Commissioners court

AUTUMN OWENS/WD PHOTO

Parker County Elections Administrator Don Markum speaks before commissioners court Monday morning.

The Parker County Commissioners Court met in regular session Monday morning, discussing and taking action on the Tree of Angels Ceremony, intersection stop signs and an elections meeting.

The annual Tree of Angels Ceremony will take place at 6 p.m. on Dec. 3 at The Doss Heritage and Culture Center and has been done for the past 15 years.

“It’s a great event and our office sponsors it, we have several different hosts that attend, and this year the speaker will be Judge [Craig] Towson and we will also have victims up there,” Parker County Attorney John Forrest said. “What they do is they recognize individuals that have been lost, been a victim or had loved ones that have been victims [of violent crime] and they hang an angel on the tree to memorialize those individuals.”

The commissioners approved accepting a proclamation from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, which recognizes Dec. 2-8 as Tree of Angels Week.

“If you have not been to this ceremony, it’s a very moving ceremony and I appreciate the county attorney’s office for putting this on,” Precinct 3 Commissioner Larry Walden said.

In 1991, the Tree of Angels was initiated in Austin to recognize that the holiday season is a difficult time for victims and their families, according to the People Against Violent Crime organization.

“We’d like to have a big crowd out there to show support of these victims and individuals who have lost loved ones,” Forrest said.

Stop signs

The commissioners also approved installing northbound and southbound stop signs at the intersection of East West Oak Drive and Becky Drive following a required public hearing.

Ten-year resident in the vicinity of the intersection Kirie Schulze spoke at the public hearing.

“I can attest that drivers traveling north and southbound on East West Oak Drive are driving at a higher rate of speed and more aggressively. Recently, a dog walking with a group of children was hit by a speeding vehicle that did not stop and had to be humanely euthanized. Thank God none of the children were struck by the vehicle,” Schulze said. “Motorcyclists are riding as if it were a speedway, there are skid marks from vehicles burning out and residents have either been hit or narrowly missed by vehicles speeding past at this intersection. My concern is predominantly for children at the bus stop and pedestrians that walk their dogs to and from this intersection.”

The road comes off of East Bankhead Highway near Stillwater Meadow in Precinct 4.

“I have received a petition with about nine addresses on it in that subdivision that have requested it and that’s the reason I put it on the agenda,” Precinct 4 Commissioner Steve Dugan said.

Elections

The concerns with the county’s voting machines were once again discussed at commissioners court to which Parker County Elections Administrator Don Markum responded with solutions to those concerns.

The issues brought up about the new voting equipment included paper jams, bad barcodes and lengthy wait times. Markum said they, like other counties in the state, underestimated the number of voters that would come out for the Nov. 5 election.

Markum ensured that they would be more prepared for the next election with more machines and workers.

“Expect a meeting to be scheduled with the elections commission, but I would also encourage [Markum] to get with both party chairs and sit down to have some of these discussions in preparation for that meeting,” Parker County Judge Pat Deen said.

For more information visit parkercountytx.com

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