By Lauren Cabral and Mason W. Canales

The Cove Herald

Copperas Cove City Council

The City Council protected its downtown's greenery Tuesday by denying a request to remove trees on Main Street near Ledger Furniture.

Stephen Branch, owner of Ledger Furniture, requested the city remove several trees, which were purchased by the Copperas Cove Garden Club and planted by the city in the 1990s. Branch also requested the city add new brick pavers after the trees' removal.

Removing the trees would be inconsistent with the downtown master plan adopted by the city, which requires the beautification of the area, City Manager Andrea Gardner said.

After some discussion about safety, the council unanimously denied the request.

During the meeting, Mayor John Hull made three proclamations: April 10-16 is Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, and April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and Fair Housing Month in Central Texas.

Other action taken by the council included:

The council recognized several staff members with Employee Service Awards: Sgt. Kevin Keller, for 10 years with the Copperas Cove Police Department; Jean Williams, for 10 years with the Municipal Utilities Department; Maria Burns, for 10 years of service with CCPD; and Allan Thompson and Marcus Waechter, for five years of service to the Copperas Cove Fire Department.

Purchased 28 new self-contained breathing apparatuses for the Copperas Cove Fire Department for $156,356.65.

Appointed Gardner to represent the city by serving as a member of the Cen-Tex Sustainable Communities Partnership Executive Committee.

Lampasas Independent School District

LAMPASAS - The Lampasas Independent School District decided to keep seven one-on-one and small-group teachers for struggling students despite the upcoming state funding cuts.

These seven teachers, interventionists, will cost the district about $350,000 during the next fiscal year. The seven positions serve roughly 200 students.

All seven positions are currently staffed, and the board wants to continue the program for at least the next year, despite LISD Superintendent Randall Hoyer calling the positions "a year-one hitch" if state funding continues to drop in 2012-13.

Several board trustees agreed it would be worth using money from the district's fund balance of about $13 million to finance the positions if state funding doesn't come through, and agreed that the district should investigate other means of trimming the budget during the next year to try and save as many educator positions as possible.

The district is estimating between a 5 percent and 15 percent cut in state funding because of the state's budget deficit.

The school board also addressed state funding concerns by joining more than 580 school districts across the state in approving a

resolution that the state Legislature should make education a priority.

The school board also:

Reviewed the district's bills.

Accepted Singleton, Clark and Company PC to perform the audit ending Aug. 31.

Rejected all bids from companies to install an air conditioning system at Lampasas Middle School.

Reviewed the district's enrollment.

Reviewed the district's curriculum progress.

Contact Lauren Cabral at (254) 501-7476 or and Mason W. Canales at or (254) 501-7474.

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