Resource Center featured
at Rotary Club meeting
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
GUN BARREL CITY–A group of ladies started helping those
in need back in the late 1980s, which was the beginning of the Family
“And then others asked if they could help,” Director Toni Muirhead told
members of the Rotary Club of Cedar Creek Lake Friday.
She added the Center began to grow, until now they are building a larger
facility that employs several workers.
Winnie Branum does most of the screening of people who apply for aid.
Learning how to screen applicants was an on-the-job-training adventure,
“I had to learn to really listen to people,” she said. “And, you have to
ask questions to know about the person being screened.”
Applicants are required to show proof of their identity and income, as
they must make less than $15,000 per year for an individual and less
than $18,000 for a couple, Muirhead said.
Organizations have banded together in a networking system with other
groups and organizations, so no applicant can receive aid from all, the
two women explained.
This year, the Resource Center has helped with 300 to 500 utility bills,
clothed 89 people, and in general helped a total of 1,102 people.
“Approximately 10 to 20 people a day come to us that we try to help,”
In other business, Rotarians were told:
• the next book giveaway will take place from 9-10:20 a.m. Thursday,
Dec. 14, at Kemp Primary School.
• the RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Award) committee interviewed 14
students. The committee chose four students to attend RYLA Camp.
Courthouse roof repairs ok’d
By Wilbur Callaway
CANTON–After two split votes, the Van Zandt County Commissioners decided
to spend $18,205.20 on repairs to the roof of the county courthouse in
After discussing at length the proposed repairs, Precinct 1 Commissioner
Ricky LaPrade moved that the county only do two of the three proposals
made by roofing contractor Bruce Ruckman, which amounted to $12,445.20,
and leave the other $5,720 to be done later.
However, Precinct 4 Commissioner Ron Carroll argued strongly against
such a move.
“We have been neglecting the courthouse for too long. I would rather go
ahead and get everything done at one time,” Carroll repeatedly said
during their meeting Nov. 21.
A 2-2 vote of the court resulted in LaPrade’s motion failing.
(Precinct 2 Commissioner David Risner was absent due to a death in his
Carroll then moved that the county undertake the entire roofing repair
project, which passed 3-1 with LaPrade opposed.
The work includes patching, and covering the holes in the roof with
reroofing the entire area, including parapet walls for $9,576, patch the
flat areas for $795, and replace the aluminum coating for $4,800.
The same roofing material recently used on the roof of the new county
jail is being used on the courthouse, commissioners heard.
A 20 percent additional charge will cover labor, Ruckman of Texas
Roofing Contractors said.
Repairs are expected to extend the life of the roof for five to 10
additional years, he added.
In other business, the commissioners:
• moved the Dec. 26 regular meeting to the 28th.
• approved the county bills to be paid after LaPrade questioned what he
felt was an excessive charge ($1,100) last month for medications for an
inmate at the county jail.
• heard presentations from Arlie Edwards, Van Zandt Emergency Services,
about a recent five-state disaster drill with the American Red Cross;
Carey Hilliard regarding $17,000 now available from environmental fines,
and asked that it be used in repairs of septic systems for low-income
county residents; from representatives of Graves, Humphries, Stahl,
Ltd., for Justice of the Peace courts collection on delinquent fines.
• approved regular license plates for use on exempt vehicles for
• approved bond for Carroll, who was recently re-elected as the Precinct
• approved paying the district attorney’s attic storage bill on a
continual basis for records and files.
• approved paying DA Investigator Tim McLemee’s residential internet
service on a continual basis.
• approved a one-year lease agreement between Michael L. & Marion
Kirkpatrick and Van Zandt County for sand to mix oil in Precinct 4.
Carroll noted he lost his sand pit last of October.
• approved a bid from Rock Solid Crushed Stone for $6.60 a ton
unscreened one-inch crushed rock.
• gave permission for the City of Wills Point to run sewer & water lines
along right-of-way of VZCR 3410 to the old dump ground and water
treatment plant in Precinct 3.
• approved one-year agreement between City of Wills Point and Van Zandt
County for street work in the city. The county will furnish labor and
equipment, while the city will furnish all materials needed.
• approved a budget amendment for Van Zandt County Auditor John Shinn to
take money from IT budget to pay for leasing computers.
Library at Cedar Creek Lake news
and activities released
Special to The Monitor
SEVEN POINTS–Breakfast with Santa Saturday, Dec. 9,
organized by the Best Friends Group, was a huge success. More than 300
people attended. Charlotte Gish won a grill during the event.
The Library at Cedar Creek Lake’s first float in the Cedar Creek Area
Christmas Parade won first place in its category.
Thanks are due to supporters and benefactors for the float. They are EZ
Signs of Payne Springs, Fresh Lemonade Store in Canton, Holy Ground
Ranch, Streetman, Kevton Gourmet of Streetman, Garris Trucking, Lowe’s
and Wal-Mart in Gun Barrel City, Tolosa Feed Store and all the
volunteers and employees who worked hard to make it a success.
Saturday, Dec. 16, the Teen Library Board is sponsoring a Christmas bake
sale in the community hall. Bring your cookies, cakes and pies to sell
to benefit the library.
The library provides literacy and GED training free of charge. Training
to tutors will be provided in the near future. We need GED tutors who
can teach math portion of the test.
The library is recruiting volunteers from the lake communities.
The library is a 501(c)(3) organization operated with the help of funds
donated by friends, patrons, well wishers, businesses and various
community organizations and churches.
“The Library is in need of extra funds at this time,” Friends of The
Library president Tere Hatcher said.
“Your penny collection will be gladly accepted to replenish operating
funds,” she added.
Another way you can help is by saving your aluminum cans and bringing
them to the Library for recycling with B&J Scrap Metals of Seven Points.
A Teen Talk Book Club for all teens in the area is planned.
High school English teachers are encouraged to send their students to
It will meet once a month Saturday mornings from 10 a.m. to noon to read
and discuss a title popular with the teens. Volunteers (preferably high
school English teachers) are needed to lead this discussion.
This program is set to begin in January. Call for more information or a
A Valentine’s Day community dance is planned for Feb. 10, from 4 to 6
p.m. Tickets are $5 at the door or $4 purchased in advance. Tickets go
on sale in January.
For more information, call (903) 432-4185.