Clear Lake Chatter: More Help for Harvey Flood Victims

February 1st, 2018

There were smiles aplenty when League City Mayor Pat Hallisey and his wife, Janice, center, arrived at the Johnnie Aroflo Civic Center for the League City Chamber luncheon. Among those  greeting them were, from left, realtor Kimberly Harding, Kevin Murphy and Congressman Randy Weber and his wife, Brenda.

League City Chamber members got an update by Galveston County Judge Mark Henry at their State of the County Luncheon – learning about the status of several county projects in addition to offering advice for Hurricane Harvey flood victims.

Knowing that Harvey was foremost on everyone’s minds, he agreed with their thinking: “I’m aggravated (over the lack of action). Things are going way too slow,” he said of the delays many of the county’s 20,000 flood victims have been facing.

But he had some good news about a state program run by the General Land Office that has been a big help to some victims. It’s called Partial Repair and Essential Power for Sheltering Program or PREPS. It provides basic repairs up to $20,000 and allows homemakers to remain in their homes while the work is done – usually in about two days. Already PREPS has finished repairs to 20 homes in Galveston County with another 6,820 eligible for the program the GLO is attempting to reach.

The GLO has made more than 60,000 phone calls and 30,000 phone calls to victims registered with FEMA about the program. Judge Henry said he had learned that many recipients think it’s a hoax and don’t respond. He also suggested that victims visit www.TexasRebuilds.com and www.galvestoncountyrecovers.com for information.

Boeing’s Brian Freedman, from left, and his dad, Glenn Freedman, stop to talk with florist Teresa Vencil at the League City Chamber State of the County Luncheon.

Among the projects discussed were the Pelican Island Bridge, which, he said, “is 50 years old and not in good shape.” Of the options received is one from the Houston Engineering firm HDR Inc., which could range in price from $63 million to $121 million to replace. “We need to replace that bridge and doing so will result in lots of good paying jobs.”
Another was the 64-acre Bayside Regional Park in Bacliff and community center for seniors.

But while many were glad to get some good Harvey tips, they all were happy to see Mayor Pat Hallisey arrive after nearly losing his life to a heart attack several weeks back and having to have his lower leg amputated. He and his wife, Janice, were all smiles as Chamber President Steve Paterson, Congressman Randy Weber and his wife, Brenda, Galveston County District Attorney Jack Roady, former County Commissioner Ryan Dennard and a number of city officials welcomed him to the Civic Center.

Bay Area Houston Ballet & Theatre dancers Meaghan Abel, Jenna Westall, Rachel Stonestreet, and Hannah Young entertain the crowd at the Bay Area Go Texan Rodeo Style Show.

Rodeo Style Show the ‘best one yet’

“BEST ONE YET!” That was the reply of a Clear Lake cowboy when asked his opinion of the Bay Area Go Texan Rodeo Style Show, which seems to get better and better as the years roll by.

And, and it also was a comment Capt. Dianna Jones and Asst. Capt. Anita White heard over and over Friday, Jan. 19 after they welcomed the lively crowd of cowboys and cowgirls to NASA’s Gilruth Center and invited them to come right in and join the fun.

Walking in, you probably would have bumped into Rocky Mauldin, Gene Hollier, Emmeline Dodd, Nancy Buffaloe, Anita Fogtman, Irene Pavig, Annette Snow Falks, David Robertson or Don Billings before you went very far. They never miss it.
Emcee Phil Pampolina got the crowd rocking after introducing the dignitaries and donors and giving everyone a chance to bid in the live auction. Then came the style show, which had a “Fire and Ice” theme highlighted by a great performance by the Bay Area Houston Ballet & Theatre dancers and directed by fashion guru Lenny Matuszewski.

Models included Miss Texas USA Nancy Gonzalez, Webster Fire Chief Patrick Shipp, Nassau Bay City Manager Jason Reynolds and former Mrs. Galveston County, Kelly Williams of Kemah.

Model, Lily Heintz, shows off an evening gown during the Bay Area Go Texan Rodeo Style Show.

Joining them in showing off a variety of fashions from Adelaide’s Boutique, Casanova’s Downfall, Cavender’s Boot City, Dillard’s Baybrook, Jill’s Fashion and Bridal, Kendra Scott-Baybrook Mall and The Clotheshorse were Bobby Osoria, Shari Sweeney, Karen Jordan, Lily Hentz, Jimmy Molina, Anna Babineaux, Moni Trevathan, Molly Culbreth and John Bartee.

Others coming down the runway included Kellie Gross, Bo Rogers, Amy Bowlin, Dafne Sanchez, Ashley Reed, Jeremiah Corbin, Leah Galindo, Kelly Gurgos, Sarah Elliott, Jamie Sausser, TL Sellers, Karen Beaty, Karla Boddie, Jamie Sausser, Misty Hajecate, Ashley Reed, Nancy Buffaloe and Liz Cantu.

And, after a delish luncheon provided by Grazia Italian Kitchen, many stopped to thank the hard-working committee, who had put together another winner for all to enjoy.

