Lake Houston - Humble - Kingwood Edition | June 2021

LAKE HOUSTON HUMBLE KINGWOOD EDITION

2021 H E A L T H C A R E E D I T I O N

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VOLUME 6, ISSUE 2  JUNE 25JULY 22, 2021

LakeHouston-area hospitals, educators attempt to keep up with rising nursing shortage

DEMAND

The Texas Department of State Health Services projects the Gulf Coast region’s demand for full-time registered nurses will outpace the region’s supply over the next decade.

OUTPACES SUPPLY

Projected unmet demand for registered nurses by 2032

Supply and demand of Gulf Coast registered nurses Projected demand Projected supply Percentage of demand unmet

BY DANICA LLOYD & KELLY SCHAFLER

Hospitals in the Greater Houston area and across the country have reported higher rates of turnover and sta burnout during the pandemic as nurses faced heavier workloads and treated critically ill COVID-19 patients, according to a February study from the U.S. Oce of Inspector General. At the same time, local educators training the next generation of nurses said programming was temporarily paused; already-limited capacities in clinical programs became even more restrictive; and graduations were delayed. But hospitals across the state have faced nursing shortages since long before the pandemic, health care ocials said. The Texas Department of State Health Services projects the Gulf Coast region will have a decit of 21,400 registered nurses by 2032 as the growing demand continues to outweigh the supply. “Health care workforce shortages existed before the pandemic. We didn’t have enough doctors; we didn’t have enough nurses, and the pandemic has denitely exacerbated that problem,” American Medical Association President Susan Bailey said. The median turnover rate for registered nurses in Gulf Coast hospitals was 17.5% in 2019, according to DSHS data. Since the pandemic began, many nurses have considered leaving the profession between the anxiety over bringing COVID-19 home to their families and losing at least 4,000 health care workers

1

4

100,000

5

2

6

21.9%

90,000

1 Panhandle: 0% 2 West Texas: 4.2% 3 South Texas: 6.7% 5 East Texas: 17.9% 4 North Texas: 14.7%

7

3

19.9%

80,000

18%

8

16.2%

14.6%

70,000

12.9%

6 Central Texas: 19.8%

11.4%

10.2%

60,000

7 Gulf Coast: 21.9% 8 Rio Grande

0

Valley: 27.2%

2018

2020 2022 2024 2026 2028 2030 2032

SOURCES: TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF STATE HEALTH SERVICESCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

to the virus nationally, Bailey said. In the last decade, the Gulf Coast region’s supply of registered nurses has grown by 45%, per the DSHS, but that growth is not enough to keep up with the population. Nursing education leaders said there is not a shortage of individuals interested in the profession, but training programs are competitive and expensive. Nickie Loftin, nursing program director at Lone Star College-Kingwood, said 1,500 individuals applied to the college’s nursing program in January,

but the college can only accept 100 applicants to its registered nursing program, 60 for its transition program and 24 for the licensed vocational nursing program each year. While the college used to accept 80 students per year to its RN program, it increased its capacity to 100 students this spring semester, she said. “I’m trying to increase my enrollment as much as I possibly can to meet the demands of the community, but at the same time having to balance the ability

CONTINUED ON 26

HEALTHCARE EDITION 2021 SPONSORED BY • HCAHoustonHealthcareKingwood • Kingwood Emergency Hospital • Lone Star College

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LAKE HOUSTON  HUMBLE  KINGWOOD EDITION • JUNE 2021

IMPACTS

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

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LAKE HOUSTON WILDERNESS PARK

1485

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NEWCANEY

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VALLEY RANCH PKWY.

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MARKET PLACE DR.

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Urgent Doc Urgent Care Clinic

VALLEY RANCH CROSSING DR.

SORTERS MCCLELLAN RD.

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COURTESY URGENT DOC URGENT CARE CLINIC

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KINGWOOD

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is 100,000 square feet, opened in the Valley Ranch master-planned community. The business features climate-controlled space separated into rentable units, a state-of-the-art security system, an elevator, and carts and dollies. 281-779-8690. www.valley-ranch.com 6 Camp Bow Wow , a national dog care franchise, opened a new location June 11 at 11321 N. Sam Houston Parkway E., Humble. The facility oers a variety of services for dogs, including day care, boarding with a 24-hour monitoring system and grooming. The facility will also oer training in the future. 832-304-3641. www.campbowwow.com 7 National salon franchise Sport Clips Haircuts of Humble-Townsen Crossing celebrated its grand opening April 29 at 9490 FM 1960 Bypass Road W., Humble. The barber shop lets customers watch a variety of sports while oering haircuts from stylists who specialize in men’s and boy’s hair care, neck and shoulder massages, and steamed towel treatments. 281-319-4468. www.haircutmentowsencrossing humbletx.com. 8 Pavilion at The Groves , a luxury garden-style apartment community by Martin Fein Interests, is now open at 15951 Woodland Hills Drive, Humble. The 318-unit community features one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments as well as three-bedroom townhomes with units ranging from 556-1,734 square feet. Community amenities include an innity edge-style pool, a 24-hour fully equipped tness center with a children’s room and a tness lounge, an on-site playground with soft turf and a swing set, and a dog park,

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W. FORK OF THE SAN JACINTO RIVER

ATASCA OAKS DR.

