GRAND OPENING OF CELEBRATION CENTER IN G'TOWN pB1 FEBRUARY 9, 2017
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No Sanctuary in WilCo
The Year Ahead Governor Greg Abbott cut $1.5 million in criminal justice funding for Travis County after Sheriff Sally Hernandez announced her department would reduce its cooperation with federal immigration authorities. The Advocate spoke to Williamson County Sheriff Robert Chody to explain a bit about Texas Senate Bill 4, which requires jails to notify and hand over all undocumented immigrants who have committed a crime. "Texas has 254 counties and of those, 253 will honor the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainers," Chody says. "What this means is that the Travis County sheriff is practicing selective enforcement. Travis County law enforcement are currently honoring the detainer rules on the persons they deem the most violent offenders, rather than the blanket rules established by ICE." Chody explained normal ICE procedure dictates when a person is arrested and determined to be a foreign national (based on country of birth), if that person has no identification, local law enforcement will contact ICE for detention instruction. "It is not our duty to be discretionary," Chody says. "If ICE requests that we hold a person of interest, it is my duty as Sheriff to detain that person for 48 hours regardless of the crime." The law is designed to protect citizenry when local law enforcement may not have extensive access to data, alien status, or convictions. "It is in the best interests, for the safety of our citizens, to detain without bond for the required 48 hours. We can not, in good conscience, release a person knowing that if that person causes harm to someone in our community, that we could have prevented it." Sheriff Hernandez specified serious criminal acts for which she will honor the detention order; e.g., murder, rape and aggravated assault. Everywhere else in Texas, the crime and severity are not a consideration; anyone for whom resident status is unknown is detained until a determination can be made. Chody added, "To me, it is a public risk to allow any suspect back onto the street before we have ascertained that person's identity and potential for harm. While Travis County is selectively choosing detainees, I agree with the ICE and state policy. And for its part, ICE and Texas are making their best efforts to make it easier for officers to check alien status in real time."
with Mayor Dale Ross
The Advocate sat down for a little Q&A with Mayor Ross this week to find out what more is in store after Georgetown received national attention on several fronts throughout 2016. How would you characterize your expectations for the coming year? I think it will be most fitting that when we look at 2017 we see a hard-hat. This year you will see construction happening in our city from east to west. Roads, parks, city facilities, schools, apartments, houses, and businesses are being built to support the 13 residents each day, on average, who are moving here. We have a great number of projects already underway or that will be breaking ground this year. What improvements can we look forward to in transportation? Work is continuing on the Southwest Bypass, the 2.4-mile long road that will provide a north-south connection from Hwy. 29 to Leander Road, and I believe the road will be open in early 2018. The City’s segment will connect with a Williamson County segment from Leander Road to Interstate 35. When finished, the road will provide a new loop around the southwest side of the city. The FM 1460 project also continues this year and should be completed early next year, providing a key north-south route to Round Rock and the growing higher education corridor. I'm also very excited about the extension of Mays Street that will be completed this fall. This new road segment will open up development opportunities south of Westinghouse Road near the Bass Pro Shop. After a great deal of debate and discussion, a fixed-route bus system is scheduled to begin service on four routes in August. Federal funds will help pay for new buses and bus stops on the first fixed-route transit system in Georgetown. And a grant from the Georgetown Health Foundation will help fund the system’s operating costs. We are also looking forward to recommendations from the Williams Drive Corridor Study to be included in a report
this spring, based on input from workshops and public input meetings last fall. The primary issues identified include traffic congestion and circulation, traffic operations and safety, redevelopment and reinvestment barriers, gateway aesthetic enhancements, and pedestrian and bicycle improvements. What changes will we see in our high-caliber parks? Our cornerstone park, the San Gabriel, will have a first phase of renovations this spring. Everything from street access to picnic areas and restoring the natural springs. Georgetown voters approved the bond and we should have the first phase completed before summer. We will also have a complete renovation of VFW Park on Second Street—new softball fields, parking areas, restrooms, concession stand, and lighting. Of course everyone is excited about the start of Garey Park, set for later this year. The new park will include hiking and picnic areas, an equestrian area, the Garey House event center, and other features. Are there plans to upgrade or renew our municipal facilities? The Downtown West project is nearing completion and construction will begin in the Fall. We are also renovating the former public library, which will become City Hall, as well as renovating the current building at 510 W. Ninth St. to become the new Municipal Court and Council Chamber. Construction should be completed and we can transfer over by the end of next year. I am also excited about the city’s sixth fire station, set to begin construction later this year and operational by the end of next year. The station, which will be owned by Emergency Services District 8 and operated by the Georgetown Fire Medical Department, will be located near Williams Drive and FM 3405. Will we be able to shop more in 2017? We are already seeing new retail development in a number of locations in the
city, including a shopping center with a new Randall’s grocery store at Williams Drive and Jim Hogg Road. The new grocery store should open later this year. The City will also be targeting new retailers this year based on the Retail Strategy and Recruitment Plan we completed last year. Is Georgetown still a destination city for business and industry? We announced just a few weeks ago the new Holt Cat construction equipment sales and service dealership which will begin construction later this year. The facility on Airport Road near Lakeway Drive is expected to create 129 new jobs and a net benefit to the City of more than $13 million over ten years. How does the city plan to accommodate all the newcomers to Georgetown? We have several new residential developments under construction and the first homes are for sale. This includes the Hillwood Wolf Ranch development along Wolf Ranch Parkway and Saddle Creek, a project on Sam Houston Avenue in southeast Georgetown. Each of these major residential projects include multiple phases with more than 1,000 single-family residences as well as retail areas. Overall, and in all these ways, I believe the City and private development are responding to the remarkable growth we’ve been experiencing. That growth is the result of many people like us who have found and embraced the city we love.
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The Hall of Honor award is given annually to GHS/ Carver graduates who are leaders in their field, or who have contributed greatly to the community. To be considered for the award, alumni must have graduated at least 10 years ago. GHS Hall of Honor is now accepting nominations for outstanding Alumni of GHS and the former Carver High School. Nomination forms are attached or are available at the GHS Administration office. Applications will be due by February 28, 2017. If you have questions please contact Wes Vanicek at 512-943-5100.
