Bay Area Edition | July 2021

BAY AREA EDITION

2021 R E A L E S T A T E E D I T I O N Solar energy interest sparks in Clear Lake

ONLINE AT

VOLUME 3, ISSUE 12  JULY 23AUG. 26, 2021

A group of 50 Clear Lake-area residents chose in 2020 to explore solar panel possibilities for their homes. Systems can be designed to oset some or all of a consumer’s energy needs. Hot spots

met the group’s needs and counseled members through the design and panel installation process once they committed, co-op member Mohammed Nasrullah said. Nasrullah, who has lived in the area for 26 years and resides in the Northfork subdivision in northern Clear Lake, was able to begin using his residential solar system for 75% of his two-person household’s energy needs in June. His system was turned on within the same week in mid-June the Electric Reliability Council of Texas asked residents to reduce electric use

BY COLLEEN FERGUSON

A greener and potentially money- saving solar energy era has dawned for some Clear Lake homeowners, who will be reimagining their long-term approach to residential energy after forming a solar co-op. Residents of 50 homes in Clear Lake and the surrounding area, including Seabrook, Baytown and La Porte, began forming the co-op in spring 2020 through Solar United Neighbors, a national nonprot focused on supporting the growth of residential solar energy by informing consumers. The nonprot helped homeowners select a solar energy company that

Most area residential solar energy systems cost around $35,000 to install.

The average 7-kilowatt system produces 9,600 to 12,800 kilowatt-hours annually.

Systems are usually paid for over the course of 10-15 years.

SOURCES: JERRY CARPENTER, HANNA MITCHELL, ENERGYSAGE COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

CONTINUED ON 18

COURTESY OF MOHAMMED NASRULLAH

Protection district aims to fund coastal barrier project

Billion-dollar benet

While the cost of the coastal barrier between Galveston Island and Bolivar Peninsula is expensive, ocials said the annual average benets to the region make the project worthwhile. The following estimates are based on a maximum expected cost of about $14 million to the Bay Area.

BY JAKE MAGEE

Bay Area local match

Bay Area federal funding

Project remainder

Savings due to prevented storm damage

Savings due to prevented economic loss

Nearly 13 years since it was rst proposed, the coastal barrier between Galveston Island and Bolivar Peninsula is one milestone closer to reality with the creation of the Gulf Coast Protection District. During the 87th Texas Legislature that ended May 31, legislators passed Senate Bill 1160, led by CONTINUED ON 22

$4.9B

$9.1B

$12.2B

Total coastal barrier construction

Barrier’s average annual benet

$3.1B

$2.3B

SOURCES: U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS, REFOCUSCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

2021

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

THIS ISSUE

ABOUT US

Owners John and Jennifer Garrett launched the rst edition of Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 with three full-time employees covering Round Rock and Pugerville, Texas. We have expanded our operations to include hundreds of employees, our own printing operation and over 30 hyperlocal editions across three states. Our circulation is over 2 million residential mailboxes, and it grows each month with new residents and developments.

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

FROMPAPAR: Over the last few years, solar power has become increasingly popular for homeowners across the nation. Texas has been slow to embrace solar energy for a variety of reasons. For our annual Real Estate Edition, we look at some of the reasons why readers are seeing more solar panels in the Bay Area and if experts believe panels will continue to show up on more rooftops. Papar Faircloth, GENERALMANAGER

Community Impact Newspaper teams include general managers, editors, reporters, graphic designers, sales account executives and sales support, all immersed and invested in the communities they serve. Our mission is to build communities of informed citizens and thriving businesses through the collaboration of a passionate team. Our core values are Faith, Passion, Quality, Innovation and Integrity.

FROM JAKE: The 2021 legislative session is done, and with it came the passage of a bill that has created the Gulf Coast Protection District. This district, which includes Harris and Galveston counties, will potentially be taxed to help fund the $26 billion coastal barrier planned near Galveston. Read our front-page story to learn more. Jake Magee, EDITOR

Our purpose is to be a light for our readers, customers, partners and each other.

