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KBST News Archives for 2021-06

Big Spring Comedy Show on Friday to raise money for local chapter of Disabled American Veterans


Tomorrow night, Veteran Comedians Chris Crawford and Mikey Mike on the Mic, Performers with the Veterans of Comedy - a network of veterans with the mission of helping to bridge the gap between service and civilian life by using laughter as the foundation - will make a stop in Big Spring tomorrow to help raise money for the local chapter of Disabled American Veterans. 

 

DAV is a nonprofit charity that provides a lifetime of support for veterans of all generations and their families, helping more than 1 million veterans in positive, life-changing ways each year. According to Mike Tarpley, Senior Vice Commander for the local DAV Chapter 47, the local organization assists veterans with basic needs, such as rent, utilities, home repairs, and groceries. In years past, they've also provided coats for veterans in the domiciliary and CLC at the VA, and have even taken them out for holiday meals, among other things. 

 

"Last year we teamed with the Quilts of Valor to start an annual First Responder Veterans Quilts of Valor service. This year, thanks to the community, we were able to start scholarships at Howard College. We put together three $1,000 scholarships and for someone to use that, they have to be a veteran, child of a veteran, or grandchild of a veteran," said Tarpley.

 

The DAV also holds monthly birthday parties at the Texas State Veterans Home,  coordinates the annual 9/11 Memorial Service, and organizes a dove hunt to honor four veterans every year.

 

Friday night, a variety of West Texas comedians will perform in the Veterans of Comedy and Friends Comedy Show at VFW Post 2013 - located at 500 Driver Rd. in Big Spring at 7 PM. They’ll be joined by Jeanette Fahey of San Angelo and the show will be hosted by local comic Adrienne Green. 

 

This is a BYOB event. Doors open at 6 PM and donations for the DAV will be collected at the door. There will also be drinks for sale at the event. Sponsors for the event include 350 Cafe & Convenience, Wolf Dirt Contractors, JNC Electric, Oncor, HEB, and All Washed Up.

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Thank You for Your Investment - Mekason Pharmacy


The Big Spring Area Chamber of Commerce held a “Thank You for Your Investment” presentation for Mekason Pharmacy to thank them for serving the community. Mekason Pharmacy opened its fifth location at 2602 S. Gregg in Big Spring, near the entrance of Comanche Trail Park, in September of last year.

 

Dr. Edward Ugbor, Pharmacist with Mekason Pharmacy in Big Spring, told KBest News that although things have not gone as planned, things are going well and they are happy to serve the community. 

 

"We are here to serve the community, but everybody - whether you have insurance or no insurance - we are here to help you out. We are here to serve," said Dr. Ugbor.

 

Mekason Pharmacy accepts all types of insurance and you can pick up your prescriptions from their convenient drive-thru window. Call them at 432-517-4480 for more information or visit: Mekasonpharmacies.com

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TWDB's Water Weekly for the week of 06/07/21:


For the seventh consecutive week, the area of the state impacted by drought has declined, according to the Texas Water Development Board. In that time, the drought area has declined by 56 percentage points. The latest drought map for conditions as of June 1 shows the lowest area of the state in drought since June 2020. 

 

Since early May, the area of the state impacted by drought has declined 26 percentage points. Improvements have been widespread, with many areas experiencing two or more classes of improvement. The TWDB states that additional improvements are expected during the month of June.

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Big Spring City Council to meet tonight for a regular meeting and budget work session, 06/08/21


Big Spring City Council members will have a regular meeting tonight at the City Council Chambers, located at 307 E. 4th St. in Big Spring, at 5:30 PM. 

 

During tonight’s meeting, City Manager Todd Darden will update the council on the seal coat project and rollout containers. He will also give a report on the radio system.

 

New Business items will include discussion and possible action allowing the Mayor to renegotiate and execute an Economic Development Agreement between the City of Big Spring and NH Management LLC, and the first reading of an amending ordinance that would amend the Landfill Fund Budget for the purpose of additional postage for mailouts. In addition to this, the council will also consider and possibly take action regarding an agreement with ADT Commercial for a surveillance camera system.

