Texas Round-Up: What’s Happenin’ around Texas?

COVER11AUSTIN:

The City of Austin enters a 90-day period asking the public about names.

The city is discussing the renaming process for the East Lawn portion of Auditorium Shores in Central Austin.

The East Lawn portion of Auditorium Shores is bound by the trailhead parking lot to the east; Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail to the south; Riverside Drive to the north; and the Stevie Ray Vaughan Walkway to the west.

The 90-day period for public discussion is about possible names for the parkland. Deadline for submissions is Sept. 1, 2014. Nomination forms may be obtained: At the Parks and Recreation Department’s Annex Office at 919 W. 28 ½ St., By calling (512) 974-9458 or online at www.austintexas.gov/department/parks-and-recreation.

BEAUMONT

The Beaumont Independent  School District Board of Trustees presented additional cost-saving considerations offered by Dr. Timothy Chargois, Superintendent of Schools.

In addition to the recently approved Reduction in Force (RIF) that will take place by the end of this month, Chargois is reviewing a list of other unfunded line items contributing to a state of financial exigency of school district.

The RIF will trim millions of dollars from the school district’s $173 million of annual expenditures and help re-establish BISD’s dwindling fund balance that is projected to end this school year at just over $6 million.

“We have to make budget cuts in excess of $25 million for the coming school year in order to end the year in the black. Next year, we may have to make additional cuts to help shore up our fund balance and maintain an overall healthy budget,” Dr. Chargois said. “The standard for a recommended  fund balance designed for maintaining a school district during disasters as hurricanes or other emergency situations is two to three months of the cost of operating. For BISD, the current recommended  fund balance is $28 million to $42 million.”

According to Dr. Chargois, the suggestion of retirement incentives has been discussed. “However, at this point in time, the cost associated with funding a retirement incentive to qualifying employees would be another unplanned for and unfunded budget item.

“We have to eliminate as many surprise costs to our budget as possible to streamline,” he said. “Our operations are hurting, but I see no other choice.”

DALLAS:

The Dallas City Council is eyeing beefing up its security.

The plan calls for spending $400,000 to do security upgrades and improve on security measures in the event of an emergency.

District 4 Councilman Dwaine Caraway said the security changes are needed to better protect the council in the event of a situation involving threats or violence. Some of the changes include visitors being subject to new security screenings to be checked for weapons. In the briefing room, Council members will sit behind bullet-proof desks.

Caraway noted that Dallas has been fortunate not to have any incidents like in other parts of the country.

Times have changed so this is for the safety of citizens,” Caraway said. “You never know when a deranged person may have had a bad evening and decided to take it out on innocent people.”

HOUSTON

Community Activist Deric Muhammad, the men of Project FORWARD and others have declared this Fathers Day, June 15th, “A DAY OF ENCOURAGEMENT FOR BLACK FATHERS in MacGregor Park from 5 p.m. To 8p.m.

The theme for the event is “Moving Forward as Fathers”

Fathers Day in the Black community is different than in any other community. Statistics say that nearly 70% of the homes in the Black community are headed by females.

This creates an interesting dynamic on Fathers Day.

“We want to encourage fathers to accept their divine responsibility and become the men they were born to be,” Muhammad said. “At the end of the event we will all take a “Pledge to Become Better Fathers.”WHAT: A “Day of Encouragement” for Black Fathers.”

The event is headed up by Activist Deric Muhammad and Project Forward.

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