LHS JROTC Students dug up and pulled out a number of partially buried or submerged shopping carts in an area near Timber Creek.(Photo by Marcelo Maristan)
Keep Lewisville Beautiful (KLB) celebrated its 23rd annual citywide waterway cleanup on Saturday November 16, 2013 at Lake Park. KLB partnered with The City of Lewisville, LLELA, T.R.E.E.S., Army Corps of Engineers, Upper Trinity Regional Water District, Rain Ranchers, CoServ, and Kayak Power to help educate volunteers about waterway health and conservation and conduct a community wide clean up. A record breaking 352 volunteers showed outstanding community spirit by cleaning up just over 4 TONS of illegally dumped materials, plastic, and other items carelessly discarded along creeks, streams, shoreline, and the Elm Fork of the Trinity River.
KLB Executive Director Amy Wells said “Together we made a huge dent in litter abatement and took a big step towards a cleaner community and cleaner waterways. I am so proud of and thankful for the volunteers who came out and showed tremendous effort to tackle some very difficult spots in our community. I am thrilled to have so many people interested in the health of Lewisville waterways. Just a few short years ago we only had 25 people cleaning at the Trinity Trash Bash. It’s great to see so many groups getting involved”.
KLB volunteers Ben Wells, Sarah McLain, and Dan Carter taking a look at the “weirdest items found” table.(Photo courtesy KLB)
KLB would like to thank all of the wonderful volunteers who worked so hard to clean our waterways and help make this event a success. Trophies for most trash collected for adult groups are as follows: EA Engineering won for adult large group with 35 bags collected, and adult small went to the Hlatky Family who also collected 35 bags with just three people on their team. Most trash collected for youth large group went to the Lewisville High School Naval Junior ROTC group, which worked alongside a group from The Lewisville Texan Journal to clean up a combined total of 87+ bags from one trouble-spot along Timber Creek. Girl Scout Troops 650 and 3854 teamed up and won for youth small with 16+ bags. “Most unusual item found” trophy went to Americorps who found several illegally dumped electronics in a local creek. Other interesting items included a hot tub cover, pool equipment, a basketball goal, a bed and mattress, a baseball jersey, a credit card, a statue of a saint, and one dressy high heel shoe.
Lewisville Police tonight are asking the public's help in identifying two suspects from separate incidents in the city:
The Dangler: On Tuesday, November 5, 2013, Officers were flagged down in the parking lot of a retail store in the 700 block of Hebron Parkway. An employee told them that a customer had seen a man exposing himself inside of the store. While inside of the store and shopping, the victim glanced over and saw the suspect expose his genitals and begin to masturbate while he looked at her. Video surveillance footage was reviewed and footage of the suspect was obtained.
The suspect was described as a white male, approximately 27 to 28 years-old, wearing grey shorts and a black shirt. The suspect left the location in a dark-colored, full-sized pickup.
The Potty Papparazo: On November 15, 2013, at around 10:45 a.m., the suspect at right took a picture of another person while inside of a stall in a public restroom. The suspect then fled the store, located in the 800 block of West Main Street. The victim reported the crime to store employees and they found that surveillance cameras had captured an image of the suspect as he left the store.
The suspect appears to be a young black male in his early 20s, with a medium skin tone, standing approximately 5’9” tall, and weighing around 150 pounds. He is clean-shaven and has short dark hair. At the time of the offense, the suspect was wearing an orange shirt underneath a white zippered sweatshirt and light blue jeans. On the right is an image of the suspect, taken directly from the surveillance footage.
Anyone with information related to these offenses is asked to call the Lewisville Police Department’s Tip Line at 972-219-TIPS (8477) or Denton County Crime Stoppers at 800-388-TIPS (8477).
Happy Friendsgiving, friends. Friendsgiving was created by Lewisville High School teacher Nicole Franczvai, and is catching on. Described by Franczvai as a “bogus, but important weeklong holiday”, she explains what it is this way:
Notes of appreciation at its very core-and if you want-small tokens of appreciation. Try it! It's all about shooting positive energy into the universe. It might come back it might not who knows.
