Katy Edition | April 2020

KATY EDITION

VOLUME 8, ISSUE 8  APRIL 23MAY 20, 2020

ONLINE AT

Waiting for normalcy Katy-area businesses adjust to life amid the coronavirus outbreak SUPPORT LOCAL JOURNALISM Please join your friends and neighbors in support of Community Impact Newspaper’s legacy of local, reliable reporting by making a contribution. Any amount matters. Together, we can continue to ensure our citizens stay informed and keep our local businesses thriving. Become a #CommunityPatron COMMUNITYIMPACT.COMPATRON

BY JEN PARA AND NOLA Z. VALENTE

The Toasted Yolk is one of many restaurants in the Katy area hurting from the stay-at-home orders issued by state and local governments, said Cyril Thomas, the CEO of Arista Groups, which owns the location. “Business is slower than usual, but we’re riding it out,” Thomas said. “Peo- ple don’t often think of breakfast and brunch as to-go and delivery options.” During the coronavirus pandemic, some restaurants have had to come up with creative solutions to maintain sales, such as oering to-go meal kits with groceries in the case of Whiskey Cake. Others, such as Bernie’s Burger Bus, have had to temporarily close in Katy. “I knowwe are all hurting; this thing is hitting everyone hard,” said Adam Syed, a co-owner of Katy Vibes, in a Facebook post. “It doesn’t discrimi- nate, and we’ve all seen at least a 50% decrease in sales, if not more.” Patrick Jankowski, the senior vice CONTINUED ON 16

The Sam’s Club grocery line in the Katy area is out the door as social distancing is in eect. (Jen Para/Community Impact Newspaper)

Counties pushing for 2020 census response

$3.59 BILLION * in federal funding over 10 years, according to census data. With a 1% undercount in the 2010 census, Texas lost *CALCULATED USING THE CENSUS BUREAU’S ESTIMATION THAT EACH PERSON UNDERCOUNTED RESULTS IN A $1,500 LOSS PER YEAR FOR 10 YEARS. Estimated cost per year of a 1% undercount to the Katy area: $5.5 million* The Katy-area population has grown 38% since 2010.

to our particular communities to respond to the cen- sus,” said Nabila Mansoor, who co-chairs the Harris County/Houston Complete Count Committee, a col- laborative eort of city and county ocials, commu- nity leaders and nonprots dedicated to ensuring a complete count in Houston and Harris County. Texas is the third-largest recipient of federal fund- ing based on census data, according to the Texas Demographic Center. An undercount of Texas’ 2020 population by 1% could result in an annual $300 mil- lion loss in federal funds, according to the center. CONTINUED ON 19

BY JEN PARA

Organizers are pitching in to help census workers get an accurate count of the Katy-area population, as thousands of federal dollars are at risk for every per- son the count misses. “All of our partners have been spending a long time trying to gure out how we make that really big push

SOURCE: U.S. CENSUS BUREAUCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

All content in this print publication, both editorial and advertisements, was up to date as of press deadline. Due to the fast-changing nature of this event, editorial and advertising information may have changed. Please visit communityimpact.com and advertiser websites for more information. Thanks for your support.

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

THIS ISSUE

CONTENTS IMPACTS

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

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Now Open, Coming Soon &more

PUBLISHERS AND FOUNDERS John and Jennifer Garrett PUBLISHERHOUSTONMETRO Jason Culpepper ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Kristina Shackelford GENERAL MANAGER Susan Rovegno, srovegno@communityimpact.com EDITORIAL EXECUTIVE EDITOR Joe Lanane MANAGING EDITOR Marie Leonard EDITOR Jen Para

FROMSUSAN: How the world has changed since our last issue! In the very last few hours before we sent our March pages to press last month, we saw an inux of late breaking news and event cancellations. And like many of you, we thought it would be a short-term situation. In the days that followed, however, nearly every aspect of our lives was touched by the coronavirus pandemic: work, school, leisure and exercise.

Here at Community Impact Newspaper —where we are thankful to utilize the best in technology to work from our homes—we feel a strong sense of duty and pride to deliver local, useful information to our readers. If you have visited communityimpact.com, you have seen our team hard at work keeping up with breaking news on the coronavirus. Many of you are seeing this coverage via our social media and newsletter. If you are not yet a newsletter subscriber, it is free and daily, and we encourage you to sign up today. In the last few weeks we have spoken to local business owners about restrictions put in place and how the drastic reduction in customer trac is directly impacting them and our community. Now, more than ever, is the time to support our local businesses as much as possible. In this month’s issue we have included a guide of local restaurants that are oering curbside, to-go and delivery services during this time (see Page 9). As news of the coronavirus outbreak is constantly evolving, please make sure to visit our website at communityimpact.com/news/houston/katy for the most current updates. We all look forward to a return to normalcy. Until then, look for the many blessings around you. Be the light for others.