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TIMBER FOREST DR.

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GEORGE BUSH INTERCONTINENTAL AIRPORT

W. LAKE HOUSTON PKWY.

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HUMBLE

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ATASCOCITA

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RALSTON RD.

ASSAY ST.

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REDEMPTION SQUARE RD.

MAP NOT TO SCALE N TM; © 2021 COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER CO. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

N . L A K E H O U S T

NOWOPEN 1 Fountainwood at Lake Houston opened its independent-living units in early May at 17990 W. Lake Houston Parkway, Atascocita. Upon completion, the $45 million development from The National Realty Group will consist of independent- and assisted-living facilities as well as memory care for residents with Alzheimer’s. The business aims to open its assisted-living and memory care services in July. The community features a pool, tness classes, and an on-site restaurant and spa. 281-612-3585. www.fountainwoodatlakehouston.com

4 Burn Boot Camp Kingwood opened May 24 at 1414 Northpark Drive, Ste. E, Kingwood, in the Centre at Northpark shopping center. Franchisees Rebecca and Eric Parsons operate the location, which oers 45-minute, high-intensity cardio and strength workouts for all tness levels. Membership also includes a child-watch program and focus meetings, where members can get nutritional guidance from a trainer. 832-304-4114. www.facebook.com/ burnbootcampkingwoodtx 5 Valley Ranch Self Storage opened May 21 at 21910 Valley Ranch Crossing Drive, New Caney. The center, which

2 Urgent Doc Urgent Care Clinic opened June 1 at 20304 Hwy. 59, New Caney. The health care provider features a walk-in clinic and emergency room, and oers physicals, workers compensation and occupational medicine, and X-ray orders from other doctors. 346-954-9998. www.urgentdoc.com 3 Mr. Gatti’s Pizza opened May 26 at 1345 Kingwood Drive, Kingwood. The eatery is a full-service buet oering pizzas, pastas, salads and chicken wings and has an arcade. It will oer delivery in the future. 832-644-8780. www.gattispizza.com

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COMPILED BY WESLEY GARDNER, KELLY SCHAFLER & HANNAH ZEDAKER

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Russo’s New York Pizzeria

The Aria at Ralston

The Atrium Center will be used for weddings, events and community events.

COURTESY ROCKIN’ AD PHOTOGRAPHY

COURTESY THE SIGNORELLI CO.

RENDERING COURTESY THE ARIA AT RALSON

FEATURED IMPACT NAME CHANGE The East Montgomery County Improvement District Complex at 21575 Hwy. 59, Ste. 205, New Caney, will be repurposed into a new event venue called The Atrium Center , according to a June 11 news release from the EMCID. The venue will be able to be reserved for meetings, conferences, weddings, anniversary celebrations, birthday parties and community events. The 20-year-old building will also be improved to feature new carpet, event space furnishings and an enlarged outdoor space by the pond and fountains, according to the release. “While our building has been closed to the public for the last year, we’ve 15 Nimble Workspaces is tentatively scheduled to open in September at 250 Assay St., Houston, in Redemption Square. McCord Development will own and operate the new workspace, according to a June 8 news release. According to Ian Adler, director of marketing for McCord Development, Nimble Workspaces is aimed at providing a ready-to-use work environment for businesses that will oer private oces as well as meeting and conference spaces. Additional amenities at Nimble Workspaces will include a sound-absorbing podcasting room, a tranquil mother’s room and a 1,500-square-foot Nimble Space for large teams. The workspace will also oer networking events, complimentary private Wi-Fi, covered garage parking,

among others. The community’s leasing oce opened May 20, and move-ins began

12 Houston-based eatery BB’s Tex-Orleans will open this fall at 25635 Hwy. 59, Kingwood, according to Maricela Bassler, chief brand ocer for BB’s Tex-Orleans. The eatery will feature boiled crawsh, po’boys and homemade gumbo, other Cajun-inspired items and a full-service bar. The new location comes after the eatery opened a pop-up trailer in Valley Ranch Town Center for three months in March 2020. The Kingwood eatery is one of three opening this year with the other two being in Tomball and San Antonio. www.bbstexorleans.com 13 Rosati’s Pizza will open a new location in August at 25661 Hwy. 59 N., Kingwood. The Chicago-based brand specializes in thin-crust and deep-dish pizzas. The menu also features chicken wings, pastas, salads, desserts, beer, wine and mixed drinks. Owned by local franchisees Calvin Dodson and Darren Frankenberger, the eatery is replacing Fuji Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi o Northpark Drive. Rosati’s Pizza has more than 200 locations nationwide with one already in Cypress and another aimed to open soon in The Woodlands area on FM 1488, according to the website. www.rosatispizza.com 14 The Aria at Ralston , a multifamily development, will open in the rst quarter of 2022 at 14809 Ralston Road, Humble. The 178-unit complex is a development from Aria Developers, a real estate company with six other apartment developments in the Houston area. Aria Developers Managing Partner Nadeem Abassi said the community will feature one-, two- and three-bedroom options, a tness center, a swimming pool and a small dog park. www.thearialife.com

