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Sanctity of Human Life celebrated

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Diana Buckley

Ellis County Human Services


WAXAHACHIE – Ellis County Commissioners declared the week of Jan.17 through 24, as Sanctity of Human Life Week in Ellis County.

"The Ellis County Commissioners’ Court wishes to remind their constituents that our country was founded on the principle that we are endowed by our Creator with the right to life and that each of our citizens has value and worth," said County Judge Carol Bush, reading from her proclamation.

Donna Young, executive director of the Women’s Resource Center, addressed the Court.

"I am here representing the Women’s Resource Center," said Young, noting President Ronald Reagan was the first to proclaim National Sanctity of Life Day on the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision.

"We are celebrating our 15th year of service to our citizens, with no government funding or expense to our cities or cou-nty."

Young said the organization has two centers, one in Waxahachie and one in Ennis. In 2009, services provided were up 50 to 75 percent when compared to 2008.

"We served 637 mothers and their families, with 2800 client visits and 600 pregnancy tests," she said.

"No one was turned away because of funding. Often, they come in for a pregnancy test first, and we are able to provide peer counseling, information on the procedures and risks of abortion, adoption and parenting information, support for those who are pregnant and parenting children up to age two, and abortion recovery support."

"Thank you so much for the invaluable services you provide to this community," Bush said.

A second proclamation of the Court designated the month of January, 2010 as School Board Recognition Month in Ellis County, in honor of school board members serving as advocates for public education, working closely with families and educational professionals alike.

A nine-month contract with the Ellis County SPCA for Animal Control and Shelter Services was also approved during the meeting.

"I would like to first thank the Sheriff’s Department, the SPCA, Commissioner (Heath) Sims, the legal department, and Holly (Davis) for working on this with me," said Commissioner Bill Dodson, pct. 2.

"We spent two or three months on it and probably had seven or eight meetings. We looked at issues and looked at different ways to approach this contract."

According to Dodson, the County sent 1,244 dogs to the SPCA in 2005; 2,514 dogs in 2006; 2,347 dogs in 2007; 1,475 dogs in 2008; and 1,435 dogs in 2009.

"I am going to recommend that this time we go with a contract for 1200 animals during the time period," Dodson said. "With these numbers, we came up with a contract amount of $55,560 for a nine month period, so we can get back on our fiscal period with the County."

Emergency Management Coordinator John Patterson received permission to apply for a State Homeland Security grant which will allow the county to renew a contract with Emergency Communications Network to provide the CodeRed Emergency Notification Warning System that will provide emergency warning to county residents via telephone or cell phone.

"For the last two years we have been under contract with CodeRed for emergency situations, to get emergency information out to the public such as a national disaster, terrorist attack, or in the event of a lost child or lost person search," Patterson said, noting that the system has so far been used only for drills.

In other business, Commissioners:

• Approved interlocal cooperation agreements with the Palmer ISD, the City of Palmer, and the City of Ferris for the term Jan. 1, 2010 to Jan. 1, 2011;

• Declared 12,000 rounds of 9mm ammunition, 800 rounds of 357 sig. ammunition, and 8,700 rounds of 45 acp ammunition as surplus and, pursuant to LGC Sec 263.152 (1) authorized the Sheriff’s Department to offer these rounds as trade-in through BULOT Company LLC for new property of the same general type in the best interest of the county, since the ammunition on hand is the wrong caliber for the Department’s existing weapons;

• Granted a variance from Rules and Regulations for Subdivisions and Mobile Home Parks relating to road frontage requirements for a particular piece of property in precinct 3; and

• Declared the following books as surplus so they may be sold on an online auction through GovDeals.gov: 7 books – Thomson West’s Texas Jurisprudence 3d; 6 books – Lexis Nexis Texas Criminal Practice; 31 books – Thomson West’s Vernon’s Texas Rules Civil; 1 book – The Michie Company Sexual Assault Trials; 1 book – Thomson West’s Vernon’s Texas Rules Civil; and 5 books – Thomson West’s Vernon’s Texas Codes Annotated.

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