REPORTER Nola Z. Valente COPY CHIEF Andy Comer

DINING LISTINGS

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COPY EDITORS Ben Dickerson, Kasey Salisbury STAFFWRITERS Shawn Arrajj, Emma Freer, Anna Herod, Daniel Houston, Ali Linan, Olivia Lueckemeyer, Danica Smithwick ADVERTISING SALES DIRECTOR Tess Coverman ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Tracy Drewa DESIGN CREATIVE DIRECTOR Derek Sullivan ART PRODUCTIONMANAGER Tessa Hoee SENIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNER Anya Gallant GRAPHIC DESIGNER José Dennis STAFF DESIGNER Justin Howell BUSINESS GROUP PUBLISHER Traci Rodriguez CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER Claire Love ABOUT US John and Jennifer Garrett began Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 in Pugerville, Texas. The company’s mission is to build communities of informed citizens and thriving businesses through the collaboration of a passionate team. CONTACT US

Local eateries remaining open

Susan Rovegno, GENERALMANAGER

TODO LIST

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Events to attend virtually TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES 13 Upcoming and ongoing projects VOTE 14

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

CARING TAKES TRUE COURAGE. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SACRIFICE.

THANK YOU TO EVERY PHYSICIAN, NURSE, FIRST RESPONDER AND HEALTHCARE WORKER IN THE GREATER HOUSTON AREA. Thanks to those being called away from their own families to be of service to yours. And we thank the people of the Greater Houston area for taking every step possible to safeguard your own health. Thank you for the sacrifices you’re making. And for the impact you’re having on all our lives.

ThankYouHouston.org

Advancing health. Personalizing care.

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

IMPACTS

Businesses that recently opened or are coming soon, relocating or expanding

COMPILED BY JEN PARA

COMING SOON 4 Newton Nurseries plans to open at 322 Buc-ee’s Blvd., Katy, this summer, according to a press release. The location will include a 153,000-square-foot nursery with a 7,000-square-foot green- house and a 20,000-square-foot shade area. The wholesale business provides trees, shrubs, flowers, bedding plants and other landscape items for profession- al landscapers. It also has horticulturist services. Two other Newton Nurseries are located in Houston and Austin. 713-868- 5 H-E-B plans to open a new location at 9211 FM 723, Richmond, near Fulshear this summer. The grocery store will be 101,000 square feet and offer fresh produce and meat as well as packaged goods. During the coronavirus pandemic, the brand is offering reduced hours and additional curbside delivery. There are five other locations of H-E-B in the Katy area. 281-392-9500 (Fry Road location). www.heb.com RENOVATIONS 6 Jersey Mike’s Subs at 6445 FM 1463, Ste. 200, Katy, reopened April 13 after a one-week closure for a store remodeling, General Manager Jami Georg said. Jersey Mikes is a chain that serves cold and hot subs filed with meat, cheese and veggies. All Jersey Mike’s locations are offering takeout and free delivery during the coronavirus pandemic. 281-665-2065. 9030 (Houston location). www.newtonnurseries.com 7 Astor Farm to Table at 1520 S. Mason Road, Ste. A, Katy, has been preparing meals for health care workers and first responders in the Katy area, owner Casey Castro said. He estimates the business will have donated over 1,200 meals over four weeks. Each meal costs between $8-12, and he has asked the community for donations on Facebook and GoFundMe to help his business continue this service. The restaurant also offers its menu to custom- ers for to-go, pickup and delivery orders during the coronavirus pandemic. 832-913- 6465. www.astorfarmtotable.com www.jerseymikes.com GIVING BACK

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Pinchy's Tex-Mex

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Happy Day Daiquiris

COURTESY HAPPY DAY DAIQUIRIS

8 Maika’i Hawaiian BBQ at 1251 Pin Oak Road, Ste. 109, Katy, is offering free lunches to children every day between 11 a.m.-2 p.m. The lunch includes a small barbecue chicken dish, which can be picked up for take-out. Its menu can also be ordered for to go, pickup and delivery through Grubhub and Uber Eats. A 20% discount is available for party trays and catering. 832-913-6466. www.maikaihawaiianbbq.com 9 Kosmos Coffee inside Fellowship Church at 22765 Westheimer Parkway, Katy, is offering a free cup of hot or iced coffee to residents who are in an essential workforce category. The coffee shop had temporarily closed between March 25-29 but reopened March 30 with new hours and takeout and to-go options. Its new hours of operation are Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-noon. 281-395-4001. www.kosmoscoffee.org

