Aug

30

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : August 30, 2015

GBC mayor-Dennis Baade

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
GUN BARREL CITY–Gun Barrel City has a new mayor. Council members unanimously chose longtime Councilman and city volunteer Dennis Baade to fill the center chair, Tuesday.
Councilman Rob Rea as selected to be Mayor Pro Tem. Former mayor Jim Braswell announced his resignation last week due to family health issues.
“Me and Jim started here (on the council) at the same time,” Councilman Ron Wyrick noted. “He has been a great asset to the city. We’ve been moving in a positive direction. We’re sure going to miss him.”
Rea reiterated the strength of Braswell’s leadership. “This was a great loss to the city, one I hope we are all keenly aware of,” he said. “I wish him all the luck in the world with everything he needs.”
Councilwoman Linda Rankin made the motion to elect Baade as mayor saying, “He’s an honest man with great integrity.”
The council will be appointing someone to fill the vacant position from the city’s west side, which Baade represented. That person will hold the office until the regular city election in May, when the seat will come open for election. Those wanting to be considered for Place 4 should see the city secretary to pick up an application and to verify residency.
Another highlight at the specially called meeting was a discussion on the current financial balances and report on the economic outcomes of July Fest.
City treasurer Mickie Raney reported that though concert ticket sales were down 40 percent from last year, bringing in $11,215, the overall festival increased venues by 16 percent over last year, bringing in $53,621 compared with last year’s revenues of $45,145. Beverage sales were also down, she said.
The lowered ticket sales were partly attributed to the July 4th observance falling on a Saturday, competing with so many other observances in the area. However the addition of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles more than made up the difference, selling out far in advance of the event and attracting visitors from far and wide.
Raney said $80,000 was budgeted for the festival; however, the city was able to keep spending down to $77, 520. When total revenue is factored in, the net cost to the city was only $23,899.
We have always strived to make this an event that families could afford with the goal to bring back in half of the money we spend,” she said. “We recaptured 70 percent of the amount budgeted for the event.”
Estimates of attendance for the entire event came in at between 5,000 and 5,500. Councilwoman Carol Calkins pointed out that the local economic impact of the festival totaled $231,000 spent in the city that weekend, as a multiplier of effect of the festival.
City Manager Gerry Boren took a few moments to explain some of the seemingly negative numbers in the financial report, which he said was an actual snapshot in time, which happened to show the city in an $80,000 deficit fund balance.
He explained that tonight he was waiting for authorization to move funding from various sources to reimburse the fund balance and detailed specific numbers and departments, which once adjusted for would bring the city’s books back into the black by $83,942. “We’re watching the budget very closely,” he said, noting that with the sales tax figures, reflective of June spending up 9.16 percent and a report from Walmart reporting sales increases by 10 percent, he expects the next several sales tax distribution to also be on the rise over last year.
In other business, the council:
• conducted a second reading for the Domino’s Pizza EDC Project for a matching grant from the Boots To Business program not to exceed $150,000; and right away adopted the resolution to move forward contingent on the project becoming ADA compliant as it builds out its space.
• adopted a resolution to loan First Call Restoration $55,000 as an EDC project.
• postponed approval of the SPA Skateparks project due to improper wording in the contract, calling for the EDC to be responsible for certain aspects it has no power to perform. EDC Executive Director Sean Overeynder agreed with the recommendation.
• conducted a first reading for a loan to GBC Medical Associates for $82,400.
• tabled discussion and approval of the EDC budget, which needs adjusting in light of recent glitches with its computers.
• adopted revisions to the EDC bylaws
• named Henry Peters PC of Tyler as the city’s auditors on a 3-year service contract to be negotiated.
• heard plans for the Fall Festival to feature the Lone Star Lawnmower Racing Association and fund the festival with $6,000 for the second Saturday in October.

Aug

30

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : August 30, 2015

David Jones Aug 15 race

By Erik Walsh
Monitor Staff Writer
KEMP–Street racer David “Bird” Jones is at it again.
The Kemp native continues to cement his name among the top street racers in the country after facing Kye Kelly in a head-to-head in a grudge match at Dig Night in Houston Aug. 1, and placing top four at the Armageddon Outlaws $20K Invitational Aug. 15 Noble, Okla.
The grudge match was set up after Bird defeated Kelly last month. Kelly wasn’t happy with the results and “called out” bird for the rematch in Houston. Bird accepted. Unfortunately for Bird, when race day came his engine caught on fire when hitting the nitrous and was unable to continue to the final race and had to settle for runner up.
Despite the disappointing outcome, Bird had no time to mope around. The big Armageddon Outlaw $20K Invitational was less than two weeks away and he needs to get his car ready. Jones and his crew worked around the clock to make sure his Camaro was in top shape to face the racers from the Discover television series Street Outlaws.
Finally, the big day arrived and Bird was pitted against some of the top racers in the country at the Thunder Valley Raceway Park. He, and 31 other speedsters vied for the $20K prize. Bird didn’t win the whole event, but had a strong showing and earned cheers from fans and respect from his peers.
The invitational was set up in a single elimination bracket. The winner moves on, and the loser is out. In the first round of the event, Bird quickly send Plan B home packing. Bird’s rival Kye Kelly also participated in the event and was noticeably defeated by John Doe in the first round.
Bird was matched up against Andrade in the second round and defeated him as well to move on to the top eight. With a spot in the final four on the line Bird got the best of Honey Badger and advanced to the fourth round.
Birds opponent in the semi-finals was John Doe, the man that defeated Kelly in the first round. Things didn’t fall Birds way in the race, as his car was unable to shift into high. According to Bird’s mother, Lynn Jones, her son was a little gun show on manually shifting after losing a previous motor. John Doe moved on to the final, where he lost to the head Outlaw racer, Big Chief.
That ended the competition for Bird, but his showing was strong enough to keep making noise in the industry. He was just one race away from competing against the guy that invited him to the Oklahoma in the first place and potentially winning it all.
Jones may not be sure where the street racing will take him, but it is clear his life is about to get a whole lot busier.
David Jones Aug 15 race

Aug

30

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : August 30, 2015

Riggs Obit

Billy Wayne Riggs “Wild Bill” went to be with his lord and savior Aug. 24, 2015, at East Texas Medical Hospital in Tyler.
Bill was born March 11, 1939, to Estell and Garland Riggs. He had four sisters and five brothers.
On July 29, 1960, Bill married the love of his life Norma June Riggs (Hooper). He was a loving husband and father of two girls, Leann Riggs and Billie June Riggs (BJ).
He operated his own business by the name of “Riggs Drywall” until he was forced to retire in 1997 due to illness. He has since lived out his retirement in his lake home where he loved fishing, listening to classic country music, visiting with friends and family, and happily dressing up every Christmas as Santa Claus for his grandchildren’s enjoyment.
This past July, Bill and Norma celebrated their 55th anniversary.
Bill is survived by his wife, Norma Riggs, daughters Leann and Billie Riggs, grandchildren Amy Nipp, Hollie Norris, Ashley Brinegar, Brittany Neighbors, Randi Lynn Horn and Angela Riggs; 18 great- grandchildren, brothers Burt Russell Riggs and Dan Riggs, sisters Jeniva and John Stokes, Wanda Roberts, Lorene Koonce, Linda Blue; and a loving sister-in-law, Frances Tedder.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Estell and Garland Riggs, brothers Garland, JD, and Leroy Riggs.
Service was given by David Woodham “Pastor Woody” of the Rocking Country Church.
Funeral service was Aug. 27, 2015 at the Moorhead Epps Funeral Home in Gun Barrel City.