $1,312,027.20 for the land. The contract calls for the firm to start construction within three years, but officials expect the store to open earlier.

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Tax increase asked to fix flooding

Commissioners Morman (above) and Cagle were present to talk with residents about flood control projects planned for North Houston, if the bond issue passes. Also above, Jeremy Phillips and Matt Zee talk with Connie Esparza and Veronica Sanches.

Community engagement meeting explores NE projects

By Lewis Spearman

On a night when flooding was actually a concern at the Northeast Community Center, last Wednesday, Matt Zee, Director of Operations of the Harris County Flood Control District, and County Commissioner Jack Cagle gave keynote addresses to welcome the public to an open meeting related to asking for a bond to fund a plan to fix flooding, and to discuss public concerns and hear suggestions.

Precinct 2 County Commissioner Jack Morman hosted the event, with staff and county departments offering reading material, drinking water and cookies.

“This is my second meeting in my district and my fourth overall on this subject,” said Morman, Pct. 2 commissioner for the Aldine area.

According to Cagle, Commissioner for the northern most portion of the county, the $2.5 billion dollar bond is the first comprehensive plan to address flooding through all of the county’s flood plains and watersheds from top to bottom.

Cagle said, “The number one reason I am excited about this bond is that for the first time, we are taking an integrated approach. We have a lot of neighborhoods wondering, ‘What is happening for me in my section?’ Which is important. There is this very important concept that I have been taught, that water flows downhill. These projects are about dealing with water up the hill, to detain it and manage it, as best can be done. We are working with these projects in the middle of the hill, where we can spread it out so it doesn’t flood homes and move fairly efficiently through. And trying to do projects at the bottom of the hill because if water doesn’t clear there, it is like a plug at the bottom of a bathtub. At the bottom of the hill we want to take out the plug, and at the top we want an umbrella. So, this countywide approach is to try to make sure that we are taking care of the water at the top, middle and bottom of the hill.

“Most of the time, Commissioner Morman’s area, where we are, is the bottom of the hill. So, where would you like to deal with the water, up in the north or where you are? Or all along the path? That is the best thing about this bond, is that it is an integrated approach.

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Green holds Hurricane Preparedness conference

L – R: JP Judge Joe Stephens, Congressman Gene Green, Harris County’s Emergency Operations Center Manager Misty Gunn, Harris County Flood Control Precinct 2 Coordinator Jeremy Ratcliff and Houston City Councilman District I Robert Gallegos. (Photo by Allan Jamail)

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX. – Monday, June 11, 2018 — Congressman Gene Green brought governmental agency representatives together to give the preparedness advice to citizens, since we are now in the hurricane season, from June 1 through November 30th.

Misty Gunn, Harris County’s Emergency Operations Center Manager said this is the time citizens should make an Emergency Essentials Kit. The contents needed for the kit can be found at WWW.READYHARRIS.ORG.

“In addition to your kits contents, if you’re evacuating from high water, put inside a water proof container or plastic bag, your prescription drugs, a printed list of all relatives, doctors and insurance agents phone numbers, cell phone and cell phone charger, credit cards and checkbook, important family documents (birth certificates, insurance/ bank account information, etc.),” Guinn said.

Harris County Flood Control Precinct 2 Coordinator Jeremy Ratcliff, and Communications Officers Robert Lazaro, said Commissioners Court plans to call a bond election for August 25, 2018, for the Harris County Flood Control District. Voters will be asked to vote on what could be $2.5 billion in bonds for flood risk reduction projects throughout the county. To learn more about the flood bonds visit WWW.HCFCD.ORG/ BOND-PROGRAM.

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CASTLEWOOD CIVIC CLUB MEETING

The next meeting is scheduled on Tuesday, June 26, 2018, at 6:30 p.m. to be held at East Aldine Management Offices, 5333 Aldine Mail Rt. (next to Jed’s Hardware).  The speaker will be Mr. Vince Ryan, Harris County Attorney, who will introduce his office and the many topics their staff attorneys can speak about upon request.  There will be a Q & A session afterwards so please come prepared to participate.  Meetings are open to the public.

Contacts: Connie Esparza, Treasurer: (832) 306-0231 and Carmen Schnur, Secretary: (832) 443-7541.

Mayor Turner holds Juneteenth Parade

Mayor Sylvester Turner led the Parade of 143 units, with his daughter Ashley.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner celebrated Juneteenth with his 7th Annual Juneteenth Parade in Acres Homes last Saturday, June 16.

The parade featured over 140 participating groups and organizations, including local marching bands, dancing groups, horses, floats, vintage cars and more. A number of special guests participated and there were giveaways to spectators.

The parade began at 10 a.m. at the Acres Homes Multi-Service Center, 6719 West Montgomery, and traveled north up West Montgomery to turn left on Dolly Wright and disband at Greater Zion Baptist Church and Drew Academy.

“Juneteenth is an important day in our community,” Mayor Turner said. “I want everyone to come out and celebrate. We’ve gone all out on the 2018 parade. You won’t want to miss it.”

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Judge Emmett speaks on $2.5 billion flood bonds

Judge Ed Emmett speaking at the Rotary Club of Houston last week.

HOUSTON – In a wide ranging talk before the Rotary Club of Houston, Harris County Judge Ed Emmett spoke about a number of topics of interest. He started by talking about his appreciation for the work that Rotary does in the community, and across the world. He gave examples from his own experience of how he has been touched by and involved in this work.

Then he spoke about the upcoming $2.5 billion bond issue that will be on the ballot in a special election on August 25th. He explained that the date is the one year anniversary of the devastation when Hurricane Harvey hit the Texas coast, causing flooding throughout Harris County and other parts of the state.

