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David R. Miller

Monday, January 18th, 2016

David R. Miller 1945 - 2016

David R. Miller
1945 - 2016

David R. Miller, 70, of Amarillo passed away Jan. 11, 2016, in Amarillo.

A memorial service was held Saturday, Jan. 16, at First Presbyterian Church. Dr. Roger Hubbard of Lake Tanglewood Community Church officiated. Arrangements were by Schooler Funeral Home of Amarillo.

David was born in Lubbock on March 28, 1945, to Marvin and Melba Miller. He was raised in Amarillo where he attended Tascosa High School and Amarillo College before graduating from the University of Texas in 1967 with a degree in both Finance and Economics. David served in the United States Navy followed by a career with Levi Strauss. For the past thirty years, he has fulfilled his passion as an oil and gas producer in the Panhandle.

In 1991, David married Suzi in La Quinta, Calif. Together, they were involved in many philanthropic endeavors within the community.

David is survived by his wife, Suzi; his daughter, Ali Miller of Amarillo; his two sons, Chris Miller and wife Bridget of La Quinta and Jeff Miller and his wife Lindsay of Nashville; one sister, Kay Burk and her husband Buck of Conway; one brother Marvin Miller and his wife Beverly of Kingsland, Ga.; and three grandchildren, Ethan, Noah and Claire.

In lieu of flowers please make donations in memory of David Miller to the National Organization for Rare Disorders, 55 Kenosia Avenue Danbury, CT 06810.

Please sign our online guest book at www.schoolerfuneralhome.com.

Weather Warning Now Available in CodeRED System

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

Carson County, Nov. 24, 2014- Carson County has recently updated its account with Emergency Communications Network, providers of the CodeRED high-speed notification solution. This no-charge update will allow message recipients to easily identify calls coming through the system. Message recipient’s Caller ID will read Emergency Communication or 866-419-5000 for the Emergency database and 855-969-4636 or ECN Community for general database, depending on local telephone providers.
Most relevant for our citizens, says Brenda Vermillion, Carson County Emergency Management Coordinator, “Residents can simply dial the number displayed on their Caller ID to hear the last message delivered. This will greatly reduce the number of inbound inquiries handled by our office and will offer residents an immediate replay of the message.”
The CodeRED system provides Cities of Groom, Panhandle, Skellytown and White Deer and Carson County officials the ability to quickly deliver messages to targeted areas or the entire cities and the county. If you are not sure that you are included in the database, simply log onto the http://www.co.carson.tx.us/ website, and follow the link to the "CodeRED Community Notification Enrollment" page. Those without Internet access may call Office of Emergency Management at 806-537-5395, Monday through Friday, (8 a.m.-5 p.m.) to supply their information over the phone. Required information includes first and last name, street address (physical address, no P.O. boxes), city, state, zip code, and primary phone number, additional phone numbers can be entered as well.
All businesses should register, as well as all individuals who have unlisted phone numbers, who have changed their phone number or address within the past year, and those who use a cellular phone or VoIP phone as their primary number.
Another product from CodeRED will be the WEATHER WARNING which will alert citizens in the direct path of severe weather. Notifications by phone will be sent out moments after a severe thunderstorm, tornado warning, and flash flood warning have been issued by National Weather Service. Text messages will be sent for the above warnings plus winter storms warnings. Only citizens in the immediate impact area will be alerted. “With this new feature of CodeRED residents will receive the notice of weather conditions as soon as National Weather Service issues them,” Vermillion stated. Residents will have to re-add their information and mark which Weather Warning they want to receive.
You will know the call is from CodeRED Weather Warning when you see the telephone number 800-566-9780. If you would like to hear the last message delivered to your phone, simply dial the number back.
Vermillion stated, "CodeRED gives those who want to be included an easy and secure method for inputting information. The data collected will only be used for emergency notification purposes." Questions should be directed to the Office of Emergency Management at 806-537-5395.

About Emergency Communications Network
Headquartered in Ormond Beach, Fla., Emergency Communications Network, LLC (ECN) has pioneered high-speed emergency notification services capable of reaching millions of citizens in minutes. ECN’s sophisticated network supports a Web-based product suite featuring six major services: CodeRED® which enables local government officials to communicate time-sensitive, personalized messages via voice, email and text messaging; CodeRED Weather Warning™ which provides automated alerts to citizens in the path of severe weather just moments after a warning has been issued by the National Weather Service; CityWatch™, a premise and Web-based, full featured outbound and inbound communication notification system; SmartNotice™, a streamlined notification solution for businesses; My Daily Call™ for scheduling calls to check on at-risk individuals, including the elderly, infirm and latchkey kids and Code-RED® for use by school systems to improve communications with their communities. For more information, visit www.ecnetwork.com.

