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Ho. Co. Commissioners Table Ambulance Discussion

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Historical Commission Receives Distinguished Service Award

By Will Johnson
Messenger Reporter

HOUSTON COUNTY – The Houston County Commissioners Court met in a relatively short meeting on Tuesday, June 25 highlighted by a discussion on a contract renewal between Houston County and Lifeguard Ambulance Service.

“It’s that time,” County Judge Jim Lovell said. “What was that, a five-year contract? We have a representative from our hospital district here – Dina Pipes – and we’d like to discuss this a little bit.”

The judge said the court was not sure where Lifeguard stood on the contract renewal or what they might be asking.

“I have spoken with the (Houston County Hospital District – HCHD) president – Mrs. (Barbara) Crowson. I think it would be proper and I would like the hospital district to take over negotiations with that contract and let it be between the hospital district and Lifeguard,” Lovell said.

Pipes – the chair of the HCHD’s ambulance committee – said they had already met with Lifeguard but she said she had a question.

“I know they are under your jurisdiction right now because y’all did the (initial) negotiating. We have agreed to negotiate with them and they have agreed to let us. But, in order to save us money and save y’all money and to save them money, if we could leave it under your name? We would have an interlocal agreement with y’all to pay it. It wouldn’t cost anyone anything and we could just roll it over, as long as they don’t increase our subsidy. That is what they are checking into to – to make sure everything stays exactly like it is. It would just roll over and we would still be making the payment on it, if that meets with the approval of the county,” she said.

Lovell asked how leaving the policy between the county and the ambulance service as is would save any money to which Pipes explained it would avoid legal fees and added “… they (the HCHD) would have to put it out for bid, because there is a subsidy involved.”

She went on to say everyone on the HCHD board was very pleased with the service Lifeguard had provided, thus far.

Following several minutes of discussion, the matter was tabled for further study and consideration. It was determined, however, Lifeguard would be retained as the ambulance service regardless of which entity’s name – the county or HCHD – was on the contract with Lifeguard.

Also during the Tuesday meeting, the Houston County Historical Commission was presented with the Distinguished Service Award for 2018 from the Texas Historical Commission.

Representing the HCHC were Wanda Jordan, Barbara Wooten and Alfred Kreger.

“Thank you for all the support we get from the use of the office to the IT people and the good AC we now have. We also particularly need to thank our volunteers. WE have a lot of good things going on. WE are currently working with SFA on oral recordings. It is so much fun. They are actually giving us graduate students to help transcribe these oral recordings,” Jordan said.

According to THC Executive Director Mark Wolfe, “The Distinguished Service Award honors County Historical Commissions that go above and beyond to protect and promote local historic and cultural resources. They are essential to our agency’s efforts to save the real places that tell the real stories of Texas. The Texas Historical Commission presents this Distinguished Service Award to the Houston County Historical Commission to honor its efforts to preserve the Lone Star State’s unique heritage.”

In other matters brought before the court:

  • The commissioners approved the minutes from previous meetings.
  • The payment of bills and expenses incurred by the county were approved.
  • The Houston County Treasurer’s and Compensatory Reports were received as information by the commissioners.
  • Salaries for new and/or transfer employees were approved.
  • Houston County Auditor Melissa Jeter was appointed to audit ESD #1 and issue report for 2018.
  • Chief Deputy Justin Killough was appointed as a representative to the county’s Human Resources Committee.
  • The court received as information the Houston County Electric Cooperative’s request for a utility road crossing located on County Road 2280.

 

 

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at wjohnson@messenger-news.com.