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MAP NOT TO SCALE N TM; © 2020 COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER CO. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

NOWOPEN 1 Pinchy’s Tex-Mex opened at 1230 N. Mason Road, Ste. 100, Katy, on Feb. 24. The menu includes tacos, queso, nachos, ceviche, enchiladas, fajitas, and a children’s menu and a family pack. Due to stay-home orders, the restaurant is offering free delivery, curbside pickup, and takeout and to-go orders. Margaritas are also available to-go. 832-321-5745. www.pinchystexmex.com 2 Happy Day Daiquiris opened Jan. 25 at 20660 Westheimer Parkway, Ste. I, Katy, owner Chris Kerth said. It serves a variety of frozen alcoholic and nonalcohol- ic drinks as well as Jell-O shots. Popular

menu items include the Long Island iced tea, strawberry daiquiri and pina colada. Guests can also create their own flavor. During COVID-19, the business is only offering its menu to go. 346-322-4963. www.happydaydaiquiris.com. 3 Texas Sno opened for the 2020 season on March 1 at 22450 Franz Road, Katy, owner Kelsie Dartayet said. The business sells New Orleans-style snow cones in a variety of flavors such as watermelon, coconut and king cake. Guests can also order toppings such as ice cream, pickles and gummy bears. The business also has a small trailer for events. 346-377-9436. www.texassno.com

THIS INFORMATION IS ACCURATE AS OF 4/16/2020. FOLLOW COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM FOR THE LATEST BUSINESS AND RESTAURANT NEWS UPDATES.

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

DINING LISTINGS

A list of eateries open for delivery, curbside pickup and more

COMPILED BY NOLA Z. VALENTE

Restaurant owners have adapted to statewide regulations restrict- ing dine-in options and large group gatherings to slow the spread of COVID-19. These restaurants are oering takeout, drive-thru, curbside pickup and delivery services. This information is accurate as of April 15. FOOD&DRINKDELIVERYOPTIONS

832-437-3800 www.kurrywalah.com H T La Hacienda Real 11605 S. Fry Road, Ste. 101, Fulshear 346-707-8196 www.haciendarealtexmex.com H T $ A Luna y Sol Mexican Grill 9115 FM 723, Ste. 500, Richmond 281-762-7588 www.lunaysolmexicaneatery.com H C T $ A Mala Authentic Chinese Cuisine 5803 N. Fry Road, Ste. 103, Katy 832-427-6218 www.malakaty.com H C T Orleans Seafood Kitchen 20940 Katy Freeway, Katy 281-646-0700 www.orleansseafoodkitchen.com H C T $ A Palinuro Italian Cuisine 27131 Cinco Ranch Blvd., Ste. 650, Katy 281-394-2495 www.palinuroitalian.com H C T $ A Pane e Vino 8945 S. Fry Road, Ste. A, Katy 281-391-2222 www.paneevinokatytx.com H C $ A Pappa Gyros 23255 Kingsland Blvd., Katy 281-574-7764 www.pappagyros.com H C D T $ Phat Eatery 23119 Colonial Parkway, Ste. B2, Katy 832-913-6382 www.phateatery.com H C T $ Pier 36 Seafood & Oyster Bar 8502 FM 359, Fulshear 281-346-8379 www.pier36seafood.com H C T $ A Ramble Creek Grill 7930 W. Grand Parkway S., Ste. 100,

Richmond 832-222-9371 www.ramblecreekgrill.com H C Red River BBQ & Grill 1711 S. Mason Road, Katy 281-578-3800 www.redriverbbq.com H C T $ ROKO Grill 406 W. Grand Parkway S., Ste. 340, Katy 281-665-3369 www.rokogrill.com H C $ Saigon Basil Restaurant 8710 Grand Mission Blvd., Ste. L, Richmond 832-363-3690 www.saigonbasilrichmond.com H D $ Texas Borders Bar & Grill 20940 Katy Freeway, Ste. H, Katy 281-578-8785 www.bordersbarandgrillkatytx.com H C T $ A Texas Tradition 5321 Highway Blvd., Ste. 1306, Katy 281-391-6113 www.katytexastradition.com C T $ A Thai Spice Asian Gourmet 1420 Mason Road, Ste. 170, Katy 281-574-1500 www.facebook.com/Thai-Spice-Asian- Gourmet-49918811566 H C T $ A Tobiuo Sushi & Bar 23501 Cinco Ranch, Ste. H130, Katy 281-394-7156 www.tobiuosushibar.com H C T $ A Tracey’s Fajita Restaurant 21040 Highland Knolls Drive, Katy 281-944-9913 www.traceysfajita.com H C D T

