Bond committee discusses procedures, why last one didn’t pass

first_img Bond committee discusses procedures, why last one didn’t pass Pinterest Ground rules and a scope of work were set for the new Ector County Independent School District Bond Advisory Committee that met Monday in the George H.W. Bush New Tech Odessa cafeteria.TransCend4, the firm hired by ECISD to guide the committee through the process, also asked people why they thought the November 2017 bond issue failed and what’s different this time. About 72 people attended the meeting and 100 were invited. The committee includes some of the same people as the last one with some new additions.The bond is now proposed for May 2019, giving the committee more time to go over the information and make decisions. Superintendent Tom Crowe said a bond and tax ratification election will be held separately with the TRE coming first.“We’re starting from scratch,” Crowe said. “… We are making this a community conversation.”In remarks before the meeting started, ECISD Board of Trustees President Carol Gregg said the schools are overcrowded. The last time, the district did not give the community time to buy into the bond and TRE.She added that Ector County residents are not used to a downturn where people don’t leave. For years, Gregg said the student population stayed the same and now it’s increasing and continues to grow with more than 32,000 students.Crowe said the district will be very clear in its communications, which was an issue last time.Michelle Hughes from TransCend4, said all the information from meetings will be posted on the district website.Hughes told the committee to be respectful but that doesn’t mean they can’t express themselves.Some of the reasons why the group said the 2017 bond failed were: All the taxing entities raising their tax rates and/or going for specific levies. The district had two items that would raise people’s taxing and all the other entities seemed to be asking for more money, as well, which created mutually assured destruction, committee member Lorraine Perryman said. Perryman said the community also felt that the priorities were predecided; there continues to be a teacher shortage, but more facilities would have been built and there was a question of where more teachers would come from; adding more high schools also was an issue and ninth-grade centers should possibly have been considered. Perryman said presenting the bond in proposition may have given it a better chance to pass. Cruz Castillo, an architect who was on the previous bond advisory committee, said there was no teacher buy-in last time. Too little time to review information before the bond election. Castillo said he was grateful for the extra time.A lot of complications with marketing; not explaining the needs clearly; misperception of the information and misunderstanding of the presentation of the information.Overcrowding was not addressed properly.Asking for two high schools; issues with sports; not selling that properly; and people being unaware of the need for facilities.The community didn’t understand how it was going to affect them and the students. A bad plan that cost too much money and question marks about finances.Not enough accurate communication.Karen Howard-Winters, who was on the last bond advisory committee, said everything was pre-packaged last time and there was no way to separate out the items. She said what contributed to the defeat was the high cost and bad timing.Renee Henderson Earls, President/CEO of the Odessa Chamber of Commerce, who also was on the bond advisory committee last time, said this effort must be driven by the community.Virgil Trower, a new member, said something has to be done to get voters out because with higher turnout it stands more of a chance of passing.What has changed is the boom has made people more aware of the needs and that there is more of a sense of urgency because there are more students coming in.Perryman said some people at her table thought nothing had changed, but some who were more optimistic said the district was humbled and ready to do things differently. Maybe with the boom, she said, people would see the urgency for more facilities.Hughes said districts usually determine needs based on demographics, where the growth is and a long-range facilities plan that shows when a roof is going to fail, for example.Conrad Turner, who was on the last bond advisory committee, said work on the 2012 bond was completed in February and six months later people were voting on another one.Ector Middle School, Noel and Pease elementary schools in their fifth year of improvement required status under state accountability standards. If the campuses don’t come off the list, they will face closure or the Texas Education Commissioner will appoint a board of managers over the whole district.Turner noted this and asked if this bond fails, “do we deserve better leadership?”Perryman, who has been a fan and critic of ECISD, said with the new boom and severely overcrowded schools that more facilities are desperately needed.“… But we need to build trust and faith in our school district to positively respond at the ballot box for what those real needs are,” Perryman said. “… I want to us to stay child centered as we approach this, that everything we do is focused on the children and the community and meeting their needs. As long as we stay focused on the kids, then I think we’ll go in the right direction and that will remove a lot of the peripheral debate.”Interim Odessa City Manager Michael Marrero was not part of the original process.“But tonight’s process is very promising because it really is well structured. The hope is that we get all the information that we need (so) we can then make a good recommendation to the school board,” Marrero said.Marrero added that it’s good to get a sense of what individuals think in terms of what they perceive to be the problems with the initial bond and look at those. People may differ on why it worked or didn’t work.“I think everybody’s input is valuable and shouldn’t be discounted,” Marrero said.So each one should be considered and analyzed as the process moves forward.Crowe said he liked that more people were involved in the bond committee this time and that some of the old members were back and that there were new people with fresh eyes.“I’m liking where we’re heading and Michelle’s got a lot of experience and a mature approach, so I’m anxious to see her working with everybody,” Crowe added.More InformationIn November 2017, a $291,172,291 bond and a tax ratification election failed.Some 7,186 people voted in the election. The bond failed with 61.81 percent, or 4,442 people, voting against it and 38.19 percent, or 2,744 people voting for it. The 2017 bond included a new comprehensive high school; conversion of Ector Middle School to a high school; a new middle school to replace Ector; a district wide fiber network; lifecycle improvements; fire and safety upgrades; secure front entries at each campus; Permian High School locker room renovation; Odessa High School weight room upgrades and expansion; and renovation of restrooms at Ratliff Stadium.A tax ratification election also was voted on in November 2017 with a total of 7,182 votes. Close to 40 percent, or 2870 people, voted for the tax ratification election and just over 60 percent, or 4,312 people, voted against it. Facebook WhatsApp Local News WhatsApp Pinterest Facebook Twitter Previous articleSuspect charged in fatal 2013 shootingNext articleConcert’s partial proceeds goes to H.O.T. admin Twitter By admin – April 9, 2018 last_img read more


