Cy-Fair Edition - June 2020

CYFAIR EDITION 2020 HEALTHCARE EDITION VOLUME XX, ISSUE XX  XXXXXXXXXX, 2020

ONLINE AT

VOLUME 11, ISSUE 10  JUNE 16JULY 20, 2020

Cy-Fair’s uninsured rate expected to increase Texas has the nation’s highest percent of residents without health insurance, and because of an unemployment uptick in the wake of the coronavirus, local health care experts said providers are struggling to meet needs and communities can anticipate even higher rates.

Percentages below show how many residents in each demographic category were uninsured in northwest Harris County in 2018.

A CLOSER LOOK

TOTAL POPULATION BY DEMOGRAPHIC

1.8% UNINSURED POPULATION BY AGE Younger than 19 8% 19-64 65+ UNINSURED POPULATION BY RACE White Hispanic 12.2%

240,204 481,656 76,876

16.8%

521,237 216,557 140,075 137,424

22.6%

INSIDE

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BARRIERS TO CARE

HOWHEALTHY IS CY-FAIR?

12.3%

Black Other

14.2%

11.8% of Cy-Fair residents did not have health insurance in 2018.

UNINSUREDRESIDENTS

35.3% UNINSURED POPULATION BY EMPLOYMENT STATUS Employed 14.7% Unemployed Not in labor force 20.8% UNINSURED POPULATION BY HOUSEHOLD INCOME Less than $25,000 $25,000-$49,999 $50,0000-$74,999 $75,000-$99,999 $100,000 and more: 11.2% 5.7% 22.6% 24% 17.3%

365,154 19,484 97,018

Most ZIP codes in Cy-Fair exceed the U.S. rate for the percent of uninsured residents.

17.4%

9.4%

68,486 124,906 128,199 118,699 358,093

9.4% 17.6% 13.9% 13.6% 10.3% 6.8% 10.7%

77040 77064 77065 77070 77095 77429 77433 U.S.

Texas

SOURCE: 2018 AMERICAN COMMUNITY SURVEY 5YEAR ESTIMATESCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Debates ensue over voting inHarris County during coronavirus pandemic BY SHAWN ARRAJJ

and therefore was not enough to make a voter eligible for a mail ballot. “We agree, of course, that a voter can take into consideration aspects of his health history that are physical conditions in deciding whether, under the circumstances, to apply to vote by mail because of disability,” the court wrote. “We disagree that lack of immu- nity, by itself, is one of them.” Meanwhile, a separate but similar lawsuit is making its way through fed- eral court, where an appeals court also ruled against expanding mail ballot

“I DON’T SEE THIS CONFLICT GOING AWAY REGARDLESS OF WHATEVER IS RESOLVED FOR JULY." RENEE CROSS, SENIOR DIRECTOR

Eorts to expand access to mail bal- lots in Texas during the coronavirus have been blocked in several recent court rulings, including a May 27 ruling by the Texas Supreme Court. However, in that same ruling, Supreme Court justices upheld a piece of voting law that essentially allows voters to decide for themselves

whether they qualify for a mail ballot and said election ocials are not obli- gated to verify those qualications. In the May 27 ruling, the Supreme Court agreed with state ocials, who argued that a lack of immunity to COVID-19—the disease caused by the coronavirus—did not qualify as a “dis- ability” in and of itself under state law,

OF THE HOBBY SCHOOL OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS WITH THE UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON

CONTINUED ON 32

SPONSOREDBY • America’s ER • Houston Methodist • Lone Star College HEALTH CARE SNAPSHOT HEALTH CARE EDI T ION 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

Getting your annual mammogram is still important. Houston Methodist can see you safely. Getting your annual mammogram is one of the most important steps you can take to stay healthy. That’s why our Breast Care Centers are taking every necessary precaution during the coronavirus pandemic to keep you and our staff members safe.

During the coronavirus pandemic, we are:

Screening all patients when scheduling appointments and upon arrival.

Wearing masks and other personal protective equipment while providing patient care.

Implementing additional sanitation processes to disinfect all equipment and surfaces.

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HOUSTON METHODIST BREAST CARE CENTER ATWILLOWBROOK

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Redesigning waiting rooms and check-in procedures to ensure social distancing.

Visit houstonmethodist.org/breast-care-wb or call 281.737.PINK (7465) to schedule your mammogram today.

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CY-FAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

Resilient and strong for our patients and their families.

Access to Care Texas Children’s looks forward to seeing you soon, either virtually or in clinic: • Virtual visits – We are able to convert many clinic visits to virtual visits, either via phone or video. If you have an appointment, the specialty clinic will contact you directly if a virtual visit is available. • Clinic visits – If you need to come in for a visit, we have taken every precaution to keep you and our staff safe. When you arrive, you will experience a health screening and be issued a mask, be surrounded by a clean environment, and treated with care by medical staff wearing the right protective gear and following the latest safety protocols.