Wilco Burn Ban
On Tuesday, January 31, 2017, Williamson County Commissioners Court approved the implementation of a County Burn Ban for a period not to exceed 30 days and to authorize County Judge Dan A. Gattis to lift the ban when conditions improve. A person violates this order if he burns any combustible material outside of an enclosure which serves to contain all flames and/ or sparks, or orders such burning by others. The burn ban prohibits the burning of household yard waste, such as leaves, grass, brush and other yard trimmings. It also prohibits burning to clear land of trees, stumps, shrubbery, or other natural vegetation. This order may be enforced by any duly-commissioned peace officer. It is a Class C Misdemeanor that is punishable by a fine up to $500.
FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
The Williamson County Sheriff's Office released information about a citizen report to Williamson County Emergency Communications. The person was called by an unknown subject three times demanding money for a warrant. The Unknown Subject wanted the money sent via Western Union to them by 3pm today. The Unknown Subject called from three different phone numbers. However, the last number they called from was 512864-8282. WCSO believes the Unknown Subject could be spoofing the Emergency Communications Departments phone number to collect money by using their non-emergency number. We encourage anyone who experiences this type of call to contact WCSO to file a report with a deputy/ detective on this matter.
Real Estate Agent Workshop Feb. 16
The City of Georgetown and the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce are hosting the first Real Estate Agent Workshop on Thursday, Feb. 16. The free workshop starts at 9am at the Georgetown Community Center, 445 E. Morrow St. Coffee and breakfast will be provided by the event sponsor, Wolf Ranch by Hillwood Communities. Scheduled speakers include Hugh Brown, St. David’s Georgetown Hospital CEO, Mayor Dale Ross and Georgetown ISD Superintendent Fred Brent. The purpose of this event is to equip real estate professionals and those
Parks and Rec Spring Youth Soccer League
interested in real estate with the information they need to know to effectively market Georgetown to homebuyers. Information tables will also be staffed by representatives from most City agencies. If you plan to attend, please register at Georgetown.org/LoveGeorgetownTX. Presentations begin at 9:30am, and the event will conclude at 11am.
Registration is now open for the Georgetown Parks and Recreation 2017 Spring Youth Soccer League for boys and girls ages 4-14. The recreational league offers a safe and fun team sports environment, and is open to athletes of all skill levels. Children will get to experience being part of a team, learning from coaches and being active. The season starts March 18 and runs through May 13. All games take place on Saturdays at the San Gabriel Soccer Fields next to the Georgetown Recreation Center, located at 1003 N. Austin Ave. Fees are $50 for Georgetown residents and $60 for nonresidents. Registration will be accepted until Saturday, Feb. 25. For more information and to register, visit parks. georgetown.org/youth-soccer-leagues or call (512) 930-3596.
Free Cat Clinic
The Georgetown Animal Shelter is again holding three free spay/neuter clinic for cats this spring – February 25, April 29, and June 24. The goal of the clinics is to reduce the cat population in Georgetown. This is the sixth year that the shelter has offered free spay/neuter clinics for cats, and it seems to be making a difference in the number of kittens ending up at the shelter. Spay and neuter surgeries and a rabies vaccination will be provided at no charge. Other services will be available at the clinic on those dates. Appointments are required; first-come, first-served basis. Cats or kittens must be at least three months old. Call (512) 930-3592 to schedule your cat for surgery. The clinic will be at the Shelter at 110 W.L. Walden Drive near the McMaster Athletic Fields. Pets.Georgetown.Org
Heritage Society’s 40th Anniversary
FEB 26, 6-9pm: The Union on Eighth. Join the Georgetown Heritage Society as they celebrate Georgetown’s rich history and dedication to heritage and preservation. Cocktails and a Buffet Dinner, plus a program featuring past Presidents, and a new documentary and the unveiling of their new logo. For more information and tickets, please go to georgetownheritagesociety.org or call (512)869.8597.
The opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of The Advocate, administration, staff or contributing writers. The views expressed in all letters to the editor and signed opinion articles are those of their authors. All letters to the editor must include a name, address and phone number for verification. Anonymous and unverified letters to the editor will not be printed. The Advocate reserves the right to edit letters for length and journalistic style, and has a recommended length of 300 words.
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FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
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Octavio Garza Starts as Public Works Director A civil and environmental engineer with more than 21 years of experience started yesterday as public works director, a new position for the City of Georgetown. Octavio Garza comes to Georgetown from the City of Waco where he had been the public works department director since 2014 In Georgetown, Garza will oversee the City’s Street Maintenance, Transportation Planning, and Storm Water Drainage departments, in addition to the Georgetown Municipal Airport and solid waste and recycling services. “Octavio brings a significant amount of quality experience to the City of Georgetown and is a great addition to lead the newly formed Public Works Division to meet the demands of our growing community,” says City Manager David Morgan. In Waco, Garza was responsible for the city’s
Engineering, Traffic, Streets, and Solid Waste departments, as well as the city’s digital mapping, development, and floodplain administration services. The Solid Waste department encompassed operating a city-owned municipal landfill. Prior to Waco, Garza served for six years as city engineer and capital programs manager for the City of New Braunfels where he had oversight for developing and implementing an $87 million bond program. The bond program approved by voters in 2013 funded transportation, parks, and economic development projects. Garza also led the engineering division, negotiated professional services contracts, and managed the street maintenance program in New Braunfels. Garza’s other experience includes management of capital projects and
environmental investigations for the cities of San Antonio and San Marcos as well as serving as a project engineer for water and environmental projects for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and the San Antonio River Authority. Garza has a master’s degree and a bachelor’s degree in agricultural and civil engineering. Both degrees are from Texas A&M University in College Station. He also is a certified public manager and a certified floodplain manager.
Chamber 2016 Service Awards
The Georgetown Chamber of Commerce held its annual awards gala at the Sheraton January 27. The sold-out crowd represented the Who's Who of Georgetown and enjoyed dinner and drinks. The banquet agenda recognizes and awards the efforts of individuals and businesses who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in service to our community for 2016. Pictured Barry Laing, Large Employer
of the Year-Radiation Detection Corporation • Volunteer of the Year, Jim Wilson • Ambassador of the Year, Raymond Husser • Martha Diaz Hurtado Award, Carolyn Holloway • Jess Sawyer Award, Stephanie Blanck • Owen Sherrill Lifetime Achievement Award, Jeff Novak • Citizen of the Year, Ron Swain • Small Business of the Year, Williamson County Sun.