Committee members include Deane Beck, Darla Billings, Amber Blake, Sunnie Byerly, who was named Committee Person of the Year, Ronda Cook, Renee Daigle, Robert Engler, Lesa Martin Gaffey, David Gambino, William Greer, Angela Guidry, Lisa Gurgos, Deborah Gutierrez, Tory Jenkins, Sandra Kay Kelly, Heather Kirk, Becki Leal and Alice Lyons.

Plus, Ange Mertens, Marish Morgan, Sabana Nathoo, Alan Rice, Elena Richards, Shelley Rogers, Donna Rone, Keith Satterwhite, Melis Sausser, Debra Stokes, Elizabeth Taylor West, Chiquita Taylor, Irene Taylor, Robert Mike Taylor, Marisa Vannoort, Michelle Walker, Sharon Werner, Darice Whatley and Janice Williams.

League City, Kroger team up to establish Donation Center

September 4th, 2017

The City of League City, led by Mayor Pat Hallisey and a group of volunteers, has teamed up with Kroger to establish a League City Kroger Donation Center to support recovery efforts related to Hurricane Harvey.

It will be located in the empty store front at 176 Gulf Freeway South (at the intersection with FM 518 and I-45) in the League City Plaza.

“We all know we are here because Chad Davidson sitting up in Mustang, Okla., saw somewhere on the news that his hometown had flooded. We have some 6,000 homes that have water in them. Most of our people are out there trying to recover right now,” Mayor Hallisey said.

The mayor also highlighted the efforts of the Kroger team from Cincinnati, all the way down to the local store, jumping through hoops to make this happen. “Their generosity is something special. We made one call and within three hours we had the store keys and the beginning on the donation center,” he added.

The empty store front had originally been set aside for Galveston County and the Red Cross to provide support, but Galveston County Commissioner Mark Henry said that facility was moved to Texas Agrilife Center in La Marque, opening the door for League City to begin establishing a single League City Kroger Donation Center, which will eventually consolidate facilities from Hometown Heroes and Walter Hall parks.

“One thing that has jumped out at me throughout this catastrophic event, is the generosity in the City of League City and Galveston County. It has just been unbelievable. Neighbors helping neighbors and people like Libby Johnson chasing me around and teaming with my wife and daughter to get this set-up,” Hallisey said.

“Our problem was that storm supplies and donations were starting to come quickly, and we needed a facility to be able to get them out to the community. Ryan Smith, the City of League City’s IT director has put in a lot of effort to coordinate the use of the Kroger storefront, forklifts and logistics coordination to help make this facility a reality. Ryan is our Radar O’Riley…he can do anything.”

On Sunday, two tractor trailers from Mustang, Okla., arrived at 7 a.m. and numerous local and area residents have stopped by to drop off supplies. The donation center is anticipating as many as six to eight additional truckloads coming in from Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Georgia, Indiana and Colorado. The center also received some welcome support from a four person Summerdale, Ala. team that drove through the storm with a goose-neck trailer to get much needed supplies into the Galveston County area.

On Sunday our donation center will become a donation and distribution center. The donation and distribution center is taking all donations except clothing. Initially the center will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. with volunteer check in beginning at 10 a.m. and continuing through the day.

Volunteers, donors and those seeking assistance are asked to report to the appropriate entrances. People looking for volunteer information or bringing large donations for drop-off should contact Johnnie Waid or Carl Wankowicz at lctxharveyrelief@gmail.com

“We are grateful for all the support for those in need,” the mayor added. “It really shows the heart of our community.”

Mayor updates League City Chamber

April 1st, 2017

League City Regional Chamber President Steve Paterson, right, prepares to introduce Mayor Pat Hallisey to the crowd at the State of the City Luncheon.

By Mary Alys Cherry

League City is growing like wildfire, and city officials are working just as hard to tackle any issues that might accompany that growth, while maintaining a high quality of life and preserving its small town charm, Mayor Pat Hallisey says.

His words came in a update for the League City Regional Chamber’s State of the City Luncheon in South Shore Harbour Resort’s Marina Plaza Ballroom before a crowd that included Councilmen Larry Millican, Todd Kinsey, Greg Gripon, Keith Gross and Nick Long. New City Manager John Baumgartner, who the mayor called “óne of the city’s hardest working guys” also joined him in the update, explaining that he was trying to build a strong financial foundation for the city.

“The fabric of any community is its people,” Hallisey said, “…and I am always amazed by the spirit of our great city. While we may have our challenges from time to time, our resiliency and ability to come together as a community is stronger than ever,” he said before showing a video of some of the city’s accomplishments.

Evidence of the city’s growth:

  • 181 new businesses such as Kroger, HEB, Memorial Herman, MD Anderson, Cabela’s, Jason’s Deli, etc.
  • 10,942 building permits
  • About 1,000 new homes each year

The city’s biggest challenges in the coming years, he told the crowd, “is mobility and securing water resources to meet the needs of our growing community.”