Nassau Bay gets new city secretary
Marisela Garcia has been named city secretary in Nassau Bay, to replace City Secretary Pat Jones, who plans to retire at the end of the year. Garcia currently serves as Kemah’s city secretary.
She was selected by the Nassau Bay City Council in a unanimous vote at its November meeting. Jones, who has been city secretary for 17 years, was honored at a reception prior to the council meeting, which will be her last.
Jury subpoenas Steve Stockman
A federal grand jury in Washington, D.C., has subpoenaed retiring Congressman Steve Stockman and three of his aides in a criminal investigation.
The Clear Lake Republican has not announced the subject of the investigation, but the House Ethics Committee reportedly has been looking into possible illegal campaign contributions.
Stockman ran against U.S. Sen. John Cornyn in the GOP Primary and lost, choosing not to run for his House seat.
CCISD selected a top workplace
The Clear Creek School District — for the third consecutive year — has been selected as one of The Houston Chronicle Top Workplaces and ranked No. 17 out of 150 top places to work in Houston.
“What an honor to receive this designation again,” Dr. Greg Smith, CCISD superintendent, said. “It is special because the judges are our employees, who indicate they believe the district continues to move forward and strives to be a visionary leader in education.”
The Top Workplaces are determined based solely on employee feedback in a survey conducted by Workplace Dynamics, that shows CCISD employees are happy with the district’s direction, have confidence in their leader and believe CCISD operates with strong values and ethics.
Skye Bartusiak death explained
An accidental overdose of drugs has been ruled as the cause of the death of Nassau Bay child star Skye Bartusiak, who died in her sleep in her Houston home in July.
The young actress, 21, who shot to fame as Mel Gibson’s daughter In The Patriot, and suffered from epileptic seizures, died from a combination of the pain killer hydrocodone, the muscle relaxant carisoprodol and the inhalant difluoroethane, Harris County officials said.
Burglars keep officers busy
Crooks have been keeping Friendswood Police busy as they hit both businesses and vehicles.
Officers found that burglars had smashed the drive-thru window at Morning Donuts at 301 W. Edgewood Drive, where they robbed the safe, and emptied the Wok D’Lite cash register at 202 S. Friendswood Drive after also smashing the drive-thru window.
Before they had a chance to complete work on those burglaries, they had reports of motor vehicle burglaries in the Forest Bend and Wedgewood Village — at 16600 Barcelona, Appleblossom, Tibet and Forest Bend Avenue, plus three car burglaries at the Laura Leigh Townhomes at 3800 Laura Leigh Lane.
Property tax bills mailed
Tax statements for some 1.3 million properties and Galveston and Harris counties have been mailed and should be in the hands of their owners by now.
Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector Mike Sullivan, who has mailed nearly 1.1 million tax bills to property owners, noted the incredible growth of the Harris County region and how property appraisal values have risen substantially. Most taxpayers will see an increase in their tax bill, he said.
“Compared to last year’s tax bill, the average homestead throughout Harris County, Houston, the surrounding school districts and cities could see an increase of approximately $400 in property taxes.”
Galveston County Tax Assessor Cheryl Johnson said she expected her county’s 192,000 property tax bills to be about the same as last year with some $400 million in taxes due.
2nd man held in shuttle graffiti
Justin Michael Purdy, 20, of Friendswood has been arrested by deputies from the Harris County Precinct 8 Constable’s Office and charged for his alleged role in splashing graffiti of the mock space shuttle at Space Center Houston in November 2013.
Earlier Jesse Ray Calloway, 19, also of Friendswood, was arrested, convicted and sentenced to two years of deferred adjudication, in addition to 30 days in jail and a $2,000 fine.
Capt. Wendell Wilson, third from left, stops for a photo at a “Naming Reception” hosted by UH-Clear Lake, which has named its new veterans service office on campus the “Capt. Wendell M. Wilson Office of Veteran Services.” The goal of the center is to help veterans transition smoothly into an academic career. With him are, from left, UHCL President Bill Staples, Wilson’s wife, Dr. Pat Wilson, and Veteran Services Coordinator Trisha Ruiz. Wilson flew more than 300 combat missions as an F-100 fighter pilot in Vietnam and later trained Vietnamese pilots before joining Delta Airlines, for which he flew for 33 years before retiring as an international captain.
UHCL has record fall enrollment
University of Houston-Clear Lake President William A. Staples has announced the largest enrollment in the university’s 40-year history for the fall 2014 semester.
Crossing significantly over the 8,000-student mark, the final headcount for the semester is 8,668, an increase of approximately 6 percent more than the previous year and 13.4 percent over the past five years — including the addition of more than 400 freshman and sophomore students from approximately 70 different high schools.
Galveston editor plans to retire
Long-time Galveston Daily News Editor Heber Taylor plans to retire just before the new year, the newspaper announced Nov. 14.
Taylor, 59, joined the newspaper in 1991, became managing editor in 1996 and editor shortly thereafter, the paper said in making the announcement.