H Home delivery C Curbside pickup D Drive-thru T Takeout $ Special deals A Alcohol

BreakTime Tea Lounge & Bánh mì 1215 Grand West Blvd., Ste. C5, Katy 281-717-4845 www.facebook.com/breaktimetealounge https://www.facebook.com/breaktime- tealounge/referral C T $ Donkey Yaki 23119 Colonial Pkwy, Bldg B, Katy 832-234-4636 www.facebook.com/donkeyyaki/ H T Eight Turn Crepe 23119 Colonial Parkway, Ste. C-8, Katy 832-913-3461 www.eightturncrepe.com H C T $ El Kourmet 25757 Westheimer Parkway, Ste. 100, Katy 346-257-4980 3939C N. Fry Road, Katy 281-829-7740 www.elkourmet.com H D T Golden China 26440 FM 1093, Ste. B150, Richmond 281-676-5161 goldenchinarichmondtx.com H T Great Harvest Bread Co. 1623 S. Fry Road, Katy 281-578-3097 www.greatharvestkatytx.com C D T Kabob Korner 557 S. Mason Road, Katy 281-769-1999 www.kabobkorner.com H T Kurrywalah Fine Indian Cuisine 1830 S. Mason Road, Ste. 165, Katy

Pane e Vino NOLA Z. VALENTE COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Alegria Brazilian Grill 24449 Katy Freeway, Ste. 700, Katy 281-394-7753 www.alegriagrill.com/home H C T Alibabba Cuisine 9006 S. Fry Road, Katy 832-913-8072 www.alibabbaoaty.com H C T Astor Farm to Table 1520 S. Mason Road, Katy 832-913-6465 www.astorfarmtotable.com H T $ Azul Seafood Tapas 21945 Katy Freeway, Ste. C, Katy 832-437-6179 www.facebook.com/azulseafoodtapas H C T $ A Beer Biryani and Kabab 4747 FM 1463, Ste. 100, Katy 832-437-0674 www.facebook.com/pages/Beer-Biryani- and-Kabab/341273403260471 H T $ A Big Z’s Pizza House & Brew 2004 S. Mason Road, Ste. A1, Katy 630-240-1936 www.facebook.com/bigzspizza H T A

Tropical Diner West 3111 N. Fry Road, Katy 281-579-9060 www.jamaicanfoodhouston.com H

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TODO LIST

Virtual events in April and May

COMPILED BY JEN PARA & NOLA Z. VALENTE

Danjoy’s Homemade Pasta at 1138 FM 1463, Katy, is oering virtual cooking classes. Owner Giancarlo Danjoy will provide a list of ingredients and lead viewers through making pasta from home. Cooking times are exible. $80. 832-919-5345. www.danjoyshomemadepasta.com LEARN TOMAKE PASTA

While the Children’s Museum Houston at 1500 Binz St., Houston, is temporarily closed, the museum is oering free virtual courses daily with experiments and activities, such as story time and an inside look at exhibits. Previous days’ activities will be posted online. 713-522-1138. www.cmhouston.org TRY OUT ACTIVITIES REMOTELY THROUGH THE CHILDREN’SMUSEUM COURTESY CHILDREN’S MUSEUM HOUSTON

COURTESY DANJOY'S HOMEMADE PASTA

210B, Katy, moved to online teaching. Anyone interested in learning to play the violin, viola or the cello can tune in. Instruments are available for rent or for sale and can be picked up at Sam’s Strings Violin Shop at 411 Park Grove Drive, Ste. 210. Lesson prices start at $36 and go up to $72. Lessons can be done in 30, 45 or 60 minutes. 281-769-3609. www.paganinischool.com/ TRY ARTS AND CRAFTS Pinspiration Richmond at 7930 W. Grand Parkway, Ste. 150, Richmond, is delivering do-it-yourself kits with printed instructions for canvas paintings geared for children and adults as well as fairy house kits including

a fairy. Some projects include online video tutorials. Projects will vary, depending on supply availability. $10-$38. 281-207-6568. www.pinspiration.com GETMOVING CrossFit 1420 at 1420 Katy Flewellen Road, Katy, is providing free programming and demonstration videos to members online through Facebook and Instagram. Posts include home workouts for each day of the week, including warmups and recovery with links to video instructions. The gym will also share three home workouts geared for children per week. free. 713-367-1388. www.facebook.com/CrossFit1420/