had time to assess the building, and we’re currently making repairs and improvements to the facility,” EMCID President and CEO Frank McCrady said in the news release. The EMCID is booking the venue for events in 2022, but limited booking for this fall will be available. 281-354-5020. www.atriumcentertx.com

in early June. 866-205-5216. www.pavilionatthegroves.com

9 Baan Thai Cuisine opened June 8 at 5350 FM 1960 E., Humble. Baan Thai’s menu oers a wide variety of popular comfort Thai food, including selections of pad Thai, stir fry, pan fried noodles, Thai curries, soups, barbecue and seafood. The restaurant supports local and sustainable farms and believes in farm-to-table sourcing as well as the use of fresh and natural ingredients in its dishes, owner Phanee Holt said. 346-616-5033. www.baanthaicuisinehumble.com 10 Russo’s New York Pizzeria , a pizza chain with locations across the U.S., held a soft opening for its newest location June 19 at 21572 Market Place Drive, Ste. 100, New Caney. Located in Valley Ranch Town Center, the New York-style restaurant oers specialty pizzas, pastas, calzones and sandwiches, including a burrata pizza and true mushroom pasta. The Italian eatery—located in the space formerly occupied by RC’s NYC Pizza & Pasta—also features an outdoor patio. 281-354-4815. www.nypizzeria.com COMING SOON 11 The Bradford Memory Care will open in early July at 19414 Atasca Oaks Drive, Humble. The business will oer memory care services and assisted living for individuals with Alzheimer’s and dementia. The memory care facility will feature 38 private suites and 24/7 nursing care upon completion. 346-770-8804. www.thebradfordmemorycare.com

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controlled access to the building, furniture, and a hospitality area with a bottomless coee bar and cold brew on tap. Per the release, private oce membership will start at $725 per month, and day pass pricing will be set before the workspace opens. 713-830-8202. www.nimbleworkspaces.com 16 Crust Pizza Co ., a franchise based in The Woodlands, will open a new restaurant in the fourth quarter of 2021 at 30129 Rock Creek Drive, Kingwood. The Chicago-inspired eatery will oer specialty thin-crust pizzas, pastas, hot subs, wine and beer and feature an outdoor patio. Aaron Young, marketing director for Crust Pizza Co., said the new location in the Kingwood Place shopping center is under construction. www.crustpizzaco.com

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LAKE HOUSTON  HUMBLE  KINGWOOD EDITION • JUNE 2021

TODO LIST

June & July events

COMPILED BY BROOKE ONTIVEROS

9:30-10:30 a.m. Free. Visitor Center at Mercer Botanic Gardens’ East Side Main Garden, 22306 Aldine Westeld Road, Humble. 713-274-4160. www.hcp4.net 26 SOIL SCIENCE 1.0 Attendees can advance their gardening skills with a class taught by a specialized soil scientist. Learn about the best soils for dierent uses and why it is important to nd the right one. 10 a.m. Free. Kingwood Garden Center, 1216 Stonehollow Drive, Kingwood. 281-358-1805. www.facebook.com/kingwoodgardencenter JULY 02 THROUGH03 SUMMER LOCKIN Drop children o for an overnight stay at a gymnastics center. Pizza, games, movies and an open gym are available for children ages 6-12. Children should bring their own pajamas, sleeping bags and pillow, and snacks. 7 p.m.-8 a.m. $60 (per registered student), $70 (per non-registered student). Rowland Ballard School, 19505 W. Lake Houston Parkway, Humble. 281-812-7835. www.facebook.com/rowlandballardacademy 03 LIBERTY ON THE LAWN Catch an early reworks showing with live music by Bri Bagwell, No Rehearsal and Jenna Lynn at Liberty on the Lawn. Child-friendly activities include face painting, a bounce house and caricature drawing. Bibo’s Bistro and Lupo Pizzeria serve dine-in and take-out for the events, and attendees are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets for the reworks show. 5-9 p.m. Free (admission), $5 (game tickets). Redemption Square,