 

A budget work session for the Big Spring City Council is also scheduled for tonight. That session is scheduled for 6:30 PM. During this session, council members will discuss the proposed budget for the 2021-2022 fiscal year. 

 

Both meetings will be broadcasted on local Suddenlink Channel 17. They can also be watched online at mybigspring.com in the Media Center, or catch a live stream on our KBest Media Facebook page.

 

You can find an agenda for tonight's meetings online here:

 

https://www.mybigspring.com/AgendaCenter/City-Council-2 

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Big Spring ISD and community discuss possible use of $9.6 million received from ESSER III federal grant


Big Spring ISD held a public meeting last night at the Big Spring High School library to educate the community about the ESSER funds and to allow them to have input in the district’s plans for the American Rescue Plan ESSER III funds.

 

ESSER stands for Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief, a federal grant that had been authorized through the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act) that had been signed into law in 2020. Big Spring ISD received $907,547 from ESSER I about a year ago; these funds are available through Sept. 2022. ESSER II funds, also made possible by the CARES Act, were received by the district on June 3rd in the amount of $4,283,433.

 

Funding for these federal grants was based on the Title I formula. According to the Texas Education Agency, Title I provides supplemental funding to state and local educational agencies to acquire additional education resources at schools serving high concentrations of students from low-income homes. These resources are used to improve the quality of education programs and ensure students from low-income families have opportunities to meet challenging state assessments.

 

ESSER III funds were a result of the American Rescue Plan, a plan similar to the CARES Act. The total amount of these funds is approximately $9.6 million ($9,619,918). Two-thirds of this money, $6,413.321 or approximately $6.5 million, was made immediately available to BSISD on April 28, 2021. The last third, $3,206,660 will be made available at a later date which is dependent on the State of Texas submitting a plan for the funding to the U.S. Department of Education.

 

Air Quality - HVAC filtering, control systems, fan coils, new evaporative units for CTE, which may require roof replacement/repairs - cost $5 million

 

Academics: Interventions and Trainings, and Personnel - cost $2 million

 

Technology: Additional Personnel to support devices - cost $500,000

 

Retention Bonuses: for all employees from COVID shutdown date to start of new school year in Aug. 2021 - cost $479,000

 

Safety: Keyless access controls for all interior doors, cameras to monitor spaces for social distancing - cost $1.5 million

 

Total costs of the suggested uses for ESSER III: $9,479,000

 

 

** Priorities for ESSER III, according to BSISD **

Entire Amount of ESSER III: $9,619,981

 

  • Air Quality - Upgrades across all campuses: $5 million
  • Academics - Interventions and Trainings: $2 million
  • Technology - Additional Personnel: $500k
  • Retention Bonuses - from COVID shutdown to Aug. 2021: $479,000
  • Safety - keyless access / cameras: $1.5 million

 

Total costs of the suggested uses for ESSER III: $9,479,000

Balance: $140,981

 

 

It should be noted that a final decision on the use of these funds is yet to be made. A public hearing on ESSER III will be held at the beginning of the next BSISD Board of Trustees meeting, scheduled for Thursday, June 10th, at 5:15 PM at the Big Spring High School Board Room, located at 707 11th Place.

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COVID-19 Vaccines available for ages 12 and up at SMMC drive-thru vaccination clinic on June 10th in Big Spring


Scenic Mountain Medical Center will have the 1st doses of the COVID-19 vaccine available Thursday, June 10th from 3 pm to 6 pm at Scenic Mountain Medical Center - Whatley Plaza (North Driveway Entrance on Martin Luther King Blvd), located at 1601 W 11th Place in Big Spring.

 

Vaccines will be offered while supplies last for individuals ages 12 and up. You will receive a separate appointment for the second dose.

 

“Pfizer has now also opened up to 12 years old, so has Moderna, and Moderna has been FDA approved so it’s not an emergency approval,” said Mitzi Knight, SMMC Business Developer. 

 

She also went on to say, “We’re at 21 percent vaccinated in Howard County. We need to get up to at least 75 percent in Howard County. Let’s make it where we all can breathe a little.” 

