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Northeast News

Aldine community approves sales tax

The board of directors of the Aldine Community District met Monday evening to canvass the vote from the recent election. Voters in Aldine went to the polls to vote on two propositions for the newly created Aldine Community District.

Proposition One that allows for a one cent sales tax within the boundaries of the district won support from 59% of the voters. All revenue generated by the sales tax will remain in the Aldine Community District for neighborhood improvement and operation of the district. The district would have existed in name only without passage of this proposition.

Proposition Two that would have given additional authority to the board of directors failed by a narrow margin to receive voter support.

Area State Representative Kevin Bailey who authored the legislation calling for the election, said: “This is great news. It’s an exciting day for Aldine. The district will pave the way for a bright future of economic growth and improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods.”

After certifying the results of the election the board of directors voted to adopt the sales tax as allowed by the voters. The State Comptrollers Office is being notified of the new sales tax and a request was submitted for the collection of the new tax. The Comptrollers Office will have to prepare an inventory of businesses within the district and send written notification to those businesses before the tax can be collected. It is estimated that area businesses will begin charging the one cent tax on about October 1 of this year.

The board of directors will begin a search for an executive director to run the day to day operation of the district. They will now have an opportunity to improve the area by developing and implementing a service plan to maximize service from such entities as Harris County, Metro, the Texas Department of Transportation and other government agencies.

Storm Debris Pick Up Update

Residents of Commissioner’s Precinct 1 (El Franco Lee) who still have storm debris to be picked up should call 281-820-5151. Operations Supervisor for Lee, Deotis Gay, informed The News last Friday that Precinct 1 will pick up debris twice a week and will honor specific individual requests for pick up.

David Floyd, Senior Assistant to Precinct 2 Commissioner Jim Fonteno, advised The News, also on Friday, that Precinct 2 will make no more storm debris collections. If you live in Precinct 2 and do not have city heavy trash service, you must arrange and pay for a private contractor to pick up any remaining debris.

Most, but not all of the homes that receive the Northeast News are in Precinct 1. If you are not sure which precinct your home is in call El Franco Lee at 713-755-6111 or Jim Fonteno at 713-755-6220. Their staff members will be able to tell you which precinct you are in based on your street address.

My Two Cents Worth

I know a few things, things from books like the population of Zimbabwe and date of the Magna Carta, some useful stuff I picked up along the way (how to change a tire) and a lot of hard lessons, learned the hard way I’d rather not talk about.

I am a walking compendium of trivia of every sort, and, lest you think I lack depth, I point to my near encyclopedic knowledge of Chinese history, the work of e.e. cummings, and the life cycle of the blowfly.

Which brings me to today’s topic: Space. Not space as in NASA Space Center, but the physical space that exists, and apparently must exist, between human beings.

When Paul Simon was cataloging the “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” he didn’t list the one heard most often in the self-absorbed 70s and 80s, the one heard most often last month and last week and probably at the close of a thousand painful partings last night: I need my space.

Do human beings need space?

Everyone has a sense of where his own “personal space” begins and ends. Like an aura it surrounds and insulates us from unwanted familiarity; if someone intrudes upon our space we feel violated and even threatened.

Love and lust and simple chemistry alter the boundaries, at least for a time, but the decision to allow another into our personal space doesn’t negate its existence: the space is always there.

Watching the crowds of beachgoers, and the crowds of wading birds at the shore last week I was struck by the similarity between the two groups.

The birds were lined up along the along the edge of the water, perfectly positioned, each one an equal distance from the next. When a new bird set down in their midst, every one moved as far as necessary to restore the equilibrium.

With mathematical precision, the sunbathers took up their positions on the sand as if each was surrounded by an invisible force field designed to repel marauders.

I watched as a swimmer who had drifted with the tide and come ashore out of place, tip-toed gingerly along the water line until he reached his little piece of the island, where he executed a perfect right turn and returned to his place in the sun.

Why are we so afraid to let others into our space? What are we afraid of?

Until we can figure that out, I can’t see that we have much chance of overcoming the other barriers, no less real, that separate us from one another

Hibiscus show and sale coming Sunday

Hundreds of exotic hibiscus blooms will be displayed by the Lone Star Chapter of the American Hibiscus Society from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 19 at the Bellaire Community Center, 7008 South Rice Avenue. Named variety hibiscus will be for sale. Blooms will be displayed representing varieties of the tropical “Chinese” hibiscus that grow well in Texas. Admission is free. Two free hibiscus plants will be given to those who join the Lone Star Chapter during show hours.

Visitors will receive the free leaflet ‘How to Grow Better Hibiscus Near The Texas Coast.” To raise funds, the chapter will sell landscape and exotic hibiscus plants, the internationally acclaimed Hibiscus Handbook, and the Space City Chapter’s water-soluble fertilizer, 18-10-28, formulated especially for hibiscus.

Experienced hibiscus growers will share growing tips and answer questions. For consultations about growing problems, leaves from problem hibiscus may be brought to the show in sealed plastic bags to the “Help Desk.” Also, bring your “mystery” hibiscus blooms for identification.

The Lone Star Chapter meets every fourth Tuesday at 7:30 p.m., March through October, at the Garden Center in Hermann Park. Visitors are most welcome. You are invited to visit our website to learn more about tropical hibiscus.

Football tickets available

Fans of Aldine ISD’s four varsity football programs can purchase tickets now to see their favorite teams in action during the 2001 season.

Tickets can be purchased through the Aldine ISD Athletic Department located in the M.O. Campbell Educational Center, located at 1865 Aldine Bender Road. Advance tickets (to home games at Thorne Stadium) are $4 in advance and $5 at the gate. Student tickets are $2 in advance and $5 at the gate.

The season begins the weekend of Sept. 7-8. For more information, contact Joe Young, AISD director of athletics, at 281-985-6100.

Free Texas music at Garden in the Heights

With roots in country, folk, blues, and rock, Texas music came out of the Hill Country around Austin and en-joyed a loyal and growing following over the years. A new generation of performers has exploded on the scene, and the Homegrown Texas Jam serves as a showcase for them and the Texas music stars of tomorrow.

Garden in the Heights is the perfect venue for the series with Texas roots going back to the 1880’s, an outdoor concert area under the trees, and large indoor hall in the event of rain.

The Homegrown Texas Jam is a Thursday night free (21 and over only) concert series featuring the new genera-tion of Texas music artists. Each week, the Jam will feature live free performances by hot young artists such as Jack Ingram, Roger Creager and Bill Pekar with Texas Music legends like Guy Clarke. The eight-week series at the his-toric Garden in the Heights kicks off August 16th with Jack Ingram.

Doors will open at 6:00 p.m. Food and drink will be available. Check the website at www, for band updates and times.