People, Places & Events



Lake Area

East Cedar Creek Freshwater Supply District meets at 12:30 p.m. the third Wednesday of each month at the ECCFSD office on Hammer Road just off Welch Lane in Gun Barrel City.
Eustace City Council meets at 7 p.m. in the Eustace City Hall the first Thursday of each month. For more information, please call 425-4702. The public is invited to attend.
Eustace Independent School District meets at 7 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month at the Eustace High School Library. For more information, please call 425-7131. The public is invited to attend.
Gun Barrel City Council meets in Brawner Hall at 6 p.m. the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 887-1087. The public is invited to attend.
Gun Barrel City Economic Development Corporation meets at 1831 W. Main, GBC, at 6 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 887-1899.
Henderson County Commissioner’s Court meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 9 a.m. in the Henderson County Courthouse in Athens. The public is invited to attend.
Henderson County Emergency Services District #4 meets at 7 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month at 525 S. Tool Dr. in Tool.
Henderson County Historical Commission meets the first Wednesday of each month at 1 p.m. in the HC Historical Museum.
Kaufman County Commissioner’s Court meets the first, second, third and fourth Monday of each month at 9:45 a.m. in the Kaufman County Courthouse in Kaufman. The public is invited to attend.
Kemp City Council meets at Kemp City Hall at 7 p.m. the second Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 498-3191. The public is invited to attend.
Kemp Independent School District meets the third Tuesday of each month in the Board Room in the Administration Building. For more information, please call 498-1314. The public is invited to attend.
Log Cabin City Council meets the third Thursday of the month in city hall. For more information, please call 489-2195. The public is invited to attend.
Mabank City Council meets at 7 p.m. in Mabank City Hall the first Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 887-3241. The public is invited to attend.
Mabank Independent School District meets at 7:30 p.m. the fourth Monday of each month. For more information, please call 887-9310. The public is invited to attend.
Payne Springs City Council meets at city hall at 7:30 p.m. every third Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 451-9229. The public is invited to attend.
Payne Springs Water Supply Corp. meets the third Tuesday of each month at 1 p.m. at the Payne Springs Community Center, located at 9690 Hwy. 198.
Seven Points City Council meets at 7 p.m. in Seven Points city hall the second Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 432-3176. The public is invited to attend.
Tool City Council meets at 6 p.m. in the OranWhite Civic Center the third Thursday of each month. For more information, please call 432-3522. The public is invited to attend.
West Cedar Creek Municipal Utility District is held at 5 p.m. the fourth Monday of each month. For more information, please call 432-3704. The public is invited.

  Property values flat and holding
Henderson County up 2 percent; Kaufman County down 2 percent; Van Zandt County holds steady
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