 

The drive-thru vaccination clinic will be set up at Scenic Mountain Medical Center from 3-6 PM on Thursday, June 10th outside of the Whatley Plaza building located at 1601 W. 11th Place in Big Spring.

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Quail Dobbs Memorial Parade still accepting entries for June 19th


The Quail Dobbs memorial parade marches through Big Spring Saturday morning, June 19th at 10 AM. Featured attractions in the parade will be the SIX WHITE HORSES from Hardin Simmons University in Abilene, cheerleaders, drum-lines, and bands. Viewers will enjoy seeing The Texas Tech Masked Rider, “40 something” Cowgirls on horseback, car clubs, and rodeo participants. Susan Zack Lewis has been named as the parade marshal for the event.

 

Entries for the parade are still being accepted. For a parade entry, contact Mark Richardson by emailing him at mark@kbst.com to enter.

 

The 87th Big Spring Cowboy Reunion & Rodeo will be held Thursday, June 17th - Saturday, June 19th at The Surge Energy Rodeo Bowl, located at 2900 Old State Hwy 80, in Big Spring.

 

This year’s entertainment for the event includes a live performance on Friday night after the rodeo by Josh Ward, and a live performance by the Randy Rogers Band after the rodeo on Saturday night. The dances are made possible by Franklin & Sons and Big Spring Ford. Tickets are on sale now. For more information visit the Facebook page for Big Spring Cowboy Reunion and Rodeo.

 

(Photo: Cross Roads Young Marines getting ready for the 2019 Quail Dobbs Memorial Parade)

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Jim Baum Memorial Highway Becomes Law:


Gov. Greg Abbott, R-Austin, has signed into law a measure honoring beloved Texas broadcaster and former Colorado City Mayor James G. “Jim” Baum.

 

Baum, the longtime owner-operator of KVMC-AM and KAUM-FM, both in Colorado City, passed away Dec. 16, 2018, after a battle with leukemia.

 

SB 1124 by Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, renames a stretch of Business Interstate Highway 20-J in his honor.

 

Baum owned and operated KVMC-AM Colorado City. He was known as “the Voice of Mitchell County” for nearly 40 years.

 

He signed KAUM-FM on the air later in the 1980s.

 

Baum served as Colorado City mayor three times, holding the position for a total of more than 20 years.

 

Jim Baum was a well-known broadcaster here in Big Spring before relocating to Colorado City more than four decades ago.

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SCAM ALERT: New email scam uses threats of copyright infringement


A new email scam is making waves by using threats of copyright infringement. In the message, a link to view the alleged copyrighted images is attached, but it is actually a backdoor trojan that can be used to install ransomware and other malicious programs. Ransomware encrypts files on the infected computers, making these files inaccessible, and only releases the code to unencrypt the files when the user pays a bitcoin ransom.

 

According to techlicious.com - A site that offers authoritative yet approachable information on buying and using consumer technology - ransomware attacks are 100 percent preventable. In order to protect yourself from ransomware, they recommend:

 

  1. Keeping your system up to date.
  2. Using a reliable anti-malware program.
  3. Back up your data.
  4. Keep your browser and plug-ins up to date.
  5. Avoid ransomware in the first place.

 

For more on these tips to prevent ransomware attacks, visit:

 

https://www.techlicious.com/tip/how-to-protect-yourself-against-ransomware/

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Americal Legion hosts Fajita Cook-Off - TOMORROW, June 5th


The American Legion, located at 3203 Old State Hwy 80 in Big Spring, will have their annual Fajita Cook-Off tomorrow morning - Saturday, June 5th - to raise money for the Women’s Auxiliary. The funds raised will be used to coordinate celebratory holiday events for veterans at the West Texas VA Health Care System in Big Spring.

 

Check-in is from 8-9 AM. The cost is $10 per meat and there is a 3 lb minimum to enter. Meat entries will be due by 11 AM. Fajita plates will be on sale for $10 per plate, plus there will be a 50/50 drawing, a raffle for a patio set, a plant and cakewalk, and a kids' summer basket raffle.b

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Property Valuation higher than anticipated? HCAD says to submit a notice of protest by June 21, 2021


The Howard County Appraisal District mailed property valuations last week to people who have an increase in their property value. If taxpayers disagree with the value listed on the notice, they have the right to appeal that notice but must file the protest within 30 days of the sending of the appraisal notice.

