"Van Vleck trustees give teachers, staff pay raises" by: Jessica Shepard

   Van Vleck ISD trustees unanimously approved approve a 5% raise for teachers and counselors with 6 or more years while all other staff received a 4% raise as part of the regular Monday night meeting. 
   “Plus, all staff will receive a $1,500 longevity pay check,” said VVISD Superintendent John O’Brien. 
   The raises and longevity checks are due in part because of the 86th Legislative session passing House Bill 3. 
   The bill is supposed to provide more money for Texas classrooms, increase teacher compensation, reduce recapture and cut local property taxes for Texas taxpayers. 
   “Even with HB3 in place, we always review our salaries and stipends during the budget process,” said Gayle Blackmon, assistant superintendent of finance. 
   “We try to make sure that all of our employees are getting something every year. Usually, we try to give 3% every year.” 


"Sanchez: STP consistent in its plant safety" by: Jessica Shepard

Alfred Sanchez
Photo by Jessica Shepard

   United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s South Texas Project Senior Resident Inspector Alfred Sanchez addressed over 25 businesspersons and citizens about the plant’s safety during a luncheon July 10. 
   “We’re happy to announce that STP has completed its end-of-cycle performance assessment for Units 1 and 2,” said Sanchez. 
   “Historically, STP has almost always been in the green for us and this time is no different. STP has never posted a high safety violation.”  
   Being in the “green” means that any inspection findings were of very low safety significance in the NRC action matrix. 
   The green status also puts STP in the category for a baseline inspection program. 
   As safety significances increase, a plant progresses through several other categories going from green to white, yellow and then red – the highest safety significance. 


Air Liquide reveals new plant’s future

   Air Liquide will invest nearly $140 million to build a new world-scale Air Separation Unit (ASU) near Bay City. 
   The industrial gas production plant will be on about 20 acres owned by the Port of Bay City, adjacent to Oxea. 
   The Air Liquide plant will support a long-term agreement with Gulf Coast Growth Ventures (GCGV), a 50/50 joint venture between ExxonMobil and Saudi Arabian Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC).  
   The agreement is to supply oxygen and nitrogen from its industrial gas pipeline network to GCGV’s planned ethane cracker facility near Corpus Christi. 
    Air Liquide will daily supply 2,000 tons of oxygen and 900 tons of nitrogen to GCGV’s planned 1.8 million tons per year ethane cracker facility.  


"Council: Mayor to keep salary for 3 mo. after interim city manager hired" by: Mike Reddell

Sentinel photo/Mike Reddell
Bay City Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture President Mitch Thames, center, discusses the Bay City Civic Center during city council’s budget workshop Thursday, July 11.

   Following an executive session that included discussion of an interim city manager, City Council set the compensation for Mayor Robert Nelson Thursday, July 11. 
   There were three matters listed for executive session discussion, but the only action taken afterward was on an agenda item originally marked for open session and discussed in closed session – timelines for interim city manager hiring and the mayor’s compensation. 
   Council members Julie Estlinbaum and Bill Cornman had excused absences, leaving the council quorum of Jason Childers, Becca Sitz, Brent Marceaux and Nelson. 
   Councilman Jason Childers moved – and council unanimously approved - to allow Nelson continue with his $83,000 salary for three months after an interim city manager is hired and to receive the following compensation during his term of office: 


"Claude ‘Tiger’ Lane remembered at commissioners court" by: Mike Reddell

   Claude “Tiger” Lane was remembered at the Matagorda County Commissioners Court meeting Monday, July 15. 
   Lane, the longtime Sargent chamber president and widely acknowledged goodwill ambassador, died in a Houston hospital early Monday morning, July 15. 
   Precinct 2 Commissioner Kent Pollard momentarily paused, in his grief, as he included Lane in giving the prayer that precedes all court meetings. 
   “He was an outstanding gentleman who had a big heart for Sargent,” said County Judge Nate McDonald later in the meeting. 
   An application for funding to continue progress on preventing the Sargent Beach erosion was approved by commissioners court at its regular meeting Monday. 
   In February, a Sargent Beach Study proposed ways to prevent further erosion with barriers in the surf and renourishment efforts on shore. 