250 Assay St., Houston. 713-860-3000. www.redemptionsquare.com 04 VALLEY RANCH FOURTH FEST Visit the Valley Ranch Fourth Fest, and feed animals at the petting zoo, or grab a drink at the beer garden. The event includes live music performed by the Eli Young Band and Wade Bowen. The event also features a classic car show and children’s zone complete with a rock wall and obstacle course. Nearly 15 dierent food vendors, such as Bahama Buck’s Shaved Ice and Mama’s Corny Cob, are on-site. 4-10 p.m. $25 (general admission), $50 (VIP admission), Free (age 12 and younger), $10 (parking). The Hill at Valley Ranch, 21562 Valley Ranch Parkway, New Caney. 713-452-1700. www.thehillvalleyranch.com 10 DUELING PIANOS CONCERT Watch Grammy-recognized pianist Brian Holland, drummer Danny Coots and Boogie Woogie Hall of Fame pianist Carl Sonny Leyland perform their album, “Old Fashioned.” 7 p.m. $20. Charles Bender Performing Arts Center, 611 Higgins St., Humble. 281-446-4140. www.humblepac.com 15 MOVIES UNDER THEMOON: ‘TROLLSWORLD TOUR’ View ‘Trolls World Tour’ on a 32-foot wide screen at Kings Harbor. No outside food or drinks are allowed, as restaurants at Kings Harbor are open for attendees to dine in or order food to-go. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own blankets and chairs to watch the movie. 8:30 p.m. Free. Kings Harbor, 4501 Magnolia Cove Drive, Kingwood. 713-629-5200. https://kings-harbor.com

JULY 04

JULY FOURTH FIREWORKS FESTIVAL KINGWOOD TOWN CENTER PARK

Local musician Andy Rodrigues hosts the annual July Fourth Fireworks Festival, during which the Continental House Band and the Honky Tonk Revivalists perform live music. The event also features local vendors selling food and crafts. 3-9 p.m. Free. Kingwood Town Center Park, 8 N. Main St., Kingwood. 346-600-2366. www.towncenterevents.com (Courtesy Town Center Events)

JUNE 25 BEYOND BEES

Attendees are guided through the bee colonies of Mercer Botanic Gardens’ East Side Gardens and learn about the critical role carpenter and honeybees play in the environment. Attendees also learn about holistic gardening practices as well as ongoing conservation eorts by Mercer Botanic Gardens sta. Online registration closes 48 hours prior to the event.

Find more or submit Lake Houston, Humble and Kingwood 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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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES

COMPILED BY KELLY SCHAFLER

UPCOMING PROJECTS

ONGOING PROJECTS

1314

KINGS PKWY.

B

494

A

PHASE 1

1314

LOWE RD.

59

FERNBANK FOREST DR.

A

KINGS PARK WAY

SORTERS MCCLELLAN RD.

494

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1960

BOUNDARY WATERS LN.

NORTHPARK PLAZA DR.

59

B

WALDEN FOREST DR.

N O R T H P

MADERA RUN PKWY.

W. LAKE HOUSTON PKWY.

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N

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Madera Run Parkway expansion Construction on Harris County Precinct 2’s Madera Run Parkway expansion began last May and will be completed in July. It will expand the road to four lanes between Kings Parkway and Boundary Waters Lane, add a median and create a bridge over a Harris County Flood Control District channel near Fernbank Forest Drive. The project will be substantially completed by June 24, but the road will open in early July. Timeline: May 26, 2020-early July 2021 Cost: $3.7 million Funding source: Harris County Precinct 2

Loop 494 expansion The Texas Department of Transportation’s project to reconstruct Loop 494 between Sorters McClellan Road and Northpark Plaza Drive has been delayed. The project will expand the road from two to four lanes, and add a raised turf median, center turn lanes at intersections and sidewalks. TxDOT Public Information Officer Emily Black said the completion date has been pushed from the third quarter of 2021 to the second quarter of 2022 due to weather and utility delays. Timeline: July 2019-second quarter 2022 Cost: $15.1 million Funding source: TxDOT

Sorters McClellan Road expansion Segment 1 of Montgomery County Precinct 4’s Sorters McClellan Road project will bid in late June. The project will expand the road to four lanes with a center turn lane between FM 1314 and Northpark Drive. A Segment 1 spans from FM 1314 to the bridge just south of Lowe Road, while B Segment 2 extends to 400 feet south of Northpark. Segment 1 will break ground in two months, followed by Segment 2. Timeline: TBD Cost: $7 million (Segment 1); $7.4 million (Segment 2) Funding source: Montgomery County Precinct 4

Atascocita Hike & Bike Trail (Phase 2) Harris County Precinct 2 has designed A Phase 2 of the Atascocita Hike & Bike Trail and is negotiating right of way. The concrete trail will connect to B Phase 1 of the trail. Phase 2 has the 8-foot-wide trail moving south down West Lake Houston Parkway to Walden Forest Drive. Precinct 2 officials planned to bid and award the construction contract for Phase 2 in the third quarter of 2021; however, until right of way issues are resolved, bidding has been delayed. Timeline: TBD Cost: $5 million Funding source: Harris County Precinct 2

ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF JUNE 17. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT LHKNEWS@COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM.