Texas Children’s is dedicated to providing the very best for our patients and their families. That commitment remains stronger than ever today as we confront this current challenging and ever-changing situation. As always, we are proud to offer you the same great care you know and trust – now with the safest, most convenient ways to access it. Appointments Available We are open and have availability for clinic and virtual visits. You can schedule a new appointment, reschedule an existing appointment to a sooner virtual visit and even add yourself to a wait list in MyChart. To make an appointment or reschedule, please visit texaschildrens.org/appts or contact your care team directly.

Texas Children’s wants you to know that we are here to support you, serve as a trusted resource, and most importantly, continue to provide the health care children need. Please visit texaschildrens.org/appts to schedule your new or return visit today.

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CY-FAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

THIS ISSUE

CONTENTS

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

IMPACTS

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Now Open, Coming Soon &more EDUCATION Cy-Fair ISD plans for budget needs NEWS BRIEFS

FROMKIM: Since the beginning of 2017, I have been a part of Community Impact Newspaper and am excited to join our Cy-Fair edition as general manager. I am proud to have called Cy-Fair home since 2005. In addition to our mission of letting residents know what is going on in their backyards and helping local businesses grow, our family-owned company’s purpose is to be a light for our readers, customers, partners and each other. Be the light for someone today, and as always, thank you for being a valued reader. Kim Giannetti, GENERALMANAGER

MARKET TEAM GENERAL MANAGER Kim Giannetti, kgiannetti@communityimpact.com EDITOR Danica Lloyd CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Shawn Arrajj GRAPHIC DESIGNER Stephanie Torres ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Karen Nickerson METRO LEADERSHIP PUBLISHER Jason Culpepper MANAGING EDITOR Matt Stephens ART PRODUCTIONMANAGER Tessa Hoee CORPORATE LEADERSHIP PUBLISHERS AND FOUNDERS John and Jennifer Garrett GROUP PUBLISHER Traci Rodriguez EXECUTIVE EDITOR Joe Lanane CREATIVE DIRECTOR Derek Sullivan SALES DIRECTOR Tess Coverman WHOWE ARE John and Jennifer Garrett began Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 in Pugerville, TX. The company's mission is to build informed citizens and thriving businesses through the collaboration of a passionate team. Today we operate across six metropolitan areas, providing hyperlocal, nonpartisan news produced by our full-time journalists in each community we serve. BECOMEA#COMMUNITYPATRON

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14 Group gives update on Cypress Creek; Cy-Fair ISD continues meal program

HealthCareEdition

HEALTH CARE SNAPSHOT Browse data for Harris County

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FROMDANICA: We hope you enjoy this year’s Health Care Edition, which takes an in-depth look at the region’s uninsured population (see Page 28) and continues to explore how COVID-19 is aecting our neighbors. Despite ongoing challenges from the virus, you will also nd announcements of new businesses opening and updates on local projects moving forward. Danica Lloyd, EDITOR

THIS ISSUE BY THE NUMBERS

Local sources 43

New businesses 9

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CORONAVIRUS 21 Health systems experiment with plasma transfusion as COVID19 treatment INSIDE INFORMATION 27 Contact tracing BUSINESS FEATURE 31 Salons at Stone Gate, The Factory Cypress REAL ESTATE 35 Residential market data IMPACT DEALS 38 Local coupons CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE All content in this print publication, both editorial and advertisements, was up to date as of the 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.

Hospitals

Salons

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CYFAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

IMPACTS

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

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HOUSE & HAHL RD.

6 Pollo Bravo Express opened June 10 at 6871 N. Fry Road, Katy, at the southwest corner of FM 529. The Peru- vian-Mexican restaurant, which has five locations across Houston, specializes in Peruvian-style rotisserie chicken, which is marinated in a mixture of 25 different ingredients. Other menu items include Peruvian-style spaghetti, ceviche and taquitos. www.pollobravoexpress.com 7 Mexpozole Restaurant , an Aztec-in- spired Mexican restaurant, opened May 27 at 6871 Fry Road, Ste. 112, Katy, near the FM 529 intersection. The eatery— which is open for dining in, takeout and delivery through Uber Eats—features a range of traditional Mexican dishes and specializes in pozole, a traditional Mex- ican soup made with hominy and chile peppers. 832-835-7584. www.mexpozolerestaurant.com 8 A new location of the financial services company Edward Jones opened May 21 at 17302 House & Hahl Road, Ste. 205, Cypress. The office is run by Eric Reed, who has been with Edward Jones since 2000. Services include wealth management; advice on retirement and college savings; advice on stocks, bonds and mutual funds; and advice for business owners. Edward Jones is also a licensed insurance provider. 281-855-1581. www.edwardjones.com 9 Dr. Urmeel Patel began seeing patients earlier this year at Millennium Physicians ’ new oncology office, located at 27700 Hwy. 290, Ste. 330, Cypress, in the Memorial Hermann Cypress building. Patel is board certified in medical oncol- ogy and hematology. 281-440-5006. www.millenniumphysicians.com

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TM; © 2020 COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER CO. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