- Be good. - Try to do good. - Accept good.
We think it makes a whole lot of sense, so we are going to go with it, and hope you will too. The Lewisville Texan Journal certainly appreciates all of our friends and supporters who have helped us over the years in our mission to inform and discuss. We also appreciate all of the hard work and dedication of the hundreds of community leaders, volunteers, non-profit workers, and government employees who make our community such a great place to live.
Speaking of volunteers, this past Saturday was the Trinity Trash Bash. We hope to have some numbers to share with you later this week, but I will say that this event has grown in prominence and participation greatly over the few years that we’ve been involved, and that reflects well on our community. Our LTJ team worked alongside the Lewisville High School Navy Junior ROTC to clean a stretch of land adjacent to Timber Creek that collects wind-blown trash from a large shopping center. Over 4 pickup truck loads were pulled out by our two groups. The ROTC group won a trophy for their haul. LTJ was beat out this year for adult large group by the employees of EA Engineering, Science, and Technology. We’re glad to have the competition, because it makes our city that much cleaner.
The City of Lewisville has added a tribute to the LHS Girls Softball Team to the water tower on I-35E.
An NBC 5 investigation of state records in alcohol-related crashes reveals that I-35E through the Lewisville 75067 zip code is a hot spot. Lewisville is strong on enforcement and does often top the list of participating agencies in LEADRS (Law Enforcement Advanced DUI/DWI Reporting System). Lewisville officers will be stepping up enforcement this coming holiday week, so be careful of others, and know your limits if you drink, then drive.
This coming “Black Friday”, you can choose to enjoy the natural environment rather than celebrating commercialism. Take a hike at LLELA! You might see us out there.
Students at one school stood up for their classmate “Sasha”, who was born male but prefers not to identify by gender. Sasha was set on fire by another student as he dozed on a school bus, leading to severe injuries. His fellow students decided to wear skirts to support the injured student.
A bunch of gun bullies supporting open-carry of firearms showed up at a local restaurant to try to intimidate a group of moms who support gun control. While I am a gun owner and generally supportive of the second amendment, I am not happy with these mindless show-offs who generally do more harm than good with their public displays of weapons. Our system of government and the public discourse that shapes policy at all levels from the local to the national has absolutely no place for the display of weapons and the intimidation that goes with that. The use of force, or the threat of force to get one’s way in a political debate has a name: Terrorism.
The Lewisville City Council met in its regular scheduled meeting Monday night, November 18th, 2013. The agenda for this meeting may be found here. These are our unofficial (and sometimes rough) notes on the proceedings. Minutes are generally posted by the City Secretary after the following meeting.
Regular Session This week's meeting was an almost record-setting quick 16 minute public meeting.
There were no speakers during the visitors and citizens forum.
Items 1-3 of the consent agenda were approved unanimously. Notable in those two items was that the Lewisville Library will provide library services to all residents of Denton County, in exchange for a $69,320 payment from Denton County. The City Council also authorized the sale of the run-down duplex half at 302 W. Corporate Drive to Habitat for Humanity, which will rehab the property. Those of us who drive down Corporate often or live in the area will appreciate that eyesore being taken care of.
Item 4, which was on the consent agenda was pulled by Mayor Ueckert so that it could be explained in further detail for the citizens' benefit. Currently the City of Lewisville only has one ladder truck, which is stationed centrally in Station 7, at I-35 and Business 121. That truck is nearing the end of its typical budgeted lifespan. The new truck will be a Pierce Custom Velocity 95 ft. Ladder Platform, with a price tag of $1,188,896. The city sets aside money each year for vehicle replacement, so funds are available for this. The old truck will be converted for reserve use, to back up the new truck, but will not be fully outfitted as a second truck. This was approved unanimously.
Item #5 was a variance request for Texas Enterprises at 517 N. Kealy Ave. They are doing some improvements to the property, and due to the size of the improvements, that would normally trigger a new site plan and force compliance with modern development regulations. However, because of a prior condemnation of right-of-way by the city for expansion of the street, they would be unable to comply. The variance was approved unanimously.