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LAKE HOUSTON - HUMBLE - KINGWOOD EDITION • JUNE 2021

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

GOVERNMENT State to awardHarris County $750M in flood aid funds

FLAWED FUNDING According to county officials, 40% of the $125 billion in damage caused by Harvey in the Gulf Coast area took place within Harris County.

BY DANICA LLOYD

Harris County and add at least $500 million to the Regional Mitigation Program—$418 million of which would go to the regional council of governments that includes Harris County, officials said. Bush blamed the federal government’s “red tape” for Harris County not being awarded funding. “Money from the federal government is, as always, tied up with endless mounds of red tape and bureaucracy,” Bush said in a June 17 statement. “During Hurricane Harvey, Texans in Harris County undoubtedly suffered some of the costliest damage in the state. After considerable back and forth with the [President Joe] Biden administration’s Department of Housing and Urban Development, the General Land Office will allocate $750 million in funding for mitigation efforts in Harris County and continue to work around the federal government’s ever-changing bureaucratic demands.”

Harvey in the Gulf Coast area took place within Harris County. However, county officials were notified in May they had not been awarded any grant funding. County officials said they believe the formula GLO officials used to determine which grant applications would be awarded funding was discriminatory against large, urban areas such as Harris County and the city of Houston. Following requests from county leaders to reconsider, Bush requested a direct allocation to Harris County for flood-mitigation efforts from HUD less than a week later on May 26. However, that request was denied, according to a June 14 letter from HUD. Officials said the law prevents HUD from providing a direct allocation of Community Development Block Grant Mitigation funding to the county. Instead, the GLO will now draft an action plan to award $750 million for

Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush announced plans to subaward Harris County $750 million in flood mitigation funding following denial by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, according to a June 17 news release. Harris County officials had previously anticipated receiving $1 billion in Hurricane Harvey relief funding from HUD. However, instead of directly allocating the funds to Harris County, HUD sent the relief money to the Texas General Land Office to be made available as competitive grants. As previously reported by Community Impact Newspaper , the Harris County Flood Control District submitted $915 million in grant applications last October in hopes of receiving federal funds earmarked in 2018 for flood mitigation efforts following Harvey in 2017. According to county officials, 40% of the $125 billion in damage caused by

February 2018: $4.3 billion in federal funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is earmarked for Texas. January 2020: HUD sends money to the Texas General Land Office for competitive grants. October 2020: Harris County applies for $915million in GLO grant funding for flood projects. May 2021: The GLO awards the $1 billion first round of Harvey relief funds May 21; none are awarded to Harris County nor Houston. GLO Commissioner George P. Bush requests HUD send $750million directly to Harris County on May 26. June 2021: The GLO announces plans to award $750 million for Harris County and add at least $500 million to the Regional Mitigation Program.

SOURCES: TEXAS GENERAL LAND OFFICE, HARRIS COUNTY/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Through our affiliation with Altus Baytown Hospital, your Kingwood and Porter Neighbors Emergency Centers now accept Medicare. We’re proud to be able to offer extraordinary emergency care to all members of our community. We’re also in-network with BlueCross BlueShield, Aetna, and Cigna. NE IGHBORHOOD! THE BEST NEWS I N THE Your Neighbors Emergency Centers accept Medicare.

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LAKE HOUSTON - HUMBLE - KINGWOOD EDITION • JUNE 2021

FM 1960

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Beltway 8 at Lockwood

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

EDUCATIONBRIEFS Humble ISDapproves $549.6Mbudget for 2021-22 News from Humble & New Caney ISDs

BUMPING PAY Humble ISD is altering various financial compensation for district employees in the 2021-22 year.

BY WESLEY GARDNER

COVID[-19] lockdown, and we didn’t know what was going to happen with the state budget,” she said. “A lesser staff may have been anxious about the fact that we did a [compensation] freeze to keep the family whole. Our staff was completely supportive. ... I’m very pleased with the work [human resources] and finance have done to bring together this compensation improvement.” According to HISD Chief Financial Officer Billy Beattie, the district will bring in roughly 1,000 new students in the 2021-22 school year. To account for that growth, the district will open Autumn Creek Elementary

This fiscal year, however, the district’s budget includes a 3% average raise for all employees, a $1,400 retention stipend added to the base pay for teachers and a $1,000 stipend for other staff as well as raising the minimum hourly wage for full-time auxiliary staff members to $11.50. The district is also bumping its starting teacher salary from $56,700 to $59,000 annually. HISD Superintendent Elizabeth Fagen lauded the additional compensation included in the new budget during the June 15 meeting. “Last year was a very uncertain year when we ended the year in the

HUMBLE ISD The Humble ISD board of trustees unanimously approved a $549.6 million budget for the 2021-22 school year at a special called meeting June 15. The budget, which includes the general fund, the child nutrition fund and the debt service fund, is operating on about $550.6 million in revenue, leaving the district with a surplus of a little more than $1 million for the coming school year. Last year, the district’s approved budget did not include employee raises due to the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic.