CEDAR CREEK LAKE–Overall, property tax values increased slightly over last year in Henderson County, up 2.24 percent. In Van Zandt County, values stayed the same and in Kaufman County, taxable values decreased 2.2 percent.
“The biggest reductions are on the large industrial accounts, when industry and manufacturing was down,” Kaufman County chief appraiser Chris Peace explained. “That’s been county-wide.”
The county has $316 million less in taxable property than last year, bringing the total to $14.08 billion.
The cities of Mabank and Terrell experienced the largest drop in taxable value, down 8.45 percent and 7.41 percent, respectively.
Solar Turbines, the area’s largest manufacturer, reported significantly lower goods and inventory than previously, Peace added.
“We use Jan. 1 as the appraisal date, but in theory you have to look back to October, 2009, when manufacturing and inventory were significantly less than in the past,” he said.
Mabank is still waiting to learn what its effective tax rate is – the rate that will deliver the same amount of revenue as last year. It is likely the effective rate will increase.
City administrator Louann Confer is working on a no-growth budget, based on $750,000 in sales tax revenues (the same projection as last year) and an unknown effective tax rate.
“I’m trying to give the employees a 3 percent raise and maintain the health insurance,” Confer said.
The city is currently paying $350 per employee per month, she said. The basic coverage with a $3,000 deductible has gone up in price 20 percent, she reported.
“The employees likely will have to make up the difference,” she said.
The news isn’t all bleak, however. Mabank properties located in Henderson County increased in value by $1.66 million.
Like Mabank, most taxing entities in Kaufman County saw a decrease.
However, the Kemp ISD held steady at nearly the same taxable value as last year. The city of Kemp saw a 5.18 percent increase.
In Henderson County, the appraisal district figures show a 2.62 percent increase in appraised value, with taxable values increasing 2.24 percent.
Last year, the county saw a slight increase of 4.46 percent.
“On the whole, we didn’t see an increase in real estate values,” chief appraiser Bill Jackson said.
Only a few taxing entities in Henderson County saw a decrease in values. The largest decrease was in the city of Frankston, 22.8 percent. The few other decreases were less than 3 percent.
Of the $30.7 billion in 2010 appraised value, $20.2 billion is taxable.
Trinidad ISD saw a sizable increase in taxable value, up 16 percent. Though the city of Eustace saw a 21 percent increase in appraised value, it only saw a 2.49 percent increase in taxable value, reflecting the large number of senior citizen property owners.
Eustace ISD taxable values in Henderson and Van Zandt increased by a little more than a million dollars.
Jackson said most of the increases in Trinidad came from reappraising property in that area, and from improvements to oil and gas properties.
The district tries to conduct reappraisals every three years, he said.
“It’s normal during the reappraising process to find some undervalued properties,” Jackson explained. “About $2 million to $3 million came from improvements to residential properties.”
In Van Zandt County, market values saw a slight decrease, but taxable values held steady at $2.32 billion, slightly above last year’s $2.31 billion.
Chief appraiser Brenda Barnett said there was some new construction in the residential category on rural properties, but these were offset by other property owners reaching age 65 and freezing their property value, which helped keep values flat.
“I felt fortunate that we stayed steady, in view of other counties losing ground,” Barnett said.
Eight taxing entities in Van Zandt County saw slight increases, while 13 experienced slight decreases.
Barnett added plans for a few new housing subdivisions have been filed in the county, but no new construction has resulted yet.
With healthcare costs increasing, county commissioners are asking department heads to submit lean budgets.
Commissioners, city council members and school trustees are now holding budget meetings, in preparation for announcing fiscal year 2011 tax rates and budgets.
The Henderson County Commissioners are expected to propose a tax rate Tuesday, Aug. 31.
Two public hearings are set for Tuesday mornings, Sept. 7 and Sept. 14, at the courthouse, and commissioners are expected to adopt a tax rate Sept. 14.
The budget may be adopted at the same time, or soon afterwards.
Van Zandt and Kaufman counties have similar timetables.

Mabank Family Health Mart Pharmacy health fair helps raise diabetes awareness
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer

MABANK–Diabetes is a fast-growing problem across Texas, the nation and in the Cedar Creek Lake communities.
“The local pharmacies, including Mabank Family Health Mart Pharmacy, wanted to do something about (diabetes) growth, and in addition, wanted to raise awareness concerning the problem,” Zach Nixon, tour manager for Health Mart, Healthy Living Tours said.
Friday, Mabank Family Health Mart Pharmacy, a member of Health Mart, a national network of more than 2,600 independently owned pharmacies, conducted a health fair.
DeWayne Chapman, R. Ph. owns Mabank Family Health Mart Pharmacy.
The fair was deemed a great success, as 70 local residents attended the three-hour event, with 27 patients identified as being at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
The Health Mart Living Tour’s goal is to raise awareness of the escalating diabetes problem by identifying people at risk, and to encourage people with diabetes to better manage their condition.
Diabetes affects more than 23.6 million people, with another 57 million at risk, if their eating habits are not altered.
“We were chosen by Health Mart back in April, and told when to expect them to set up,” Chapman said.
“Them” consists of Nixon and several other Health Mart representatives, traveling in a huge RV fitted out with cubicles and equipment for scanning patients and supplying information for their physicians.
The touring health clinic travels for five to six months at a time, visiting with the independent pharmacies across the nation.
The vehicle wears tags from Maine, and at least one of the members, Nixon, is a Mainer. More than likely, the rest of the crew is from the Pinetree State, as they all were remarking about the 100-degree-plus heat.
The number of cases of diabetes in the United States has more than doubled in the last decade, with obesity named as the number one cause.
Chapman is a second-generation pharmacist who bought the store 13 years ago. He proudly explained his son, Craig, is half way through his pharmacy studies at Oklahoma State University.
After taking over the store, Chapman added several features to make the pharmacy more customer-friendly.
One of the first additions was the annual flu shots that Chapman made available to customers.
“We even have a drive-through of sorts,” Chapman said. “When customers arrive with elderly parents and friends, we will go out to their car and give them their shot.”
Another special feature involves the special shoes needed by diabetic patients – shoes that are smooth inside to prevent blisters and rubbing that could cause sores a diabetic patient must avoid.
“We are accredited for diabetic shoes and supplies,” Chapman said, noting the state requires pharmacies to be accredited when selling special supplies.