Here are a few virtual events hosted by businesses in the Katy area to attend during stay-home orders. HAVE A RELAXATION SESSION Body & Brain Yoga Tai Chi at 1515 S. Mason Road, Katy, is oering online classes in yoga and tai chi as well as meditation and core strengthening while the studio is temporarily closed due to the coronavirus. Live group classes are oered daily. Times vary. Online classes free until May 15. 281-492-7000. www.bodynbrain.com/katy LEARN TO PLAY AN INSTRUMENT Paganini School of Music, at 411 Park Grove Drive, Ste.

Find more or submit Katy events at communityimpact.com/event-calendar. Event organizers can submit local events online to be considered for the print edition. Submitting details for consideration does not guarantee publication.

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES

COMPILED BY JEN PARA

Crews to begin on Texas Heritage Parkway inMay

million project will be funded by landowners, while the other half will be funded by Fort Bend County, the city of Fulshear and the city of Katy. The landowners are also paying for a roadside trail system, which will cost about $2 million. Fort Bend County Commissioners Court unanimously approved two amended interlocal agreements related to the project at its special March 31 meet- ing. This will allow the county to be reimbursed for some of the project’s costs, said Precinct 3 Commissioner Andy Meyers, who has been involved in the project. Fulshear City Council voted March 24 to accept an amended interlocal agree- ment for the project. And Katy City Council must also approve the amended interlocal agreements before the project can break ground, said attorney Rich Muller, who is representing land- owners involved in the project, at the Fulshear meeting. Community Impact Newspaper reached out for more information regarding the delay of the project, but a representa- tive from the project did not comment. However, Meyers provided some insight last October. “We’ve been delayed a little bit, mainly because the last portion of it—we didn’t have the right of way,” Meyers said.

UPCOMING PROJECT

ONGOING PROJECT

PeekRoad paving Crews have completed paving to widen Peek Road to a four-lane boulevard from Clay Road to Grand Ventana Drive, Harris County engineer Jennifer Al- monte said. As of March 25, crews were finishing drainage and detention work. Timeline: April 2019-second quarter 2020 Cost: $4.4 million Funding source: Harris County

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PEDERSON RD.

10

After almost a year of delays, crews are expected to break ground on the Texas Heritage Parkway in May. That is according to Gary Gehbauer, an engineer with BGE Inc., who is involved with the project. Once construction begins, Texas Heritage Parkway is expected to take about 13-16 months to complete. The design plans for the Texas Heritage Parkway involve building a 6.4-mile, 200-foot-wide thoroughfare with two lanes in either direction and a median. Additionally, this new north-south road will have a total of 10 roundabouts from I-10 at Pederson Road to McKinnon Road just south of FM 1093 near down- town Fulshear. The project will be split into three con- struction sections with three construc- tion companies overseeing each phase, Gehbauer said. He did not provide addi- tional details regarding the companies or the project sections. Previous Community Impact Newspa- per reporting states half of the $48.8

CLAY RD.

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1093

ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF MARCH 25. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT KTYNEWS@COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM.

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

VOTE Katy-areaMay elections have been postponed until November

WHO IS ON THE BALLOT?

KATY CITY COUNCIL

KISD BOARD OF TRUSTEES

There are four contested races up for election on Katy City Council and on the Katy ISD board of trustees. Incumbent SOURCES: CITY OF KATY, KATY ISDCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Ward A:

Janet Corte Dharminder Dargan Diane Walker

Position 4

BY JEN PARA AND NOLA Z. VALENTE

and $30,000 for the city to hold elections, but continuously sanitizing surfaces and ensuring the safety of poll workers would add an unknown amount, City Secretary Becky McGrew said. The May 2 city of Katy ballot would have had seven candidates vying for two council member posi- tions—wards A and B— according to McGrew. The at-large council mem- ber position is also up for election this year. However, incumbent Chris Harris is running unopposed. Incumbent Janet Corte, Diane Walker and Dharminder Dargan are campaigning for the Ward A council position while Steve Pierson, Sam Pearson, Rory Robertson and incumbent Durran Dowdle are vying for Ward B. For similar reasons as the city of Katy, the KISD board of trustees voted unanimously to postpone

