By Judy Sheridan
The 7-day outdoor burn ban County Judge Mark Riley authorized July 15 through an emergency order was extended by county commissioners to Aug. 26 in a special session Friday.
“We typically do this for 30 days,” the judge said, prior to the unanimous vote. “We’d like to do it for 45; that will get us to the Aug. 26 court meeting before it expires.”
Parker County has dried out rapidly in the last few weeks, Fire Marshal Shawn Scott told the court, and was shown to be in severe drought conditions by the U.S. Drought Monitor July 11.
“Our Keetch-Byram Drought Index has dried out very quickly since the first of June,” Scott said. “The National Weather Service said this year alone we need nine to 12 inches of rain just to get back to a normal state.”
Adding to the problem, he said, is the fact that the county ended 2012 with a 10-inch rainfall deficit.
The Index, which measures soil moisture, puts the county average at 527, with the west side of the county, at 577, drier than the east side, at 473.
Scott reported a slim chance of above average rainfall in the next two weeks, “which in July doesn’t amount to much anyway.”
The three-month outlook, however, shows below average rainfall and above average temperatures, he said.
The high number of holiday fire calls was “a good indicator” of the need for a burn ban, Scott said, as well as the KBDI numbers.
From 9 p.m. to midnight July 4, the fire marshal’s office reported 83 fire calls across the county, including five structure fires.
Scott said that critically dry trees, as well as dead standing vegetation lost over the last two years, are fueling dangerous and erratic fire behavior.
Violations of the burn ban are punishable by a fine of up to $500.
For more information, go to www.parkercountyemergencymanagement.com.
By Judy Sheridan
- Aledo ExtrA
CASA seeks 100 new advocates to represent children in CPS care
In Spanish, casa means home, but for thousands of abused and neglected children, it’s an acronym that has even more meaning – it’s the hope of finally finding a safe, permanent home where they can thrive.
Spivack to speak at PCRW event
Parker County Republican Women will have Loren Spivack as the March 13 luncheon meeting guest speaker.
State education board candidates in runoff
Tuesday’s voting tallies signified an extremely tight race for State Board of Education District 11 candidates in the Republican primary.
Renfro in runoff for job he didn’t want
Precinct 4 Commissioner Dusty Renfro, who unexpectedly scored 1,213 votes in Tuesday’s Republican Primary while campaigning for an opponent, is still trying to lose his job on the Parker County Commissioners’ Court.
Area council, school board filings
Filings for school board and city council elections in May ended last Friday. Here are the filings for area city council seats open in May:
ALEDO – Patricia Weckel, 60, died Tuesday, March 4, 2014, surrounded by family at her home in Aledo.
This time, Riley cruises past McKay in judge’s race
County Judge Mark Riley knocked it out of the park against challenger Cary McKay in final but unofficial returns in Tuesday night’s Republican primary, securing 62 percent of the total votes cast with a final count of 7,524 to 4,670.
Dugan, Renfro in runoff for Pct. 4 Commissioner
The three-way race for Precinct 4 commissioner will end in a May 27 Republican primary runoff with front-runner Steve Dugan — who received 1,776 votes — facing incumbent Dusty Renfro, a candidate who told voters he didn’t want the job but got 1,213 votes anyway. Fred Hammons received 704 votes.
Barnwell edges Vick; Brunson claims win
Running for an office that counts money, Parker County Treasurer candidate Dedra Vick might still be counting votes today.
March 4 primary elections
Tuesday, March 4, is election day, and voters will cast their ballots in one of two political party elections. The candidate selected (unless a runoff is necessary) will represent the party in the Nov. 4 General Election.
- More Aledo ExtrA Headlines
- CASA seeks 100 new advocates to represent children in CPS care