Animal Shelter to get multiple upgrades


By Kyle Mooty

LPR Editor

The Lockhart Animal Shelter will be getting upgrades in the coming weeks, including indoor and outdoor kennel restoration, outdoor draining, flooring, and divider walls.

Austin-based Connolly Architects & Consulting will be providing the work at the shelter.

Public Works Director Sean Kelly said the work at the shelter would begin in the next two or three weeks and would help with both noise control as well as disease control.

There are about 40 outdoor kennels at the shelter. They would have concrete flooring and drainage to help with the sanitation issues.

Also, the chain link divider walls will be replaced in the main indoor kennel area with cinderblock walls.

There will be other upgrades, such as adding new concrete flooring in the isolation area.

The City Council approved the professional services agreement.

In other business:

The Council approved an ordinance adding Juneteenth as a holiday for City employees starting in 2024. Juneteenth became a Federal holiday in the U.S. in 2021, commemorating the end of slavery.

Caldwell County already recognizes Juneteenth as a holiday.

The City of Lockhart will not have 12 paid holidays as well as a personal day for employees in 2024 Juneteenth is set this year on June 19.

Six entities were approved for the city’s hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) funding. The Advisory Board allocated $222,500 for Fiscal Year 2024 to the Caldwell County Jail Museum and Visitors Center, the Greater Caldwell County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (both the Cinco de Mayo and Diez y Seis festivals), Lockhart Chamber of Commerce (both the Chisholm Trail Roundup, Rodeo and Festival and the Visitors Bureau and Information Center), Rach and Rhodes Presents Courthouse Nights, Troubadour Sound + for its 78644 podcast, and Gaslight-Baker Theatre.

Only the Lockhart Chamber was on hand for a brief presentation at the meeting, and Councilmembers agreed to revisit how the allotments were distributed next year.

Frank Sanchez addressed the City Council during the public comments. The Dale resident said he was speaking on behalf of the disabled and disabled veterans.

“It seems lately that nobody is enforcing parking for the handicapped,” Sanchez said. “Wherever you go, people are parking wherever they want. I’ve talked to the sheriff’s department about it and they said there’s not enough for them to enforce it. The City Police are also short-handed. I understand that, but Lockhart is growing.

“Handicapped parking (fines) are anywhere from $200 to $250 a ticket. They would make a pretty good income. It would also give disabled people a place to park. I see the elderly having to walk farther and farther out from stores. We just need help, and it’s not being offered.”

Mayor White advised Sanchez that he would discuss the handicap parking issue with Police Chief Gary Williamson.

The Council approved to move forward with a feasibility study investigating Railroad Quiet Zones within the City Limits. There are six railroad crossings in Lockhart and a “Quiet Zone” must be at least a half-mile long where locomotives cannot use their horn.

Safety measures for the crossings would need to be investigated before a Quiet Zone is deemed possible.

The Council unanimously approved an ordinance assigning a recently adopted a 53-acre tract known as the Real Cold Property at 1925 FM 2001 to City Council District 2. The industrial land currently has no one residing in the voting area.

Mayor White read a proclamation declaring May 2024 as Motorcycle Awareness Month.

Among the statistics mentioned, it was noted that there were 438,551 registered motorcycles in Texas last year.

Several motorcyclists representing Lockhart were on hand. They have helped with Lilly’s Christmas Party and the Toy Run for the last 17 years.

Several Councilmembers praised the Greater Caldwell County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for its recent Cinco de Mayo celebration in Lockhart, as well as the 5K and 10K runs associated with the event.

The new soccer mini-pitch at the CPL Jason K. LaFleur Soccer Complex will have a grand opening on Saturday, May 25, at 10 a.m.

Mayor Pro Tem Angie Gonzales-Sanchez said Courthouse Nights had begun with a big night in April with musical guest Dale Watson. EZ Band (see related article this page) will be next, appearing May 17.

The Gaslight-Baker Theatre’s rendition of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” was also praised by Councilmember John Lairsen, who said it was “one of the best I’ve seen.”

Councilmember John Castillo wished a Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers, and Councilmember Brad Westmoreland noted the Lockhart Junior High’s 7th grade golf team had won its district golf title.


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