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

IMPACTS

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

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locations across Houston and opened a League City location in December 2019. 832-284-4008. www.fajitapetes.com 6 Twisted Parrot Bar & Grill opened in May at 625 Hwy. 146, Kemah. The busi- ness serves seafood such as shrimp and crawsh; meats including ham, turkey, sausage and roast beef; and sides such as boudin, potatoes, mushrooms and corn. 713-855-2403. www.facebook.com/ twistedparrot COMING SOON 7 Texas Pit Stop BBQ will open in July at 20794 Gulf Freeway, Webster. The restaurant began with the owner, Arnold Garza, winning barbecue cook-o compe- titions, which drove him to open his own eatery, which serves brisket, sh tacos, sausage, pulled pork, smoked chicken and other barbecue staples. The restaurant has two other locations in Galveston and La Marque. 409-744-2222. www.txpitstopbbq.com 8 Children’s Lighthouse of League City-Tuscan Lakes plans to open by late July at 1920 E. League City Parkway, League City. Kayla and Michael Dority, parents in the Tuscan Lakes community, decided to open the values-based early learning school after seeing area demand for a high-quality child care option as well as a lack of an existing school that met their own family’s needs, according to a June news release. The school will oer learning for families with children 6 weeks to 12 years old in classroom and group settings, with an on-site kitchen serving healthy meals and snacks daily for students, per the release. In addition to

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NOWOPEN 1 Houston Methodist Orthopedics & Sports Medicine at Clear Lake opened May 10 at 2020 E. NASA Parkway, Ste. 230, Houston. The new facility, which broke ground in December 2019, is the campus’s fourth medical oce. The six-story, 150,000-square-foot facility includes physical and occupational ther- apy and an outdoor sports and aquatic center. Additionally, the second oor contains space for orthopedic physicians and surgeons for hands, feet, joints and other areas. An open house event for the new facility will be held in August. 713-363-9090. www.houstonmethodist.org

2 Stan’s Pop Shop opened June 15 at 17070 Hwy. 3, Webster. The business is a craft soda and collectibles shop that car- ries popular Funko Pops and other action gures along with candy and collectibles, such as backpacks and lunch boxes. 832-905-2922. www.stanspopshop.com 3 Dance Vision Studios opened a location in mid-May at 20810 Gulf Freeway, Ste. H, Webster. Dance Vision Studios-Clear Lake teaches over a dozen dances through private and group lessons and practice parties. Students can com- pete and take trips through the business. The studio has four other Texas locations, including in Pearland. 832-905-4159. www.dancevisiontexas.com 4 Big Phil’s Soul and Creole Cafe

opened June 11 at 10000 Emmett F. Low- ry Expressway, Ste. 1136, Texas City. The eatery is the largest Black-owned restau- rant in Galveston County, according to its website, with a dining room and outdoor patio seats able to accommodate more than 130 customers at full capacity. The menu is a soul and Creole fusion, including items such as oxtails and grits, and Big Phil’s oers weekend brunch specials along with live music. 409-927-5330. www.facebook.com/bpsoulcreolecafe 5 Fajita Pete’s opened a Clear Lake location in late June. The restaurant is located at 16809 El Camino Real, Ste. A, Houston, near the H-E-B. Fajita Pete’s, which rst opened in 2008, oers and delivers handmade fajitas and other Mexican cuisine. The business has several

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

COMPILED BY COLLEEN FERGUSON & JAKE MAGEE

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Fajita Pete’s

Damn Fine Coee and Fried Pies

COURTESY FAJITA PETE’S

COURTESY DAMN FINE COFFEE AND FRIED PIES

ANNIVERSARIES 12 Damn Fine Coee and Fried Pies celebrated one year at its storefront in Seabrook on July 3. The local business, owned by J. Mel Jarnagin at 910 Hall Ave., began selling coee at local farmers markets, then expanded with a location that sells coee, nitro cold brew, craft sodas, and sweet and savory fried pies. 281-942-0954. www.itsdamnne.com IN THE NEWS 13 San Jacinto College , 8060 Spencer Hwy., Pasadena, was one of sever- al hundred organizations across the United States to receive a monetary donation from MacKenzie Scott, philanthropist and former wife of Amazon CEO Je Bezos. Scott and her husband, Dan Jewett, gave $30 million to the college, which is the largest private gift in San Jacinto’s history, Scott and San Jacinto announced June 15. The college’s new 21Forward Scholarship, which provides free tuition to recent grad- uates from six school districts within the San Jacinto taxing district, is derived from the Scott donation, college ocials said. www.sanjac.edu 14 On July 3, organizers held a rib- bon-cutting for Exploration Green ’s new and improved parking lot at 16205 Diana Lane, Houston. The free lot will accommodate the site’s many visitors and replaces an old, deteriorating lot. Exploration Green is a former golf course turned conservancy being constructed to provide detention for surrounding Clear Lake homes while also allowing for

educational child care during traditional school hours, interactive after-school programs and summer camps are also available. 832-953-5730. www.childrenslighthouse.com 9 The Cookshack is opening soon at 160 W. Bay Area Blvd., Webster. City ocials said it would open this summer. Cookshack uses all natural, hormone-free chicken in its menu, which also includes a variety of ribs, salads, desserts and more. The Cookshack has locations in Fort Worth and Houston.