Michael Dillard Leah Wilson

Due to the spread of COVID-19, local ocials decided to postpone campaigns and elections to late 2020. Originally scheduled for May, city of Katy and Katy ISD board of trustees elections will be held on the general election date with federal, state and county elections on Nov. 3. Katy City Council members voted unanimously to postpone elections at the March 23 meeting after discussing concerns related to the logistics— including maintaining social distanc- ing standards—to conduct an election during a global pandemic. “Some of the decisions are prob- ably not going to be easy decisions, and they are certainly not going to be liked by everyone,” Mayor Bill Hastings said at the meeting. “But please, keep in mind that we are here to serve you.” It normally costs between $25,000

Ward B:

Position 5

Durran Dowdle Sam Pearson Steve Pierson Rory Robertson

Bill Lacy Greg Schulte

the May 2 elections to Nov. 3 at the regular March 30 meeting. Board Vice President Bill Lacy was absent. This action does not reopen candidate lings, and all applications for a ballot by mail led for the May 2 election will remain valid for the Nov. 3 election, per board documents. Michael Dillard and Leah Wilson are seeking election for Position 4 while incumbent Bill Lacy and Greg Schulte are seeking election for Position 5. The Position 3 seat is also up for election, and incumbent Ashley Vann

is running unopposed. KISD General Counsel Justin Gra- ham said board members serving in positions on the ballot will serve until the November election. Those elected in November will serve two-and-a- half-year terms to keep to district on the May election cycle. “This won’t be the last time we talk about it,” Graham said. “We’re going to have to order a new election; we’re going to have to talk about what the polling sites are going to be and how that may change.”

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

EDUCATION BRIEFS

News from Katy ISD

Celebrating 41 years in Katy area!

Katy Youth Soccer Club!

41 Years in Katy

Katy ISDCFOprojects lower tax rate KATY ISD At the special meeting of the Katy ISD board of trustees March 23, KISD Chief Financial Officer Chris- topher J. Smith provided an update on the 2020-21 school year budget. “We are going to be able to lower BY JEN PARA

• Ages 4 and U19 • Teams formed by neighborhood

to $0.016 due to House Bill 3, a school finance reform law passed during the 86th legislative session. The district’s total 2019-20 adopted tax rate is $1.4431 per $100 in valuation. The 2020-21 projected budget estimates $844.6 million in revenue, which is an increase of $49.6 million from the official 2019-20 budget, according to Smith’s presentation March 23.

• Full uniform provided • End of season awards to all players

• Standings for U8 and up. • Volunteer coaches receive free training and mandatory background checks • Most games on Saturday • Games played at Katy Soccer Park. • Fall online registration will open on May 10. www.katyyouthsoccer.com • Walk up registration Time and Location TBA. Please keep an eye on the website. • Season starts on September 12. Season ends Mid November.

the tax rate,” Smith said. “The ques- tion is, how much? And we won’t know that until summertime.” He estimates KISD will lower its maintenance and operations tax rate

BUDGETING THE 2020-21 SCHOOL YEAR KISD expects $49.6 million more in revenue in FY 2020-21. Official 2019-20 budget Projected 2020-21 budget

$439M

$422.7M

$16.4M

$16.4M

Under 5 & 6 Under 7 – 10 Under 11 and up

$110.00 $130.00 $140.00

TAX REVENUE

OTHER LOCAL REVENUE

www.katyyouthsoccer.com

Projected revenue increase: $16.3M

Projected revenue increase: $0

$334.4M

$45.5M

$300.4M

$43.3M

$9.3M

$12.2M

Projected revenue increase: $2.2M STATE TRS CONTRIBUTIONS

FEDERAL REVENUE

STATE FUNDING

Projected revenue increase: $34M

Projected revenue decrease: $2.9M

SOURCE: KATY ISD/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Katy ISD to hire up to605 newstaff for 2020-21 school year

Katy ISD 2020-21 campus staffing request The district will request 605 additional campus staff members for the next school year.

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345 secondary school staff members

BY JEN PARA

KATY ISD The Katy ISD board of trustees approved a campus staffing plan for the 2020-21 school year at the regular March 30 meeting. This will be a $24 million expense for the 2020-21 general fund. These staffing needs are based on expected year-over-year student growth of 4,244 students, Chief Human Resources Officer Brian Schuss said.