Reports A representative of the Lewisville Fire Department noted that Santa would soon start riding around town on fire engines to greet the children. Santa starts December 8th, and goes from 6 - 8 p.m. each night until the city is covered.
Councilman Durham noted the upcoming holidays, and wished everyone safe travels.
Councilmen Gilmore and Vaughn shared that the Community Development Block Grant committee has public meetings coming up for citizens to provide input on various federally funded improvements and spending on social service programs.
Mayor Ueckert thanked the Fire Department for its recent care of his mother who was transported to the hospital. Ueckert thanked everyone for the thoughts and prayers for his mother and his daughter.
The Council then convened into executive session to discuss its litigation against the City of Farmers Branch, and the Camelot Landfill, as well as property acquisition and deliberation regarding economic development negotiations.
Once again, The Lewisville High School Student Council is seeking donations for its “Angel Tree” program. Now in its 11th year, the program helps to fulfill the holiday wish lists of local children in need. Counselors within schools throughout the Lewisville High School feeder pattern discreetly identify children who are in need, and are not receiving help from other organizations like Christian Community Action, or the Marine Corps Reserve’s “Toys for Tots” program. LHS Student Activities Director Allison Stamey then compiles an anonymized, coded list of the kids and the gift items they need. Community members then look at the list and choose an “Angel” to adopt for the season.
Here are some examples of children who need help:
Central Elementary School - Female - Age 7: Bicycle, other age appropriate toys . CLOTHING: Pant size 7/8, shirt size 7/8, coat size 7/8, underwear size 8, dress size 7/8
Degan Elementary School - Male - Age 6: Dinosaurs, cars, legos, drawing, and coloring supplies . CLOTHING: Pant size 6/7, shirt size M, Shoe size 13.5, coat size M
Durham Middle School - Female - Age 13: Skyrim game, headphones, nano block building statue of liberty . CLOTHING: Pant size 7, shirt size M, shoe size 8.5, coat size M, underwear size 7, dress size M
Huffines Middle School - Male - Age 13: Football, basketball, game stop gift card . CLOTHING: Pant size 34X30, shirt size L, shoe size 10, coat size L, underwear size M
Lewisville High School - Female - Age 17: Needs food card . CLOTHING: Pant size 5, shirt size M, shoe size 6, coat size L, underwear size 34B, dress size M
Lewisville High School - Male - Age 15: Basketball, Football. Gift card for clothing and food.
The Lewisville Police Department has released information from the following incidents which occurred in the past week:
Deadly Conduct Under Investigation On Thursday, November 7th, at approximately 11:30 p.m., officers were dispatched to an apartment complex in the 1000 block of Valley Ridge regarding gunshots. Officers arrived and contacted witnesses who reported that multiple shots had been fired. At least two bullets passed through the bedroom windows of two different apartments. People were inside of both apartments at the time the shots were fired. This deadly conduct incident remains under investigation.
Convenience Stores Robbed On Saturday, November 9th, at approximately 9:00 p.m., officers were dispatched to a convenience store in the 600 block of Fox Avenue regarding an aggravated robbery. The employee stated that a male came into the store wearing a Halloween mask. The suspect displayed a handgun and demanded money and cigarettes. The employee complied with the suspect’s demands and the suspect fled from the store. Responding officers were unable to locate the suspect.
A short time later, officers were dispatched to another store that was about a block away from the convenience store. An employee there reported that he was robbed at gunpoint. The suspect was wearing a Halloween mask similar to the one worn during the earlier robbery. This suspect, too, demanded money from the register and escaped with an undisclosed amount of money. Both of these aggravated robberies are under investigation.