Amazon will open a League City delivery facility by early next year.

COURTESY AMAZON

FEATURED IMPACT COMING SOON Amazon is opening a new, 180,000-square-foot delivery station in League City, according to a June 28 news release from the city. The location, which is expected to open at 2455 Tuscan Lake Blvd. in early 2022 and will employ about 200 people, will power Amazon’s “last-mile” delivery capabilities to speed up deliveries for Galveston County customers. Delivery stations receive packages from neighboring Amazon centers and are then loaded onto vehicles for nal delivery, the release said. “We are extremely excited about Amazon coming to League City,” League City Mayor Pat Hallisey said in the release. “Not only will it bring jobs, but it will benet a large majority of our residents, as well as those in neighboring cities, who regularly shop on Amazon.” Amazon oers a starting wage of $15 per hour, comprehensive benets for full-time employees, 401(k) with a 50% company match, paid leave, up to 20 weeks of maternity and paternity leave, and other perks, according to the release. “As we work to attract more commercial development and diversify our tax base, I am thrilled that League City sta

members were able to attract Amazon to our community,” League City City Manager John Baumgartner said in the release. “League City is a great place to live, work and play, and we hope to attract more companies like Amazon to our area in the future.” Those interested in working at the delivery station can apply at www. amazondelivers.jobs. Learn more about available jobs at www.logistics.amazon. com and http://ex.amazon.com. “We’re excited to continue our investment in South Texas with a new delivery station in League City to provide fast and ecient delivery for customers and great pay, benets and a safe work environment for the talented local workforce,” Amazon spokesperson Daniel Martin said in the release. Amazon is opening a delivery station in La Marque later this year. www.amazon.com

www.thecookshack.com RELOCATIONS

10 Fab Med Spa and Cosmetic Laser Center has relocated from Friendswood to 1203 W. Bay Area Blvd., Webster, opening the new location June 19. The business treats and rejuvenates skin for tone, texture and tightness; uses botox and llers; oers laser hair removal; and treats acne. 281-819-1565.

www.fabmedspa.com EXPANSIONS

11 Houston Physicians Hospital , 333 N. Texas Ave., Webster, will complete a 38,400-square-foot expansion in the fall to meet patient demands, per a news release. The rst-oor expansion will in- clude a kitchen, a dining facility, a private sta break area, sterile processing and a sta meeting room. The second-oor build-out will add four operating rooms, and the third oor will be used for post-acute recovery and rehabilitation. 281-729-6651. www.houstonphysicianshospital.com

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walking trails. 281-317-7535. www.explorationgreen.org

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TODO LIST

July & August events

COMPILED BY SAVANNAH KUCHAR

JULY 28

HOUSTONASTROSMASCOT VISIT JOHNNIE AROLFO CIVIC CENTER

AUG. 13

HOMESCHOOL DAY SPACE CENTER HOUSTON

AUG. 19

ROCK THE DOCK KEMAH BOARDWALK

The Houston Astros baseball team’s mascot, Orbit, teaches children ages 6-11 about the importance of reading. Registration is required and opens July 25. 2-2:45 p.m. and 3:30-4:15 p.m. Free. Johnnie Arolfo Civic Center, 400 W. Walker St., League City. 281-554-1113. http://helenhall.libcal.com

Home-schooled students and their families can buy discounted tickets this day, and the space museum opens earlier at 9 a.m. for an hour of exclusive access. 9 a.m. $14.95 (admission), free (age 3 and under). Space Center Houston, 1601 E. NASA Parkway, Houston. 281-244-2100. www.spacecenter.org

The Rock the Dock concert series with live music every Thursday night this summer concludes Aug. 19 with a performance by Weezhur and Foo Fakers. Guests may bring chairs, but no outside food or drinks are allowed. 7 p.m. Free. Kemah Boardwalk, 215 Kipp Ave., Kemah. 281-535-8100. www.kemahboardwalk.com