154 elementary school staff members

requested staff members 605

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

ADAPTING AMID THE CORONAVIRUS

CONTINUED FROM 1

president of research at the Greater Houston Partnership, said April 14 he believes the Greater Houston area will see more than 250,000 job losses for March and April alone due to the coronavirus and an energy industry downturn. The Katy Area Economic Development Council could not esti- mate howmany job losses would be in the Katy area as of press time, April 16. However, good news may be on the horizon for small businesses. Gov. Greg Abbott said during an April 13 press conference he may announce a plan for the state to open small busi- nesses. Abbott revealed this plan after press time, April 16. “If we stay focused and help each other we can overcome anything,” said Don McCoy, the president of the Fulshear-Katy Area Chamber of Com- merce. “We have been here before, and Texans found new ways to be fruitful. I believe we will come out of this stronger than ever.” Financial woes The worst part about canceling Home for the Holidays Spring Gift Market was telling the news to ven- dors, Stacie Henry said.

Local businesses are finding new ways to serve and help the Katy-area community.

To help vendors who would have sold their wares at the Home for the Holidays Spring Gift Market on April 4-5, the market went virtual. Shoppers can purchase items at a virtual market on Facebook. The Toasted Yolk is offering to-go and delivery orders only, and kitchen staff is also prepping breakfast tacos for local health care workers. Tacos are easy for on-the-go eating and easy to package separately.

Whiskey Cake Katy is selling meal kits with groceries. The Texas two-step ($48) comes with two marinated chickens, two ribeyes and two essentials—1 gallon of milk, 15 eggs, 1 pound of butter or 1 roll of toilet paper. MKT Distillery is manufacturing gallons of hand sanitizer for first responders. Residents can receive two free bottles on Saturdays. 1,850 free bottles of sanitizer were given out April 4 and 11.

Feeding health care providers

Meal and grocery kits for the family

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Shopping online

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

SUPPORTING L O C A L BUSINESSES

Henry owns Home for the Holidays Gift Market—which was going to host its annual spring market in Katy at the Leonard E. Merrell Center on April 4-5—and used to be a vendor herself before promoting events, she said. “This is so financially devastating for them,” she said. “We’re refunding, but not everyone is. ... I’m not wor- ried about myself; I’m worried about the vendors. … A vendor told me, ‘We don’t know if we’ll still be in business by Christmas.’” Professional services are also expe- riencing a slowdown, said Alex Hunt, a family law and estate planning attor- ney with Katy-area Hunt Law Firm PLLC. He said there may be some hesitation in taking action for major life decisions due to the stay-at-home orders and financial uncertainty. The effect of COVID-19 is also being felt in the local real estate industry, said Tim Sojka, a Realtor and the owner of See Tim Sell Property Group. Gaining loans from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Eco- nomic Security Act to help busi- nesses through the pandemic was not a smooth or easy process initially, Thomas said. He talked to three banks before one of them would approve his loan

establishments and residents to ask for recommendations. Many eateries are also giving back during the hard times. Toasted Yolk is putting together and donating break- fast taco trays once a week for health care workers at two Memorial Her- mann locations in Katy, Thomas said. He estimates each tray delivered is an approximate $150 donation. Business law attorney Michael Burg, who is also president of the Katy Bar Association, said his commercial landlord clients are being proactive with their tenants to work through the tough times. “They’re saying, ‘We’re here to work with you,’” Burg said. “The landlords don’t want empty space, whether you’re a dentist, a doctor or a pizza shop. They want you there.” Sojka stressed now is an important time for businesses to connect with existing and future customers. “The most important question any industry can ask right now is, ‘What can we do to help you?’” he said. Additional reporting by Danica Smithwick.

applications. He said businesses must have a relationship with a bank to have a chance at getting a loan. To make things more difficult, the forms and requirements changed daily. “We’re holding our breath on what to do next,” he said. Helping out Many local organizations are find- ing ways to help businesses in the Katy area get through COVID-19. The Katy EDC, Katy Area Chamber of Commerce and the Fulshear-Katy Area Chamber of Commerce are host- ing materials, training sessions and Facebook groups for businesses to obtain assistance for retaining cus- tomers and applying for financial assistance under the CARES Act. “Being an optimist and a cheer- leader for local businesses, I antici- pate that the Katy area will rally and rebound and that our residents will do everything they can to get our local economy back on solid ground,” said Rick Ellis, vice president of the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce. Several Facebook groups, includ- ing Katy Food To Go During COVID- 19 and the Katy/Fort Bend Foodies, are offering a platform for restau- rateurs to post updates about their

Many small locally owned businesses and restaurants are struggling to make ends meet amid stay-at-home orders.

