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Jasper County Commissioners Court December 18th

The Jasper County Commissioners Court met on Monday, December 18th, 2023 in the last Regular Session of 2023 and covered the following agenda items:


First, the Court voted to approve a resolution authorizing Jasper County to join the South East Texas Rural Transit District, which currently already serves Hardin, Jefferson, and Orange Counties.  Previously, Jasper County had been a member of the Brazos Transit District but had severed membership in 2022 to initiate the process of moving to the southern district in hopes of gaining additional transportation resources for Jasper County citizens.


The Court then voted to reappoint board members on Jasper County’s four Emergency Services District Boards.  The Court made one change to the ESD #3 board of directors by adding Mr. Rodney Robison, noting that Mr. Derek Thomson had previously resigned from the ESD board.  The Court thanked Derek Thomson for his service on the board and also all board members volunteering to serve in 2024.


In other board appointment matters, the Court voted to appoint Wayne Carter and Todd Lawlis to the Jasper County Historical Commission Board of Directors as additional members.


The Court then heard from Lieutenant Jason Hollyfield from the Sheriff’s Office, who reported that a total of $18,280.00 had been invoiced to Nacogdoches, Newton, and Tyler Counties, as well as the City of Jasper, for housing inmates during the month of November 2023.


The Court then voted to adopt a long-term strategic plan for Jasper County’s Public Safety Regional Radio System as proposed by the South East Texas Regional Planning Commission.  The Court hopes that by adopting this long-term plan, Jasper County emergency response entities can begin working together to upgrade radio communications systems to better communicate between themselves and with other jurisdictions within the Southeast Texas region.  The Court also noted that this step would greatly aid Jasper County in obtaining additional major grant funding in the future similar to the $750,000.00 grant received recently to assist with constructing a 440-foot tall emergency communications tower in the Call Junction area.


Concluding emergency response business, the Court voted to approve a memorandum of understanding between Jasper County and Lamar University in Beaumont for flood sensors that Lamar has deployed in flood-prone areas in Jasper County.  Emergency Management Coordinator Billy Ted Smith, who serves on the advisory committee over the flood sensor program, advised that Lamar intends to deploy additional sensors to better assist personnel in assessing potential flooding during emergency response situations.


In airport-related matters, the Court voted to award an aviation fuel contract to Sun Coast Resources, Inc. to provide bulk fuel for the aircraft fueling operation at Jasper County’s Bell Field Airport.


Next, the Court voted to retain the legal services of JETLAW, LLC out of Washington D.C. to assist Jasper County with establishing a policy, contract templates, and associated fees for vendors accessing Jasper County’s Bell Field Airport through the perimeter fence on a regular basis.  This would include future business development entering into the airport through the aircraft gate from the JEDCO Industrial Park side of the fence, which also assists Jasper County in conforming to Federal Aviation Administration guidelines.


Next, the Court voted to accept a donation of 976 cubic yards of reclaimed asphaltic pavement material valued at $19,525.00 from the Texas Department of Transportation under the FY2024 Local Government Assistance Program.  Each individual Commissioner will receive 244 cubic yards of material for use in their own Precinct for routine road maintenance and upgrades.


Concluding road and bridge matters, the Court voted to amend the Jasper County budget for Precinct Commissioners’ road and bridge budget line by transferring an amount of up to $706,000.00 in total from the General Fund to assist with potential shortfalls in their 2023 budget.


The Court then heard from County Clerk Holly Thomas who presented proposed dates, times, and locations for Jasper County’s March 5th Primary and May 28th Runoff Elections, which the Court approved.  The Court noted that early voting would begin on February 20th and run through March 1st of next year.


Next the Court voted to authorize the voting location for Box 21 to be moved to the United Methodist of the Pines Church, located at 740 Verna Street in the City of Jasper to make the location more convenient to the public and election workers.


Concluding election business, the Court voted to approve the joint election primary resolution and contracts for the March 5th Primary and May 28th Runoff elections.


In other business, the Court then heard from District Clerk Rosa Norsworthy, who presented her monthly civil and criminal fee reports.


Concluding business, the Court voted to establish the 2024 Commissioners Court term and then approved resolutions of appreciation to Jasper County’s School Board Trustees in Buna, Brookeland, Evadale, Jasper, and Kirbyville for the role they play in providing an education to our students to better prepare them to meet the challenges of the future.


That covers it for this Court meeting.  As always, feel free to call if you need anything my way.  Have a safe and joyous Christmas Holiday and a healthy and prosperous New Year in 2024.  May God bless each and every one of you and may God continue to bless Jasper County, Texas.


Mark Allen, County Judge

Jasper County, Texas


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