COURTESY HELEN HALL LIBRARY

COURTESY SPACE CENTER HOUSTON

COURTESY KEMAH BOARDWALK

14 PENNY’S FARMER’SMARKET Local vendors selling home-grown or handcrafted products appear at this outdoor shopping market every second Saturday of the month. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Free (admission). Penny’s Beer Garden, 1001 FM 646, Dickinson. 832-315-6263. www.pennysbeergarden.com/ farmer-s-market 21 SPACE CENTER HOUSTON SENSORYFRIENDLY EVENTS The museum oers a sensory-friendly

JULY 24 AND AUG . 2 1 WATCH OUT! WATCH MATINEES!

AUGUST 06 MOVIE IN THE PARK The city of Webster will be showing “Toy Story 4” at Texas Avenue Park. Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets, and they can bring outside nonalcoholic refreshments or purchase food and drinks from on-site food trucks. 8:30 p.m. Free. Texas Avenue Park, 17100 Texas Ave., Webster. www.cityofwebster.com/calendar

environment for anyone diagnosed with conditions such as autism spectrum disorder and sensory processing disorder. Lighting, music and sound eects are adjusted, and tickets are limited to avoid large crowds. Instructors leading educational activities are trained to accommodate sensory-sensitive guests. 8-10 a.m. $15.95 (admission), free (age 3 and under). Space Center Houston, 1601 E. NASA Parkway, Houston. 281-244-2100. www.spacecenter.org

Watch matinee movie showings for adults only with “Palm Springs” July 24 and “High Noon” on Aug. 21. Snacks will be provided, or attendees can bring their own. 12:30-3 p.m. Free. Helen Hall Library, 100 W. Walker St., League City. 281-554-1136. http://helenhall.libcal.com

Find more or submit Bay Area 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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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES City Council to consider raising roadway impact fees in League City Within a fewmonths, League City

BY JAKE MAGEE

UPCOMING PROJECTS

ROADWAY IMPACT FEES The city charges developers roadway impact fees based on a development’s “service units,” which are calculated based on various factors. For instance, the service units for a general oce building is 6.21. Area 1: Fees are at their state-mandated maximum of $323 per service unit.

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Area 2: The fees are $1,120 per service unit for residential developments and $560 per service unit for nonresidential developments. These both can be raised to a maximum of $3,632 per service unit.

developers may be paying more for roadway projects, lessening the burden on taxpayers. In January 2019, League City City Council unanimously passed an ordi- nance establishing roadway impact fees charged to developers to help cover the cost of road projects made necessary by new developments. The idea behind the fees was to facilitate new growth in League City, which is about halfway built out. Depending on a City Council vote this August, these fees could increase this summer. At time the ordinance was imple- mented, developers opposed the idea, calling impact fees another tax they would have to pay. The council agreed the fees were like a tax but said it is better the cost be paid by those causing the expenditures—the developers—rather than residents. By the city collecting impact fees, taxpayers are not “subsidizing” roadwork for which developers should be paying, residents and ocials have said. For these reasons, City Council adopted the roadway impact fees ordinance two years ago. “It’s a way for growth to pay for growth and not put that back on exist- ing taxpayers,” Director of Engineering Chris Sims said. Under the ordinance, League City is divided into four roadway service areas, each no more than 6 miles in diameter, according to state law. Per the ordinance, the impact fee rate for Area 1, east of Hwy. 3, is $323 per service unit. The fee for areas 2-4 is

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League City Parkway right-turn lane This project will result in a new east- bound right-turn lane on League City Parkway to I-45, starting 300 feet west of Butler Road. The project will tie into an existing Texas Department of Trans- portation turn lane to improve mobility in the area. Timeline: summer 2022-TBD Cost: $300,500 Funding sources: city of League City, Galveston County

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Area 4: The fees are $1,120 per service unit for residential developments and $560 per service unit for nonresidential developments. The residential development fee is at its state-mandated maximum, but the nonresidential development fee can be raised to a maximum of $1,120 per service unit.

MAGNOLIA LN.