HOW TO HELP:

Order food and drinks for takeout or delivery. (See Page 9 for a list of local options) Purchase retail needs from local vendors on their websites while their storefronts are closed. Sign up for virtual classes offered by gyms, art studios and other businesses temporarily open online only. (See Page 11 for more information) Buy gift cards to favorite local businesses and restaurants. Donate to a charitable fund.

For more information, visit communityimpact.com .

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KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

DATES TOKNOW April 1, known as census day, is the date that respondents report where they live. However, the Census Bureau adjusted deadlines on April 13 because of COVID-19. SOURCE: U.S. CENSUS BUREAUCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

MARCH 12 OCT. 31, 2020

DATE TBD

DATE TBD

AUG. 11 OCT. 31, 2020

APRIL 30, 2021

JULY 31, 2021

The bureau counts people who are experiencing homelessness.

The bureau delivers apportionment counts to the president and Congress.

Residents respond to the census.

Census takers follow up with households that have not responded yet.

Census takers visit hard-to-count populations.

The bureau sends population counts to states for redistricting.

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all of which could aect residents, Loveday said. “Billions of dollars in federal fund- ing goes tohospitals, redepartments, schools, roads and other resources,” said Brandee Tiemann, chair of the 2020 Waller County census commit- tee. “Communities lose federal fund- ing for each person not counted. We need everyone to count.” The U.S. Census Bureau reported it undercounted Texans by 239,500 people in the last census. At $1,500 per person per year, an estimate from the bureau, the state lost billions in federal funding that goes toward programs such as sub- sidized school lunches, student and housing loans, and infrastructure and transportation projects, Loveday said. To ensure they do not lose out on this funding, Katy-area counties are spending funds to ensure every per- son is counted. The Harris County Commission- ers Court approved a $4 million bud- get for 2020 census outreach, and Fort Bend County commissioners approved a $414,500 contract to pro- mote a full count of its residents. Waller County did not spend any funds to ensure a complete count, Tiemann said. The committee used available resources in county oces such as iers and Facebook posts. An accurate census count drives local business decisions, Fort Bend County Judge KP George said. “Businesses use census data to decide where to build factories, oces and stores, and this creates jobs,” George said. “Developers use the census to build new homes and revitalize old neighborhoods.”

With an accurate count, Texas is expected to gain at least three seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, jumping from 36 to 39. Once the data is approved, the cen- sus is dispersed to state governments and used by legislators—primarily the party in power—to determine redistricting. Some Katy-area residents are at a higher risk of not being counted. Cen- sus takers consistently have a dicult time counting immigrants, young children and people who are home- less or disabled, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. George said this is a priority for Fort Bend County. “We are especially prioritizing his- torically ‘hard to count’ communities to ensure we get an accurate count so that folks who live in these areas are no longer underrepresented,” he said. On April 13, the U.S. Census Bureau announced eld operations are sus- pended and will resume after June 1 because of the coronavirus, and the deadline to complete the count has been pushed from August to October. In response, Mansoor said advo- cates have shifted to digital outreach to get a complete count. “We’re still looking to leverage those trusted relationships,” she said. “We’re just doing it in a dierent way now.” Additional reporting by Shawn Arrajj, Emma Freer, Anna Herod, Daniel Houston, Ali Linan and Olivia Lueckemeyer.

CONTINUED FROM 1

This makes a complete count of the population for the 2020 census a pri- ority for the Katy area, which includes Fort Bend, Harris and Waller counties, ocials said. As of April 14, the Katy- area response rates range from 27.9%- 68.4%, depending on the census tract. The census is a constitutionally mandated survey taken every 10 years to count each person where they live on April 1, said Douglas Loveday, senior media specialist for the U.S. Census Bureau. The distributed cen- sus is condential and anonymous. The results are then used to deter- mine federal funding allocation deci- sions government representatives make at the federal and local levels, REACHING A COMPLETE COUNT Participation varied throughout the Katy area for the 2010 census.

2010 response rates:

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72.8%

Fort Bend County

65.1%

Harris County

54.5%

Waller County

For more information, visit communityimpact.com .

SOURCE: U.S. CENSUS BUREAUCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

19

KATY EDITION • APRIL 2020

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