SALADO — The village has a new mayor pro tem as well as a new sewer system.

The Board of Aldermen appointed Fred Brown as mayor pro tem during Tuesday’s meeting and swore in newly elected officials: Aldermen Frank Coachman and Amber Preston Dankert as well as Mayor Skip Blancett.

“You’ve got a great bunch of aldermen here,” Blancett said.

Salado also now officially owns a sewage treatment plant, compliments of a prominent Salado land owner. The gift deed was signed Tuesday, Village Administrator Jim Reed said.

One challenge the board will face after the recent elections is protecting the salamander population in Salado. The amphibian, recently added to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s threatened species list, still survives in Salado Creek. Because the village obtains its water from groundwater, it must be careful to protect the species.

Coachman said as a new alderman, he is on board with plans to balance the needs of the salamanders with those of the humans. “I there’s a way everyone can co-exist, I’m for it.”

Dankert, who is supervisor of Wildlife Management at Fort Hood, said she believes the board “has the right people” to address the issue.

The Clearwater Underground Water Conservation District is planning an educational workshop with Salado’s board to address minimizing disruption to the salamanders’ habitat.

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