News

Fri
11
Aug

Granite Shoals Council fighting financial fire

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

Caught doing something good: Granite Shoals City Council Member Anita Hisey, right, was spotted picking up litter on Phillips Ranch Road recently by former Mayor Dennis Maier, left. Calling himself a "self-appointed committee of one," surprised her at the Tuesday night, Aug. 8, council meeting with an impromptu "Trash Picker-Upper" award, a long-handled grabber to help with any future impulse to clean up what "inconsiderate litterers" leave behind.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

The Granite Shoals City Council has faced a challenging year of unknowns surrounding costs of road repair, but another issue fanning the flames of financial woes has been rising fire department costs.

At their meeting Tuesday, Aug. 8, it was clear council members and staff consider a new stream of financial support from surrounding communities the only remedy.

Granite Shoals Fire Rescue provides fire protection for the adjacent City of Highland Haven and the large, outlying rural communities of Burnet County Emergency Service District #3 (ESD3), each looking at the end of a contract for services that ends Sept. 30.

“My view is, they need to pay their fair share,” said City Manager Ken Nickel, looking specifically at ESD3. “They collect 7.5 cents per $100,000 valuation from their property owners. They have a fund balance of $400,000.

Thu
10
Aug

Llano County residents upset by jail study, possible 'depopulation'

This story appeared in the Tuesday, Aug. 6, edition of The Highlander. It prompted a letter to the editor on Thursday, Aug. 10, also found here on HighlanderNews.com and to be included in the Friday, Aug. 11, print edition of The Highlander.

By Phil Reynolds

The Highlander

Llano County commissioners got an earful Monday from county residents who want to keep the county jail open.

Commissioners held a budget workshop but part of that involved a study by Precinct One Commissioner Peter Jones on the feasibility of turning Llano County Jail prisoners over to Burnet County under a contract yet to be written.

Jones emphasized that he hasn’t finished the study. But he said preliminary numbers indicate that the county could save some $170,000 a year by sending inmates to the reginal jail in Burnet.

Wed
09
Aug

Texas Sales Tax Holiday is Aug. 11-13

Burnet County shoppers can save money on a number of items, including school supplies and school clothes priced below $100, during the annual sales tax holiday, scheduled for this Friday through Saturday, Aug. 11-13, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar said.

State law exempts most clothing, footwear, school supplies and backpacks priced below $100 from sales tax, which will save shoppers around eight to 8.25 percent ($8 ro $8.25) for every $100 they spend during the weekend.

Tue
08
Aug

PEC officers remain the same

The Pedernales Electric Cooperative board of directors voted at its July 17 meeting to keep its current board leadership.

District 2 Director Emily Pataki of Williamson County will continue to serve as board president, with District 6 Director Paul Graff of Comal County serving as vice president and District 7 Director Amy Lea SJ Akers of Hays County serving as secretary-treasurer.

Other directors include District 1 Director Cristi Clement of Burnet County, District 3 Director Randy Klaus of Travis County, District 4 Director Jim Powers of Hays County and District 5 Director James Oakley of Burnet County.

The PEC board elects its board officers each year after the cooperative's annual meeting.

For more information about PEC board members, see pec.coop/bios.

Tue
08
Aug

CWS in 30th year presents Holloway Citizen Award

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

In a fitting 30th Anniversary benchmark, the City of Cottonwood Shores Citizen of the Year Award is presented by Mayor Donald Orr, left, to Rex Holloway at a city council meeting Thursday, Aug. 3. The seal of the city behind them proclaims Aug. 8, 1987 as the date of incorporation.

Council proposes tax rate, discusses deer ordinance

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

Rex Holloway can now say he received the Cottonwood Shores Citizen of the Year Award on the city's 30th Anniversary.

Cottonwood Shores incorporated Aug. 8, 1987, but only in the last three years has it begun honoring the volunteers who have done much of the work to keep improving the city.

In Holloway's case, that includes serves on the city's Board of Adjustment and as vice chairman of the Parks Committee.