NOWOPEN 1 The Toasted Yolk celebrated its grand opening June 15 at 27008 Hwy. 290, Ste. 100, Cypress. The eatery is open from 7 a.m.-3 p.m. daily and serves breakfast, brunch and lunch. Menu items include omelets, pancakes, salads, sandwiches and soups. www.thetoastedyolk.com 2 A new sweets shop opened May 22 at Fairfield Town Center, 28610 Hwy. 290, Cypress. Sleek Creperie & Cafe serves sa- vory and sweet crepes with waffles, coffee and gourmet chocolates. 281-213-2108. www.facebook.com/sleekfairfield

3 Which Wich sandwich shop opened June 1 at Fairfield Town Center, 28902 Hwy. 290, Ste. J-03, Cypress. The eatery serves customizable sandwiches, wraps, salads, fries, cakes and shakes, among other menu items. Catering and delivery services are also available. 832-653-6381. www.whichwich.com 4 Local entrepreneur Jose Moril- lo opened Camp BowWow on June 12 at 16641 Telge Road, Cypress. The 8,700-square-foot site features 75 cabins for dogs, eight teacup suites, and five indoor and outdoor play spaces. Services include overnight stays, day camps and a 24-hour monitoring system. Morillo owns

two other Camp Bow Wow locations in the Houston area. 281-826-9881. www.campbowwow.com/cypress 5 The Olive Tree Counseling opened May 1 at 12262 Queenston Blvd., Ste. E, Cypress. The business, run by Kristin Car- penter, offers a full range of mental health services both in office and by teletherapy. The office serves clients age 10 and older and specializes in young adults; caregivers; people with disabilities; and people experi- encing anxiety, depression, trauma or grief. Self-pay and insurance are both accepted at the new practice. 281-743-3468. www.theolivetreecounseling.com

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

COMPILED BY SHAWN ARRAJJ & DANICA LLOYD

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Sleek Creperie & Cafe

Play Street Museum

COURTESY SLEEK CREPERIE & CAFE

COURTESY PLAY STREET MUSEUM

AndrewMitchamwill open the brewery this summer. (Courtesy Senate Avenue Brewing Co.)

COMING SOON 10 Construction on a new location of In-N-Out Burger is underway at 7611 FM 1960, Houston. Carl Arena, vice president of real estate and development for the company, said in an email that while the store was in “the later stages of con- struction,” officials are not yet announc- ing an opening date. The California-based burger joint has dozens of locations in Texas and ventured into the Houston area late last year with locations in Katy and Stafford. Along with burgers, fries and shakes are also on the menu. 800-786-1000. www.in-n-out.com 11 Cypress residents Leanna and David Barton are opening Play Street Museum in mid-June at 25712 Hwy. 290, Ste. E, Cypress. The small-format children’s museum is designed to encourage young children’s imagination and creativity. The farm-themed children’s venue features interactive educational exhibits and offers private parties. 281-717-2239. www.playstreetmuseum.com RELOCATIONS 12 Dr. Steve Stanton, owner of Houston Podiatry , relocated his business in May from 7905 Hwy. 6 N., Houston, to 9740 Barker Cypress Road, Ste. 108B, Cypress. The office provides services related to sports medicine, pediatric care, geriatric care and wound care, among other areas of podiatry. Officials said the move was needed because the business outgrew its old space, where it had operated for the

EXPANSIONS 13 Master-planned community Amira is adding 113 acres of property to its development at 20508 Mueschke Road, Tomball. The added land will equate to an additional 400 new homes in the community, according to a May 18 news release. Johnson Development opened Amira last fall and has thus far sold 175 homes, officials said. Prices start at $220,000 for floor plans by developer Beazer Homes and at $240,000 for floor plans by developer Perry Homes. www.amiratexas.com Cypress residents Stanley and Ashley Anemelu recently added new features to their mobile application LocalServes , which offers pictorial menus for restau- rants throughout the Cy-Fair area and beyond. During the coronavirus pandemic they added the ability for restaurants to indicate their ordering and delivery op- tions. The app also offers an alternative to physical menus in restaurants, officials said. www.localserves.com IN THE NEWS 14 Howard Hughes Corp. announced May 21 that Cy-Fair ISD officials final- ized the purchase of a 16.7-acre plot of land in the master-planned community for Elementary School No. 57 , which is slated to open in time for the 2022- 23 academic year. Construction of the 120,000-square-foot, two-story campus is included in the $1.2 billion bond passed in 2014. The school will be located off Tuckerton Road near Fry Road in the Parkland Village neighborhood. Officials said the new campus will hold 1,092 stu-

FEATURED IMPACT COMING SOON Jersey Village Mayor Andrew Mitcham said he plans to open Senate Avenue Brewing Co. in late June or early July at 16000 Dillard Drive, Ste. F, Jersey Village. The 4,800-square-foot facility will have 12 craft beers on tap; patio games; a large green space for children; and a full kitchen serving pizza, burgers and seafood, among other items. Mitcham said the business will be open for lunch and dinner daily as well as brunch on the weekends. The Jersey Village native said he is excited to bring a unique business to the city that can cater both to its retired population and young families moving to the area. “I’ve been involved in the local dents, and attendance boundaries will be determined in late 2021 or early 2022. CLOSINGS 15 Acute Workshop announced on Facebook on May 10 that the DIY studio will close its 20510 West Road, Ste. 100, Cypress, location permanently. Acute Workshop opened in July 2018 and offered classes for adults and children to decorate signs, centerpiece boxes, serving trays, canvas pillows and other

community since I was a kid, and just over the years that I’ve been involved, there has always been a lack of quality restaurants and community gathering spaces,” he said. “The byproduct is people have conversations and they learn about each other, and it makes for a better community. That’s a direct reection of what craft beer can do for a community.” www.facebook.com/senateave

