People, Places & Events


  Gun Barrel EDC eyes budget
Certification application for city being
named a retirement community nears completion

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

GUN BARREL CITY–The members of the Gun Barrel City Economic Development Corporation reviewed the budget they plan to submit to the city council for approval.
No big changes were noted, aside from a slight increase for postage.
“Since we were criticized for our advertising line item last year, this year we’ve cut it way down and gotten a 13 times rate (in a Dallas business publication) for $34,000,” executive director Jack Thompson said. “The rule of thumb is it takes eight times before people begin to recognize that they’ve seen the ad.”
Business assistance or project funds amount to $600,000, with another $300,000 still in the revolving loan fund, making close to $1 million available, EDC president Steve Webster said.
The EDC’s efforts in compiling all the information needed to apply for certification as a federally-recognized retirement community is nearing completion.
“We only lack a few minor pieces of information, a marketing plan and a long-range plan,” board member Richard Wendel reported.
Thompson said he would have a marketing plan ready by the end of the month.
“A long-range plan is an explanation of the areas where the community may have some deficiencies, and what is being done to fill them, such as our lack of a hospital,” Wendel explained.
Currently, Wendel is collecting letters of recommendation from Gun Barrel City businesses and associations to include with the application. When everything is complete, Wendel plans to go through it page by page, comparing it to the successful application Athens completed.
“We could be ready to submit our application by the August meeting,” he said.
If successful, Gun Barrel City would be added to a national list of retirement communities available via the Internet to those planning for retirement, and assisting them with their decisions.
In other business, the directors:
• heard a report from Stephen Orsak of S.O. Sportsplex. In this economic climate, it doesn’t look like the financing for the long-proposed indoor soccer facility is going to happen, Orsak reported.
The banks are calling the arena project “not a typical request for this region,” he said.
EDC members assured him of their continued support, should he be able to obtain the financing he needs to use the 5.2-acre parcel the EDC purchased from the city in 2006 for $200,000 (or about $40,000 an acre).
• discussed the failure of a recent attempt to purchase about seven acres contiguous to city property near the park for $299,000.
“I tell you, I’m very disappointed,” EDC treasurer Dennis Baade said.
“They (the city council) took it into executive session and didn’t give us a chance to inform them of the property’s benefits for the city. I don’t know what they (council members) want from us. I feel directionless now,” Baade said.
• heard Superior Paint & Body owner Michael Thompson outline his business history and plans to dramatically grow his business, with a corresponding need for surety assistance with the bank from the EDC.

First payment made on KHS
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer

KEMP–Construction workers have been moving tons of dirt and setting frames for the foundation of the new Kemp High School, and the first payment to contractors is due.
Tuesday, Kemp Independent School District trustees approved the first “drawdown” on the $23 million bond package approved by voters in May, 2007.
The payment totaled $464,648.10, and the itemized list for payment went first to architect Randy Fromberg for scrutiny and then to the board for review and approval.
“We pay the contractor and he disperses the funds,” KISD Superintendent Dr. Peter Running explained.
In other business, trustees:
• approved “rustic red” for down spouts, gutters and support beams in the new high school, to contrast with gray rock siding.
• discussed plans to host a public meeting each month, a week after each board meeting, to educate district patrons on the function of the school board and activities within the district.
The meeting is aimed at encouraging parents to become more involved in the school district. Several activities and suggestions are being seriously considered.
At least two board members will be on hand to make a presentation and to answer questions, although the board cannot have a quorum of board members present.
Other speakers will be solicited, such as a presentation by a Chartwells representative on food service operations and student activities from a featured campus..
A supervised, separate area will be provided for children, who will be fed a meal, such as pizza.
Parents will be treated to a sit-down dinner, presentations, programs and door prizes.
• reviewed a preliminary classroom core curriculum.
The district is planning to add several new classes, including an honors algebra I and is considering adding theater production and Ready, Set, Teach II.
• approved Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) Policy Update 83, affecting local policies concerning 13 individual areas.
• heard budget workshops are pending.
“The department heads have submitted their requests,” business manager Kim Johnson said.
Several dates are marked as deadlines in August, she explained.
A completed budget draft needs to be finalized by Friday, Aug. 1, an advertisement should be published in the newspaper by Thursday, Aug. 14, with a proposed tax rate to be adopted by Thursday, Aug. 28. The budget must have final approval by Aug. 31.
• discussed participation in the TASB Energy Cooperative.
“Bottom line is we’re looking at better prices for us,” Running said.
“And better representation (in soliciting energy suppliers),” Johnson added.
Trustees asked for further information on what other purchasing sources and prices were available. That information will be brought back at a later meeting.
• heard the current tax collection is now up to 87.59 percent of levy.

So what bugs you about bugs?

Courtesy Photo/Melissa Newland
The Orkin Bug Man brings a host of bugs to show children during the final
reading program of the year at The Library at Cedar Creek Lake Tuesday.
Kids learn that bugs are creatures you don’t want to live with, but also creatures
we couldn’t live without.

Courtesy Photo/Melissa Newland
A willing volunteer demonstrates how bugs sense
their surroundings with their antennae. “Look Mom,
it’s a dance step for the Bug’s Ball.”

Courtesy Photo/Melissa Newland
Scorpians were one of the species of insects kids
got to examine close up when the Orkin Bug Man
came to The Library at Cedar Creek Lake Tuesday.


Come Adopt Us At
The Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake

My name is Nelson. I am a beautiful male Dachshund. I was brought to the shelter by animal control, so I have no history. So far, I seem pretty laid back and gentle. I am a wonderful boy looking for my new forever home.

My name is Oreo. I am a beautiful female black Lab. I was brought to the shelter by animal control, so I have no history. I seem to get along with other dogs. I need help with leash training. I have been started on my shots and need to be fixed. I am a beautiful girl looking for my new home.

We are a whole litter of Shepherd mix babies. We were brought to the shelter by animal control, so we have no history. We have been started on our first set of shots. We are good kids looking for our new forever homes.

I am a beautiful Border Collie, who is four months old, or so. I was brought to the shelter by animal control, so I have no history. I have not been at the shelter long, so not much is known about me. I am a beautiful kid looking for a new home.

Pictured are just a few animals at the Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake in Seven Points in dire need of a good home. Please call or stop by the Humane Society today and rescue one of these forgotten animals. The Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake is located on 10220 County Road 2403 in
Seven Points. For more information, please call (903) 432-3422 after 11 a.m.
We are closed on Wednesday and Sunday.

For further information visit our website at


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