Mayor Sims acknowledges National Men’s Health Month

Published 11:21 am Wednesday, May 25, 2016

By Martha Tallent

The Orange Leader

At the City Council meeting on May 24, 2016, Mayor Sims acknowledged the month of June as National Men’s Health Month.

During this event, the Julie Rogers Gift of Life Program along with Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas will provide free screenings for those who qualify throughout the area. The non-invasive screenings will include testing related to prostate cancer screening, cholesterol levels, HIV, blood pressure, Hepatitis C and blood sugar.

Screenings will take place on Saturday, June 4, from 9am – 11am at the Student Center of Lamar State College in Orange. It will include lunch, door prizes, and refreshments. Further information on other cities, as well as eligibility requirements, can be found at the website

The City of Orange approved contributing $25,000 toward improvements to Fire Station #2 on Allie Payne Road. The station was built in 1979 originally with bathroom facilities for males only. The contract awarded to G&G Enterprises, in the amount of $122,800 exceeded the annual budget of the station. With the help of the City of Orange structural improvements will allow for structural improvements to accommodate female personnel, additional tool storage and a fitness facility. The city granted the supplemental amount from its contingency fund.

The City Council considered and approved an ordinance amending the Land Use Matrix of the Zoning Ordinance to allow day care centers, Standard Industrial Code Classification 8351 as a use within the C-S “Commercial Special” zoning district by special exception; making certain findings thereto; establishing an effective date; repealing all conflicting ordinances and providing a severability clause.

A public hearing was conducted to receive comments regarding the amendment of Future Land Use Map to designate a 1,160.87 acre tract or parcel of land out of the Charles Morgan Survey Abstract No. 18, the William Morgan Survey, Abstract No. 266, the Jacob Townsend Survey, Abstract No. 180, and the John Allen Survey Abstract No. 1, all in Orange County, Texas (International Paper Company) as Industrial Uses. No citizens commented, however City Councilman Patrick Pullen said, “International Paper is a good company, and I recommend the City of Orange to help them any way they can.”

Customer Service Manager, Ramie Howlett reported to the City Council about their recent findings pertaining to garbage and trash collection services for businesses. Surveys were sent to 188 local businesses, and 29% responded, with a majority in favor of reducing garbage pick-up at their business from twice a week to once a week. This will save each business $21 a month in garbage pick-up fees. It will save the Waste Management company wear and tear on their trucks, as well as free up the city streets for other local traffic. The council approved the change in service.

An amendment was passed regarding correction of an error of a previous City Council ordinance. This action was regarding the CenterPoint Energy Resources Corp., d/b/a CenterPoint Energy Entex and CenterPoint Energy Texas Gas (“CenterPoint” or “Company”) Company’s Gas Reliability Infrastructure Program (“GRIP”) filing made with the City on March 31, 2016; finding that the meeting complies with the Open Meetings Act; making other findings and provisions related to the subject, and declaring an effective date.

A resolution passed authorizing the City Manager to execute a contract amendment with Tyler Technologies, Inc. in the amount of $42,080 plus travel expense and one-year maintenance in the amount of $12,160 for a code enforcement software upgrade. This new software will allow personnel to do code enforcement in the field more efficiently, saving man-hours. It will also allow citizens to apply for code enforcement permits online. The price will include four, week long training sessions for all personnel on this new software.

Councilman Bill Mello was appointed to the Orange Economic Development Corporation to fill an unexpired term for the period expiring September 30, 2016.

Cheryl Zeto is the new finance manager in Orange and will begin her tenure in July. Current finance manager, Gail English is retiring after 30 years of service. The council gave their well wishes and great applause for her many years of service to Orange.