Carolyn Holloway, whom the Advocate named Citizen of the Year also received the Martha Diaz Hurtado College Town Award from Southwestern University President Dr. Edward Burger for service to the school as a member of the Visitors Bureau. Holloway said, "I just can't believe this year; it just keeps getting better and better." Photo courtesy Kayla Prasek
"Shotgun House" Re-Enactment for Black History Month
Top: Paulette Taylor talks about the demolition of the original Carver School. • Bottom: Re-enactment of the 1963 push for de-segregation. The Georgetown Cultural Citizen Memorial Association hosted tours of the historic Shotgun House Feb. 4-5 to share the history and commemorate the education and culture of the African American community in Georgetown. In 1997, former Mayor
Leo Wood and the City Council proposed to save this lone example of a Shotgun dwelling at 801 West St. and create a Black Heritage Museum. The house opened as a museum in 2002 and renovations were completed in 2016. The 2017 event
included re-enactments of desegregation in Georgetown and a history of the Carver School as well as historic reflections and artifacts. Thanks to a tremendous effort by the GCCMA and managed by Community Leaders like Paulette Tay-
lor and volunteers from the Williamson Museum, the 1920s-era home includes dozens of achievements and stories celebrating the culture and contributions of African-Americans in the growth of the city. A “shotgun house” is a narrow rectangular
residence, usually about 12 feet wide, with rooms arranged one behind the other without hallways, and doors at each end of the house. A popular style of house in the Southern United States, most notably New Orleans, from the end of the American Civil War
through the 1920s. While the absolute origins of the word are unclear, a New Orleans historian claimed the term “shotgun” is a reference to the idea that if all the doors are opened, a shotgun blast fired into the house from the front doorway will fly cleanly to the other end and out at the back. Many residents contributed personal photos and memorabilia to the collection, including vintage letter jackets, autographed photos, historical papers and even hair styling implements from mid20th century. Ms. Taylor narrated tours and recounted her personal history of the lawsuit to desegregate schools; the original Carver Elementary, and her encounter with Roots author Alex Haley.
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FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
Growth Prompts JISD Bond Election Call
EAST VIEW BASKETBALL
Young and Getting Stronger
East View varsity basketball L-R: Justin, Zion, Cameron, Mark, Carlos, Devhaun and Donald. • Below: Patriots and their EGA teammates shared the halftime court at the Senior night game Feb 7.
While still only 8am, the Patriots are already warmed and wound up for the first of two daily practices. Despite having what they call "not a championship season" they are very encouraged by the youth and enthusiasm of their team members. With just three seniors, leadership is shared across the team. Sophomore Captain Zion says, "I've been playing basketball my whole life so I feel more like a natural leader when I'm playing and I'm in the moment." "The most difficult thing about a young team," senior Cameron adds, "is getting them to focus and get their bodies ready for practice. But being tough on the younger guys is part of what leadership is." The season was not without big moments thanks to Donald and Devhaun's "wicked verticals" that enable them both to dunk during play. Several of these young men have been playing together, sometimes year-round for many years, which helps with the bonding and the dynamic of the team. Senior Justin says having a small team can be a great thing. "With a small team we all get to play a lot..." "You know I get mine!" Devhaun interrupts. "It helps that we all get a lot of playing time to avoid drama." Carlos adds that the season was challenging because most of their opponents have a lot of seniors, "But next year we will be on a run..." "Coming for the throats!" Zion throws in. Coach Jason Jones was also very proud of his players participating with the Ex-
ceptional Georgetown Alliance Dribblers. EGA provides athletic experiences for special needs children by enlisting the help of local high school teams to mentor the kids. "The first week, I sent a couple of kids because we still had practice. They came back and said 'Coach, that was awesome!' So the next week I sent more and they said to same thing so now, Dribblers are our Saturday practice. The kids get so much out of it and for me that's the most important thing. It's great for my players when they feel like they've been adopted by a younger person. They try harder." While in a building year, Coach Jones says "It's been difficult but being a small team brings different rewards. They are great kids and I'm happy that I get to call them mine. They do some typical teenager things but they always seem to learn from their mistakes and they have good hearts."
FBI Special Agent Shares Cyber Careers Info at JHS The Rotary Club of Georgetown-Sun City along with the Jarrell High School INTERACT Club sponsors a Career Guidance Program throughout the school year. This exposes students to different promising, long term careers where there will likely be jobs waiting for them after the post-high school education. On Thursday, FEBRUARY 9th, a Special Agent from the FBI, who is an expert on counterintelligence based in Austin, spoke to about 60 Jarrell High School students about the prospects of Cyber Security as career. He demonstrated how cyber
The Jarrell ISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously Feb 6 to call a $54 million bond election to be held May 6, 2017. The bond would allow Jarrell ISD to build the district's second elementary school, along with additions and renovations to Jarrell Middle and High Schools. Prompted by past and projected growth in the district, the bond was developed by a Facilities Planning Committee, made up of parents, staff, civic and business leaders in the community. The committee's analysis was the basis for the recommendation provided to the Board in January. The district's Fall 2016 demographic report showed the student population is projected to increase by 12 percent for the 2017-18 school year, with an additional 953 students expected to arrive over the next five years and more than 2100 in the next ten years.
Since Should 2012, the bond be JISD has approved by added 442 Jarrell ISD students voters, the and shown Above: JISD Board votes tax impact is a greater- unanimously to call for a bond an estimated election. Inset: Dr. Bill Chapman maximum of than-ten percent 17 cents, for a growth rate. total tax rate The proposed bond of $1.54. For a home valwould allow for the addiued at $100,000, this is an tion of eight classrooms increase of approximately and four science labs at $10.63 per month. For citiJarrell Middle and High zens over age 65, property Schools to increase capactaxes can not be increased ity by 240 students. The above the amount paid district-wide multi-purpose in the first year since the auditorium will allow the person turned 65 and will high school to undergo remain unaffected should renovations to remove the the bond pass. cafeteria stage area, add With the bond call dining space, and expand approved, Jarrell residents the library. can expect to see SuperinSince JISD's previous tendent Dr. Bill Chapman bond in 2008, the tax "go on the road," as he impact to residents has says, to promote the vote been minimized as property at civic meetings, school growth in the community events, and block walking. led to increased district revFor more information enue. After increasing the about the bond and election tax rate to $1.39 in 2010, visit the bond information the district maintained the site at JarrellISDBond.org. same amount until 2016.
