Putting their rally caps on Lytle, Somerset teams offer excitement on the diamond pages 7, 8
SERVING THE COMMUNITIES OF LYTLE, SOMERSET, PLEASANTON, PEARSALL, POTEET, LA COSTE, VON ORMY & ATASCOSA COUNTY
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Eagle Ford traffic clogging roadways
Safety, road wear and tear among concerns associated with increased traffic due to oil field activity Barrett House Staff Writer On a Monday evening around 8 p.m., one wouldn’t expect to find any traffic on northbound I-35 outside of Lytle. Instead, anybody who
turned onto I-35 last Monday may have been both surprised and bummed out by what they saw: a line of 18-wheelers as far as the eye could see. There was no accident, not even any construction. It was a traffic jam from before
I-35 passes Lytle all the way to Somerset Road. There was just a massive number of trucks. The reason, obviously, is the Eagle Ford Shale and the increase in trucks. “That could be related to the hydraulic fracturing need-
ed for developing a single well that is in the vicinity,” said Cesar Quiroga, senior research engineer at the Texas A&M Transportation Institute. “It’s not that it is a constant flow of traffic, it kind of goes in bursts.”
The major topic associated with the drastic increase of semi traffic has been the impact on state and county roads. However, state and county roads have been affectSee ‘Design’ on Page 3
LISD looks outside the box for its curriculum
Barrett House Staff Writer Lytle ISD is constantly caught in the delicate dance of being creative and innovative while adhering to state standards and expectations. In order to assist teachers in developing curriculums that accomplish all of these things, the district has been utilizing CSCOPE, a customizable online curriculum management system. Lytle ISD has been using this educational resource as a framework to ensure that the basic state standards, or TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) are met. “Any curriculum that you have, or somebody comes up with, has to start with those TEKS,” said Lytle ISD Assistant Superintendent Jimmy Gouard. Even with a progressive approach to learning, as has become a highlight for the district, the state standards must See ‘District’ on Page 4
Technology at forefront for LISD Barrett House Staff Writer As the modern day classroom continues to evolve, Lytle ISD students remain on the precipice of change as their administrators strive to expose them to as much technology as possible. Administrators’ efforts are an attempt to bridge the gap that exists between those who have adopted technology and those who were born into it. “Our teachers are learning, and our learners already know everything as far as technology itself,” said Kenneth Englehart, Lytle ISD technology director. “It’s a big jump for our teachers but it’s a way of life for our learners.” When compared to other districts, though, Lytle ISD is actually leading the way with its technological initiatives. “Our district is not behind in technology,” said Lytle ISD Assistant Superintendent See ‘Push’ on Page 3
Volunteers sought for Lytle trash-off event The Keep Lytle Beautiful Commission will be holding its local Texas Trash-off event on Saturday, April 6. Volunteers are asked to meet at 8:30 a.m. at Lytle City Hall for breakfast tacos, and the disperse to different parts of the city to pick up litter from 9 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. All volunteers should return to city hall by 10:45 a.m. for photographs. Safety vests will be provided.