Shots Fired During Disturbance On Sunday, November 10th, at approximately 1:15 a.m., officers were dispatched on a “disturbance” call that involved gunshots. The disturbance spilled out into the parking lot of the business in the 1400 block of South State Highway 121 (Business). Occupants of one car reportedly shot at the occupants of another car. As officers arrived on the scene, witnesses pointed out the suspect vehicle as it was attempting to leave the area. Officers Kevin Tice, David Nicaud, and Neal Merchant stopped the suspect vehicle a short distance away. The occupants were detained and their vehicle was searched. Officers did locate a handgun in the vehicle. All of the occupants were eventually arrested for outstanding warrants. One of the occupants of the car, a 19 year-old male from Dallas, was also charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. No one was injured during this incident.
Police Arrest Suspect Following Theft of Ferraris During the first week of November, two brothers reported that they had both sold their Ferraris to a single suspect. The suspect paid the brothers with a business check. It was later learned that the business checking account had been closed for several years and that it did not even belong to the suspect. The case was assigned to Detective Jeff Darlington for investigation. Darlington tracked down the suspect and arrested him for theft over $100,000. Additionally, both Ferraris have been recovered.
Today is the 238th birthday of the United States Marine Corps, which was founded at Tun Tavern on 10 November, 1775. Here is a message from General James F. Amos, and Sergeant Major P. Michael Barrett - Commandant and Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps.
Happy Birthday, Marines! I will be hosting a small get-together for Marines tonight at 7 p.m. at my home in Lewisville, where we'll have birthday cake, cigars, and port wine. (And some other non-traditional stuff). Email me @ firstname.lastname@example.org or text me at 214-280-6439 for the address if you would like to join us.
For some reason a bunch of tarantulas were released at LLELA - just South of the Lewisville dam. *Shudder* I do not want to see them. I will make the tarantulas a deal: They stay out of my sight, and don’t drop on me when I’m walking out there, and I will leave them alone. If one gets on me, I cannot control what I might do.
America’s least favorite neighbors: renters. I know this has been the case in Lewisville, and I keep hearing it from people who think the city should just “stop building apartments”. Look, first, the city doesn’t build apartments. We can’t stop people from building them on land that is already zoned for multi-family, either. We can’t just yank zoning out from under land owners either. I don’t believe that apartments have to mean “ghetto”. And I don’t think we ought to be prejudiced against people who live in them. Not everyone is ready for home ownership, or in the financial position to do so. It doesn’t mean they can’t be invested in the community, and it doesn’t mean they are less of a citizen. I love this community, and am sometimes frustrated with the fact that a large proportion of our population is transient. But I don’t think the solution is to hate on apartment dwellers. We need to engage them.
Writing for free is mostly what we do here at the Lewisville Texan Journal. It’s not because we don’t value the work; it’s just that advertising and the donations we get do not provide enough to pay people for their time. I’m always thankful for the volunteers here. I thought I’d share this article from someone who doesn’t mind writing for free.
Texas Education Agency released final ratings this week for the state’s public and charter schools. Of the state’s public school districts, 4.5% were classified as “Improvement Required”, while 14.9% of charter schools needed improvement. Lewisville schools did pretty well for the most part. We hope to post a separate article on this soon, with links to each school’s results.
A Doctor’s lawsuit alleging that his rights were being violated because a Pennsylvania law prevented him from discussing the dangers of fracking fluid with is patients, (by requiring a non-disclosure agreement if the contents of fluids were disclosed to him), was thrown out for lack of standing. He never actually treated a patient where he received information he was not allowed to share, so the alleged injury was deemed conjectural.
Local restaurants sampling their fare in "Taste of Lewisville"
This Saturday, November 9th, from 10 a.m to 3 p.m., the Lewisville Area Chamber of Commerce will host its 6th annual Community Showcase event. Hosted at the Lewisville High School Ben Harmon Campus at 1250 W. Round Grove Road, the free, family-friendly event will feature booths from local businesses showing off their products and services, as well as a "Taste of Lewisville" put on by local restaurants.
Restaurants offering samples of their food include Canes, Hooters, Johnny Carino's, Kristi G's Cupcakes, Las Tortugas, Priceless Caterings, Savanna Café & Bakery, Seven Loaves Catering, Smokin' J's BBQ, and Tierney's Café & Tavern.