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Politics PAGE A5
FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
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REP TERRY WILSON'S SIT-REP
Welcome to "Sit-Rep", a series of articles brought to you as part of my promise to always stay in touch with the people of HD20 during the 85th Texas Legislative Session and beyond. For the next four months, as the legislature meets to tackle the issues facing our state, I want to make sure you have a chance to hear from your representative on a regular basis. It’s your job to hold me and your other representatives accountable; so, every two weeks I will come before you in this paper with an update from the session, and with the reasoning behind the decisions I
have made on your behalf. Please do not hesitate to let me and my staff know your thoughts; we depend on them to better represent you once bills begin hitting the floor. You can reach my office at (512)463-0309, or email me at Terry.Wilson@house. texas.gov. As for social media, well, when you’ve had a security clearance for a few decades it can be hard to adjust to being able to speak your mind freely on the internet at any moment, so please bear with me as I learn to use these new tools for the first time. I do have a Facebook page at facebook.com/ter-
rymwilson, and we will be posting there as regularly as possible as well. Before we get into the ins and outs of the session, let’s start with what went on between the election in March and the swearing-in in January. March’s Republican Primary, like many across the state, created the potential for deep and lasting divides within HD20. A changing of the guard comes with uncertainty. Will those who worked hard to push for needed legislation find all their work was in vain? Will people who supported the incumbent face retribution? It became apparent right away that we would need to address these concerns in the most direct way possible, by bringing together a panel of people from across the district; from Williamson, Milam, and Burnet counties, party leaders, community leaders, those who had supported me and those who supported the incumbent, to help choose the staff that would help me navigate the legislative session. Starting a legislative office from scratch takes a whole team, and how a legislator selects their staff can have more impact on how they will help govern than almost any other. With over 4,000 bills filed in the house alone last session, we have no choice but to rely on staff to help read, Continued p. A6
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Security a Top Issue at State of the Judiciary Chief Justice Nathan Hecht delivered the State of the Judiciary Feb. 1 to a joint session of the Texas legislature. Williamson County Judges Billy Ray Stubblefield and Bill Gravell were honored to have been invited by Hecht to attend. "It was an honor to receive the call," Judge Gravell said. "As a member of the Texas Judicial Council, I am pleased to be able to help propagate the values and principles of Williamson County around the state." At the top of his address, Justice Hecht focused on security. His special guest at the address was Judge Julie Kocurek, who was shot last year at her home. "The Texas Judicial Council has made comprehensive recommendations to improve judicial security," Hecht said. "Some protections exist already, but gaps should be closed and state funding for law enforcement and the Department of Public Safety should be increased to cover essential security costs, including personal protection for threatened judges." Judge Gravell commented, "Courthouse security is a major judicial issue. I am passionately behind the effort to make sure that our judges are safe and secure, and I am deeply grateful to have a sheriff who cares about that. He listens to our judges." Judge Gravell noted that although it is not public
Top: Chief Justice Nathan Hecht at the Texas House. • Bottom: Williamson County Judge Billy Ray Stubblefield (center-left) and Judge Bill Gravell (right) were invited to sit on the House floor as special guests. knowledge, judges and the court receive threats on a regular basis. "This is intolerable and inexcusable. This must be a focus of the Commissioners Court as well as local law enforcement, and half-hearted measures are inexcusable. What happened to Judge Kocurek is entirely avoidable if proper security measures are taken." Judge Gravell is also participating in the National Judicial College in Nevada, which provides guidelines for mentoring and coaching in the judiciary nationally. The program is designed to ensure judges are mentally and emotionally prepared to be successful on the
bench. "Judges often a heavy responsibility for sentencing," Gravell says, "and being necessarily isolated in their work is the most challenging part of the job. They need to be able to make good decisions, and I believe our Williamson County judges are getting it right most of the time. The mentor program is a way for great judges like (368th) Judge Rick Kennon to connect with and mentor our younger and newer judges. It is my hope that I can work with Hecht to create a program for all of Texas to adapt the kind of righteous wisdom we have here in Williamson County."
Community PAGE A6
FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
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analyze, and recommend a vote on each bill that comes before the house. By bringing together people from across the district, and people who supported different candidates, we helped ensure that the staff that would help advise, analyze and would properly represent the needs of the entire district, not simply one group. We started with a deep bench of candidates from a variety of backgrounds. Former chiefs of staff for retired legislators, legislative directors who had helped write and pass conservative legislation in the past, and many others. In the end, though, the panel of voices from across the district all chose the same candidate as their first choice. Despite different needs, different counties, and different preferences towards candidates, we found a place to come together and start building something new together. As we approached the day of my swearing in, I once again relied on the
strengths of people across the district to help get us on the right path. Volunteers from Williamson, Burnet, and Milam counties showed up in force to help get our office decorated for the inauguration, with only a 72 hour window to work with. They did an amazing job, and I’d love to have you come see the work they contributed to give our capitol office the best face possible. Opening day itself surpassed my wildest expectations. So many of you showed up that other legislators joked they couldn’t get past the
crowd to their offices. But they weren’t just there to see me, the real star of the show was my grandfather (photo left), a World War II Navy Veteran with endless stories to share who turned 90 years old on the same day his grandson took the oath of office to become a state representative. The Speaker’s staff graciously went out of their way to make sure my grandfather could be with me on the floor for the swearing in, and Speaker Strauss himself even spent time visiting with him before being introduced on the house floor. Words can’t properly express the gratitude I have for the people of HD20 for granting me this great privilege. I make this solemn promise to you: I am here to represent ALL of HD20, I am available to hear what you have to say, and I will always listen and respond. Thank You, Terry Wilson
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The Last Word
FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
Schwertner Plan to Recruit Psychiatrists to Texas Senator Charles Schwertner (R-Georgetown) filed SB 674, legislation requiring the Texas Medical Board (TMB) to create an expedited licensure process that would allow out-of-state psychiatrists to treat Texas patients in need of care. Currently, Texas is one of only eight states to offer no reciprocal licensure for out-of-state physicians. "The sad truth is, the majority of Texas counties are already woefully underserved when it comes to mental health services," said Schwertner. "Unless we can expand our mental health workforce, we risk worsening an already serious behavioral health crisis in Texas." According to a 2013 Department of State Health Services (DSHS) study, 207 of Texas' 254 counties have been designated as Mental Health Professional Shortage Areas, meaning they have fewer than one mental health clinician per 30,000 individuals. Texas currently has only 1,460 licensed psychiatrists available to treat a state of nearly 27 million residents. Further complicating matters is the fact that 532 of these psychiatrists are nearing retirement age
(55 years or older), while experts stress that Texas needs at least 1,000 additional adult psychiatrists and 200 child psychiatrists just to meet current needs. "If there are psychiatrists out there willing to move to Texas, we should make that process as easy as possible," continued Schwertner. "I think we owe it to the people of Texas to meet this challenge head on and do everything we can to train, or in this case recruit, an adequate number of psychiatrists to serve our state's growing mental health needs." In order to qualify for the expedited licensure process, a psychiatrist must hold a full and unrestricted medical license issued by another state, as well as a current certification in psychiatry by the American
This Week in the Archives
The Georgetown Library will have the first static display of the City's record books beginning in May. Here are some more tasty tidbits from history... In the late 1880s, there were plenty of animals to be found in the center of the city. Pearl and Betty Cooper were acquitted of disrupting public commerce by driving their hogs through town. Several docket items show some things never change; in just one month, three people were arrested for drag-racing... their horses on public streets. While most were acquitted, a Mr. Joe Brady was arrested for
Board of Psychiatry and Neurology or the American Osteopathic Board of Neurology and Psychiatry. Applicants must also have a clean disciplinary record from their respective state licensing authority and may not be under active investigation by any state, federal, or foreign law enforcement authority. "We have always maintained a positive, pro-active attitude when it comes to recruiting out-of-state businesses to come to Texas," continued Schwertner. "It would be foolish not to consider a similar strategy when it comes to addressing the critical long-term shortfall in our state's mental health workforce." The full text of the bill is available at http://www. legis.state.tx.us/
A medical doctor by training, Dr. Schwertner serves as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services. Schwertner is currently serving his third term as the senator for Senate District 5, a ten-county region of central and east Texas.