Poteet home destroyed in fire Officials from the United States Department of Agriculture and project collaborators joined Somerset Mayor Paul Cuellar this past week for the grand opening of the new sewer facility that was made possible with a $3.4 million grant/loan program. (Photo by Alicia Ramirez)
Somerset celebrates new sewer plant After years of planning and some struggles, city opens facility that will allow for growth Alicia Ramirez Staff Writer Roughly 15 years ago, the city of Somerset purchased a tract of land adjacent to the existing wastewater treatment plant at the request of Luke Parchman, who was working with the city and Mayor Paul Cuellar. This past week, after years of work to garner the funding for the project and a yearlong construction project, the city of Somerset cut the ribbon officially opening the Luke Parchman Wastewater Treatment Facility. “We started working on this approximately four years ago looking for funds because we knew that the facility was almost at capacity,” said Cuellar. “We went to Austin to see the Texas Water Development Board and at that time they had no funds available for grants and they only had loans and we, the people of Somerset, could not afford just a loan.” With the facility reaching the critical 75 percent capacity threshold, the city then went to the United States Department of Agriculture office in Seguin and started working with the agency roughly two years ago. The city was able to get $3.4 million for the facility with a $2.2 million grant and a $1.2 million loan. “Now we have the capacity for development,” Cuellar said. “We were limited to the number of new hookups we could have and that was it because the capacity was not there, but now if a developer wants to
Somerset bank hosting Easter egg hunt Friday
Mayor Paul Cuellar unveiled the new sign for the Luke Parchman Wastewater Treatment Plant at the end of the ceremony with help from city employees. Parchman was instrumental throughout the entire process and was involved with the first plant. (Photo by Alicia Ramirez) come in and build, we’re ready for it.” That future development was one of the best outcomes for Tammye Trevino, the
administrator of rural housing and community facilities program, at the USDA. “The community leaders have the vision to see what
their community can be and they know that without the infrastructure they’re not going See ‘Plant’ on Page 4
Turn N’ Burn transforms Pleasanton into barbecue city More than 150 teams compete for over $35,000 in prize money at largest paying barbecue competition in Texas Barrett House Staff Writer Barbecue culture came crashing down on Pleasanton last weekend, giving rise to what was, for two days, the barbecue center of Texas. The 2013 Turn N’ Burn was an overwhelming success for the Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce, which hosted the event along with a slew of sponsors, including Western Premium
Products. The Atascosa County Show Barn was overrun, giving way to a city made up of RVs, barbecue pits, tents, trailers and even semis. Its inhabitants were the epitome of barbecue cookers, individuals coming from all over for a shot at barbecue glory. They had team names like The Worms Cooking Team, Wingnut Cookers, Rambling Amigos, Armadillo Flamekickers and
A Poteet family’s mobile home was destroyed in a fire Tuesday morning. No injuries were reported, but one family member was treated for smoke inhalation. The Poteet Volunteer Fire Department was the first to respond to the emergency. Firefighters from the Primrose, Pleasanton, and Jourdanton Volunteer Fire Departments were also on scene to combat the blaze. As of press time the cause of the fire is unknown. However, an arson investigator has been called in keeping with standard operating procedure. The Poteet VFD has called in the Red Cross to provide assistance for the family.
Bottle Cap Cookers. The demographics of this barbecue population ranged from amateurs to serious competitors, spectators to beer drinkers. The event kicked off with teams arriving Thursday night and setting up camp. Friday was for cookers’ choice, leading up to a dance that night. Saturday, though, was what the competition was all about. Trailers could be seen from Highway 97
while turning onto the dirt road leading up to the show barn. It was hot, very hot; the Texas weather throwing everybody for a loop. But that didn’t stop the new residents of the barbecue encampment from setting up shop next to hot pits, showing off their meat talents. After the food was turned in, the day was spent just like any other massive barbecue event. The tunes were cranked up, washer
boards set out and alcohol consumed. Surprisingly, there were no incidents over the weekend. Every one was there for a good time, despite the fact that it was a competition. Once all the food was turned in, a few judges tasked with tasting submissions from more than 150 teams in five categories, there was nothing left to do but sit and wait See ‘Chamber’ on Page 2
This Friday, while the schools are closed, Texas Community Bank will once again be partnering with the city of Somerset to bring some Easter cheer to local residents. The bank will provide free photos with the Easter Bunny starting at 12 p.m. in the bank’s conference room and the city will hold the annual Easter egg hunt at 2 p.m. in the field behind the church for all local kids. The eggs will primarily be filled with candy with a few golden eggs containing money. After the egg hunt, the Easter Bunny will be on hand until 4:30 p.m. for photos. All photos will be available for pick up next week.
La Coste to crack down on berms With the past council discussions regarding berms that have been recently constructed around town, the council asked City Attorney Chris Schuchart to draft an ordinance that would necessitate a permit before the berm was constructed. Schuchart went through the ordinances and found a 2009 ordinance that named City Administrator George Salzman as floodplain administrator and required any structure built to have a permit stating that it would not have a detrimental effect on the water flow. With the ordinance on the books, the city would simply need to enforce the rule as it would apply to the berms.