National School Bus Safety Week: Oct. 20-24

Friday, October 17th, 2014

Obey the Law: Don’t Pass Stopped School Buses

AUSTIN - In conjunction with National School Bus Safety Week, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is reminding drivers that it is illegal to pass any school bus that is stopped and operating a visual signal – either flashing red lights or a stop sign.
During this time, DPS Highway Patrol troopers will be on the lookout for drivers who disregard the law.
“Children are particularly vulnerable when entering or exiting a school bus, and drivers who refuse to yield to a stopped school bus put our children in harm’s way,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “DPS will not tolerate those who ignore the law, and we urge drivers to make safety a priority when they encounter school buses.”

During National School Bus Safety Week, troopers in many areas will be riding on or following school buses to catch motorists who disregard the law. Troopers will also be patrolling areas where school buses pick up and drop off students, watching for motorists violating the school bus law. Drivers who violate the law could face fines as much as $1,250.

In 2013, Texas Highway Patrol troopers issued 566 tickets for passing a stopped school bus. According to the Texas Education Agency, more than 40,000 school buses transport 1.5 million Texas children every school day.

According to Texas statute, a driver – traveling in either direction – must stop when approaching a school bus that is stopped and operating a visual signal. The driver may not proceed until one of the following occurs: the school bus resumes motion; the operator is signaled by the bus driver to proceed; or the visual signal is no longer activated.

If a road is divided only by a left-turning lane, drivers on both sides of the roadway must stop for school buses with alternating red flashing lights activated. However, if the lanes are separated by an intervening space or physical barrier, only motorists going in the same direction as the bus are required to stop.

(As a reminder, school buses, by law, must stop at all railroad crossings.)

Here are several safety measures drivers can take to help keep children safer:

•When driving in school zones, watch out for student pedestrians.
•Slow down and watch for children congregating near bus stops.
•Look for children who might dart into the street without looking for traffic.
•Know and obey the laws concerning traffic and school buses in Texas.

Square House Museum Day This Saturday!

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

This Saturday, Sept. 27 marks the 49th annual Museum Day Barbecue here in Panhandle. Come on out and enjoy all the festivities!

The celebration will begin with a barbecue lunch being served in the Agriculture Building from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Meal tickets are $12 for adults and $7 for kids (under 8 - eat for free). You will be able to purchase homemade baked items and canned goods from the Country Store in the Ag Building and you can participate in the Silent Auction, featuring all kinds of art items and specialty foods. A sneak peak at the Silent Auction items can be had at the Hazlewood Building of the Square House Museum and bids on the items are being accepted now.

Larry Hill will be on hand, painting scenes of the day and entertainment will be provided for your listening pleasure.

Guest speaker, Glen Hodges of Pattern Energy Group, will be speaking at 2 p.m. and the Bones Hook Memorial Presentation will be given, along will a Pioneer Memorial Service.

After you leave the Ag Barn, head over to the Square House Museum and the Hazlewood Galleries to check out the splendid array of quilts and other interesting artifacts on exhibit! What a wonderful display of our history!

Oliver Studies With Distinguished Scholars

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Panhandle High School Teacher Sheryl Oliver was selected to attend “Teaching the American Literary Tradition,” a professional development institute sponsored by Humanities Texas, the College of Liberal Arts at The University of Texas at Austin (UT) and the Harry Ransom Center.

Oliver teaches English, debate and theater at PHS.

“Teaching the American Literary Tradition” drew fifty teachers in all to Austin for three and a half days of dynamic presentations and inspiring small-group workshops, studying topics such as the literature of the Civil War era, the rhetoric of the civil rights movement, American drama and Texas and Latino literature in the twentieth century.

Robert S. Levine, Distinguished University Professor of English at the University of Maryland and General Editor of The Norton Anthology of American Literature, discussed the American literary tradition in his keynote lecture.

Other faculty included Philip Barrish, Evan Carton, Heather Houser, Coleman Hutchinson, David Kornhaber and Jennifer Wilks, all of The University of Texas at Austin; José Aranda of Rice University; Steven L. Davis of Texas State University; Eve Dunbar of Vassar College; Randall Fuller of University of Tulsa; Debra Moddelmog of Ohio State University and Eric Lupfer of Humanities Texas.