Learning about SWAT

Sentinel photo/Jessica Shepard
Bay City Police Department Sgt. James Reckaway gave an inside look at what it means to be a member of SWAT at the Bay City Public Library July 16. Reckaway showed children and adults all the tools of the trade including weapons, armor and communication headsets..


One arrested for violating protective order

   A 21-year-old Bay City woman was accused of violating a protective order and breaking into a residence to assault a woman Monday, July 15, Bay City police said.
   Sha’Dasia L. Wilcox, 21, Bay City 2019, was charged with violation of protective order and burglary of a building – assault, records show.
   Officer Jacob Garon was sent to the 200 block of Ronald at about 9:30 p.m. Monday on a burglary that had just occurred.  
   Upon arrival, Garon observed blood all around the area.  
   He spoke with the complainant who said the suspect had cut herself when she broke out a bedroom window to enter the residence.
   The complainant said he heard glass breaking and went to check when he saw the woman assaulting his girlfriend.  
   The man grabbed the suspect and pulled her outside and went to check on his girlfriend.  
   At that time, the suspect drove off in a silver vehicle.  


Hankins new director of BCHS dance team

Photo courtesy of BCISD
Wendy Hankins

   Wendy Hankins is the new director of the Bay City High School Aristocats Dance Team, and has already met the team and begun rehearsals. 
   Hankins brings 26 years of experience to BCHS.
   Her previous directing stints include most recently the Brazosport High School Shipmates/Silver Starz Dance Team. 
   Prior to that, Hankins founded and directed the Cinco Ranch High School Cougar Stars Dance/Drill Team. 
   She also is a former director of the Lamar Consolidated Fillies Dance Team, where in 1999, her head officer won Miss Drill Team Texas and they travelled to California to compete nationally. 
   Hankins began her directing career with the Waller High School Wranglerettes. Hankins has taught grades 9-12 dance, served as dance instructor at Freeport Intermediate School, and coached cheer teams, among other school positions.


Linnie Roberts names Ashley Hagg as new principal

Photo courtesy of BCISD
Ashley Hagg

   Ashley Hagg has been promoted to Principal of Linnie Roberts Elementary. 
   Hagg began her professional education career in Bay City ISD in 2010 as a teacher at Tenie Holmes Elementary. 
   She taught for five years in the classroom, and then moved into school counseling in 2015. 
   Her most recent position has been as the Cherry Elementary school counselor.
   Hagg earned her undergraduate degree from Sam Houston State University in Early Childhood Education, and her Masters in School Counseling from Lamar University. She also achieved her Principal Certification from Lamar.
   “I am looking forward to building a campus that puts student growth at the forefront of every decision and that cultivates a love of learning through student and teacher success,” said Hagg. 


"Bay City July sales tax rebates show upward swing" by: Mike Reddell

   Bay City’s July sales tax allocations from the Texas Comptroller’s office were among three area cities with numbers higher than the same month last year. 
   Statewide, the July allocations totaling $764.3 million were 0.7 percent more than in July 2018.  
   These allocations are based on sales made in May by businesses that report tax monthly. 
   Bay City July sales tax rebates total $510,748, up 6.32% from the $480,369 tally from the same month last year. 
   For the year, Bay City’s sales tax allocations are $3,421,084, which is 3.53% higher than the $3,304,400 total for the same period in 2018. 
   In Palacios, July’s total of $58,654 is 15.71% down from $69,593 the city received for the same month last year. 
   For the year, Palacios rebates total $411,336, down 7.61% from the 2018 year-to-date tally of $445,228. 
   El Campo’s July rebate total was $369,888, up 9.26% from the same month last year. 


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