 

“There is a document in the information that comes out called a notice of protest. If a person feels like - ‘I couldn’t sell my house for this. I have all these issues with my home.’ Then they should file that notice of protest," said HCAD Interim Chief Appraiser Richard Petree.

 

Petree went on to say that by filing the Notice of Protest - either in person or online - the taxpayer’s right to continue the appeal is protected.

 

"So, they come in. They talk to an appraiser at our office. They visit back and forth. We tell them what sold in their area, tell them why we think the value is what it is. They share with us any information [concerning the property]. [If] we feel they have good evidence, we’ll make an adjustment appropriately," said Petree.

 

Evidence to support the taxpayer's claim can include a recent closing statement, estimates for repairs, or pictures of interior problems with the property. If a settlement number is offered and accepted then the appeal is over and both parties sign paperwork.

 

If an agreement cannot be reached, then the taxpayer has a right to appear before the Appraisal Review Board, a group of local citizens who listen to the evidence and make a decision regarding the value. This decision can be appealed to the district court or to an arbitration hearing.

 

The deadline to file a protest is June 21st.

 

According to an open letter from Petree posted to the HCAD website, the appraisal district wants to work with the taxpayers of Howard County to ensure that taxes are fairly and equally assessed. If you have any concerns or comments, you can contact Richard Petree by email at rpetree@howardcad.org. You can also find more information about HCAD at: www.howardcad.org

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West Texas VA plans to 'Beat the Heat' this summer


BIG SPRING — The West Texas summer heat impacts every rural West Texan. Veterans who depend on medications that don’t do well in the heat are at risk of hospitalization if that medicine goes bad. West Texas VA Health Care System (WTVAHCS) has embarked on a pilot program called – ‘Beat the Heat’ – to ensure their Veterans have all the temperature-sensitive medications they need to see them through the hottest months of summer.

 

Veterans who rely on temperature-sensitive medications, such as insulin, normally receive a 30-day supply of medications at a time in small shipping coolers packed with ice. This method of shipping works well in most circumstances. However, when the summer temperatures reach highs in excess of 100 degrees for days on end, this method of shipping does not always protect the medications inside.

 

This leads to costly losses of expensive medications, delays in Veterans receiving them, and additional costs in having to re-ship medications.

 

“We’re always looking for ways to improve how we deliver health care to our Veterans,” said WTVAHCS Director Jason Cave. “This team has developed a solid, workable plan that will improve the lives of our Veterans. I look forward to the feedback of the pilot program.”

 

WTVAHCS has been developing a plan over the past several months to alleviate these issues and has begun operation ‘Beat the Heat’. Pharmacists, doctors, and others devised a pilot program to ship a 90- day supply of these critical medications to Veterans before the summer temperatures begin to bake the West Texas landscape, and they put this pilot program into action this June.

 

This may sound like a relatively simple feat but does have its challenges. Considerations such as the stability of the Veterans medication treatment plan, the ability of the Veteran or their caregiver to properly store and care for the medications, which medications are appropriate for this effort, and much more went into developing operation ‘Beat the Heat’.

 

“A great deal of planning went into this effort,” said Associate Chief of Pharmacy, Wendy Brown.

 

“Our team screened every Veteran in our catchment area who receives these medications; discussed the plan with them and asked if they wanted to participate in the pilot program.” In all, more than 100 West Texas Veterans opted to participate.

 

WTVAHCS doesn’t typically maintain enough of these medications to send a 90-day supply to Veterans.

 

Part of the planning began months before with the Pharmacy team working with WTVACHS Fiscal and Logistics Services to purchase large quantities of the medications and to get them to Big Spring and stored appropriately in advance of this effort.