riding his cow. It was also illegal, even then, to discharge fireworks in public places, with a half-dozen doing so to celebrate Christmas and likely spending all their gift money on the average $5 fines. However, it would seem Mr. Waverly Armstrong celebrated a bit too much over Thanksgiving and was fined a whopping $15 for indecent exposure ($332 in today's dollars). Although there was no corresponding drunkeness charge so it's hard to tell what he was up to. Visit Georgetown.org Historical Documents for more.
Creating Reality From Vision
OP-ED On Extreme Vetting On January 27 Rep. John R. Carter (R-TX-31) released the following statement in regards to President Trump’s recent Executive Order on extreme vetting. The Executive Order was signed by the President on Friday, January 27. "As Chairman of the Homeland Security Appropriations Committee, I know firsthand the challenges that our customs and intelligence personnel face when attempting to vet applicants from countries with little to no record keeping. While implementation of
the new policy could have been better communicated, I support President Trump's efforts to increase security measures and vetting processes on people seeking visas to our country, and those refugees seeking asylum. I am committed to keeping Texans safe and I will continue to support all efforts to put our national security first. I stand against any polices that open the door to radical extremists manipulating our immigration policies and infiltrating our homeland. We must ensure we have the best practices in place
to deny entry to those wishing us harm while allowing peaceful, freedom loving people access to our great nation." Rep. Carter represents Texas District 31, which includes Fort Hood, the largest active duty armored military installation in the free world. He serves as Chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Appropriations, co-chairman of the House Army Caucus, is on the Subcommittee for Commerce, Justice and Science and the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR Why Obamacare Must Be Repealed
Obamacare must be repealed. A majority reduced the national deficit. In 2009, polof Americans never supported it because iticians told us Obamacare wouldn’t cost a it places the government in control of our penny more than $900 billion from 2014 to healthcare, which encompasses one-fifth of 2020. Currently, its cost is projected to be our economy. Many predicted Obamacare $2.6 trillion. Overhead costs (the bureauwould fail for the reasons experts are now crats supporting Obamacare, its adminisdeclaring it to be in a death spiral. tration, rules, regulations, and compliance) The three primary goals for Obamacare are eating 22% of its budget. To date, 17 were to cover everyone, lower healthcare of 23 Obamacare co-ops have failed. Many costs, and reduce our national deficit: state-run exchanges funded by Obamacare 1. Obamacare has not covered everyone: folded before opening or shortly afterOne of Obamacare’s biggest problems is wards. A recent audit indicated none of the that not enough young healthy people are remaining 14 state-run exchanges is fully buying health insurance to cover the cost functional. There is little hope the governof sick people on the Exchanges. While it ment will recover the $3.9 billion invested currently has increased insurance coverage in these co-ops and state exchanges. for 20 million Americans (9 million on Insurance companies lost billions on Exchanges and 11.1 million on Medicaid), the Exchanges because they based their almost 7 million lost their healthcare plans initial premiums on everyone purchasing because their plans did not provide all of health insurance. They soon discovered the 19 government mandated coverages. many young people paid the penalty inWhile Medicaid recipients are covered, stead of buying their expensive insurance. they frequently have a difficult time findConversely, many people buying their ing a doctor accepting Medicaid patients insurance had chronic illnesses requiring due to the government’s low reimburseextensive medical services. The government rates. This could explain why Medic- ment spent over $3.0 billion for bailouts aid recipients have not reduced their usage in 2014 and 2015 to reimburse insurance of Emergency Rooms under Obamacare. companies for losses. Losses continued 2. Obamacare has not lowered healthin 2016. However, a third bailout was care costs: Many middle class Americans impossible. Companies began pulling are struggling under Obamacare. Preout of the Exchanges—leaving custommiums and deductibles have skyrocketers frantically searching for coverage. In ed. Some are paying monthly premiums 2017, many states have only 2-3 insurance exceeding $1,000. They are deferring companies servicing their Exchanges. One medical treatments due to deductibles exthird of American counties have only one. ceeding $6,000. Many have lost their jobs The approved insurance rates for 2017 or had their hours cut due to costs incurred increased 20-90% in all but a handful of by small businesses struggling to survive states. If losses continue, more companies under Obamacare’s complex rules and will abandon the Exchanges--resulting in regulations. This is unfortunate since most higher premiums and deductibles in 2018. middle class Americans work for small In closing, Obamacare has failed to fulbusinesses. Middle class Americans are fill most of the false promises made to get paying the Obamacare bill for the nation. it passed. It has caused healthcare costs to They pay the Obamacare taxes directly or skyrocket. Middle class Americans cannot indirectly as businesses pass Obamacare afford it. Our country cannot afford it. costs on to customers by raising prices. Obamacare must be repealed. Before Obamacare, roughly 70% of ~Joy Putnam doctors owned their own businesses. As a result of the high costs of complying with Obamacare’s rules and regulations, this has dropped Home • Auto • Life • Commercial to around 30%. Doctors are joining hospitals or large Insuring Central Texas Since 1982 medical groups. Hospitals are growing because Obamacare pays them more than private practices. Doctors predict this increased reliance on hospitals will cause Gary Miller further increases in healthcare Agent costs. Anyone who has paid $1.50 for one Tylenol tablet 3008 Dawn Dr., Suite 205 at a hospital will probably Georgetown agree. 3. Obamacare has not www.garymillerinsurance.com
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RE-ELECT CPA For Mayor, City of Georgetown A proven, visionary leader for ALL of Georgetown
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SECTION B • PAGE 1
FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
Grand Opening of Celebration Center
Celebration Church in Georgetown dedicated its new 80,000 sq/ ft Celebration Center in a dazzling Grand Opening event January 28. More than 3000 people attended the event, which included live music and food trucks, capped off with a fireworks show. The ultra-modern facility, located off of Westinghouse Road, is sometimes referred to as "A City on the Hill" due to its location atop one of the highest elevations in the county. The main sanctuary seats nearly 3000 people and has a canteen, apparel, and multiple flatscreens throughout for overflow seating. There is also as a new children’s ministry wing with state-of-theart teaching facilities and security features.
