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Wednesday, September 17, 2014
The second ot two public hearings on the increase in the city's tax rate was held yesterday evening, again with no one speaking either for or against the tax rate. The council then moved forward and approved the new tax rate, which is 3 cents higher than last year's rate. The increase is to pay for the certificate of obligation for the new Terrell Police Department facility. The council, last night, also approved a bid totalling $116,644 for parking improvements at city hall, repairs which will include foundation repair in the west bay of the fire department as explained to the council by city manager Tory Edwards. Three seats on the Zoning Board of Adjustments require apointments, and there were no applicants. Therefore, the council tabled that item until applicants can be recruited. There were four members of the Library Board reappointed, and Mike Elswick was appointed to fill one of two seats on that board that will become vacant.

The new tax rate for Kaufman County of 57.62 cents per $100 taxable value was made official Monday at a special meeting of the Kaufman County commissioner's court. The new rate is just under 2 cents higher than last year's rate, with the increase going to pay for the transportation bond package approved by voters last year. Commissioners also appointed Kaufman County's assistant Fire Marshal Randy Richards to the position of Fire Marshal, as the county's current Fire Marshal, Larry Ewing, has announced his plan to retire.

Rockwall police have released information on a pedestrian fatality this past weekend which occurred in the 800 block of Horizon Road at Rockwall Parkway shortly after 9:30 p.m. Friday. The pedestrian, identified as a 13-year-old freshman at Rockwall-Heath High School, was crossing Horizon Road when she was struck by a passing motorist according to the preliminary investigation. She was taken to Presbyterian Hospital where she was pronounced dead. Police say the driver of the vehicle did stop at the scene. The Rockwall Police Department's traffic dividion is continuing its investigation.

Those who travel State Highway 34 near Interstate 20 regularly have likely watched the progress as the new Quick Trip convenience store and gas station was built. A representative of the company yesterday said that last minuite preparations are being made, and the new business will open tomorrow morning, September 18th.

Forney Police are hopeful someone will like a well-used red 2004 Dodge Durango they have up for auction online. The vehicle was seized by the police in March of this year. According to the Forney Police Department's facebook page, where you can view the vehicle, it was running at the time it was seized.

Shade screens for the city's parks will again be discussed when the Terrell Park Board meets this evening at 6 o'clock at the city's service center. They will also be looking at park user fees, park security and vandalism.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Terrell police released the identity of the pedestrian struck and killed early Saturday on State Hwy 205 as Sonni Blankenbaker of Crandall. Blankenbaker was walking in the 1300 block of State Hwy 205 when she was struck by a white Honda Civic driven by 62-year-old Rockwall resident, Marsha Johns. Captain A. D. Sansom said in the department's official press release on the incident, that Johns reported Blankenbaker was standing in the middle of the northbound lane, and she was unable to avoid her. According to accident investigators, alcohol is not a factor for Johns, the driver of the Honda, and the investigation is continuing.

The second public hearing on the city's tax rate increase is set for this evening during the regular city council meeting which starts at 7 o'clock. The rate increase of 4.47 per cent will impact the average homeowner in Terrell by increasing their tax bill by just under $30. Tonight's public hearing is the last time for residents to voice an opinion on the increase before it is officially adopted. The increase is necessary to pay for the new police headquarters building.

The Terrell School Board of Trustees met Monday evening at 6:30, and handled the district's business in about 11 minutes. One parent chose to speak to the board concerning the solid color backpack rule which was adopted by the school district for the current school year, as the change was made after she had purchased her child's backpack. She also brought up the relaxed dress code which allows shirt-tails to be worn out and does not require belts. The board then handled the financial affairs of the district, and reviewed the end of course scores and exit level TAKS scores from July 2014. Less than half of those taking the end of course tests achieved a satisfactory score according to the report. Those tested were all students who had failed the tests previously, and re-testing will again take place in December, according to Lauren Johnson, Director of Testing and Accountability for the district.