Burn ban remains active


By LPR Staff

The Caldwell County Commissioners held a brief meeting on Tuesday morning to discuss routine business for the month of February.
At the top of the agenda, Commissioners heard from Caldwell County Fire Marshal Jeff Wright regarding an outdoor burning ban and the continued danger of wildfire throughout the county.

spite the weekend”s rain, Wright suggested the burn ban be left in place, because there is little chance of rain for the coming weeks.
“I think the south end of the county has received a little more rain than the north end,” Wright said. “But I think there”s only one day this week that rain is expected and it”s a good idea that we leave it on.”
County Judge H.T. Wright noted there is still a great deal of dry grass throughout the county.
J. Wright also gave the Court an update on a fire that destroyed a residence in Niederwald last week.
He said the fire was still under investigation in conjunction with the State Fire Marshals” Office. Pending completion of that investigation, the cause of the fire will not be released.
Judge Wright said he had been told the volunteer firefighters battling the blaze had run out of water during the incident.
“The fire was about 3,000 feet from the nearest hydrant and we had to have a tanker truck shuttle water to us,” he said. “We did have some problems with that.”
He suggested he would keep the Commissioners updated as the investigation continues.
Caldwell County Jail Chief Deputy Keith Jeffrey approached the Court asking for the addition of a cement slab at the rear of the Caldwell County Jail Facility for storage and maintenance purposes.
Judge Wright expressed concern that the slab had not been included in the original plan for the County Jail addition, and was therefore not yet approved by the City of Lockhart.
“Joe [Santopetro, the project architect] said that in Austin or San Antonio or anywhere else, it would just be an amendment to the contract and the City would approve it, but with the City of Lockhart, who knows?” Jeffrey said.
Bonn suggested tabling the measure until the Court can determine what, if any, additional fees or requirements the City of Lockhart will request. During that time, Jeffrey will also work with Santopetro to determine the cost of the addition. The Court unanimously agreed to address the topic again next week.
Precinct One Commissioner Tom Bonn questioned the cost of the addition. Jeffrey said project architect Joe Santopetro had not yet quoted a price for the slab, but he expected to have a price this week.
In brief Court news:
The Commissioners approved a new contract with the Travis County Medical Examiner”s Office which will raise the price of autopsies and change certain record-keeping procedures. The agreement is a uniform contract that Travis County has presented to the 45 counties they contract with for service.
The Court convened in an executive session to discuss employment issues, but did not make an announcement or take a vote after the session.
The County paid bills in the amount of $128,853.15, which included $6,020.50 in indigent legal defense and $18,172.23 in indigent health care expenses.
The Caldwell County Commissioners meet on the second, third and fourth Monday of each month at 9 a.m. in Room 100 of the Caldwell County Courthouse.


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