The Road Here
The need for an expanded building became clear when regular attendance regularly reached the building's capacity. Pastors Joe and Lori Champion explain that when people are new to church or hesitant about coming to a new place, they are much more likely to come and continue coming when getting there is easy, childcare is easy, and they have enough personal space to feel comfortable. In 2000, the Champions were living in Baton Rouge and they arrived at a simultaneous revelation about where to plant a new church; "It is Austin." Since then, the church has grown from humble beginnings in the Round Rock library with just 54 members, to more than 9000 regular attendees in a permanent home. In 2005, the church was able to purchase the 110-acre site at the top of Rabbit Hill Road due to the previous owner's judicious decision not to sell the land except for something "that would promote God's kingdom." "The dream was not just the building," Lori says. "We built a
'home' because we believe people belong here. Over the last 16 years we've consistently experienced growth and needed more room, so in this new Center, we've just created more room for lives to be changed." Pastor Joe agreed; "Today we are dedicating this for Georgetown, Round Rock and all the people in Williamson County." At the heart of Celebration's current message is You Belong Here. Pastor Joe explains, "You belong here because we want you to meet your best friends here and also the Lord who loves us and died for us. And we do believe the Lord wants to provide a family for us on this planet." Celebration Church is at 601 Westinghouse Road. Services are Sat. 5 pm, Sun. 9:30 am and 11:30 am, and first Wed. 7 pm.
Top: Church members pray a blessing over the new Celebration Center. • Inset: Lori and Joe Champion share the story of Celebration's growth. • Bottom: The new church was designed to encourage people to engage and get to know each other better.
Farewell to Beloved Jarrell Coach, Vicki Kieffer
Basketball and Volleyball teammates celebrated Coach Kieffer September 30 and were proud to "Fight Like a Girl!" Jarrell High School lost a valuable coach, mentor and friend January 27. Volleyball Coach Victoria Anne Kieffer lost her battle with cancer at the age of 36. A memorial was held at the school February 1. Vicki was born April 22 1980 at Elmendorf AFB, Anchorage Alaska to Peggy and Garrett Kieffer. She graduated James Bowie HS in 1998 and from Texas State University. In 2005, Vicki was hired to coach volleyball at Jarrell High School. Superintendent Dr. Bill Chapman says, "Naming Vicki the varsity volleyball coach
was my very first personnel move as Superintendent. It was a big moment for me, now even more special." Vicki was also a teacher and worked as a member of the HEB family since 1997. Vicki's parents and sister live in Kyle as well as two beloved nephews. After her diagnosis, Vicki received a tremendous outpouring of support from the community. Last September, after Kieffer completed a difficult series of treatments, the Jarrell community came together and raised more then $10,000 to help her with expenses of treatment
and not being able to work. Upon receiving the oversized check from the "Purple Out" fundraiser with the "We've Got Your Back" battle cry, Coach Kieffer was very thankful her students stepped up to organize and manage such an effort, despite their anxiety about her health. She was also very touched by the outreach from the entire Jarrell community. Teacher Marlena Brown said of her friend, "Vicki was the most thoughtful and giving person I have ever met. She had an amazing ability of making people feel important and
valued. I can’t tell you how many times she told me she was going to spend a weekend watching a student in one of her classes play little league. I don’t think she missed more than handful of practices during radiation and chemotherapy. Even in her last month, she emailed me and the coaching staff. She worried she was letting us down. She was fighting for her life and apologized for missing athletics." Fellow coach Liz Boyd delivered a eulogy to the students. The last conversation they shared, Coach Kieffer was very ill but advised Boyd to tell a struggling student to "Step it up!" "Those words, 'step it up' will motivate me for the rest of my life," Boyd said. "Vicki will never know the impact that she has made on me, my son, these students, their parents, the teachers and other coaches in the area.
I hope that because of the way she battled with class, you will be motivated to 'step it up', wherever you are in life. Whether it is in the classroom at your job, on the court or the field and with your family. Will you help honor Coach Kieffer and Step It Up?" Dr. Chapman says the students are doing well under the circumstances. "People don't understand youth sometimes. These students are very resilient and we are blessed to have
such great kids. We do everything we can for them but they are great for each other." Coach Boyd echoed his sentiments, "I'm grateful for these friendships and have been so proud of my community and co-workers and students over the past couple of weeks as we have dealt with this loss." Additional condolences may be posted at HarrellFuneralHomes.com
Activities PAGE B2
FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
400 Del Webb | Georgetown
Fat Tuesday Games Day
Sweet Affair on the Square
FEB 11, 11am-4pm: Sweet Affair on the Square will take place in the Historic Downtown shopping district in Georgetown. Featuring Chocolate Candy Land where you can dip into decadence at the large chocolate fountain. Shop at local merchants tasting fine confections. Don’t forget to participate in a cookie stacking or chocolate pie eating contest. Local merchants will offer exclusive promotions to only Sweet Affair on the Square participants. Tickets $15
GISD 100 Year Celebration
FEB 27: Join us as we kick off our year-long centennial celebration on the Georgetown square, February 27, 2017 at 10 a.m. We will be meeting outside of the courthouse to hear a few words from Superintendent Dr. Fred Brent, and watch as the new GISD 100 year anniversary banners are placed around the square. We are excited to celebrate our past 100 years with the Georgetown community throughout 2017.