SOURCE: CITY OF LEAGUE CITYCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

$1,120 per service unit for residential developments and $560 per service unit for nonresidential developments. The amounts are based on the demand for development and roads in each area, Sims said. Service units are calculated based on a formula that includes the number of cars that pass along a road during a peak trac hour, the road’s length in miles and other factors. Service units for each type of development are pre- determined; for instance, the service units for a general oce building is 6.21, meaning the roadway impact fees collected for such a building would be $2,005.83 in Area 1 and $3,477.60 in areas 2-4. The statutory maximums for roadway impact fees in League City

are higher than what the city charges today in some areas, such as in Area 2, on the city’s north side, where the maximum is $3,632; Area 3, on the city’s south side, where it is $1,153; and Area 4, on the city’s west side, where it is $1,120. The city can increase the fees up to those amounts. Sta will return to City Council by early August with recommendations for new roadway impact fees. A public hearing will be held in August. Council members have already indicated they support increasing the fees. “This is just kind of another step in … [making] new development pay its own way and try to get ahead of the trac for once instead of just being reactionary,” Council Member Nick Long said.

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ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF JULY 8. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT BAYNEWSCOMMUNITYIMPACT.COM. League City will install trac signals along League City Parkway at Landing Boulevard, Magnolia Lane and West Bay Area Boulevard, along with a west- bound right-turn lane at Magnolia. The Landing and Magnolia trac signals will be constructed this upcoming scal year, which begins in October, and the remaining signal will be constructed in scal year 2022-23. Timeline: fall 2021-late 2022 Cost: $4.2 million Funding source: city of League City Installation of League City Parkway trac signals

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

CITY& COUNTY

News from League City, Houston, Galveston County & Harris County

Houston City Council meets at 9 a.m. July 28 and Aug. 4, 11, 18 and 25 at 901 Bagby St., Houston. MEETINGSWE COVER Clear Creek ISD board of trustees meets at 6 p.m. July 26 and Aug. 23 at 1955 W. NASA Blvd., Webster. Watch online at www.ccisd.net/ boardmeeting. League City City Council meets at 6 p.m. July 27 and Aug. 10 and 24 at 400 W. Walker St., League City. Watch at www.facebook.com/ leaguecitytexas. Meetings are streamed at www.houstontx.gov/htv. budget concerns exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The raises are expected to cost the city $115 million dollars over the next three years and bring HFD starting salaries up to $21.35 per hour. QUOTEOFNOTE “I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGHTHERE IS NOREASON TONOT GET VACCINATED IF YOU’RE OLD ENOUGH.” PHILIP KEISER, GALVESTON COUNTY LOCAL HEALTH AUTHORITY CITY& COUNTY HIGHLIGHTS HARRIS COUNTY Harris County Commissioners Court June 29 approved $15 million worth of initiatives to combat the Houston area’s ongoing rise in violent crime. “This is an exciting opportunity to improve the lives of our constituents,” said Precinct 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia, who previously served as Harris County sheri. The proposals approved unanimously by the commissioners include six new associate judges to assist in 22 criminal district courts; funding for visiting judges to assist the proposed six new associate judges, an expansion of jury service at NRG Stadium; and funding within the sheri’s oce for overtime, new body cameras and expansion of pilot neighborhoods for the Shot Spotter program that geolocates gunre in real time. HOUSTON On June 30, Houston City Council unanimously approved long-anticipated raises for the Houston Fire Department. The 18% raises split over the next three years are funded by the American Rescue Plan Act, a federal bill that allocated funds to local governments to alleviate

BayArea ocials trying tomakewatershed study projects feasible

Chuck Wolf, an associate with con- sulting rm Freese and Nichols, spoke before League City City Council during a June 22 workshop. Wolf reviewed what the rm discovered during its 18-month study of the Clear Creek and Dickinson Bayou watersheds. “This is the easy part, even though it’s taken us 18 months to get here,” City Manager John Baumgartner said. In its study, Freese and Nichols used modeling to determine there would be about $500 million worth of damages in the Clear Creek Watershed in a 100-year storm event. In the Dickinson BayouWatershed, the damages would total more than $800 million, Wolf said. The Dickinson BayouWatershed has fewer structures as the watershed is less developed than the Clear Creek Watershed, but the structures mostly are together in a “bowl” that is prone to deep ooding, leading to more damages, Wolf said.