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projects. 281-386-0396. www.acuteworkshop.com

16 Crystal Bay Designs closed in mid- March due to the coronavirus outbreak, and owners Kevin and Erica Ryan said in an April 20 Facebook post they will not reopen its doors at 11438 Cypress North Houston Road, Cypress. However, the business will continue operating online, according to the post. The website offers iron-on transfers, glitters and rhine- stones, among other design elements. www.crystalbaydesigns.com

past 15 years. 281-550-3338. www.houstonpodiatry.com

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CY-FAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES Texas Central wins

COMPILED BY SHAWN ARRAJJ

PROJECT UPDATES

court case over eminent domain

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A key decision in a lawsuit aect- ing plans for a high-speed rail line connecting Houston to Dallas was handed down May 7 when the Texas 13th Court of Appeals determined Texas Central, the company planning the rail line, to be legally recognized as a railroad company in Texas. Plaintis in the case—James Miles v. Texas Central—said they plan to appeal it to the Texas Supreme Court. The decision, provided it is not reversed by the Supreme Court, allows Texas Central to use eminent domain to obtain land where the line will run. Some landowners along the proposed route—including plainti James Miles, who lives in Leon County—have refused to sell their land to Texas Central, making the future of the rail uncertain. Eminent domain involves the tak- ing of private property for public use, even against the will of the owner. Only particular entities are allowed to use it under state law, including rail- road companies. Ocials with Texas Central have previously said they only intend to use eminent domain as “a last resort” and would compensate landowners fairly. Miles, who won his case at trial court in 2019, argued Texas Central is not operating a railroad because it does not own any trains and has not constructed any tracks, among other issues. In her ruling, appeals court Judge Nora Longoria reversed the trial court decision.

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Hwy. 6 bridge construction The Texas Department of Transpor- tation is building a four-lane yover bridge that will connect Hwy. 6 and FM 1960 over Hwy. 290 from North Eldridge Parkway to Copper Grove Boulevard. The project is on track to be done by late 2020 with most related lane clo- sures running through November. Timeline: September 2019-late 2020 Cost: $41.4 million Funding source: TxDOT

A company looking to build a high-speed rail line between Houston and Dallas won a key court case May 7. The case is expected to be appealed to the Texas Supreme Court. (Courtesy Texas Central)

Longoria wrote that her decision was based on the language of the Texas Transportation Code and the intention of the state lawmakers who wrote it. “Miles’s interpretation would have this court ignore the Legislature’s instruction ... by limiting the word ‘operating’ to solely the present tense. We decline to do so,” Longoria wrote. Texas Central CEO Carlos Aguilar lauded the decision. “This decision is rooted in state law that allows survey access and use of eminent domain by railroads, pipelines, electrical lines and other industries that provide for the public good and a strong economy,” he said in a statement. “This decision conrms our status as an operating railroad and allows us to continue moving forward with our permitting process and all of our other design, engineering and land acquisition eorts.” In a statement, Miles’ attorney Blake Beckham said the ruling creates

a “wild, wild west” of eminent domain authority in Texas. “This court of appeals ruling has only strengthened our resolve to keep ghting to protect not only our prop- erty but the private property rights of all Texans,” Miles and Beckham said in a statement. Initial hopes among Texas Central leadership were to break ground in 2020 and be operational in ve to six years. The company laid o 28 employees during the coronavirus pandemic, but ocials said they are still working through the approval process with the Federal Railroad Administration. In the wake of the outbreak, some state and federal lawmakers have lobbied federal transportation ocials to suspend the review process for the project. Texas Central ocials estimate the project will cost $20 billion, money they said will be raised through private investment. Opponents said that funding is not likely to be raised while the pandemic is ongoing.

METRO REOPENS PARK&RIDE FACILITIES ON LIMITED BASIS

ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF MAY 27. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT CYFNEWSCOMMUNITYIMPACT.COM. The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County reopened park and ride facilities May 18 along all major free- way corridors to downtown Houston. Services operate from 5-9 a.m. for inbound trips and from 3 -7 p.m. for outbound trips. Buses are scheduled to pick up passengers approximately every 15 minutes. Park and ride routes serving the Texas Medical Center will continue operating on a regular week- day schedule.

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CYFAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

EDUCATION

REAL HEROES DON’T WEAR CAPES.

BILLIONDOLLARBUDGET Cy-Fair ISD’s preliminary budget for 2020-21 includes more than $1 billion in expenditures before employee salary increases.