“He has worked tirelessly for new playground equipment, and the addition of the splash pad and Memorial Day's grand opening with hotdogs and tee shirts for the kids,” said City Administrator Sheila Moore. “He also attends most city council meetings.”

Tue
08
Aug

First United provides free financial ed with EverFi and seminars

One local bank is making inroads into financial education for youth and adults in Marble Falls.

One aspect of the efforts of First United Bank to foster financial well being is to sponsor seminars such as one on "How to Build Your Rainy Day Fund" from 6-6:45 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, at the bank at 418 North US 281. Following a light dinner at 5:30 p.m., the keynote speaker will be Lisa Crawford, the local financial well-being specialist.

"The event is free, but folks have to RSVP for the limited seating," said Crawford. "They just need to call 830-798-3128."

Mon
07
Aug

Burnet County cities stay strong in sales tax growth

Burnet County continues to see strong gains in sales tax rebates, as almost every city has experienced an increase of more than eight percent above last year's rebate revenue, with one exception.

Marble Falls, Burnet, Granite Shoals, Cottonwood Shores and Horseshoe Bay all have seen a significant jump in sales tax allocations as the percentage exceeds that for cities in the state, as Texas cities received $439.8 million in July 2017, or eight percent more revenue than in July 2016, and are up 3.2 percent overall for the year.

Those allocations are based on sales made in May by businesses that report tax monthly, according to Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar.

Mon
07
Aug

Local counties recorded highest rainfall

A National Weather Service forecast shows small chances for showers as skies clear and temperatures climb for LakeFest weekend in MarbleFalls.

The National Weather Service (NWS) says more showers, less flooding for our area, but it did come down from late Sunday night to Monday morning, Aug. 6-7.

The storm cluster over north Texas moved south and produced widely varying rain totals, heaviest in portions of Llano and Burnet Counties, where as much as 5-8 inches fell. Some flash flooding was observed in this area but recent dry conditions have helped limit the overall flooding and flash flooding threat, according to the NWS. “LCRA opened one floodgate at Wirtz Dam and one floodgate at Starcke Dam to move floodwaters downstream early Monday morning. Both gates were closed by 11 a.m.”

Fri
04
Aug

Granite Shoals negotiates 'learning curve' on November road bond affirmation vote

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

Eric Tanner, right, chairman of the Granite Shoals Arterial Road Bond Committee discusses with Roger Scarborough the extent of work to take place on the city three main north-south roadways if voters in November re-affirm last year's approval of $3 million in bonds. A town hall meeting Saturday, July 29, was an educational, Q&A on moving ahead with the project.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

In November Granite Shoals will be the first city in the 172-year history of the State of Texas to call an election to re-affirm a bond issue.

That is what citizens heard at the Town Hall Meeting for Road Improvement Bond Update held Saturday, July 29, in Granite Shoals.

“The city attorney (Brand Young) had to go all the way to the secretary of state to see if was allowed,” said Eric Tanner, chairman of the new Arterial Road Bond Committee. “But the city council decided to seek voter re-confirmation before issuing the $3 million in bonds approved last November.”

Tanner's committee was created just because of questions that were bound to arise when a city council hesitated before spending money essentially in hand.

The meeting on road improvements may have drawn only half the crowd that turned out for a recent urban deer update, but they were citizens with plenty of questions.

Fri
04
Aug

Nominate a Citizen of the Year in the Bay

Horseshoe Bay is looking for someone to honor as its 2017 Citizen of the Year.

The Horsehose Bay Business Alliance, along with the Horseshoe Bay City Council, is now accepting nominations for Citizen of the Year through Aug. 31.

All citizens of Horseshoe Bay are eligible to submit nominations to receive the award. The Citizen of the Year may be an individual or couple and will be chose from the following criteria:

* Civic, community or church involvement: 50 percent of the criteria considered.

* Accomplishments and contributions to the economic growth and quality of life in Horseshoe Bay: 30 percent of the criteria considered.

* Additional outstanding characteristics the nominee has: 20 percent of criteria considered.

Nominees must demonstrate leadership, valor or exemplary service in thecommunity, go above and beyond normal community involvement and volunteerism, and their philanthropic efforts will also be considered.

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