$59,000: $1,400: $1,000: $11.50:

teacher base pay

retention stipend for teachers retention stipend for other staff

minimum hourly wage for full-time auxiliary staff members

SOURCE: HUMBLE ISD/ COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

School in the fall and plans to open the district’s 10th middle school the following school year.

Newcomers, long-standing trustees take oath of office for Humble ISDboard of trustees

NewCaney ISDhires newprincipal, human resources director

BY WESLEY GARDNER

Also at the June 21 meeting, the board considered

NEWCANEY ISD The New Caney ISD board of trustees promoted a pair of internal employees to administrative roles within the district June 21. NCISD Superintendent Matt Calvert announced Porter Elementary School Principal Nicole Land would be taking over as the district’s human resources director, while Donda Slaydon, Porter High School dean of instruction, will take over the role of principal of Porter Elementary School. “We’re excited to see the things you’ll each do in your new position, and it’s always exciting to promote and grow from within,” Calvert said during the meeting. “Thank you all for your service in the past, and we’re looking forward to all of the exciting things in the future.” Land has worked in education for 13 years after receiving a master’s degree in education from Stephen F. Austin State University. Slaydon has been with the district for 20 years, during which she worked with special programs with an emphasis in curriculum and instruction.

HUMBLE ISD Two new Humble ISD board members and two re-elected members were sworn in June 8. Incumbents BY KELLY SCHAFLER

but ultimately deferred action on the purchase of a 25-acre parcel of land and the acceptance of a donation of 7 acres of land at the northeast corner of Hwy. 59 and Eagle Drive in New Caney. Humble ISD board of trustees will meet at 7 p.m. July 20 at 20200 Eastway Village Drive, Humble. 281-641-1000. www.humbleisd.net New Caney ISD board of trustees will meet at 6 p.m. July 19 at 21360 Valley Ranch Parkway, New Caney. 281-577-8600. www.newcaneyisd.org MEETINGSWE COVER Slaydon Land

Parker

Kirchhofer

Robert Sitton and Martina Lemond Dixon were re-elected to positions 1 and 5, respectively, in the May 1 election, while board newcomers Chris Parker and Ken Kirchhofer won their bids for positions 3 and 4, respectively. Parker is a Kingwood High School alumnus, a licensed insurance agent and a longtime volunteer. Kirchhofer is the director of operations at the Atascocita Golf Club and has been active in HISD programs since 2011.

Meet Angela Mosley-Nunnery, MD Primary Care Physician Near You Call 281.312.8521 to make an appointment today!

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LAKE HOUSTON - HUMBLE - KINGWOOD EDITION • JUNE 2021

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

AT THE CAPITOL Bills passed in legislative session aimto tackle criminal justice reform

BY WESLEY GARDNER

Additionally, Huffman lauded a pair of bills, House bills 492 and 929, which address no-knock warrant limitations and procedures for police officer body-worn cameras, respectively. She said she was proud of the Senate’s work this session. “[While] there were other bills that did not have the votes to pass, I am hopeful that these bills will continue to strengthen the crucial relationship between law enforcement officers and the communities they serve,” she said. However, Sandra Guerra Thompson, director of the University of Houston Criminal Justice Institute, said HB 3712, which prohibits chokeholds, has limited reach because many agencies already prohibit chokeholds. She also cited concern over requiring officers to intervene if they see another officer use excessive force, noting exceptions exist if the other officer deems the force is necessary to get the person into custody. “There’s only a duty to intervene if the officer knows that excessive force is being used that’s illegal,” Sandra Guerra Thompson said. “All of those things are judgment calls.” Still, Sandra Guerra Thompson said she saw some value in the laws that did pass. “They’re important in terms of signaling, perhaps,” she said. “They would require some training, I would think, so officers are told ‘You do have this duty to intervene.’” Meanwhile, HBs 829 and 88 authored by Senfronia Thompson that failed to pass would have required law enforcement agencies to adopt a set schedule of disciplinary actions for officers and eliminated qualified immunity for officers being sued over issues including the use of force. Sandra Guerra Thompson said she believed those bills would have had a greater effect in instituting substantial change. “I think we would have seen more of a cultural change if we saw bills passing that had to do more with discipline or lawsuits,” she said. “Those kinds of bills would definitely have changed the culture in terms of forcing more accountability.”

LEGISLATIVE RUNDOWN A number of bills aimed at reforming Texas’ criminal justice system were penned during the 2021 legislative session. Here is a look at how they fared.