Chevron and partners approve oil recovery project at St. Malo field

first_imgThe partners expect a waterflood project in the St. Malo field to contribute an estimated ultimate recovery of more than 175 million barrels of oil equivalent Image: The St. Malo field is part of the Jack/St. Malo project. Photo: courtesy of Chevron Corporation. Chevron and its partners have sanctioned a waterflood project in the US Gulf of Mexico with a goal to increase oil recovery from the St. Malo field, which has been in production since late 2014.Located nearly 450.6km south of New Orleans in Louisiana, the St. Malo field is estimated to produce for another 30 years.According to Chevron, the waterflood project is its first in the deepwater Wilcox trend. The project is likely to generate an estimated ultimate recovery of over 175 million barrels of oil equivalent, said the US oil and gas firm.The oil recovery project will see drilling of two new production wells, three new injector wells, and installation of topsides injection equipment for the Jack/St. Malo floating production unit, which all are expected to prolong the life of the field.Chevron North America exploration and production president Steve Green said: “The St. Malo field is a world-class asset that is positioned for highly economic brownfield development.“With our leading technology, experienced workforce and broad portfolio, we’re delivering value in the Gulf of Mexico.”Stakeholders in the St. Malo fieldThrough its subsidiaries – Chevron U.S.A. and Union Oil Company of California, Chevron has a 51% working interest in the St. Malo field. The company is partnered by MP Gulf of Mexico (25%), Equinor Gulf of Mexico (21.5%), Exxon Mobil (1.25%) and Eni Petroleum US (1.25%) in the offshore field.MP Gulf of Mexico is in turn owned by Murphy Oil (80%) and Petrobras America (20%).Equinor North America offshore portfolio senior vice president Chris Golden said: “We are pleased to announce this decision, which will further boost our production of high-value barrels from the Gulf of Mexico.”The St. Malo field, which was discovered in 2003, is part of the Jack/St. Malo project in the Lower Tertiary trend of deepwater US Gulf of Mexico. The Jack and St. Malo fields are located within 40km of each other in nearly 2,100m of water in the Walker Ridge area.The two fields were co-developed with subsea completions flowing back to a single host, semi-submersible floating production unit installed between them. The floating production unit has a production capacity of 170,000 barrels of oil per day and 42 million cubic feet of natural gas per day.last_img read more


Chirn Park cottage has been brought to life with a modern renovation

first_img8 Chirn Lane, Chirn Park.“We repainted the inside and outside, put in new carpet and added a lot of contemporary fixtures.” On a 562sq m block, the home has an outdoor deck which opens to the main living area. The open-plan kitchen overlooks the dining area and backyard. The property also features an electric gate. Lambert Willcox Estate Agents Broadbeach agents, Jesse Wilcox and Mitchell Lambert home will take the property to auction on April 29 at 10am 8 Chirn Lane, Chirn Park.THIS contemporary Chirn Park cottage was a home-away-from-home for homeowner and retired construction manager Steven Bennett. The civil engineer bought the home with his wife Debbie 10 years ago.“I lived in Darwin and all across Australia for work but we needed a home that would be perfect for Debbie and my daughter when I wasn’t around. 8 Chirn Lane, Chirn Park.The couple said they have spent the past two years doing renovations and creating a modern home.“We didn’t do any major extensions because the structure was open and let in fantastic breezes,” the father-of-one said. center_img 8 Chirn Lane, Chirn ParkMore from news02:37Purchasers snap up every residence in the $40 million Siarn Palm Beach North9 hours ago02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa1 day ago“This house was quaint, and big enough for the girls but it was also really secure.“The home was more for my wife and while we looked at Burleigh we were surprised at how peaceful this home was but it was located in such a bustling neighbourhood with cafes.” The two-bedroom home comes with two bathrooms and two car spaces and has an open plan design.last_img read more