Medical Center of Lewisville will host a health fair at the event. A list of vendors with booths at the event is here.
What: 6th Annual Lewisville Community Showcase Where: Lewisville High School Harmon Campus - 1250 W. Round Grove Road [Map] When: Saturday, November 9th, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Who: General public invited Cost: FREE.
2012: LTJ Clean Stream Team members loaded a pickup truck with garbage pulled from a 1,000 foot section of Fox Creek in Lewisville. The team consisted of Steve and Seth Southwell, Jennifer, Tim, and Tory Lane, Todd and Zak Simpson, Jennifer and Alex Linde, David Taylor and family, and Karla and David Scott.(Photo by Karla Scott)
Hoping to raise awareness and appreciation of the Trinity River, Lewisville Lake, and their respective shorelines, Keep Lewisville Beautiful (KLB), the City of Lewisville, LLELA, and Kayak Power are teaming up to host KLB’s 22nd annual Trinity Trash Bash (TTB) waterway clean up.
As part of a regional effort, KLB’s TTB will be held on Saturday, November 16th from 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. at the Lake Park catfish picnic area.
Many volunteer opportunities are available, including shoreline clean ups, creek clean ups, and a guided kayak cleanup of the Trinity River.
KLB is currently looking for both volunteers and sponsors for this event. All individuals and groups are welcome to join in the effort. Please note that kayak space is limited and reserved for volunteers 14yrs+ on a first come, first serve basis. Youth 13 and under are still encouraged to participate, with many other clean up locations to choose from along shorelines and in creeks.
Groups will be assigned locations and supplies to clean on the day of the event. All cleanup materials will be provided by KLB. Shirts, door prizes, and goodie bags will be given away to volunteers after the cleanup. Please wear long sleeves, pants, and sturdy tennis or hiking shoes.
In addition to the cleanup, a waterway educational expo has been added to the event with information about water safety and waterway education from various community organizations and businesses, include the City of Lewisville environmental programs office.
Voters went to the polls Tuesday to decide on state constitutional matters as well as several local issues. Here are the final unofficial tallies.
In Lewisville ISD, voters chose Angie Cox as the new trustee to take the place 3 seat vacated this summer by Mark Welding. With 44.66% of the vote, Cox has the plurality, and school board races do not have runoffs.
This precinct map from Denton County Elections shows the story on the school board races: The green shaded precincts on the West side are mostly Flower Mound and Highland Village, and show where Cox won. Shoven won the teal-colored precincts in the central zone around Lewisville, but only came up with 26.21% of the vote. Flower Mound, at less than half the population size of Lewisville had 4,343 voters, while Lewisville only had 2,694 - well below the turnout expected for a local option election.
Lewisville voters said YES to liquor sales with a solid 63.66% FOR and 36.34% against. Only one precinct rejected the measure, with precinct 3018 going against by three votes.
Only 2,694 voters turned out to vote on this measure, compared to 1,708 in this past May's City Council place 4 race. In 2005, when Lewisville first went wet for beer and wine sales, voters turned out to support that by 4,222 to 2,766. Tuesday's turnout was only about 39% of that number. In fact, the petition that put the liquor option on the ballot had 4,542 signatures, but only 1,715 voters turned out to actually vote for the proposition - meaning that only 38% could be bothered to go to the polls.
The votes that the measure did receive were costly for the sponsors, Fine Wines and Spirits of North Texas, LLC, which put up $80,000. All of that was paid to The Eppstein Group for consulting fees, according to documents filed so far by "Lewisville Citizens for Jobs". That number could increase, if expenses were incurred after eight days prior to the election. That amounts to an incredible $46.65 per vote!
In Flower Mound, voters turned out to support a Public Improvement District or PID for the Riverwalk development, which passed with 73.06% of the vote. A PID is a taxing overlay district that can borrow money for public improvements, and levy a special property tax to the owners within the boundaries to pay it back. PID debt is not a debt of the taxpayers of Flower Mound, but the Town Charter required an election any time a PID is to be created.