Lawmakers in Texas rounded out the 2021 legislative session in late May, passing several bills aimed at addressing police conduct. While some Houston-area elected officials believe the passed bills marked significant improvements in the criminal justice system, others believe more is needed to enact substantial change. Criminal justice reform was a prominent issue this session after Houston native George Floyd died last year, although numerous bills failed to gain approval in both the House and Senate. Floyd died last May after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee against Floyd’s neck for nine minutes, sparking protests and demonstrations nationwide calling for reform. Chauvin was convicted in April of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, according to verdicts issued at the Fourth Judicial District Court of Minnesota. State Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, who served as chair of the Senate Committee on Jurisprudence, said the Senate worked with law enforcement and community groups to develop and pass key reform bills. “The Senate has worked diligently on criminal justice reforms designed to instill public confidence in the justice system, ensure accountability and preserve public safety,” she said. However, state Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, who authored several bills pertaining to criminal justice reform that did not pass, said there was still more work to be done. She represents a portion of the city of Humble. “It was not a good session for criminal justice,” Senfronia Thompson said. “I think there was some change that we can build upon in the future.” A closer look Among the bills that passed are a ban on certain police chokeholds and neck restraints and a requirement for officers to intervene when they witness their colleagues using excessive force.

Awaiting governor action*

Stalled in House committee

Stalled in a Senate committee

Signed into law

House Bill 88 would have eliminated qualified immunity for officers being sued over issues including the use of force. HB 492 would limit no-knock warrants, in which officers can enter a home without announcing themselves. The bill would only allow judges to sign warrants approved by a police chief or sheriff. Officers must be in uniform to execute the warrant. HB 829 would have required law enforcement agencies to adopt a set schedule of disciplinary actions to impose on officers based on the current wrongdoing and the officers’ prior record. HB 830 would have limited officers’ ability to arrest individuals for traffic offenses that would have at most resulted in a fine. HB 929 would require police officers to activate body cameras during investigations. They can only deactivate cameras if they encounter a person unrelated to the investigation. HB 3712 would prohibit chokeholds unless an officer believes the restraint will prevent serious bodily injury or death. It would require officers to prevent others from using excessive force and aid a person who has been seriously injured.

*IF THE GOVERNOR NEITHER VETOES NOR SIGNS THE BILL WITHIN 10 DAYS, THE BILL BECOMES A LAW. SOURCE: TEXAS LEGISLATURE ONLINE/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

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LAKE HOUSTON - HUMBLE - KINGWOOD EDITION • JUNE 2021

PUBLIC SAFETY BRIEFS

Porter FireDepartment tomove into newstation

Atascocita FireDepartment to replace StationNo. 29

BY WESLEY GARDNER

ROLLING HILLS DR.

BY WESLEY GARDNER

The Porter Fire Department is getting an upgrade as ocials relocate Station No. 122 down the street to a new, more streamlined facility. Porter Fire Department Chief Carter Johnson said the new station—located at 20515 FM 1314 in Porter—is expected to be operational in July. The original station at 17290 Porter Lane will either be sold or used for storage, Johnson said. According to Johnson, the move to the new facility was needed to address growth both within the department as well as in the neighborhoods the department serves. “The current station we are at was originally built when we were a volunteer re department,” he said. “As we continued to grow, we just outgrew the facility.” While the overall cost for the new facility

The Atascocita Fire Department is preparing for the construction of a new station that will replace Fire Station No. 29 after more than 20 years. The new facility will be built on the same property as the existing station—4000 Atascocita Road, Humble—after the old station is demolished. According to Atascocita Fire Department Chief Mike Mulligan, the move is part of a multiphase project that will include the build-out of temporary living quarters at the

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The new Porter re station is set to open in July. (Wesley Gardner/Community Impact Newspaper)

is roughly $4.5 million, Johnson said the new facility came at no additional cost to taxpayers. Among the improvements at the new facility, Johnson noted the station will be able to house emergency medical services workers and vehicles in addition to reghters.

department’s upcoming maintenance shop located at Rustic Timbers Drive and Will Clayton Parkway in Humble. The new station will cost about $7.5 million.

WILL CLAYTON PKWY.

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Mayor Turner oers 18%raise to reghters

Local re department earns Class 1 ranking

BY EMMA WHALEN

BY KELLY SCHAFLER

reghters’ pay to $21.35 per hour, are based on comparisons between Houston and other major Texas cities, including Dallas, Fort Worth and San Antonio, Turner said. Beginning July 1, 6% raises will be distributed over the next three years; Houston City Council approved the scal year 2021-22 budget on June 2, which included the rst 6% raise. Totaling over $115 million, the raises will be funded by the city’s allocation of over $600 million in federal funds provided through the American Rescue Act. Houston Fireghters will receive a 6% raise every year for three years.