PARKS & REC SPRING BREAK CAMPS
FEB 28, 9:30am-2:30pm: San Gabriel Woman's Club is holding the 10th annual fundraiser at the Georgetown Community Center. $20 for a day of games, raffle items, prizes, country store, breakfast and lunch. Lunch-only $10. Money benefits charities and college scholarships. Ticket deadline is Feb 20. Bonne Haynes 281-222-6686, Jean Holden 512-863-8269.
MARCH 4, 6-9pm: The Georgetown Main Street Program will hold the 8th Annual Georgetown Swirl, our Texas Downtown Association (TDA) President’s Award-winning Texas wine and food celebration with
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5k Run/Walk & Fun Run is a community event for the whole family at the GISD football stadium. Participants in both events will have the chance to “Chase” Police Chief Wayne Nero, in the 5k race, and Assistant Police Chief Cory Tchida, in the Fun Run. It is a joint fitness initiative of the Georgetown Police Department and the Georgetown ISD Council of PTA focusing on awareness about the devastating health, social, and econom-
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shopping, on the Square where last year they sold out. Live jazz music will set a fun and festive mood. There are 125 VIP tickets for $125 each for access to Gumbo North’s balcony and private party area upstairs. Proceeds benefit the Main Street Facade & Sign Grant Program.
through a variety of drills, games and match play scenarios. TEEN ADVENTURE (ages 12-17; $250 resident/$315 nonresident) takes participants on a rock climbing and backpacking adventure on the longest loop trail in Arkansas. Registration is open. For more information and to register, visit parks.georgetown.org/camp or call (512) 930-3596.
ic impact of childhood obesity, encouraging behavior change among children and families to combat obesity, and exposing community members to fun physical activity, including a GPD obstacle course, fitness fair, and healthy snacks. Both begin at the start/ finish line between the stadium and practice fields. All proceeds from this race go toward supporting the Physical Fitness programs at GISD schools.
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opportunity to improve ball handling, shooting, footwork, and defense techniques. TENNIS (8:30am-3:30pm; ages 7-12; $140 resident/$175 nonresident) focuses on technique, stroke production, strategy and shot selection through a variety of drills and games. JUNIOR TENNIS ACADEMY (1-3 p.m.: ages 11-18; $80 resident/$100 nonresident) is designed for competitive junior players. Sessions will focus on proper technique, stroke production, strategy and shot selection
MARCH 5: Benefiting students in GISD schoolsthe
Salado, TX 254-947-3688
Georgetown Parks and Recreation offers Spring Break camps for students from March 13-17. Pricing and schedules vary for each program. Participants can select from five camps: CAMP GOODWATER (9am-4pm; ages 5-12; $140 resident/$175 nonresident) includes activities such as swimming, challenge course, games, crafts, weird science projects and more. BASKETBALL SKILLS (8am-noon; ages 8-17; $115 resident/$145 nonresident) offers participants the
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Advice FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
How to Help Older Drivers Give Up the Car Keys
Dear Savvy Senior, What tips can you recommend that can help me deal with my mom’s bad driving? At age 83, her driving abilities have declined, but I know she’s bound and determined to keep driving as long as she’s alive. ~Nervous Nelly Dear Nelly, There’s no doubt that giving up driving can be a tough step for many elderly seniors, as well as a difficult conversation for concerned family members. While there’s no one way to handle this sometimes touchy topic, there are a number of tips and resources that can help you evaluate and adjust your mom’s driving, and ease her out from behind the wheel when she can no longer drive safely.
Assess Her Driving
To get a clear picture of your mom’s driving abilities, your first step – if you haven’t already done so – is to take a ride with her and watch for problem areas. For example: Does she drive at inappropriate speeds, tailgate or drift between lanes? Does she have difficulty seeing, backing up or changing lanes? Does she react slowly, get confused easily or make poor driving decisions? Also,
has your mom had any fender benders or tickets lately, or have you noticed any dents or scrapes on her vehicle? These, too, are red flags. For more assessment tips see SeniorDriverChecklist.info. .If you need help with this, consider hiring a driver rehabilitation specialist who’s trained to evaluate older drivers. This typically runs between $100 and $200. Visit AOTA.org/older-driver or ADED.net to locate a specialist in your area.
Transitioning and Talking
After your assessment, if you think it’s still safe for your mom to drive, see if she would be willing to take an older driver refresher course. These courses will show her how aging affects driving skills, and offers tips and adjustments to help ensure her safety. Taking a class may also earn your mom a discount on her auto insurance. To locate a class contact your local AAA (AAA.com) or AARP (AARP.org/drive, 888227-7669). Most courses cost around $20 to $30 and can be taken online or in a classroom. If, however, your assessment shows that your mom really does need to stop driving, you need to have a talk with her, but don’t overdo it. If you begin with a dramatic outburst like “mom, you’re going to kill someone!” you’re likely to trigger resistance. Start by simply expressing your concern for her safety. For more tips on how to talk to your mom about this, the Hartford Financial Services Group and MIT AgeLab offers a variety of resources at TheHartford.com/ lifetime – click on
ASK THE CHIEF “Publications” on the menu bar, then on the “We Need To Talk” guidebook.
Refuses To Quit
If your mom refuses to quit, you have several options. One possible solution is to suggest a visit to her doctor who can give her a medical evaluation, and if warranted, “prescribe” that she stops driving. Older people will often listen to their doctor before they will listen to their own family. If she still refuses, contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles to see if they can help. Or, call in an attorney to discuss with your mom the potential financial and legal consequences of a crash or injury. If all else fails, you may just have to take away her keys.
Once your mom stops driving she’s going to need other ways to get around, so help her create a list of names and phone numbers of family, friends and local transportation services that she can call on. To find out what transportation services are available in her area, contact the Rides in Sight (RidesInSight.org, 855-607-4337) and the Eldercare Locator (800-677-1116), which will direct you to her area agency on aging for assistance. Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.