For solutions, Freese and Nichols proposed doing detention and conveyance improvements in the Clear Creek Watershed along with building an underground tunnel starting at either FM 2351 or I-45. These solutions would reduce ooding around the creek anywhere from 1 inch to 5 feet, especially in the Friendswood area, Wolf said. In the Dickinson BayouWatershed, Freese and Nichols ocials concluded detention and channel improvements would reduce up to 3 feet of ooding in the bowl. However, more than 1,800 structures would remain at risk of ooding during a 10-year event, Wolf said. “We can improve it, but we can’t x it,” Wolf said of the bowl. “Topographi- cally, it’s too low.” Additionally, a large bypass channel to Galveston Bay would reduce ood- ing even more. Wolf said some aspects of the study need to be studied further.

BY JAKE MAGEE

LEAGUE CITY Additional studies and federal and state funding are neces- sary before ocials can implement millions of dollars of potential regional drainage solutions. COST BREAKDOWN During a 100-year storm, experts said the Clear Creek and Dickinson Bayou watersheds would face hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.

Possible damages from a 100-year storm: $500M Clear Creek Watershed Dickinson Bayou Watershed

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Possible damages from a 100-year storm: $800M

League City poised to spend $22M onwater line fromHwy. 3 to FM518

NUMBERS TOKNOW

Galveston CountyHealthDistrict conrms COVID19delta variant fromoutbreak Galveston County residents were infected with COVID-19 at a late June church camp. 150 14 19 SOURCE: GALVESTON COUNTYCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER of the cases are the delta variant. cases occurred in fully vaccinated residents.

BY JAKE MAGEE

LEAGUE CITY Ocials have published a notice of intent to issue certicates of obligation to fund at least part of a $22 million project to upgrade a water line. During League City City Council’s June 8 meeting, Finance Director Kristine Polian said the certicates of obligation will be used to fund up to $15 million of the project, which will result in a new 36-inch water line from the Hwy. 3 pump station to the South Shore pump station. “[This is] a very large line. Obviously [it is] a very exten- sive project coming in just over $22 million,” she said. According to ocials, the remainder of the project will be funded by utility system revenues, not property taxes. Council Member Larry Millican said this project has been planned for a long time to address the lowwater pressure part of the city experienced during the 2012 drought. “This item is one of those redundancy things we planned years ago to improve the water pressure on the east side,” he said. The certicates are scheduled to be authorized at City Council’s July 27 meeting.

BY COLLEEN FERGUSON

GALVESTON COUNTY The delta variant of the coro- navirus has been identied in more than a dozen test samples from local residents that are tied to a late June church camp outbreak, according to a July Galveston County Health District news release. As of July 14, 150 Galveston County youth and adults aliated with the camp held in Giddings, Texas, were conrmed as testing positive for COVID-19, per GCHD data. Of those, 14 test samples are positive for the delta variant. More than 450 adults and youth in grades six to 12 from the area were in attendance, putting the group’s COVID-19 positivity rate around 33%. Of the 150 cases reported, 19 are considered break- through cases, meaning the person became infected more than 14 days after their second COVID-19 vaccina- tion. Of the breakthrough cases, one has tested positive for the delta variant, per GCHD.

WATER LINE TO BE UPGRADED

518

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11

BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

2021 R E A L E S T A T E E D I T I O N

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER IS PROUD TO SAY THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSOR

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Real estate data for the Bay Area shows an active market for June 2020-May 2021 compared to June 2019-May 2020. In the ZIP codes 77058, 77059, 77062, 77565

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77059

and 77573, the number of homes sold and the average home sales price have increased. Homes are selling quicker with the average days a home is on the market decreasing in all ZIP codes except 77565. SOURCES: SPARROW REALTY, FREDDIE MACCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

77062

77058

77565

45

518

77573

N

AVERAGE HOME SALES PRICE June 2019-May 2020 June 2020-May 2021

June 2019-May 2020 June 2020-May 2021 NUMBER OF HOMES SOLD

$277,841

77058 SOLD

+12.67%

$313,045

$373,866

77059 SOLD

+7.15%

$400,595

$249,731

77062 SOLD

+7.99%

$269,684

+11.6%

+11.8%

$386,693

77565 SOLD

+24.05%

+50%

+14.37%

$479,675

+1.11%

$279,688

77573 SOLD

90

91

339

379

362

404

108

162

1,510

1,727

+32.69%

77058

77059

77062

77565

77573

$371,113

June 2019-May 2020 June 2020-May 2021 AVERAGE DAYS ON THEMARKET

Although 30-year and 15-year xed-mortgage rates declined during the heart of the pandemic in 2020, they have since risen in the early months of 2021. NATIONALMORTGAGE RATE DATA

