GARDEN CLUB DINES AT BRENNAN’S CHEF TABLE Diboll Garden Club members making a trip to Houston last week were treated royally during lunch at the Chef’s Table at Brennan’s restaurant. The Chef’s Table is a huge round table surrounded by glass in the kitchen area where meal preparations can be observed. The saying of “putting the big pot into the little pot” aptly described what Executive Chef Danny Trace arranged for the group. Beginning with the first appetizer of Seared Scallop over a bed of lightly dressed Spring Greens, the meal progressed to a second appetizer of Jumbo Lump Crabmeat with Butternut Squash Puree. Each member then ordered an entrée of choice. A favorite soup was Brennan’s famous Turtle Soup splashed with sherry, and some of the members were able to watch this delicacy being prepared following lunch. Of course desserts could not be missed, and among the choices selected were Bananas Foster flamed at the table and Creole Bread Pudding. Hostesses Fran McClain, Kathy Sample and Louise Maxwell had Tessie’s Treats create a beautiful flower bouquet cookie for each lady and also provided a door prize of a unique garden bird feeder. Ima Weisinger was the lucky winner. Houston Garden Club member Nancy Keely, a good friend of Fran McClain’s daughter Lisa, had prepared gift bags containing “Fourth of July” crinum bulbs, “Rain Lily” bulbs, and amaryllis seeds for each lady. And the last “goody” on exiting the restaurant was a handful of Brennan’s outstanding pralines. Those members enjoying the outing were Nita Hurley, Mary Ingram, Marcia Jones, Fran McClain, Gloria Ogden, Jo Ann Rainwater, Kathy Sample, Gay Storch, Kathy Townes, Ima Weisinger, Dolly Whitaker, and guest Elsie Simpson.

Water or the lack thereof is a hot-button issue in most areas of the state. So, it was no surprise voters overwhelmingly voted for Proposition 6 on Tuesday – in Angelina County and across the state.
In Angelina County, Proposition No. 6, which addressed the growing water supply problems, garnered 1,551 votes for and only 609 votes against.
It allows $2 billion from Texas’ rainy day fund to help with large  water infrastructure projects, including creating reservoirs, laying new pipelines and replacing older ones.
“I’m pleased with the outcome on Proposition 6, not only because it passed, but because it did so overwhelmingly. The results tell me that Texans understand what issues are important to our state’s continued prosperity,” said state Rep. Trent Ashby of Lufkin. “The current ongoing drought, coupled with the water needs of the state’s growing population, has raised the specter of devastating shortages in the state’s water supply. If the state’s growing water needs had not been  addressed, we would have suffered from the projected loss of more than a million jobs, billions of dollars in lost income, reduced economic activity and decreased tax revenues in the coming years.
Ashby serves on the Natural Resource Committee.
“My priority was to ensure that rural Texas got its fair share of the proposed funding, East Texas water was protected, and that our water rights weren’t impacted.  Now, finally, we can begin funding our state’s 50-year water plan,” Ashby said.
The amendment creates two funds — State Water Implementation Fund for Texas and the State Water Implementation Revenue Fund for Texas — to be managed by the Texas Water Development Board.
State Sen. Robert Nichols of Jacksonville commented on the passage of Props 1 and 4.
“I was happy to hear that Propositions 1 and 4 were passed by the voters. The passing of these two amendments will provide property tax exemptions for surviving spouses of soldiers killed in action and for disabled veterans. This is just another way that we as Texans can honor and recognize the sacrifices of these brave men, women and their families,” he said.
All nine propositions earned approval from Texas and Angelina County voters.
Proposition No. 1, which would authorize the legislature to provide by statute for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of all or part of the market value of the residence homestead of the surviving spouse of a member of the United States armed services who is killed in action, as long as the surviving spouse has not remarried (Angelina County: 1,926 votes in favor and 230 votes against).
Proposition No. 2, which would repeal the constitutional provision requiring the creation of a State Medical Education Board and a State Medical Education Fund (Angelina County: 1,860 votes in favor and 281 votes against).
Proposition No. 3, which would authorize local political subdivisions to extend the length of time that aircraft parts could remain temporarily in this state before being subject to ad valorem taxation (Angelina County: 1,320 votes in favor of the amendment and 800 votes against).
Proposition No. 4, which would allow the legislature to provide for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of part of the market value of the residence homestead of a partially disabled veteran or the surviving spouse of a partially disabled veteran if the residence homestead was donated to the disabled veteran at no cost to the veteran by a charitable organization (Angelina County: 1,851 votes in favor and 303 votes against).
Proposition No. 5, which would amend the definition of “reverse mortgage” to authorize the making of reverse mortgage loans for the purchase of homestead property in addition to the current legal uses of those loans, and would give lenders recourse against borrowers who fail to timely occupy the homestead properties purchased with such loans (Angelina County:  1,310 votes in favor and 821 votes against).
Proposition No. 7, which would allow home-rule municipalities to adopt charter provisions authorizing the filling of vacancies in the governing body by appointment, but only when the remainder of the vacant term is less than 12 months (Angelina County:  1,627 in favor and 490 votes against.)
Proposition No. 8, which would repeal the constitution’s maximum tax rate for a Hidalgo County hospital district (Angelina County:  1,556 votes in favor of the amendment and 486 votes against).
Proposition No. 9, which would expand the potential sanctions that the State Commission on Judicial Conduct can issue following a formal proceeding (Angelina County: 1,758 votes in favor and 358 votes against).
– Some info from The Associated Press