Federal revenue $21M:

TOTAL REVENUE $995.8M

Local revenue $541.7M:

$433.1M: State revenue

TOTAL SHORTFALL $44.9M

Base expenditures $1.02B:

$24.5M: Base decit Additional expenditures $20.4M:

JOIN THE CY-FAIR FIRE DEPARTMENT!

COMPENSATION CONSIDERATIONS Should the board vote to increase employee salaries in 2020-21, the shortfall could increase to nearly $45 million.

Additional expenditures $20.4M

$8.1M 1% salary increases

One-time payment rolled into salaries $12.3M

Serve the Cy-Fair community as a volunteer firefighter. Learn more: www.cyfairfd.org

SOURCE: CYFAIR ISDCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Preliminary CFISDbudget includes $1 billion in expenses

BY DANICA LLOYD

for $12.3 million. The second option involves these one-time payments and increasing salaries by 1% for an additional $8.1 million. “Although this would increase the estimated budget decit to $44.9 million, the district has a healthy fund balance and has not realized prior budget decits,” Smith said. CFISD has a current fund balance of $518.7 million, or about 6 1/2 months in expenses, she said. Additionally, hiring teachers and paraprofessionals to accommodate enrollment growth will cost CFISD about $11.6 million. One of the biggest changes the school district will face in the upcoming academic year is adapting services as needed due to the corona- virus pandemic. “The preliminary budget was built understanding that there will be additional cost to keep our employ- ees and students safe, provide our students the resources for various learning options and to provide remediation due to lost instruction,” Smith said. The board of trustees is expected to adopt the FY 2020-21 budget at the June 15 board meeting.

Cy-Fair ISD could see up to a $44.9 million shortfall in scal year 2020-21 with teacher salary raises and additional funding for coronavirus response eorts, Chief Financial Ocer Karen Smith said May 11. “The decit assumes all positions will be lled, all budgeted funds will be spent, tax collections will slightly decrease [and] average daily attendance will be less and includes additional one-time funding for COVID-19 of $10 million,” she said. Board members adopted a $992.3 million budget for FY 2019-20 with a $27.5 million decit. However, Smith said she anticipates a balanced budget by the end of FY 2019-20. Budget considerations Smith said she anticipates about $995.8 million in revenue next year. The budget includes $1.02 billion in expenses and a $24.5 million shortfall before pay increases, for which the board will choose between two options. The rst option is implementing a one-time payment of $500 or $1,000 into the base salary for all employees

CY-FAIR FIRE DEPARTMENT 9630 TELGE ROAD HOUSTON, TX 77095

281-550-6663 PIO@CYFAIRFD.ORG WWW.CYFAIRFD.ORG

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

CORONAVIRUS Houston-area foster care advocatesworry of unreported abuse, trauma toll amid COVID19

Medical personnel (18.6%) 1 School (15.3%) 2 Lawenforcement (12.8%) 3 Relative (9.1%) 4 Community agency (7.5%) 5 SOURCE: TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF FAMILY AND PROTECTIVE SERVICESCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER In scal year 2019, the top 5 reporters of abuse and neglect were: Reports of suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation can be made online or by phone. Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Call the Texas Abuse Hotline: 1-800-252-5400 H T RO In Texas, medical personnel and schools contribute more than 33% of reports of abuse and neglect, according to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. W FE ROS O AS O NLT?

Anticipating needs In DFPS Region 6—which spans 13 counties, including Harris and Montgomery—approximately 2,400 children were in foster care in the month of April, and the region included 2,000 foster homes, Region 6 Media Specialist Tiani Butler said. She said as of mid-May the DFPS had not had problems nding placements for children during the pandemic, and the number of children removed from homes was not unlike any other year. “We’re a little bit concerned that we don’t have actual eyes on the children because there’s a lot that you get from nuance and seeing that you don’t get from phone calls,” McAlpin said. “We’re concerned that abuse that’s happening right now might not be being reported. We have not seen a downturn in the numbers, but those go up and down year by year anyway.” McAlpin said advocates are charged with talking to everyone involved in the child’s case, including teachers, psychiatrists and medical professionals, as well as building a relationship with the child. Without being able to meet the child in person during the pandemic, advocates have resorted to FaceTime or phone calls. With teachers reporting a signicant amount of the abuse and neglect cases in the state, McAlpin said she believes there will be a need for more foster parents as well as child advocates to counter the spike in reported abuse she anticipates once children are able to see teachers again. To help meet the anticipated demand for foster families, Riebel said Arms Wide Adoption Services— which serves Region 6—has adjusted its operations to avoid delaying the licensing process for prospec- tive families. “I feel like more families are reaching out for the licensing process. Honestly, I think it’s because they’re home more and they have time to stop, do the research, attend the meetings and all of that,” she said. Finger printing and re inspections have been dicult to complete as social distancing measures have been enacted, Riebel said. However, Riebel said Arms Wide has allowed families to attend training sessions with everything but these few items completed in the licensing process so as not to delay the process further. Home studies were also paused in April but resumed in May with personal protective equip- ment and social distancing, she said. “We haven’t allowed this to delay any of our process, because if it does, it will be delayed for the rest of the year,” Riebel said. Training sessions have also moved to live online sessions for all portions but CPR and rst aid, which are being held one family at a time in person, she said. The agency’s information meetings—usually