 

“Handling medications is always delicate,” said Chief of Logistics Carla McCullough. “But these medications require a greater degree of care and cannot simply be placed in a box or envelop and sent out.” Large quantities of special cooler-shipping boxes and ice packs had to be ordered well in advance to support “Beat the Heat”.

 

“Shipping the 90-day supply now will put medications in the hands of our Veterans in time to last throughout the summer months,” said Brown.

 

After looking at years of average summer temperatures, Brown and her team of Pharmacists and technicians determined that the first week of June was the best week to execute “Beat the Heat”.

 

If the pilot program is successful, WTVAHCS plans to expand the program to include more medications in the coming years, and potentially make this the standard operating practice for the health care system. WTVACHS estimates savings in the tens of thousands of dollars from this year’s campaign. Once the feedback from the Veterans, cost analysis, and efficacy of the program is evaluated, WTVAHCS will begin planning for next year.

 

WTVAHCS provides fills more than 20,000 prescriptions monthly, to its more than 13,000 Veterans, across its 55,000 square mile catchment area.

 

Veterans who rely on temperature-sensitive medications, such as insulin, normally receive a 30-day supply of medications at a time in small shipping coolers packed with ice. This method of shipping works well in most circumstances. However, when the summer temperatures reach highs in excess of 100 degrees for days on end, this method of shipping does not always protect the medications inside.

 

WTVAHCS provides fills more than 20,000 prescriptions monthly, to its more than 13,000 Veterans, across its 55,000 square mile catchment area

 

If the pilot program is successful, WTVAHCS plans to expand the program to include more medications in the coming years, and potentially make this the standard operating practice for the health care system. WTVACHS estimates savings in the tens of thousands of dollars from this year’s campaign. Once the feedback from the Veterans, cost analysis, and efficacy of the program is evaluated, WTVAHCS will begin planning for next year.

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BSISD invites Community to offer input on the district's plans for ESSER III funds on Monday, June 7th


Big Spring ISD will hold a public meeting on Monday, June 7, 2021, in the Big Spring High School library at 6:00 p.m. to allow the community of Big Spring to have input in the district’s plans for the American Rescue Plan ESSER III funds.

 

ESSER stands for Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief, a federal grant that had been authorized through the CARES Act that had been signed into law in 2020.

 

In last month’s meeting of the Big Spring ISD Board of Trustees, Superintendent Jay McWilliams advised board members that BSISD would be receiving approximately $9.6 million and that two-thirds, just over $6 million, of that funding had been immediately released. The other one-third is being held until the State of Texas submits a state plan to the U.S. Dept. of Education. The use of these funds will be prioritized for health and safety, technology, and at least 20 percent, or about $1.3 million, must be used, strictly, on student learning/student outcomes.

 

BSISD invites the community to offer input on the district's plans for ESSER III funds on Monday, June 7th.

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Thank you for Your Investment - Howard County Sheriff's Office


Tuesday morning, the Big Spring Area Chamber of Commerce held a “Thank You for Your Investment” presentation for the Howard County Sheriff’s Office to thank them for all that they do for our community.

 

When asked how he felt about the recognition from the Chamber, Howard County Sheriff Stan Parker told KBest News that he thought it was nice of the Chamber to recognize them. 

 

"It was kind of a surprise when they sent this. It's a big honor," said Sheriff Parker.

 

Expedition Royalty also presented the Sheriff’s Office with snacks and drinks as their way of saying “Thanks!”

 

Sheriff Parker told KBest News that the department is very grateful for the support that they receive from the community. 

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Dora Robert Rehabilitation Center celebrates 60 years of service to the community


The Big Spring Area Chamber of Commerce joined the Dora Roberts Rehabilitation Center for a ribbon-cutting yesterday afternoon to celebrate its 60th anniversary.

 

“Sixty years is an amazing accomplishment for any business! So, we’re super excited but, of course, we wouldn’t be here without the support of the community for all these years," said Michelle Grove, Executive Director of DRRC. 

 

"We’ve had the honor of treating thousands of clients over the years, and we’ve had numerous volunteer board members and trustees that have gotten us to where we are, as well as financial support from the community and various agencies and foundations over the years.”