Educational specialists from the Ransom Center and the Amon Carter Museum of American Art also served on the institute faculty and provided participants with teaching resources drawn from collections at their respective institutions.

“This institute helped so much in integrating texts I haven’t used,” said Oliver. “I feel empowered.”

“Humanities Texas was pleased to cosponsor ‘Teaching the American Literary Tradition,’” said Executive Director Michael L. Gillette.
“Giving talented teachers the opportunity to interact with their peers and leading scholars will enable them to engage students with exciting new perspectives on our nation’s literary history.”

“Teaching the American Literary Tradition” was made possible with support from the Brown Foundation, Inc. of Houston, the State of Texas and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Austin program was one of five Humanities Texas institutes this summer at major universities across Texas. Other host universities included the University of North Texas, The University of Texas at San Antonio and the University of Houston.

Humanities Texas is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Its mission is to advance education through programs that improve the quality of classroom teaching, support libraries and museums and create opportunities for lifelong learning for all Texans.

For more information about Humanities Texas, visit www.humanitiestexas.org. For information about The University of Texas at Austin, visit www.utexas.edu. For more information on the Harry Ransom Center, visit www.hrc.utexas.edu.

Be The Match! You Could Be The Cure

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

Roberta Johnson of Be The Match and PHS Senior Tyler Hall visited at the 2013 Community Health Fair on Monday about the importance of marrow donation.

Roberta Johnson of Be The Match and PHS Senior Tyler Hall visited at the 2013 Community Health Fair on Monday about the importance of marrow donation.

At the local Health Fair on Monday, May 19, there were 22 booths and 403 attendees. Roberta Johnson was at the Be The Match booth, educating visitors on bone marrow transplant. She had 42 donors sign up.

Every four minutes someone is diagnosed with a blood cancer. For thousands of patients with leukemia or other blood diseases like sickle cell anemia, a marrow transplant is their only hope.

You could save a life by joining the Be The Match Registry®. Patients especially need diverse registry members ages 18 to 44.
Marrow donation can be done in one of two ways.

In a peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) donation, a drug is given to donors for five days that increases the number of cells in their bloodstream used for transplant. Cells are gathered using a non-surgical, outpatient procedure. Donors may experience head or muscle aches, but are typically back to normal activities in one or two days.

Marrow donation is a surgical (usually outpatient) procedure which requires anesthesia. Afterwards, donors may have soreness in the lower back, but usually return to a normal routine within two to seven days.

Ask your doctor if you could be a candidate for marrow donation. If being a donor is not for you, financial contributions and volunteers are always needed.

Be The Match provides patients and their families one-on-one support, education and guidance before, during and after the transplant.

To join the Be The Match Registry®, please call (800) 627-7692 or go online to www.BeTheMatch.org.

County Commissioners Court Update

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

These are the minutes of the Honorable Commissioners’ Court of Carson County meetings. The last report we received was for the March 24 meeting.
Disclaimer: These minutes have not yet been approved by the Commissioners’ Court, so content or clerical errors may be corrected after review by the Court in the next general session.

The Court met at 10 a.m. on April 14, 2014 for Regular Meeting. Those present were County Judge Lewis Powers, Commissioner Mike Britten – Precinct No. 1, Commissioner James Martin – Precinct No. 2, Commissioner Mike Jennings – Precinct No. 3 and Commissioner Kevin Howell – Precinct No. 4.
Minutes for the March 24, 2014 meeting were discussed and approved.

The Court reviewed all claims, invoices and commissary. Commissioner Britten made a motion to pay all and to include a new claim from Atmos in the amount of $3,314.81. Commissioner Jennings seconded and the motion carried.

Tax Collector/Assessor Jackie Moore reported that the current taxes collected thru March 2014 were 97.42%. No action.

Moore also asked the Court to consider discounts for 2014. Commissioner Britten made a motion to leave discounts and homestead exemptions the same as last year. The homestead exemption is 20% and an additional 3,000.00 exemption on Lateral Road, 3% discount in October, 2% in November and 1% in December. Commissioner Martin seconded and the motion carried.

