News

Mon
09
Oct

Kirkpatrick, commissioners to appear at Tea Party meeting

The recent approval of a tax rate increase and the new budget by the Van Zandt County Commissioners Court will be a major topic of discussion at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9 during a meeting of the VZC Tea Party.

Dr. Dwayne Collins of the VZC Tea Party said that the public is invited to attend the meeting to be held at Edom City Limits, on FM 279 between Edom and Ben Wheeler.

VZC Judge Don Kirkpatrick and all four VZC Commissioners (Brandon Brown, Pct. 1; Virgil Melton Jr., Pct. 2; Keith Pearson, Pct. 3; and Tim West, Pct. 4) are scheduled to be in attendance.

VZC Auditor Freddy Thomas and a representative from the VZC Sheriff’s Department are also planning to appear, according to Collins.

The meeting will open with an update on the Convention of States from speaker Greg Holton prior to the presentation from the county officials.

Mon
09
Oct

Dogs running at large prohibited within city limits

The Wills Point Municipal Court issued a press release earlier this week, outlining all city ordinances regarding both at large dogs and dangerous dogs after seeing an influx of both types of cases throughout the summer and into the fall.

Mon
09
Oct

VZCRA Fly-In scheduled for Oct. 14

October is one of the busiest months on the local events calendar, bringing with it events ranging from the Van Zandt County Regional Airport’s annual Fly-In event to Halloween events at the end of the month.

The VZCRA Fly-In will be among the first community events to take place this month, scheduled from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Oct. 14. Fly-In events are scheduled to include hands on aviation fun for the whole family, a bounce house for children, a car show, prize drawings as well as the Civil Air Patrol breakfast and lunch.

The annual fly-in, which includes a series of events for both children and adults, has been the latest addition to a lengthy airport revitalization project that has included striping projects, replacement of lighting systems, the installation of a fuel tank and installation of a card reader in 2013, construction of a new terminal building in 2014 and a runway overlay project that was completed in 2015.

Mon
09
Oct

Warning issued regarding solicitors within city limits

The Wills Point city office issued a warning to residents this week, urging locals to be on the lookout for unlicensed solicitors in their respective neighborhoods. The warning comes on the heels of an increase in door-to-door salesman frequenting the area in recent weeks.

The city has dealt with an influx of unlicensed solicitors several times in years past, prompting similar warnings to be issued. In January 2016, the Wills Point Police Department arrested two suspects that were selling goods and services door-to-door without proper licensing that were found to have criminal records.

Additionally, the department has already issued multiple citations as a direct result of solicitors failing to obtain proper licensing through the city office.

Mon
09
Oct

Contest season begins for Tiger Band

The award-winning Wills Point Tiger Band’s marching season will reach another gear beginning this weekend with the group scheduled to kick off one of its busiest months with two contest performances.

The Tiger Band will be in action at five separate contests and events total during the month of October, including an appearance at the Mesquite Invitational at Mesquite Memorial Stadium Oct. 7 beginning at 11:15 a.m. and at the Sunnyvale Marching Invitational at Sunnyvale High School Oct. 7 with a preliminary performance at 4:30 p.m.

Other upcoming events for the Tiger Band are slated to include the Mineola Invitational Marching Contest Oct. 9, the Princeton Marching Contest Oct. 14 and the UIL Regional Marching Contest Oct. 25.

Wills Point will enter the event with plenty of momentum, recording numerous top finishes at events and contests during the previous school year, including placing fourth overall among all 4A schools at the UIL State Marching Contest.

Mon
02
Oct

ESD #4, WPVFD discuss contract

The Van Zandt County Emergency Services District #4 board and Wills Point Volunteer Fire Department covered familiar ground last week, discussing the contract between the two entities at the former's monthly meeting Sept. 19.

Board business began with several bookkeeping items, including approval of minutes of minutes from past meetings and a series of administrative updates before reaching an item listed on the agenda as “discuss and act as needed on a new contract with WPVFD for 2017-’18.”

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Mon
02
Oct

JH recognizes students, staff members

The Wills Point Junior High recently launched a new tradition, honoring student-athletes that have been leaders in the classroom and on the field, as well as the teachers that have inspired them to excel.

Casey Cochran, WPJH principal, explained, “We started a new tradition where the boys football coaches choose four football players for the week that have been leaders in the classroom and on the field. Those boys get to give their jerseys away to a teacher to wear throughout the day on game day. This is a way the teachers are recognized for how hard they are working in the classroom. The boys then recognize these teachers at the pep rally.

“They discuss why they chose the teacher and give an example of why they have made a difference for them this school year. I think this a great way to recognize our staff and hold our student athletes to high expectations.”

Mon
02
Oct

VZC citizens start petition process to limit tax rate

The process to call for a possible special tax rollback election in Van Zandt County has recently begun.

Chief Election Deputy in the VZC Clerk’s office Elsa Smith confirmed that two citizens have requested information on how they can start petition efforts to force the call of a tax rollback election by the VZC Commissioners Court.

On Sept. 12, the VZC Commissioners Court approved a 2017 tax year rate of $.615847 per $100 valuation after conducting two public hearings earlier in the month.

The 2017 tax year rate exceeds the preceding year’s tax rate ($.585847), the effective tax rate ($.552805) and the rollback tax rate ($.587864).

The effective tax rate is the total tax rate needed to raise the same amount of property tax revenue for VZC from the same properties in both the 2016 and 2017 tax years.

Mon
02
Oct

October calendar falling into place

Local residents will have plenty of activities and events to keep themselves busy throughout the month, with the return of several community favorite events looming just over the horizon.

VZCRA Fly-In

The Van Zandt County Regional Airport will be the place to be for the local community from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Oct. 14 with the return of the VZCRA Fly-In.

Fly-In events are scheduled to include hands on aviation fun for the whole family, a bounce house for children, a car show, prize drawings as well as the Civil Air Patrol breakfast and lunch.

The annual fly-in, which includes a series of events for both children and adults, has been the latest addition to a lengthy airport revitalization project that began back in 2007.

Mon
02
Oct

Busted pipe results in closure

Commuters traveling just north of Wills Point were slowed briefly after a major water leak near Tennessee Street temporarily resulted in Farm-to-Market 751 being cut down to one lane Sept. 26. City workers arrived on scene at approximately 7 a.m. to assess the damage before digging up the damaged pipe a short time later. Utilities Superintendent Matthew Neely advised that water to the Hillside Drive and Highland Avenue areas was cut off for approximately 30 minutes while repairs to the pipe were conducted, and that the southbound lane of FM 751 was reopened shortly after 4 p.m.

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