This Week's Headlines

County adopts new flood regulations

City of Houston activates Heat Emergency Plan

Council approves sewer agreement

State recognizes current PISD board

Pasadena bank set for implosion

Back-to-school events planned

Olson, Arrington introduce H.R. 3480 to help seniors

Vic Coppinger Family YMCA holds float, fun, forty celebration

Economic Alliance luncheon a success

Nguyen admires Berreth’s positivity

CCEF Topgolf Tournament raises record amount

Cisneros cites Parker’s simple seven words

J. Frank Dobie announces 2019-2020 cheerleaders

CCISD seeks 2019 citizen nominations

Munoz to take part in NYLF engineering

McCoy great influence on Saldivar

Martinez appreciates Ackerman’s humor

Matthews retires after 38 years serving HC Precinct 1

Garcia, HCA host civil construction job fair

Leader to award Schlitterbahn ticket prizes in vacation pic contest

South Belt community members celebrate Fourth of July parade

As fall sports season begins, will there be change in 22-6A, 24-6A?

Extra Inning Softball touts WIncher’s Strong 2019

Clear Brook VB to instruct youth

SBGSA fall softball has limited openings

Dobie to begin preseason team tennis workouts

Dobie VB to host camps

Pleasants makes USA U-19 World Cup roster

CCISD unveils 2019 varsity football schedule

Youth camps still available

PISD season ticket football packages available

Fort Bend ISD’s Chant is THAADA president

Brook VB trio take lofty ratings to Manhattan Beach nationals

JFD baseball’s Mercado a top base thief


County adopts new flood regulations

New regulations passed by Harris County Commissioners Court on Tuesday will add an additional layer of protection for families and communities at risk of severe flooding.

Commissioners Court adopted new regulations for the Harris County Engineer’s office that will require new developments to provide increased water detention and other standards for upstream development that will help protect downstream communities.

Commissioners Court also approved new guidelines for the Harris County Flood Control District to utilize updated floodplain maps based on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Atlas 14.

Decades of development fueled the Houston area’s rapid growth but also exacerbated flooding as concrete increasingly replaced prairies and forests. By requiring new developments to increase detention for holding back storm water and anticipating new floodplain maps, these new items adopted on Tuesday are a step toward keeping residents out of harm’s way. “This is about building a resilient future for Harris County,” said Precinct 1 Commissioner Rodney Ellis. “The era of unchecked development belongs in the past. These new standards will allow us to confront the challenges of flooding, climate change and growth head on and work toward solutions that keep our neighborhoods safe.”

Multiple “500-year” floods over the past few years and more recent storms have made it clear that Harris County’s current floodplain maps are insufficient or inaccurate, especially given the growing threat of climate change to the region. The new guidelines adopted by the Harris County Flood Control District ensure that Harris County’s development and mitigation standards are based on the best engineering and scientific data available until Harris County completes its own updated floodplain mapping project in 2021.

Additionally, the new standards require developers to set aside more space for flood water detention. While developers have raised concerns, these new rules are a critical tool to protect families and could not be delayed.

“While I understand the concerns from some in the development community that these necessary updates may increase their costs, my priority is ensuring that we as a county government do everything we can to protect our constituents – whether rich or poor, homeowner or renter, upstream or downstream – from flooding,” Ellis said.

City of Houston activates Heat Emergency Plan

The Houston Department of Health and Human Services (HDHHS) urges everyone to take precautions to protect themselves from heat-related illness and death.

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat advisory for the Houston region.

The City of Houston has activated its Heat Emergency Plan. Houston activates the plan when the heat index, a computation of air temperature and humidity, reaches 108 on two consecutive days.

High-risk groups such as adults age 55 and older, children under the age of five and people with chronic illness are urged to stay inside air-conditioned buildings between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m., the hottest part of the day.

Anyone without access to air-conditioning can seek shelter during business hours at city multi-service centers, libraries or recreation centers.

Houstonians may call 311 and ask for the nearest open city facility.

Metro can provide transportation to the Central Library, 500 McKinney.

Arrangements for transportation to the library can be made by calling 311.

HDHHS recommends people take precautions against high heat and humidity to prevent illnesses such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke. To prevent heat related illnesses:
– Increase water consumption. Drink lots of liquids even before getting thirsty, but avoid those with caffeine, alcohol or large amounts of sugar because these can actually result in the loss of body fluid.

– Conduct outdoor work or exercise in the early morning or evening when it is cooler. Outdoor workers should drink plenty of water or electrolyte-replacement beverages and take frequent breaks in the shade or in an air-conditioned facility.

Those unaccustomed to working or exercising in a hot environment need to start slowly and gradually increase heat exposure over several weeks.
– Check on the elderly. Take the initiative to visit seniors to look for signs of heat related illnesses. It takes the elderly nearly twice the time of younger people to return to core body temperature after exposure to extreme temperatures. A phone call to the frail elderly is not sufficient to determine physical condition.

– Wear light-colored, loose fitting clothing that permits the evaporation of perspiration.

– Do not leave children, senior citizens or pets unattended in a vehicle.

– A wide-brimmed hat helps prevent sunburn as well as heat-related illness.

Sunscreen also protects from the sun’s harmful rays and reduces the risk of sunburn.
– If the house is not air-conditioned, seek accommodations in air-conditioned facilities during the heat of the day: multi-service centers, malls, movie theaters, libraries, etc.

– Take frequent cool baths or showers if your home is not air-conditioned.

– Electric fans should only be used in conjunction with an air conditioner. A fan can’t change the temperature of a room; it can only accelerate air movement, and will accelerate the body’s overheating.

– Stay alert to heat advisories. The National Weather Service declares a Heat Emergency when the heat index, a computation of the air temperature and humidity, reaches 108 degrees on two or more consecutive days. A heat index of 108 is a potential health threat for all people and is particularly dangerous for high-risk groups.

During an excessive heat advisory, utility companies are prohibited from disconnecting service due to lack of payment.


Council approves sewer agreement

Houston City Council on Wednesday, July 17, approved Mayor Sylvester Turner’s previously announced plan to enter into a consent decree agreement with state and federal regulators to make $2 billion in sewer system improvements over the next 15 years.

The costly agreement was reached to avoid potential litigation from the Environmental Protection Agency, which has threatened legal action for more than a decade over the city’s outdated infrastructure that has caused sewage to escape into area homes and waterways, violating the Clean Water Act.

“It is my administration’s intent to fully resolve this matter so another mayor and city council will not have to address it, just as we did with massive pension reform and are doing to address flooding and drainage issues,” Turner said in a statement late last year, as negotiations were underway.

With more than 6,000 miles of sewer mains, nearly 400 lift stations and 39 wastewater treatment plants, Houston’s sewer system is one of the largest and most comprehensive in the nation.

“The City of Houston has devoted more than $3 billion dollars in the last 30 years to upgrade and improve its massive wastewater and sewer system infrastructure and remains committed to spending more as part of the continuing need to renew and upgrade one of the largest sewer systems in the country for the benefit of our ratepayers,” said Houston Public Works Director Carol Haddock. “The city continues to identify and invest in new technologies and techniques that will enhance future performance as well.”

The massive infrastructure improvements are expected to bring about a water rate hike, perhaps as early as January 2020. Just how much remained unclear at press time.

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