 

The Dora Roberts Rehabilitation Center is a non-profit organization, which means that they don’t turn anyone away for their inability to pay. So if anybody is needing physical therapy services, DRRC is able and happy to provide treatment for them.

 

Dora Roberts Rehabilitation Center is located at 306 W. 3rd St. in Big Spring. They can be contacted by calling (432) 267-3806.

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Big Spring Area Community Foundation awards over $400,000 in grants, agency funds, and scholarships for 2021.


During last night’s Big Spring Area Community Foundation Awards Gala, the local nonprofit organization awarded over $404,000 in grants, agency funds, and scholarships.

 

“Every year we’re able to bring the recipients for the scholarships, grants, and agencies together and present them with their funds for the year," said Greg Henry, BSACF Executive Director, of the gala. 

 

"It’s just an opportunity to come together, acknowledge them and the impact they’re making in the community whether it’s a grant proposal, the kids that are in school, or the agencies - the Big Spring Symphony, the Heritage Museum, the Air Museum. You know, it’s just one of those deals that they affect the quality of life around here and it’s so much better because of them."

 

During the event, it was announced that the late Jerry Worthy, a BSACF board member who passed away in February 2021, had donated $100,000 to the Big Spring Area Community Foundation. 

 

The BSACF awarded 16 grants totaling $360,026, plus, $44,500 were awarded in scholarships to 23 students from Big Spring, Coahoma, Forsan high schools, and Borden County ISD, Glasscock County ISD, and Sands CISD - an increase of $20,000 from last year. The total amount distributed in grants and scholarships was $404,526.

 

2021 Scholarship Recipients are as follows:

 

Big Spring High School

Kymbry Ford

Brianna Lopez

Samuel Sotelo

Brandon Rogers

Joshua Hines

 

Coahoma High School

Noah Dials

Cailey Glover

Grayson Glidewell

Brenner Gartman

 

Forsan High School

Clayton Tucker

Destiny Hallford

Sara Tarbet

Patrick Bailey 

Cameron Allen

Taryn Spivey

 

Borden County ISD

Michael Brady

 

Glasscock County ISD

Jose Chavez

Matthew Espinoza

 

Sands CISD

Me-A Gonzalez

 

 

Agency Funds awarded provide ongoing support to the nonprofit on an annual basis. Those receiving funding last night as follow:

Big Spring Symphony - $2.096.34

Hangar 25 Air Museum - $5,147.96

Heritage Museum of Big Spring - $4,321.69

YMCA of Big Spring - $84,459.90

 

Permanent / Restricted funds were awarded to:

St. Mary's Episcopal Church - $20,813.43

Cantebury Retirement Home - $4,000.86

 

Grant Recipients are as follows:

Amphitheater Improvement Board - $50,000

Big Spring Main Street - $7,586

Big Spring Symphony Association - $15,000

Crossroads Housing Development Corporation - $25,000

Cross Roads Young Marines - $4,000

Food 2 Kids - $5,000

Heritage Museum of Big Spring - $10,000

Howard County Volunteer Fire Department - $30,000

Howard College - $20,000

North Side Movement - $22,500

Southwest College for the Deaf (SWCD) - $10,000

 

Before the end of the evening, Henry also announced that BSACF would provide a matching grant to the United Way of Big Spring and Howard County of up to $33,000 for new donors and for donors who increase the amount of their donation.

 

Since 2001, the Big Spring Area Community Foundation has been helping individuals and families create personal, permanent, and powerful legacies with charitable funds customized to meet their philanthropic goals.

 

If anyone is interested in starting a fund for their favorite charity, or scholarship fund, or adding to an existing fund they are encouraged to contact Greg Henry at 432-714-4316. For more information on the Big Spring Area Community Foundation, you can also visit: 

https://bsacf.org/ 

 

(Photo: Scholarship recipients present at the Big Spring Area Community Foundation Awards Gala on June 2, 2021.)

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Free Fishing Day in Texas Slated for June 5


AUSTIN – Anglers across the State of Texas are gearing up for Free Fishing Day on June 5. The first Saturday in June each year allows Texans to fish on any public waterbody in the state without a fishing license.