Q&A Please send your questions to email@example.com with the subject "Ask the Chief" I think there are a lot of speeders in Georgetown. What would it take to lower the speed limit on Williams or Del Webb Blvd? Speed limits on roads are a product of engineering. A starting point for a rational speed limit will be the 85th percentile speed. The 85th percentile speed is the speed that 85% of the vehicles do not exceed. The 85th percentile speed is used because research has shown that is it slightly slower than the upper speed boundaries of most prudent drivers. Setting a speed limit too far below the 85th percentile speed or too high above it can actually increase chances for a motor vehicle crash. Del Webb is a great example of a road where the speed is set below the 85th percentile speed. Del Webb should realistically be a 40 mph or 45 mph roadway but is set at 35 mph due to the presence of golf carts and
the fact that they cannot travel on roadways posted higher than 35 mph. That is why we often have speed compliance issues on Del Webb. The key to reducing speeding is a combination of intelligent roadway design, education, and enforcement as a last resort.
to make bad decisions. We also provide our officers with significant amounts of training covering law, leadership, ethics, communication, and tactics. The underlying reason for all of that training is to give them the tools to make smart decisions.
Who/What are Silver Shields? Silver Shields are volunteers with the Police Department. The mission is to build a positive connection between homebound or special needs seniors and the Police Department to help ensure the seniors have a feeling of safety, security, and inclusion in the community.
What’s the best way to talk you out of giving me a ticket? I will begin by saying that historically, the Georgetown Police Department issues warnings on 75% of the stops we make. Your chances of getting a warning are already pretty high! With that being said, our goal in conducting traffic enforcement is to achieve voluntary compliance. If an officer feels from speaking with the person stopped that voluntary compliance can be achieved in the future, then that increases the chances for a warning on the current infraction. Of course, some infractions (no insurance, warp speed) will usually result in a citation no matter what just due to the egregious nature of the violation.
With so much in the national news about law enforcement, how are you training officers to make smart decisions? We begin by making sure we hire the right people! We spend a significant amount of time hiring people who will exemplify our core values of professionalism, leadership, accountability, teamwork, and integrity. When you hire people that exemplify those traits, it is difficult
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FEBRUARY 9, 2017 ï‚« THE ADVOCATE
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FEBRUARY 9, 2017 THE ADVOCATE
Love's Loser No More
As a teenager I loathed Valentine's Day because I never had a boyfriend and was thus excluded from all the classroom carnations and girlish giggling. Loser. As a young adult, I hated it because the expectations of doing something crazy and fantastic were never quite lived up to. Either that or I had found another exciting "bad boy" I could rehabilitate with my perfect girlfriendness. That always worked out well. Loser. Being single at nearly 50 I've decided Feb. 14 is a lot of build up for something not really so awesome, like senior prom or a c-section. I have decided that having fun the other 364 days of the year is just fine. I have also decided I don't want anyone who completes me. I'm totally happy with the faulty gaps in my personality. I'm completely emotional so don't bring your Spock-think to balance the argument and expect good results. When I was young I aspired to find my soul mate. Everyone has one,
right? Of course not. What if you really do have one soul mate, but he or she is a marine biologist in the Black Sea—you're never going there. Perfect matches can't just be a matter of geography. Unless you live in Mayberry, there's really no way to even meet all the people in your own town. I do, however, think it's possible to have *a* soul mate—someone who shares what I call extreme compatibility. And not just the big things like politics and religion. Some relationships get into trouble over the stupid things; like "MUST you leave the Keurig cup in the machine every morning so my Earl Grey tastes like Sanka?" I'd much rather argue about God with an atheist than arm wrestle over the thermostat with a "hot-natured" person while wearing socks to bed in July. I know some think opposites attract, and maybe they do. But only if at least one of you is extremely tolerant. An indulgent person who has a thing for expensive shoes is going to have a lot to argue about with a person who saves pennies and re-uses Ziplocs. I found it nearly impossible to live with the person who decided to go all Paleo on me, necessitating three rounds of cooking; cruciferous meal for him, one non-crucifying for me, and
PMS 1545 PMS 180 PMS 142
one chicken nugget-heavy for the toddler. (Yes, I meant to say crucifying since eating broccoli would kill me.) The habits of a person who has scrunchies on the gear shift and french fries under the seat will never satisfy a person who washes the car every Saturday and dries it with a kitten. What I think now is that all that talk about relationships being a choice and hard work is too simplistic. Sure, you have to put in effort, but if it feels like Work, it's not Fun. Having extreme compatibility with another person is a lot less effort and hardly no work at all. It takes energy but things click and there is feedback and rewards—if you're lucky enough to find the Flow. Hungarian psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi defines Flow as "the experience itself is so enjoyable that people will do it even at great cost, for the sheer sake of doing it." Here's hoping you have a Valentine's Day full of Flow. Whether it's with a sweetheart, an old love, or a new baby. I'm not going to do anything I wouldn't do any other day, kiss my sweetheart, hug my son, call my mom and maybe send a wisecraking text to my little brother. That stuff never stops being Fun.
THE MILLENNIAL VIEW A Millennial's Valentine by Haley VanderHaar & Julianna Washburn
February the fourteenth is well known as the day of love, or Valentine’s Day. This particular day of romance has become a popular topic of conversation among Millennials. However, teenagers seem to be taking a different approach, straying from formality, with casual and technological dating. Why does Valentine’s Day mean something different to Millennials than the rest of society? “It’s not about money it’s about emotion and feeling,” said Kenzie Brown, Junior at Georgetown High School. When it comes to Millennials, Valentine’s day might include a date as simple as a walk in the park, or a night of texting back and forth. Depending on the couple, a group date including friends could also be involved on the special day. This shift in the customs of dating has lead teens to believe they have created the idea of ‘casual dating’. “I definitely feel like the casual approach is more
common, and like a good, fancy dinner is nice, but if you can do something lowkey, for not a lot of money, and still have fun with it then that’s all that matters” Sarah Elston, Junior at Georgetown High school said. Technology has overtaken today’s society, especially within relationships. Millennials today are dependent upon the ability to text or direct message a specific individual, in this case, their boyfriend or girlfriend. Texting play a large part in a relationship, as well as social media (instagram, snapchat, twitter, etc..). On Valentine’s Day, Millennials look to social media to share and compare their Valentine’s Day with their social media peers. “To some extent, social
media gives a certain standard to how Valentine’s Day should be,” said Jacob Sandoval, Senior at Georgetown High School. Valentine’s Day is important in an emotional way in every teenager’s life, that’s why technology is essential, social media is addicting, and casual dating is a new sensation. It allows the individual to reach a new level of connection with their love interest. On this Valentine’s Day, love among teenagers will be displayed differently than generations prior. The Millennial View is a regular feature giving readers a look at what the younger generation things about current topics. Haley and Julianna are students at Georgetown High School.
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Services Sundays ........ 9:30 a.m. & 11:00 a.m.
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