Type O negative blood needed
Special to The Monitor
DALLAS/FORT WORTH–Carter BloodCare is experiencing a precedent-setting use of the blood type O Rh negative (‘type O negative’).
This blood type is considered universal because it is compatible with all patients – and is used frequently in emergencies when there is little time to type the patient’s blood before administering blood transfusions.
Overnight, several large trauma centers served by Carter BloodCare, used heavy quantities of O negative blood within hours of each other.
Carter BloodCare emphasizes that the blood center is currently meeting the needs of its hospitals, but is maintaining only a one-day supply of this important and less-common blood type.
This supply would be rapidly exhausted if last night’s events are repeated.
Carter BloodCare is asking donors who have type O negative blood to help replenish the supply by making an appointment to donate red blood cells within the next few days, if possible.
There are 20 neighborhood donor centers located throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, in addition to community blood drives taking place daily.
The Carter BloodCare mobile unit will bein Mabank today from 9:45 a.m. until 11:45 at the Citizens State Bank on 1381 S. Third Street and then at Clayton Homes on Business 175 near the junior high from 1:45 to 3:45 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome.
On Saturday, Aug. 21, the mobile unit will be in the City of Tool from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.. Then the following Saturday, Sept. 4, the bloodmobile will be at the Seven Points Brookshire’s parking lot from 1 to 4 p.m.
For other times and dates, please visit www.carter or call 1 (800) DONATE-4 (800-366-2834).
Potential donors can be 16 years old with a parent’s consent; 17-year-olds may donate independently and there is no upper age limit for donating blood.
All donors must weigh at least 110 pounds, be in good general health and present a photo ID.
Ideally, a donor should also eat a good meal and drink plenty of fluids before giving blood.
Carter BloodCare’s volunteer donors provide lifesaving blood for patients at more than 200 health care facilities in 56 counties in North, Central and East Texas.
Carter BloodCare is the largest not-for-profit 501(c) (3) community blood center in Texas and is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks, licensed by the Food and Drug Administration and is a member of America’s Blood Centers.


Come Adopt Us At
The Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake
The domino effect is a chain reaction that occurs when a small change causes a similar change nearby, which then will cause another similar change, and so on. My name is Domino, and I got my name not only because I’m black and white like a domino tile, but also because my outgoing, cheerful personality causes my doggie roommates to smile. This also causes our human friends to smile, which even causes the kitties in the cat room to smile.
I am an 8-month-old male Pointer/Terrier mix. I love children, other dogs, and even get along great with kitties. I’ve had all my shots and am ready to be adopted. If you’d like to experience the domino effect, I am sure to put a forever smile on your face when you take me to my forever home.
I currently live with a foster family, so if you would like to meet me, call my friends at the Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake at (903) 432-3422 to make an appointment. You can also email them at

We have many 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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