 

“Free Fishing Day is a wonderful opportunity for anglers to share their knowledge, skills, equipment, and love for fishing with a new participant, yet it’s also more than that,” said Craig Bonds, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) Inland Fisheries Director. “We hope those trying fishing on this special day will also learn that purchasing a license is an act of conservation. A fishing license purchase is one of the simplest and most effective ways people can support fisheries science and management.”

 

To help celebrate Free Fishing Day, TPWD offers multiple resources to provide fun, high-quality fishing opportunities to anglers of all skill levels and all ages.

  1. Fishing 101 - Learn the basics of fishing with tips and a variety of videos. Resources for how to get started, safety, supplies and gear, casting and baiting, and cleaning and storing fish can be found on the TPWD Learn to Fish webpage.
  2. Find a Place to Fish close to Home – Texas offers numerous lakes and rivers with access to fishing throughout the state. The Lake Finder page on the TPWD website can help  anglers find lakes by region or alphabetically. Access to information and fishing tips on more than 150 lakes are available. Also, check out community fishing lakes which can be great options as well.
  3. Saltwater Fishing from a Pier – There are numerous wheelchair-accessible fishing piers available for public use up and down the coast. Piers are a great place for the entire family to try saltwater fishing without the need for a boat. Public access sites can be found in every bay system.
  4. Go Fishing in the City – TPWD’s Neighborhood Fishin’ lakes provide urban angling access for the entire family across the state. In all, 18 Neighborhood Fishin’ lakes provide a great opportunity to catch channel catfish including five in Dallas-Fort Worth, four in the Houston area, two each in the Austin and San Antonio areas, and one each in Amarillo, College Station, San Angelo, Waco, and Wichita Falls. Information on lake locations and how-to fishing videos can be found on the Neighborhood Fishin’ website.
  5. Outdoor Adventures - TPWD, the City of Abilene, and various other organizations will provide outdoor education activities for kids and adults 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Abilene Outdoor Adventures 2021 event at Cal Young Park. Participants can enjoy fishing education and fishing (some loaner tackle and bait provided) for catfish at Cal Young Park pond. TPWD staff, along with other community groups, will have booths at the event in addition to offering families the opportunity to participate in activities such as archery and fishing. Wildlife education and plant identification activities are also on the schedule, as well as backpacking, camping, and kayak demonstrations. 
  6. Go Kayak Fishing on a Texas Paddling Trail: With more than 3,700 named streams, 15 major rivers and some 3,300 miles of tidal shoreline along the Gulf Coast, Texas offers unlimited possibilities for paddling adventures and angling opportunities of all types. Enjoy improved and maintained fishing and paddling access to rivers, creeks, lakes, ponds, bayous, and bays on any of the 78 official Texas Paddling Trails available throughout the state.
  7. Fish in a State Park: Three state parks will offer special events on June 5. Fort Boggy State Park will host the “Summer Bash Kids Fish”Sheldon Lake State Park & Environmental Learning Center will offer the “Catfish Corral”, and Bonham State Park will host a “Family Fishing” event. Although June 5 is designated as Free Fishing Day in Texas, fishing is free year-round at every Texas State Park.
  8. Help the Conservation Effort with your License Purchase – Did you know that 100 percent of your fishing license fees go to TPWD for on-the-ground conservation efforts such as fish stocking, that help make Texas one of the best places in the country to fish?  For more information on licensing, visit the TPWD licenses page.

A great value is the Year-from-Purchase All-Water Fishing Package for Texas residents, which allows anglers to fish in fresh and salt water. It’s valid from the date of purchase through the end of the purchase month of the next license year. (Example: License purchased on March 13, 2021 expires March 31, 2022) The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center is also offering free admission on June 5.

 

Learn more about Free Fishing Day at TakeMeFishing.org.

 

If you plan on fishing in federal waters, keep in mind that a license is needed for the private recreational angler red snapper season opening June 1.