“Harvey changed a lot of lives,” he said. He noted that 154,000 homes in Harris County and Houston flooded. The Hurricane dropped 51” of rain in a four day period. Many homes were destroyed or made unlivable, and there were many deaths in the flood waters.

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First allocation of funds available for voluntary home buyouts due to Hurricane Harvey flooding

The map below indicates where these approximately 169 homes are located within Harris County.

HARRIS COUNTY, TX – Since Hurricane Harvey made landfall in August 2017, the Harris County Flood Control District has been working with its many local, state, and federal partners to address the flood risk reduction needs of the county. This includes responding to and addressing volunteers for the Flood Control District Home Buyout Program by maintaining a Home Buyout Hotline, collecting information from thousands of home buyout volunteers, reviewing and identifying properties that meet the Flood Control District Home Buyout eligibility criteria, and submitting grant applications for funding to support home buyouts in response to Hurricane Harvey.

Home buyouts are used by the Flood Control District to reduce flood damages in areas hopelessly deep in the floodplain where structural projects to reduce flooding are not cost effective and/or beneficial. Since the Flood Control District’s voluntary buyout program began in 1985, more than 2,075 structures have been purchased with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grants and more than 960 properties (with and without structures) have been purchased with local Flood Control District funds.

As announced by the Texas Division of Emergency Management, Harris County will receive its first allocation of FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funds in response to Hurricane Harvey. $25.6 million are estimated to be received out of the total $163.5 million that the Flood Control District requested for home buyouts through HMGP. The Flood Control District will be able to purchase approximately 169 homes with $8.6 million required local matching funds and the $25.6 million in HMGP funds. Additional funding allocations from the same grant application are expected later this year.

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Aldine says “goodbye” to Wanda & Archie

Superintendents Archie Blanson and Wanda Bamberg were presented with framed histories of their early years in education, and subsequent years as they developed at Aldine ISD.

Two beloved superintendents set to retire

Campbell Center was the scene of a Gala Celebration last Thursday afternoon, as the Aldine ISD community and others paid tribute to the years of dedication and leadership provided to the district by two retiring superintendents, Dr. Wanda Bamberg, and Deputy Superintendent Archie Blanson.

Several hundred Aldine staff, guests, family, and the public were present and seated at beautifully decorated tables on the floor of the center. Before the celebration the audience was entertained by the Eisenhower Jazz Band, and near the end by the MacArthur Show Choir. These presentations were a hallmark of Dr. Bamberg’s public presentations, and fitting accompaniment to the program. Dr. Bamberg is also known for keynoting her talks with readings from a book she has chosen for the occasion, and so this time there was a reading from “Collectors Collect Things” in this case words leading to their use and education.

The program was actually a combination of a Toast, and a Roast, as many of the superintendents’ colleagues took the opportunity to describe with humor some of the foibles the pair had faced over the years.

There were many speakers who added to the legacy of the pair, some with insight, some with humor, or both. These included school board president Steve Mead, board member Rose Avalos, associates Bill Plummer and Raymond Stubblefield. In addition, there were a number of certificates of appreciation presented by officials, including representatives from Congresspersons Gene Green and Sheila Jackson Lee, and a thank you talk in person by State Senator Sylvia Garcia, saying Wanda is known through the state of Texas at the top of her profession.

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Commissioner Rodney Ellis and Harris County Street Olympics Officials Kick-off Exciting Summer Games

Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis and State Rep. Ana Hernandez get Hula Hoop tips from youth who participated in the Harris County Street Olympics Summer Games kickoff on Tuesday.

Young Athletes Light Olympic Flame and Demonstrate “Street Games” that will Keep them Engaged in Positive Activities this Summer

Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis, joined by about 80 young athletes demonstrating “street games,” on Tuesday kicked off the 32nd annual Street Olympics Summer Games.

Street Olympics officials and sponsors assisted Commissioner Ellis at Mickey Leland Memorial Park to highlight the exciting Olympic-style competition that begins June 9 at 90 Houston-area youth agencies, including three operated by Precinct One. Three youth also lit the Olympic flame.

About 5,000 Houston-area youth, ages 6-17, are expected to participate in the Summer Games, Discovery Camp, 3-on-3 Basketball, and Harris County Aquatics Program’s Learn-to-Swim classes over an eight-week period. The Summer Games culminate in the Final Event, Bright Futures Fair and the closing ceremonies’ “Parade of Champions” on Aug. 3 at NRG Arena.

“I want to let you know that Street Olympics programs are about more than just games,” Commissioner Ellis said. “We are using sporting games to teach our youth about life, which involves teamwork, competition, self-esteem, discipline and confidence.”

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Congressman campaigning for Sylvia Garcia

Congressman Steny Hoyer U.S. House Democratic Whip of Maryland with Senator Sylvia Garcia at a recent fundraiser for Garcia in Houston.

By Allan Jamail

Houston, TX. – Thursday, May 31, 2018 — At a reception honoring Senator Sylvia Garcia, Congressman Steny Hoyer, the U.S. House Democratic Whip of Maryland, gave a motivational speech emphasizing the importance to the Nation to elect Garcia in November.

Hoyer said, “Our Nation is facing the most confrontational leadership in its history that’s undermining our Democracy. Our American Values are being threatened. By electing Garcia, it will make a difference because she understands those values and has the skills and experience to protect them.

“My children, grandchildren and yours, need Sylvia in Congress to make sure the Country moves forward. By helping her, you’re helping our Country. Garcia, if elected, will make history by being the first Hispanic female to serve in Congress,” Hoyer said.

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