30-year xed-rate mortgage

15-year xed-rate mortgage

77058 -13.16%

77059

5%

-41.05%

76

66

95

56

4%

77062

77565 +20.18%

-40.82%

49

29

109

131

3%

77573 -18.18%

55

45

2% 0

January 2018

January 2019

January 2020

January 2021

13

BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

GUIDE

Local businesses oer home improvement tips

HOME IMPROVEMENT

COMPILED BY MATT STEPHENS & ANDY YANEZ

ASKA POOL BUILDER

ASKA PAINTER

With Texas heat in full swing, pool builders are swamped with work. Andrew Legro, owner of Coastal Oasis Pools, has tips for pool owners.

People sometimes desire change, including in the color of their homes. Shayne Watson, owner of Exquisite Services, has a few tips for those looking to paint.

WHAT IS ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU CAN GIVE TO PEOPLE INTERESTED IN GETTING THEIR HOMES REPAINTED? Always make sure [the contractor has properly prepped] the surface ... before doing any type of painting because paint will peel if not prepared correctly. Also make sure if you reach out to a professional to always make sure they have good reviews and you have seen previous work of theirs.

IS THERE ANYTHING PEOPLE WHO CHOOSE TO HAVE THEIR HOMES PAINTEDWHETHER INTERIOR OR EXTERIORNEED TO DO TO PREPARE THE SURFACES THAT WILL GET PAINTED? No. All preparations will be done by the contractor, whether it is inside and you need to put down paper or plastic or outside when you have to caulk and pressure wash before painting. Everything prep-wise will be done by the contractor. WHEN IT COMES TIME TO CHOOSE THE PAINT, HOW DO YOU RECOMMEND THE TYPE OF PAINT THAT GOES BEST WITH THEIR HOMES? In my opinion, that is up to the homeowner also. I will show them dierent sheens and let them choose. I do tell them my input and experience with all sheens before letting them choose. When it comes to paint brands I always recommend Behr Interior Paint or SuperPaint by Sherwin-Williams for exterior paint.

FOR PEOPLE INTERESTED IN INSTALLING A POOL AT THEIR HOMES, WHAT IS THE MAIN HURDLE THEY HAVE TO GET PAST? Within city limits there are permits and restrictions that must be followed. The main obstacle right now is every pool builder has more work than they can handle and material shortage. Gunite, [a mixture of sand, water and cement that is applied in layers using a specialized spray gun], has been the biggest issue. There are so many pools being built and only so many gunite companies. COVID-19 has created a materials shortage that is leaving pools sitting incomplete longer than normal. WHAT ARE SOME TIPS FOR POOL OWNERS TO KEEP THEIR POOLS AND THEIR FILTERS CLEAN? If a homeowner is maintaining their own pool, it’s imperative they stay on top of the water chemistry and equipment maintenance. It gets very expensive and time consuming if a pool is neglected for even just one week.

A good Taylor K2005 test kit [is a good tool to test the pool’s water chemistry]. YouTube is a great tool for tutorials on how to run tests and which chemicals to use to adjust the chemistry. WHAT IS ONE THING POOL OWNERS SHOULD NEVER DO WHEN IT COMES TO POOL MAINTENANCE? Work outside of their abilities. Trying to do it yourself to save money sounds great, but the problem can be compounded and much more costly. Andrew Legro Owner Coasta Oasis Pools 281-508-6700 www.facebook.com/coastaloasispools

Shayne Watson Owner Exquisite Services Remodeing and Construction 409-370-0814 www.facebook.com/ exquisiteservicesremodeling

MAINTAINING YOUR HOME

EXTERIOR

INTERIOR

The National Association of Home Builders oers routine home maintenance tips for homeowners looking to maintain their homes’ value and ensure their

1 Roofs should be inspected by a qualied roofer every three years, and skylights should be inspected so leaks do not develop. 2 Ensure downspouts and gutters do not get clogged with leaves and other debris. 3 Inspect siding each year to see if it needs repainting, and trim shrubs away so they do not touch the siding. 4 Check for split or cracked caulking on windows and doors annually, and replace the caulk as necessary. 5 Moving parts of garage doors need to be oiled once every three months.

6 Air lters require regular replacement, generally once every three months.

1

safety. Find other useful home ownership tips at www.nahb.org.