Mayor Sylvester Turner on May 19 oered an 18% raise over the next three years for Houston reghters, representing another development in years of legal battles between the city and the reghters union. Union President Marty Lancton, however, said the proposal is “not even close” to resolving the issues between the Houston Professional Fireghters Association and the mayor. He also claimed he was not consulted by the mayor prior to the announcement, which he referred to as a bonus rather than a raise. “When you don’t have specics in a contract to know where you’re supposed to be, the law states what the reghter’s rights are,” he said. The raises, which will bring

The Atascocita Fire Department earned a coveted safety ranking that made property insurance premiums lower for residents in the Atascocita area after it became eective June 1. The department was ranked as Class 1 in the Insurance Services Oce’s Public Protection Classication, meaning the department provides “superior property re protection,” according to the ISO website. Only 1% of re departments earn the Class 1 ranking, according to a May 10 news release from AFD. AFD Public Information Ocer Jerry Dilliard said via email the certication means insurance companies will incorporate the classication into underwriting

The Atascocita Fire Department serves more than 80,000 residents. (Courtesy Atascocita Fire Department)

and pricing analysis for residential and commercial insurance premiums.

“All else being equal, it’s quite reasonable for residential and commercial property owners in Atascocita to anticipate the cost of their property insurance to go down in the near future,” he said.

JUN 28-JUL 3

I N- STORE & ONL I NE

*July 4th Celebration runs 6/28/21-7/3/21. Valid on featured products. Sale items can be shopped in-store and online at www.twinliquors.com. Selection varies by store. Items and prices subject to change without notice. No further discount on Sale Items, Final Few, or Closeouts. Some exclusions apply. Please drink responsibly.

ON SELECT WI NES & SP I R I TS *

CELEBRAT I ON

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

NEWS BRIEFS

Construction set to begin on The PromiseHouse inHumble

BY WESLEY GARDNER

First America Homes, the homebuilding division of the

Signorelli Company, is partnering with local nonprots HomeAid Houston and Family Promise of Lake Houston to construct a day center for homeless families in the Greater Houston area, projected to open by the end of 2021. The 5,800-square-foot center, dubbed “The Promise House,” will be located near the intersection of FM 1960 and Wilson Road in Humble and construction began June 14, ocials noted. “We strive to give families the resources and support they need to keep their families together, while helping them to heal and work together to gain their independence from poverty and homelessness,” said Jessica Penney, executive director of Family Promise of Lake Houston. “We are thankful to First America Homes and HomeAid

Construction on the The Promise House, a day center aimed at assisting the local homeless population, began June 14. (Rendering courtesy Family Promise of Lake Houston)

Houston for stepping up to the plate and helping these families during their toughest times.” Families visiting The Promise bath facilities, a family room, a teaching kitchen, a playroom and a dining room. Families will also have access to counseling and mentoring services, individual case House will have access to administrative oce space,

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MarkMitchell to leave Partnership Lake Houston after 4 years management, weekly goal-setting and life-skills classes, a GED certicate program, an individualized education program, and parenting and money management classes.

Gov. Abbott signs bills to reformERCOT, weatherize Texas power grid amid energy crisis

BY TRENT THOMPSON

improved to prevent essential power generating transmission facilities from being shut down by ERCOT like what happened during the storm.” Under SB 3, the Public Utilities Commission and the Railroad Commission of Texas are tasked with weatherizing infrastructure for all seasons of the year, said state Sen. Charles Schwertner, RGeorgetown, who authored the bill, at the June 8 press conference. The bill also improves communication among state agencies and the public. A power outage alert system will notify the public if state power supply becomes inadequate. In the same token, SB 2 focuses on reforming ERCOT board leadership. A selection committee will appoint eight of the board members, and all members must be residents of Texas. Sen. Kelly Hancock, RDallas, said the legislation will ensure another catastrophic weather event will not aect the power grid.

Gov. Greg Abbott signed Senate bills 2 and 3 into law June 8, establishing sweeping reforms of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas and weatherization of state power generation facilities, eective Sept. 1. The bills are designed to prevent another extreme weather event from shutting down the Texas power grid similar to what happened during the severe winter storm in February. The storm left millions of houses without power for days and killed an estimated 150 Texas residents, according to a report from the Texas Department of State Health Services. Additionally, these bills create greater accountability within the power system, Abbott said. “The Railroad Commission and ERCOT now must inspect power facilities, and failure to weatherize can result in penalties of up to $1 million [per day of noncompliance],” Abbott said. “The power grid integrity is also

BY KELLY SCHAFLER

Mark Mitchell,

chief economic development ocer for Partnership Lake Houston, will leave the organization this summer after four years of service. According to a June 7 news release, Mitchell is leaving to join Katz, Sapper & Miller, an accounting rm that provides consulting, tax and audit services. He will serve as president of its location advisory subsidiary, per the release. Mitchell’s last day was June 18, however, he will remain at the organization until his replacement is hired, the process for which has already begun. “It’s been an honor and a privilege serving in this community the past four years,” he said. “The friendships, partnerships and collaborations are a true testament to the Lake Houston Mitchell

area and its resiliency and pro-business environment.”

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