BY ANNA LOTZ

With schools closed for much of the semester and families encouraged to stay home, Houston-area nonprot leaders worry there will be a spike in reports of abuse as coronavirus measures are lifted, allowing groups to gather again. Anticipating an uptick, local foster care advo- cates said they have adapted operations to meet needs amid the pandemic and are preparing for a continued need of foster families. “Once we start to get out again, people are going to start saying things, and kids will start talking,” said Arianne Riebel, director of adoption and foster care services for Arms Wide Adoption Services in Houston, an agency placing children into foster and adoptive homes. “I think that’s when the reports are going to start coming in more. That’s the major reason why here we can’t slow down. They’re going to need these homes for these kiddos in the future.” Texas Department of Family and Protective Services data shows schools contributed 15% of abuse and neglect reports throughout the state in scal year 2019, second to medical personnel for the source of most reports in the state. Further, foster care advocates said the coronavi- rus pandemic and the resulting stay-home orders and upended schedules only exacerbate the trauma children in foster care have experienced. “The fear and anxiety that we’re all feeling now... that’s what these foster kids experience every day,” said Ann McAlpin, executive director of CASA Child Advocates of Montgomery County, which recruits court-appointed advocates for children in foster care. “We’re concerned that...all of this uncertainty on top of all of the trauma and uncertainty that they’ve already experienced is really going to double the trauma.” Organizations across the Greater Houston area shared ways for the community to get involved in addition to giving nancially. LD A HD ArmsWideAdoption Services www.armswideadoption.org Attend the next virtual information meeting June 17. CASAofMontgomery County www.casaspeaks4kids.com Donate toys or games. Volunteer to be an advocate. EntrustedHouston www.entrustedhouston.org Shop from an Amazon wishlist or donate items to Moses Closet Cypress. Love FostersHope www.lovefostershope.org Donate $20 to the Finding Hope in 2020 campaign.

www.txabusehotline.org (for non-urgent situations)

held in person—have gone virtual as well, she said, and will continue virtually and in person to provide families greater exibility long term. Adapting to COVID19 Butler said the DFPS has also moved its visits for families to be virtual when possible. In-person visits are happening only at DFPS oces where 6-foot distancing is in place and spaces are sani- tized before and after a family comes in. To comply with guidelines, Montgomery Coun- ty-based Love Fosters Hope has moved its over- night camp for children in foster care to an at-home camp, Executive Director Cindy Mericle said. “Summer camps are a huge part of what we do, and of course that’s been very much impacted by the coronavirus,” she said. In place of a June overnight camp, campers will have camp at home, receiving packages, video greetings, materials for a birthday cake, and arts and crafts, Mericle said. Teen camps have been rescheduled with tentative plans for July, pending the availability of rapid COVID-19 testing. In addition, the organization has kept up its mentorship program remotely, Mericle said, and sent packages to its foster families with gifts for each child and the family to support them during the extended time at home. “It’s been a surprising blessing, even though there’s so much bad stu going on. Love Fosters Hope has been primarily focused on the children and the teenagers as they age out of foster care,” Mericle said. “This really opened us up to caring for the whole family, which I’m kind of shocked that we haven’t done that before, but we were so busy doing what we were doing.”

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CYFAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

NEWS BRIEFS Group gives update on creek quality

BY HANNAH ZEDAKER TxDOT reversing Hwy. 249 ramps The Texas Department of Trans- portation began a three-month project April 20 to reverse the Hwy. 249 northbound entrance and exit ramps between Jones and Spring Cypress roads. According to TxDOT Public Information Ocer Danny Perez, the $2.6 million project will reverse the existing entrance/exit ramp conguration to an exit/entrance conguration by shifting the new exit ramp south of the current entrance ramp. Perez said the proj- ect aims to ease trac congestion the interchange’s current design facilitates. Perez said the project is expected to eliminate the queue back onto the main lanes for driv- ers exiting to Spring Cypress Road. The project also includes restriping the Hwy. 249 northbound frontage road approach to Chasewood Park Drive.

The project will reverse the existing entrance/exit ramp conguration to an exit/entrance conguration. HWY. 249 RAMP REVERSAL

BY SHAWN ARRAJJ

“Overall what we’re trying to do is change the behaviors of pet owners,” Bower said. “A big part of what we need to do is make people more aware of the negative impacts of pet waste and the role they have in that.” Possible solutions include more pet waste stations, increasing the number of dog parks and existing capacity, and looking to homeown- ers associations and apartment complexes to help with enforce- ment, Bower said. Solutions would be targeted at the more developed parts of Cypress Creek, largely focusing on downstream areas but also including master-planned communities upstream. Although sewer systems only account for about 4% of creek pollution, Bower said they are still of concern because human waste has more severe health conse- quences, especially in instances where a system overows into a neighborhood.

