Citizen Advisory Alert
March 24th 2000

Jack Pierce Receives Pioneer Award

At a special ceremony Saturday, February 19, City of League City Citizen Liaison Jack Pierce was inducted into the Hall of Pioneers of the State of Texas. County Commissioner Ken Clark recommended Pierce for the award. Commissioner Clark remarked, "When the S.T.A.R. Day Foundation asked for my recommendation, Jack’s name came to mind immediately. The contributions he has made to Galveston County through the years have touched us all, but because he is so humble, most people don’t even know it."

The legislation authorizing the S.T.A.R. Day Foundation was authored by State Senator Mike Jackson and State Representative Craig Eiland. It allows the County Judge and each County Commissioner to honor a Galveston County citizen that is devoted to the pioneer principles of country, duty, honor, faith, and family, and who has made an outstanding contribution in pioneering the development, growth, and progress of Galveston County. City Council member Keith Dill, who attended the ceremony, commented, "Jack embodies the philosophy of this award. His love of country and love of people is evident to everyone who knows him. This is a great honor for a great man."

The S.T.A.R. Day Pioneers of the State of Texas Awards were established to commemorate the birthday of Texas.

Did you know that there were only 2 voting locations north of Dickinson Bayou and 5 locations south? The island has 39,868 registered voters and one location. The north mainland has 65,016 registered voters and 2 locations. The south mainland has only 56,783 registered voters, but has 4 voting locations.

The early voter turnout for the League City Annex Courthouse (which was moved from the League City Civic 

Center) was the highest in the county. At 24.5% it surpassed the next highest location by 9%.

On March 31, April 1, and 2, the Viet Nam Wall Memorial will be on display at Walter Hall Park. We hope that many Galveston County residents will have an opportunity to go by the park and view this national treasure. I would like to thank everyone who worked on this project.

We have another indigent health care budget shortfall. This time it could run as high as $3 million. We are seeing a steady increase in the number of visits to our clinics and the federal support has been cut nearly in half. The hospital district has been unable to control cost at the current eligibility level, which is $16,729 for a family of four (or 100% of the federal poverty level). One option is to cut weekend hours. The county also might have to retool eligibility requirements. This is one of the most serious problems facing the county, and it has the potential to bankrupt us.

Although the county needs all the revenue that it can find, the County Treasurer is still refusing to allow the county to invest our tax dollars. The county has over $59 million sitting in a checking account. As a result, Galveston County taxpayers have lost over $200,000 in interest revenue and are continuing to lose approximately $3,000 per day. Rather than allowing our money to be placed into a reasonable investment vehicle, the Treasurer instead recently filed a lawsuit against most of the county commissioners. The anticipated return on the County’s investment ($200,000 that has been lost already,) was included as revenue on this year’s budget. To compensate for that lost revenue, it may be necessary to cut programs that serve Galveston County residents or lay off county staff. Unfortunately, the longer the county’s money is held in a checking account, the more likely it is that such cuts will be necessary. 

Mark Your Calendars. My next TOWN HALL MEETING will be May 9, 2000 at 6:30 PM. It will be a joint meeting with CLADEF regarding their TOPS program.

These updates can also be viewed on the county's website:
www2.co.galveston.tx.us./commissioners.

E-mail clarkk@co.galveston.tx.us
174 Calder Rd., League City, TX 77573

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