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Clear Lake Chatter: Mayors Update BayTran on a Variety of Topics

July 1st, 2018

BayTran Chairman David Hamilton, left, Binkley & Barfield executive vice president, welcomes League City Mayor Pat Hallisey, center, and Pearland Mayor Tom Reid to the Bay Area Houston Transportation Partnership luncheon at the Marriott South Hotel.

THE MAYORS of League City and Pearland often attend the monthly luncheons hosted by the Bay Area Houston Transportation Partnership, so why not let them be the program and give an update on their Harvey problems?

Both Mayor Tom Reid of Pearland and Mayor Pat Hallisey of League City thought it was a good idea and presented quite an interesting program that all appeared to enjoy.

After briefly focusing on Hurricane Harvey, the conversation changed to transportation with Mayor Hallisey recalling that his city of 110,000+ had only 5,000 residents when he moved there, going on to talk about how transportation had played a big role in the city’s rapid growth, even back in 1893 when Kansas Street was formed. Forty-eight percent of the city’s land is still undeveloped, he added.

Mayor Reid then remembered back when his city of 135,000 plus had only 3,000 folks in 1965. Today it is the 33rd largest city in Texas, he said, the fifth safest city in the state and the third largest in land area – 48 square miles. More than 9,000 work at the Texas Medical Center, he said, adding, “Mobility has been a blessing.”

“We’ve focused on transportation and maintaining a quality lifestyle,” he explained, added that Pearland was spread over three counties and he expected it wouldn’t be long before the population topped the 200,000 mark. But before it ended, their thoughts turned to money, or the lack thereof, to build roads to carry all these people to work, to school and to the grocery store.

Volunteers Ann Wismer Landolt, Katie Jones, Chairman Wendy Drapela and Karen Keesler line up for a photo as guests begin arriving for the Las Vegas dining event. Photo by Jill Reason

Festival off to a happy start
LUNAR RENDEZVOUS is moving right along so fast we can hardly keep up with it. Already the Golf Tournament, Spa Night and Lunar Las Vegas are history as we prepare for the next round of events.

First event in July will be the Sunset Service at 6 p.m. Sunday, July 15 at the Clear Creek Community Church on Egret Bay Boulevard between Clear Lake and League City.

Next, comes the Down to the Derby Fashion Show, starting at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, July 17 at the San Luis Convention Center overlooking the Gulf of Mexico in Galveston.

Then the gala conclusion of the festival – the Coronation Ball, which has an Arabian Nights theme and starts at 5 p.m. Saturday, July 21 also at the San Luis Convention Center.


FASHION SHOW luncheons are always enjoyable, but so much more fun when everyone knows their enjoyment is going to bring joy to others, as did this year’s Dogs & Divas.

Held at South Shore Harbour Resort, proceeds will benefit both the Bay Area Turning Point and its partnership with Friends of League City Animal Shelter that led to their forming Safe Paws, which provides a safe place for the pets of those seeking shelter from abusive situations.

And, what could be more charming than both lovely ladies and wide-eyed pooches coming down the runway in fashionable outfits? Yes, one slightly embarrassed pooch even wore a multi-color lace skirt!

Carla Medlenka, BATP Board chairman, and Leigh Ann Fry, the new BATP president, welcomed the crowd and introduced TV Ch. 11 anchor Lisa Hernandez, who served as emcee for the show, after the invocation by Pastor Brad Heintz. Later, Ralph Kramer got the place humming as he conducted the auction.

UHCL to add new buildings in both Clear Lake, Pearland

October 1st, 2015

UHCLLogoPMS3 [Converted]Legislature loosens purse strings

By Karen Barbier

The University of Houston-Clear Lake received great news from the 84th Texas Legislature with lawmakers’ approval of House Bill 100, which authorized two key UHCL projects geared to accommodate expected student growth.

Among the outcomes for the legislative session was continued operations support for the university’s transition to a four-year institution; exceptional item funding for UHCL’s Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities; and capital construction funding for the addition of two new buildings, including a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and Classroom Building and a Health Sciences and Classroom Building.

“The 2015 legislative session was a great session for us,” says UHCL President William A. Staples. “Several key legislators made the difference for us including Sen. Larry Taylor, Rep. Dennis Paul, Rep. Ed Thompson and Rep. Greg Bonnen.

UHCL received $54 million in Tuition Revenue Bonds/Capital Construction Funding for the STEM and Classroom Building at its Bay Area Boulevard location and $24.6 million for the Health Sciences and Classroom Building at UHCL Pearland Campus, 1200 Pearland Parkway. The new building in Pearland has been tentatively scheduled to open in fall 2018, with the Bay Area Boulevard. building scheduled for either fall 2018 or spring 2019.

UHCL’s Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities will receive special item funding of $200,000 per year, while a second special item funding of $3.25 million will support the university’s Downward Expansion/Four-Year Initiative Start-Up.

“The new level of funding for the four-year initiative will significantly enhance the continuing development of UHCL as a four-year university,” explains Staples about the successful addition of freshman and sophomore students to UHCL in fall 2014. “We are very grateful for the support we have received.”

Other significant items include an increase in Higher Education Funding, formerly known as HEAF or Higher Education Assistance Funding, from $5 million to $8 million that will go in effect in fiscal year 2017. Also, Rep. Dennis Paul and Sen. Larry Taylor sponsored legislation which passed and gives UHCL legislative authority to assess a recreation and wellness facility fee for the construction and operation of such a facility.

For public universities in Texas, lawmakers approved Campus Carry Legislation that allows licensed gun owners, who are at least 21 years of age, to carry concealed handguns at state universities, subject to certain exemptions, beginning in fall 2016.


UHCL planning welcome events

With the start of a new school year, UH-Clear Lake is celebrating with a number of events for students and alumni. Among them are:

  • Fall Open House, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Oct. 3, Student Services and Classroom Building;
  • MBA Mixer for grad students at Fall Open House,  9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Oct. 3, Student Services and Classroom Building;
  • I HEART UHCL Day Oct. 14, noon – 6 p.m., Bayou Building, Atrium II
  • Alumni Coffee Table, Oct. 14, 6–8 p.m., Bayou Building, Atrium II; both alumni and public invited.