 

(Photo: Texas Parks and Wildlife Facebook)

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Through the Lens: A Community Photography Exhibit 


The Heritage Museum of Big Spring’s upcoming exhibit for June will be “Through the Lens: A Community Photography Exhibit” The community is encouraged to submit their photos for the exhibit, but only 100 photographs will be accepted. 

 

Each individual can submit up to 6 prints each.  The prints can be either 11x14 or 16x20. No matting or framing, just the print. The deadline for submissions has been extended until June 15, 2021. Photographs will be hung from the week of June 16, 2021, through August 21st. 

 

Be advised, the Heritage Museum of Big Spring reserves the right to refuse any photographs that they deem inappropriate for any reason.

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Governor Abbott Issues Disaster Declaration In Response To Border Crisis In Texas


Declaration provides more resources to address influx of unlawful immigrants

AUSTIN - Governor Greg Abbott today issued a disaster declaration along Texas' southern border in response to the border crisis, providing more resources and strategies to combat the ongoing influx of unlawful immigrants. The Governor is authorizing the use of all necessary and available state and local resources to protect landowners in these counties from trespassers and the damage they cause to private property. The Governor has also directed the Texas Department of Public Safety to enforce all federal and state criminal laws, including criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking. The Governor directed the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to take all necessary steps to discontinue state licensure of any child care facility under a contract with the federal government that shelters or detains unlawful immigrants.

 

Additionally, the Governor directed the Texas Commission on Jail Standards and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement to work with Texas counties to provide appropriate guidance and request any necessary waivers in order to give counties the flexibility needed to establish adequate alternative detention facilities or otherwise add or expand capacity. The Governor also directed these agencies to streamline procedures for licensing and transfers, and to address any staffing issues that may arise in expanding capacity.

 

"President Biden's open-border policies have paved the way for dangerous gangs and cartels, human traffickers, and deadly drugs like fentanyl to pour into our communities," said Governor Abbott. "Meanwhile, landowners along the border are seeing their property damaged and vandalized on a daily basis while the Biden Administration does nothing to protect them. Texas continues to step up to confront the border crisis in the federal government's absence, but more must be done. By declaring a state of disaster in these counties, Texas will have more resources and strategies at our disposal to protect landowners and enforce all federal and state laws to combat criminal activities stemming from the border crisis. Working together with local law enforcement, the state will continue to take robust and meaningful action to keep our communities safe.”

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HCVFD Fights Tank Battery Explosion over Memorial Day Weekend


A thunderstorm dropped 1.5 inches of rain on Big Spring last Friday night as well as several lightning strikes that led to an explosion. The Howard County Volunteer Fire Department received a call just after midnight in northern Howard County where a set of 3 tank batteries were engulfed in flames. The location was County Road 36, just off North Highway 87.

 

HCVFD Chief Mitchell Hooper told KBest News that when they arrived on the scene the two middle tanks that were burning were already pressurized and venting out the top, so the department had to move back approximately half a mile to maintain safety. He said that the tanks had vented off 8 to 10 times before the blast.

 

“Both tanks vented off probably 8 to 10 times I guess before the one finally took off like a rocket. That’s one reason we stayed back, because of the high pressure and stuff coming out of the tanks. When they’re like that we just stay back and let em

burn until everything’s shut-in and we can go up there and safely put em out.”

 

Chief Hooper said that the explosion blew the top of the tank approximately 120 feet up into the air, and it landed about six inches away from Highway 87. It is for reasons exactly like this that Chief Hooper encourages onlookers to stay back.

 

“Before the tank ruptured, we had people driving by real slow and shootin'

videos… and then, right after the tank ruptured and took off, the other tank was still

there and it was still ventin' off. If we’re half a mile back, then you need to be back

even further cause those things can shoot off a mile sometimes and you don’t know

which way they’re gonna go," said Hooper.

 

Thankfully, no one was injured in the tank battery explosion last Friday night/Saturday morning, and in addition to the Howard County Volunteer Fire Department, Chief Hooper expresses his thanks to the Ackerly Fire Department for their assistance. One of the Howard County firefighters did catch the explosion on video, and it can be seen here on the KBest Media Facebook Page: 

https://fb.watch/5R-JtqrEm1/ 

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