CURRENT DESIGN

A group working to improve water quality along Cypress Creek revealed some preliminary solutions at a May 29 virtual meeting, including reducing pet waste along the creek and improving area sewer systems. The group, Cypress Creek Water- shed Partnership, has been working to identify pollution sources—namely fecal matter—along the creek since last July. If unaddressed, water qual- ity is likely to continue to deteriorate as the area becomes more developed, which would have negative eects on health, the environment and the economy, said Justin Bower, a senior planner with the Houston-Galveston Area Council who is overseeing the partnership’s work. The partnership is aiming to reduce pollution levels by varying degrees spanning 64%-74% at dierent segments along the creek. On May 29, ocials revealed the vast majority of pollution—about 75%—can be attributed to pet waste.

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Timeline: April 20-July 20 Cost: $2.6 million (80% federal, 20% state) Funding source: Texas Department of Transportation

SOURCE: TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

JohnOgletree: George Floyd’s death a ‘watershedmoment’

BY DANICA LLOYD

in hopes that those in positions of authority would recognize the rights endowed to all Americans in the Declaration of Independence—the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. He said his fellow protestors included individuals of all races and religious backgrounds unied in the same purpose. “[Floyd’s] cry of ‘I can’t breathe’ is really a metaphor for every black, brown, Asian, Jew, every immigrant, every person in poverty ... basically everybody’s saying ‘I want to breathe,’” Ogletree said. “I want to be able to get a job and not be looked at for the color of my skin. If I’ve been speeding or you suspect me of a crime, treat me like you would treat a white gentleman from River Oaks.” Ogletree said his experience

Between graduation ceremonies for Cy-Fair ISD’s class of 2020, school board member and First Metropol- itan Church’s senior pastor John Ogletree attended a June 2 march in downtown Houston honoring George Floyd, the black man who was killed in the custody of the Minneapolis Police Department on May 25. “I felt the need to be present in the protest in Houston because I believe the murder of George Floyd is a watershed moment in our country on the issue of injustice and police brutality,” he said. “I went there to let it be known that I’m a part of what I would call righteous indignation over what happened to George Floyd.” Alongside tens of thousands, Ogle- tree said he marched for justice and

John Ogletree is a member of the Cy-Fair ISD board of trustees and the senior pastor of First Metropolitan Church in Cy-Fair. (Courtesy Cy-Fair ISD)

protesting for justice dates back to his time as a student at the University of Texas at Arlington. The school’s mascot from 1951-1971 was the rebels, and at every football game the mascot would ride out on a horse waving a Confederate ag when the team

scored a touchdown. Ogletree said black Americans still deal with discrimination from their white neighbors who largely do not understand what African-Americans have experienced in the past as well as the present.

Cy-Fair ISD to continue serving curbsidemeals throughAugust

BY DANICA LLOYD

where they are enrolled. Nineteen campuses are oering breakfast and lunch from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. during the summer, according to district information. Parents can bring their children to the pickup sites or bring their children’s student ID to receive one breakfast and one lunch for each child through a contactless pickup process. For more information, visit www.csd.net.

The following 19 campuses are oering free meals to children 18 and younger throughout the summer.

CURBSIDE CAMPUSES

Cy-Fair ISD will continue serving meals curbside to children 18 years and younger throughout the sum- mer until school returns in August, ocials said. Since the program began March 16, the school district has served more than 800,000 meals at no cost to local families. Students can access meals from any campus listed regardless of

Elementary schools • Bane • Danish • Francone • Frazier • Holbrook • Kirk

Middle schools • Anthony • Arnold • Goodson • Kahla • Thornton • Truitt

High schools • Cypress Creek • Cypress Lakes • Cypress Ridge • Cypress Springs • Langham Creek

• Matzke • Walker

SOURCE: CYFAIR ISDCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Yacoubian FINE JEWELRY 14100 SPRING CYPRESS RD. LOCATED INSIDE HEB AT GRANT RD/ SPRING CYPRESS RD 281-251-0408

SPECIALIZING IN FINE JEWELRY & PRE-OWNED ROLEX WATCHES

Jewelry Repair Appraisals Ring Sizing

Custom Designs Pearl Stringing Watch Batteries Rolex Service by Certified Rolex Technician

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CYFAIR EDITION • JUNE 2020

FULL COLOR CONDENSED STACKED - CMYK We look forward to the day we welcome students back to classrooms and continue our mission Opportunity for All! RESILIENCE! CHOOSE We learned a lot in Cypress-Fairbanks ISD this year despite some unexpected interruptions. You’ve proven that being apart brought our community together, and nothing can stop CFISD spirit! More than ever, our community recognizes the value of public education and the critical role passionate and dedicated educators play in meeting children’s physical and emotional needs, recognizing student potential and encouraging the pursuit of dreams.

CFISDspirit.com

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

CITY& COUNTY

News from Harris County and the city of Jersey Village

HIGHLIGHTS JERSEYVILLAGE The city pool reopened May 30 after temporarily closing in late March. HARRIS COUNTY Applications for the county’s $30 million COVID-19 relief fund opened June 11 to underserved residents. Jersey Village City Council will meet at 7 p.m. on July 20. 713-466-2100. www.jerseyvillage.info Harris County Commissioners Court will meet at 10 a.m. on June 30. 713-698-1102. www.harriscountytx.gov MEETINGSWE COVER Livestreams can be accessed via websites.

