By Lauren Cabral
and Holly Wise
The Cove Herald
GATESVILLE - The Coryell County Commissioners' Court approved a 90-day burn ban for the county, but also approved a resolution allowing the burning of brush piles in the unincorporated area of the county.
Burning brush piles needs the approval of Fire Marshal Billy Vaden, also the Gatesville Volunteer Fire Department chief, and notification to the Coryell County Sheriff's Department.
The ban will expire on April 24.
The court also appointed Vaden and County Judge John Firth to be interim co-emergency management coordinators for Coryell County effective Tuesday.
Phil Yarbrough, the current emergency management coordinator, will resign on Jan. 31.
Firth will be responsible for the Copperas Cove Fire Department area. Vaden will oversee the remainder of the county in the event of an emergency.
The three-day feral hog hunt by helicopter is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 7, pending weather, the court announced. Landowners interested in signing consent forms for the hunt should do so by Friday.
The hunt will concentrate on the watersheds of Cowhouse Creek and the Leon River, where Firth said feral hogs tend to gather. The effort will cost the county $350 per hour, not to exceed $7,500 total for the three-day period.
The state has volunteered two free days of helicopter use in March.
Kempner City Council
KEMPNER - The bid process for the new Kempner City Hall will start after the engineer and architect complete their proposal packets, Mayor Gene Isenhour said Tuesday at the council's regular meeting.
The packets are expected to be returned the first of February, and the project will go out to bid shortly thereafter.
The 4,875-square-foot building will be built on U.S. Highway 190 on property the city recently purchased. Isenhour said he hopes to move into the new building in early summer.
Also Tuesday, Isenhour noted that Sylvia Tucker Memorial Park is not finished, but will be open to the public for daytime use after the restrooms are completed.
Gatesville City Council
GATESVILLE-The Gatesville City Council decided Tuesday to appeal the decision a lawsuit it lost earlier this month concerning land rezoning.
Larry and Glenda Hughes filed a lawsuit against the city on Sept. 15, a day after the council voted to rezone 2525 Osage Road, the proposed site of a new Boys & Girls Club, from a single-gamily zoning district to a community facility zoning district. The city has sole ownership of the property.
On Jan. 7, the 52nd District Court sided with the Hughes.
Larry Hughes said he had plans to construct a housing development next to his property, which is adjacent to the site. Glenda Hughes said at a council meeting on Aug. 24 that she and her husband supported the Boys & Girls Club but did not want the organization next to their home.
Mayor David Byrom called the case's outcome a "gross error" and said he and the council consider the appeal appropriate. Byrom said the appeal must be filed by Feb. 6.
Lampasas County Commissioners
LAMPASAS - The Lampasas County Commissioners could not reach a decision last week on an ordinance regulating animals and setting standards for rabies control.
The ordinance was tabled again and will undergo more "tweaking" by the county attorney.
Judge Wayne Boultinghouse voted against tabling the item.
"In two weeks it's going to be cut and dried," he said. "We're going to go with it; we're not going to have any more of this hassling. We've already worked on this for six months."
The court unanimously gave permission to the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Lampasas County Health and Wellness Partnership to implement a Lampasas County Community Health Assessment survey.
The assessment is designed to provide information that can be used to improve health in Lampasas County, according to information provided to the court by Texas Department of State Health Services staff.
The community is encouraged to participate by attending one of four community meetings. The first meeting is scheduled from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Feb. 7 at the Lampasas County Courthouse followed by a meeting from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Lometa Independent School District cafeteria.
Residents also can attend a meeting from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 8, at the Kempner Fire Department and from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Adamsville Community Center.
Lampasas City Council
LAMPASAS - The Lampasas Holiday Inn Express is several months behind on paying the city's hotel tax and risks having its doors closed if payment is
In a letter to owner Prakesh Patel dated Jan. 7, Lampasas City Manager Michael Stoldt said the city will forward the issue to the city attorney if the full payment of $13,584.48 in back taxes is not received by Jan. 31.
Stoldt explained to the City Council Monday that legal action includes obtaining an injunction against the operation of the hotel.
Patel sent a check to the city on the last day of December for November's tax payment of $5,591.67, but it bounced. The check was reissued. Stoldt said the bank has not received confirmation if the check cleared.
Patel initiated an agreement with the city in November, which the city approved. Patel agreed to pay an additional $5,000 each month until all past-due amounts were paid.
The council approved the first reading of an ordinance designating May 14 as the general election for the expired terms of mayor and council members for Places 1, 2 and 6. The first day for filing an application for a place on the ballot is Feb. 12. The last day is March 14.