7 Safety and security : Regularly check security alarms and circuit breakers. Check batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors twice a year. 8 Clean each faucet’s aerator every three to four months. Maintain garbage disposals by running cold water through them. 9 Masonry walls can develop a white powder that can be scrubbed o with water and a sti brush. 10 Hardwood oors without polyurethane need to be waxed with a liquid or paste “spirit” wax. Use emulsion wax on vinyl.

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6

9

7

4

8

10

5

3

SOURCE: NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF HOME BUILDERSCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

INSIDE INFORMATION UNDERSTANDING REVERSE MORTGAGES

2 0 2 1 R E A L E S T A T E E D I T I O N

WHAT IS A REVERSEMORTGAGE?

Reverse mortgages allow homeowners, who are often near retirement, to convert part of the equity in their homes into cash without having to sell the house or pay additional monthly bills. Most but not all reverse mortgages are federally insured through the Federal Housing Administration's Home Equity Conversion Mortgage Program.

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PROS AND CONS

With low rates in place due to the coronavirus pandemic, Ray Daniel, reverse mortgage specialist with Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp., said he believes now is an especially good time for senior homeowners to look at reverse mortgage options. Reverse mortgages allow homeowners to convert part of the equity in their homes into cash without having to sell the house or pay additional monthly bills, according to the Federal Trade Commission website. With this loan, if the balance is more than the home is worth, heirs do not have to pay the dierence. But if heirs sell the home, the lender will take the proceeds from the sale as payment on the loan, and the Federal Housing Administration insurance will cover any remaining loan balance, it said. Daniel said there are several misconceptions when it comes to reverse mortgages with the biggest being who owns the home. He said even with the mortgage, the senior continues to own the house throughout their lifetime, and it continues to be in their name. “[Homeowners] can do with it what they want, after they close on the reverse mortgage,” Daniel said. “If ve years later they decide they need to move and be closer to one of their children or grandchildren, they can sell it.” In addition, qualication requirements include age, credit and income, among others. However, there are some cons that come with reverse mortgages including added fees for closing costs and the potential for a reduced equity on the home over time, something to consider for those planning to leave the home for their children and grandchildren. In the case that heirs want to keep the home instead of selling it, the loan must be paid o with another source of funds, but heirs will never have to pay more than the full loan balance or 95% of the home’s appraised value, whichever is less, according to the FTC website. Even so, Daniel said only about 1.5% of adult children inherit a parent's house and move into it. “If you get a reverse mortgage, that's going to reduce that amount [of equity], but that amount that an owner took out to live their life they didn't have to take it out of their savings account or stocks or bonds or investment account,” Daniel said. “So, their investment accounts are larger by the same amount they took cash out of their house.”

Reverse mortgages are not recommended for everyone. Here is a look at some of the pros and cons of this program.

Loan repayments will not be required until: REPAYMENT REQUIREMENTS Last living borrower dies; Last living borrower no longer lives in the home as their principal residence including moving to a nursing home or assisted- living care facility; or Borrower chooses to sell the property. The equity of the home decreases Fees associated with the loan generally higher than with other nancial products; ask lenders about options available Balance of the loan increases over time as does the interest on the loan and the fees associated

Maintain ownership of the home More cash on hand to live in retirement

No mortgage payment during the life of the loan Neither the homeowner nor the heir are liable for any amount of the mortgage that transcends the value of the home

WHOQUALIFIES?

Qualications for borrowers to apply for a reverse mortgage include:

Must be age 62 or older. For those in a couple, both must be at least 62 years old; Must live in home as a primary residence for more than 6 months out of the year; Must own the home outright; Must not be a delinquent on any federal debt; Meet basic credit and income qualications; and Never miss a monthly payment as owners are still responsible for maintenance, taxes and insurance as long as they occupy their home.

SOURCES: CONSUMER FINANCE PROTECTION BUREAU, WWW.REVERSEMORTGAGEALERT.ORG, FAIRWAY INDEPENDENT MORTGAGE CORP., FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION, U.S DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENTCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

TRACKING REVERSEMORTGAGE RATES

*LATEST DATA AVAILABLE AS OF MAY 18

Texas reverse mortgage rates from the HECM program are reported each month. Below is the average rate for xed and adjustable rate loans over time.*

Fixed rate

Adjustable rate

0 1% 2% 3% 4% 5%

March 2015 March 2016

March 2017

March 2019 March 2020 March 2021

March 2018

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2021

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