Discussion on sealed bids on struck-off property ensued. Moore submitted a sealed bid on Lots 22, 23 and 24, Block 14, New Roxana of Skellytown from Bryan Denham in the amount of $50.00. Commissioner Howell made a motion to approve the bid, Jennings seconded and it carried. Moore submitted another sealed bid on Lots 14, 15 and 16, Block 4, Sante Fe Addition of Skellytown from Bryan Denham in the amount of $50.00. Commissioner Howell motioned to approve the bid, Britten seconded and it carried.

Librarian Mary Hare submitted a request by the Carson County Library to recycle Lot #008. It was reviewed by the Court. Commissioner Jennings made a motion to approve the request, Howell seconded and it carried.

Judge Powers presented the Notice of Eligible Grant Award from TxDOT. The Court reviewed the notice. Commissioner Britten motioned to adopt the resolution and designation of the County Judge as Representative. Howell seconded and the motion carried.

Judge Powers also brought for discussion the Memorandum of Understanding between the Carson County Commissioners and the Bureau of Land Management Oklahoma Field Office, Bureau of Indian Affairs Eastern Oklahoma Regional Office and Southern Plains Regional Office. The Court reviewed the Memorandum of Understanding. Commissioner Jennings made a motion not to participate in the MOU with the Bureau of Land Management. Britten seconded the motion and it carried.

Emergency Management Coordinator Brenda Vermillion asked the Court to consider approving an updated version of the Mutual Aid Agreement with Panhandle Regional Planning Commission. Commissioner Martin made a motion to approve the agreement. Jennings seconded the motion and it carried.

Vermillion also presented for approval the Safety Award Program with TAC; Safety Award Application, Safety Resolution, Seat Belt Policy, Accident Prevention Plan and Incident Review Committee for Law Enforcement. No action was taken.

Vermillion asked the Court to consider allowing her to be Custodian of the State of Texas Emergency Assistance Registry (STEAR) Program. Commissioner Martin motioned to approve, Britten seconded and it carried.

Vermillion asked the Court to consider how monetary donations for the animal shelter would be handled and other animal issues in the event of disaster. Commissioner Jennings made a motion to set up committees to manage all of the monetary donations and other animal issues in the event of disaster. The committee would consist of the following positions: Happy State Bank – Spokesperson, Donations Manager, Vice-Chair Donations Manager, Small Animal Chair Person, Large Animal Chair Person, County Judge, County Sheriff and Administrative Assistant of Carson County Sheriff’s Office. Howell seconded the motion and it carried.

Judge Powers brought for discussion the Juvenile Probation Board Meeting minutes of March 31, 2014 that reflect the appointment of a fiscal officer and the transfer of Juvenile Probation bank accounts. Judge Powers asked the Court to approve the the minutes. Commissioner Britten motioned to approve the minutes of the March 31 meeting. Jennings seconded and it carried.

Judge Powers asked the Court to consider recognizing the Juvenile Probation Officer as a Carson County Employee for insurance and retirement purposes. Commissioner Howell made a motion to approve the request, Martin seconded and it carried.

Judge Powers presented for discussion the Right-Of-Way County Notification from Windstream Communications. He asked the Court to consider approving a bore under CR DD. Commissioner Britten made a motion to acknowledge the notification from Windstream Communications, Martin seconded and it carried.

There being no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned.

The Court met at 10 a.m. on April 28, 2014 for Regular Meeting. Those present were Judge Powers, Commissioners Britten, Martin, Jennings and Howell.
Approval of minutes from April 14 Meeting were approved with corrections. All claims, invoices and commissary were approved for payment.

Auditor Jackie West brought for discussion the Certificate of Receipt and Budget Amendment. She informed the Court that Sheriff Brand took in 16 of Hutchinson County’s prisoners during a gas leak in their jail. She informed the Court that she had certified the funds. Commissioner Howell made a motion to amend the Boarding of Prisoner line item in the amount of $1,920.00. Britten seconded the motion and it carried.

Treasurer Denise Salzbrenner submitted the 1st Quarterly Financial Report for January, February and March 2014. Commissioner Howell made a motion to accept the report as presented. Martin seconded and it carried.

Judge Powers presented for discussion the Burn Ban. Commissioner Jennings motioned to re-enact the ban for 90 days. Howell seconded the motion and it carried.

County & District Clerk Celeste Bichsel asked the Court to consider approving an Election Services Agreement Renewal between Carson County and Election Systems and Software. Commissioner Jennings motioned for the approval, Britten seconded and it carried.

Bichsel asked the Court to approve an Election Service Agreement between Carson County and White Deer ISD. Commissioner Howell made a motion to approve the agreement, Britten seconded and it carried.