COVID19 testing center opens in Cy-Fair, oers free testing

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BY DANICA LLOYD

Central, 8060 Spencer Hwy., Pasadena, and Pridgeon Stadium, 11355 Falcon Road, Houston. These two new sites have the capacity to test up to 750 individuals daily—up from 500 at the previ- ous locations. Appointments are required. The county continues to operate a total of six testing loca- tions, where up to 1,700 residents can access testing each day.

WINDFERN RD.

HARRIS COUNTY COVID-19 test- ing centers that previously operated in Baytown and Katy moved to new sites in Pasadena and Cy-Fair on June 1, according to a press release. May 30 was the last day of oper- ations for the Goose Creek CISD Stallworth Stadium and Katy ISD Legacy Stadium locations. Services began June 1 at San Jacinto College

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PRIDGEON STADIUM 11355 Falcon Road, Houston

Learn more and sign up for free testing at www.covcheck.hctx.net. Residents who believe they have COVID-19 can take a self-assessment online or call 832-927-7575.

As hurricane season nears, Harris County reworks 2018ood bond plans

canals and I-10, and wetland restoration. A total of $9.2 million has been set aside for the eort, redirected from other projects in the watershed where costs were reduced. The district also opted to merge some projects. Twenty watershed storm repair projects were merged into one project, as were 17 projects to buy and clear ood-prone proper- ties and 16 projects involving subdivi- sion drainage to make managing the project more ecient, according to the release. As such, the number of bond projects fell from 237 to 181, ocials said. As of late March, a total of 136 of those projects were active, and eight were completed. Of the 37 remaining projects, 19 are slated to launch between November 2020 and July 2021, and 18 will be launched between July 2021 and March 2022. The district has spent about $257 million while securing about $678 million in partner funding.

BY SHAWN ARRAJJ

a locally funded project after another project on the district’s original list did not get approved for funding from the Army Corps of Engineers, according to the May 20 release. The project will be managed by a “bond implementation manager,” who will use the local share of funding set aside for the original project, about $48 million, for eorts to acquire right of way and carry out design and construction eorts. The eorts are intended to remove as many as 2,800 homes from a portion of the 100-year ood plain in Halls Bayou, according to the release. In Cedar Bayou, located in the east central part of Harris County, the implementation plan will include eorts to coordinate multiple dierent ood projects, including stormwater conveyance along Adlong Ditch, the construction of a stormwater detention basin near the Coastal Water Authority

HARRIS COUNTY In addition to merging several projects and reworking cost estimates, Harris County Flood Control District ocials announced May 20 four new projects, including the creation of watershed-spanning implementation plans in Cedar and Halls bayous. “Our intent in updating the bond project list is to be transpar- ent about our work and include more detailed information as it is available. We intend to build every project originally included on the bond project list,” HCFCD Execu- tive Director Russ Poppe said in a statement. “Going forward, we will update this list semiannually.” Plans for Halls Bayou, which runs through the northeastern part of the county, were added as

Work targets ood-prone areas. (Shawn Arrajj/Community Impact Newspaper) Flood control district BOND PROJECT STATUS Here is a summary of bond projects as of March 2020: 136 active 8 completed 19 to start between November 2020-July 2021 18 to start between July 2021-March 2022

SOURCE: HARRIS COUNTY FLOOD CONTROL DISTRICTCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

JerseyMeadowexperiences busiestmonth in decades inMay

time, and only one rider is allowed per golf cart while golng, he said. Carts are sanitized and completely washed down in between uses. The city also approved the pur- chase of new golf carts earlier in the year, each equipped with a GPS mon- itoring system and digital scoring, which Jones said removes the need for pencils and score cards. Sta also outtted each hole with a PVC pipe that keeps golf balls from sinking more than 1 inch into the hole, so golfers are not reaching into the same holes throughout the day, he said.

BY SHAWN ARRAJJ

history, about $184,000 was raised in May. The record-setting revenue comes as Jones said they are limiting the number of tee times per hour. People are only allowed to play in groups of four, and instead of having tee times every eight minutes, they have been spread out to every 12 minutes, Jones said. Additionally, only four people are allowed in the golf pro shop at one

assumed ownership in early 2000. “It hasn’t been this busy probably ever,” Jones said in a May 26 phone interview. “We’re at our maximum. We can’t get any busier.” Through May 26, the golf course had brought in about $184,500 for the month of May, Jones said. By comparison, in May 2019, the golf course raised about $138,000. In the 2008-09 scal year, which Jones said was the best in the course’s recorded

JERSEY VILLAGE Located on Rio Grande Street in the city of Jersey Village, Jersey Meadow Golf Course was completely closed in late March and remained closed for the entire month of April due to the coronavi- rus pandemic, said Matt Jones, who serves as head golf professional at the course. After reopening May 1, Jones said the course was on par for its best month in May at least since the city

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