Bichsel asked the Court to approve an Imaging Agreement between Carson County and Kofile Solutions. Commissioner Britten made a motion for approval, Martin seconded and it carried.
Auditor West asked the Court to approve an amended Rights of Substitution for Pledge Securities between Happy State Bank and Carson County. Commissioner Howell made a motion to approve the amended Rights, Britten seconded and it carried.

Judge Powers asked the Court to approve a Road Crossing Permit with Route 66 Wind Power, LLC. The underground crossing will be at County Roads H (2), I and 2 and an overhead crossing at CR O.
Commissioner Jennings made a motion to approve the permit. Martin seconded and it carried.

Librarian Mary Hare gave a short report of the Texas Library Association Conference 2014, which she attended. Commissioner Martin motioned to accept the report, Britten seconded and it carried.

The Court took a five-minute break and then reconvened to discuss the Project Priority List for the TxDOT Road Grant. Judge Powers reported that the Court made some changes to the project form to be re-submitted to TxDOT. Item #10, which was CR 13 on the report was deleted. Item #7, CR Y was changed to a three-mile project and the amount was changed from $33,400.00 to $18,905.00. Item #11, miscellaneous repair was deleted. Item #12, CR Y from HWY 60 South to CR 16 was changed from $18,750.00 to $23,170.00. Commissioner Britten made a motion to approve and resubmit the grant application as discussed. Howell seconded and it carried.

There being no further business, Court was dismissed.

The Court met at 10 a.m. on May 12, 2014 for Regular Meeting. Judge Powers was absent. Those present were Commissioners Britten, Martin, Jennings and Howell.

Approval of the minutes of the April 28 Meeting and payment of all claims, invoices and commissary as submitted was passed.

Tax Assessor/Collector Jackie Moore reported that the current taxes collected through April 2014 were 97.54%. No action was taken.

County Treasurer Denise Salzbrenner informed the Court that CUSIP #31371LPU7 will mature on May 27, 2014 and that she will release and not replace it. Commissioner Martin made a motion to approve, Jennings seconded and it carried.

The Court reviewed a request from Windstream for a Road Crossing at County Road 16 and FM 2385. Commissioner Jennings made a motion to approve the permit, Martin seconded and it carried.

The matter of a request for a Road Crossing Permit from Grandview Wind Energy, LLC was tabled for later discussion.

There being no further business to discuss, Court was adjourned.

The Court met at 10 a.m. on May 12, 2014 for Regular Meeting. Judge Powers was absent. Those present were Commissioners Britten, Martin, Jennings and Howell.

Approval of the minutes of the April 28 Meeting and payment of all claims, invoices and commissary as submitted was passed.

Tax Assessor/Collector Jackie Moore reported that the current taxes collected through April 2014 were 97.54%. No action was taken.

County Treasurer Denise Salzbrenner informed the Court that CUSIP #31371LPU7 will mature on May 27, 2014 and that she will release and not replace it. Commissioner Martin made a motion to approve, Jennings seconded and it carried.

The Court reviewed a request from Windstream for a Road Crossing at County Road 16 and FM 2385. Commissioner Jennings made a motion to approve the permit, Martin seconded and it carried.

The matter of a request for a Road Crossing Permit from Grandview Wind Energy, LLC was tabled for later discussion.

There being no further business to discuss, Court was adjourned.

Kenneth Duane Cockrell

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Kenneth Duane Cockrell 1952-2013

Kenneth Duane Cockrell
1952-2013

Kenneth Duane Cockrell, 61, passed away Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014.

Graveside service will be held Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014 at 2 p.m. in the Panhandle Cemetery under the direction of Minton Chatwell Funeral Directors of Panhandle. The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014 at the funeral home in Panhandle.

Kenneth was born Dec. 13, 1952 in Moorhead, Minn. to Wilbur and Irma Cockrell. He was a wonderful father, grandfather and he had a strong work ethic.

He is preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Dennis, William and Jerry; and sisters, Delores and Sandra.

Survivors include his wife, Phyllis of the home; sons, Kurt Cockrell and his wife, Melissa of Canyon, Delt Cockrell and his wife, Michelle of Amarillo; grandchildren, Carson, Connor, Chloe, Parker and Reighan; brothers, Bud, Everett, David and Larry; sisters, Arlis and Delores; numerous nieces and nephews; and a host of extended family.