Cherokeean Herald (Rusk, Tex.), Vol. 162, No. 46, Ed. 1 Wednesday, January 11, 2012 Page: 1 of 15
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January 11, 2012
Rusk, Texas ■ 75 cents
director steals $37,474
on smoking ban
2012 state water plan is
on Cherokeean Herald
A complete copy of the 2012
state water plan is available on the
Cherokeean Herald’s website at
The plan was adopted by the
Texas Water Development Board
on Dec. 15,2011, and was sentto
the governor last Thursday. The
thesis statement of the new plan
is: “In serious drought conditions,
Texas does not and will not have
enough water to meet the needs
of its people, its businesses and
its agricultural enterprises.”
Sen. Robert Nichols
will vice chair sunset
pleads guilty in court
The former executive direc-
tor of the Jacksonville Hous-
ing Authority has pleaded
guilty of federal violations
in the Eastern District of
Texas, said U.S. Attorney
John M. Bales.
Georgina Denise Bridge-
forth, 38, ofMesquite, pleaded
guilty to theft of government
funds in excess of $1,000 on
Jan. 4before U.S. Magistrate
Judge John D. Love.
According to information
presented in court, from Sept.
26, 2007 to Apr. 16, 2008,
Ms. Bridgeforth devised and
executed a scheme to steal
$37,474.93 from the Jack-
sonville Housing Authority
Ms. Bridgeforth admitted
to using credit cards for per-
sonal items, fuel, a computer
and rental cars. She also in-
creased her salary payments
Ms. Bridgeforth was in-
dicted by a federal grand jury
on July 13, 2011.
She faces up to 10 years in
federal prison at sentencing.
See HOUSING, pg. 6A
By Robert Gonzalez
Jacksonville city council
members received a report
Tuesday night from the com-
mittee appointed to evaluate a
citywide ban on smoking, ap-
proved Alfred Waste Systems to
pick up trash from businesses
within the city and received the
annual report from the Jack-
sonville Pohce Department on
A five-member committee
was appointed by the city coun-
cil in November to examine
whether the city should insti-
tute a smoking ban. Dr. James
Low Jr., Annie Blanton, Will
Cole, Ricky Richards and Jean
Turner made up the committee
that looked at citizen feedback,
an electronic poll on the city
website, medical findings as
well as legal precedents on a
Ricky Richards, a local law-
yer, reported to the council on
their results. Polling results
from the website ran about 60
percent to 40 percent in favor of
the ban, said Mr. Richards.
“If I had not read the informa-
tion that Dr. Low had compiled,
I would not have thought be-
fore that second-hand smoke
See JACKSONVILLE, pg. 8A
State Sen. Robert Nichols
(R-Jacksonville) was named
vice-chair of the Texas Sunset
Advisory Commission by Lt. Gov.
David Dewhurst last Friday.
The Texas Sunset Advisory
Commission makes recommen-
dations whetheran agencyshould
ways to im-
functions if it is
and make recommendations for
24 agencies. These include the
Texas Education Agency, Ethics
Commission, the Higher Educa-
tion Coordinating Board and the
Board of Pardons and Paroles.
Relay for Life kickoff
planned for Jan. 12
Relayfor Life kickoff is planned
for 6 p.m. Jan. 12 at the Rusk
Teams and Relay for Life
participants are invited to pick
up their team packets, register
survivors and join the fight against
Additional information is avail-
able from Cynthia Kline at (903)
683-7483 or Amy Derrington at
Folk festival planning
meeting set for Jan. 15
Persons interested in a folk
festival are invited to a planning
meeting with the Mission Tejas
State ParkAssociation in Weches
at 2 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 15. The
meeting will be in the shop build-
ing at the park. Plans are under-
way for an annual folk festival to
be held on Saturday, April 28. The
park is located on State Highway
21 in Weches, between Alto and
Crockett. Call (936) 687-2394 for
Honoring their own
The Rusk Volunteer Fire Department honored one of their own
Monday night at their annual fireman’s banquet. Bob Golds-
berry was named fireman of the year. He received the award
from Rusk City Councilman and fireman Kris Morgan.
Commissioners vote against
including Tarrant Road in county
maintenance, public forum
portion during meeting
By Quinten Boyd
A saga involving the status of a road located
in the county continued during Monday’s com-
missioners court meeting.
Commissioners voted against accepting
Tarrant Road, located in Precinct 3, into the
county’s road maintenance system.
Had the road been accepted, it would have
been assigned county road number 3705.
Commissioner Katherine Pinotti, Precinct
3, was the only commissioner to vote for ac-
“The residents have complied with the
subdivision regulations, and the road exceeds
regulations,” Mrs. Pinotti said.
Louie Owens, a resident of Tarrant Road
who initially brought the matter before the
council in May 2010, was present, but did not
address the court.
At the May 2010 meeting, commissioners
said the road had necessary footage for a
county road and 25 feet of easement, but was
built to county specifications in 1995 and not
to specifications at that time.
Commissioner Steven Norton, Precinct 2,
See COMMISSIONERS, pg. 6A
10% chance of rain
CLASSIC HITS RADIO
KWRW - FM and KTLU - AM
Rusk ISD approves new contract for superintendent
Trustees approve new senior early release policy; hold AEISpublic hearing
By Robert Gonzalez
In the first meeting of the Rusk ISD board in 2012,
the trustees performed their annual evaluation of
superintendent, Dr. Jim Largent, adopted the district
and campus plans as well as adopted a shght change
to the senior early release policy.
After returning from executive session, the
board approved the extension of the contract with
superintendent Dr. Jim Largent into the 2014-15
school year. Details ofthe contract were not available
at press time.
Shortly after the meeting began, six members of
Tonya Tropp’s primary school choir sang two songs
for the board members.
Students singing were Nicole Burkhalter,
Aden Burkhalter, Camille Gresham, Clayton
Gresham, Jay la Session, Alex Patterson and Brody
At the recommendation of Dr. Largent, the board
approved a senior early release policy that would
allow students who have a passing grade in Pre-AP
or dual credit college courses to be eligible for early
“We want to reward the seniors for going out and
taking the harder classes instead ofpenahzing them,”
said Dr. Largent.
Students with an 80 or better average in their
regular classes in the Spring semester of their junior
year would continue to be eligible for early release.
A public hearing was held to discuss the Academic
Excellence Indicator System and to present the
campus and district plans that are required by the
state. Kathleen Glidewell presented the plans for
each campus and for the district as a whole.
Overall, according to the AEIS, the district’s TAKS
test scores were better than the state average in
reading, math, writing and science. In social studies,
the district scored below the state average by just
The foundation ofthe plan is the needs assessment.
It is in these meetings that the greatest needs of
each campus are identified and a plan is fashioned
to meet those needs.
Board members adopted the plans unanimously,
there were no citizens who spoke at the hearing.
During the board discussion on expenditures,
executive director of finance Lesa Jones was asked
how the every-other-day janitorial service was
This plan was put in place as a cost cutting measure
and will save the district $72,000 per year.
“The principals say that the janitorial service not
coming in every day is noticeable, but manageable,”
Mrs. Jones said.
“Each campus has one custodian except the high
school, which has one for the school and one for the
athletic facilities such as the stadium, ball fields and
the new Eagle Coliseum,” she added.
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Gonzalez, Terrie. Cherokeean Herald (Rusk, Tex.), Vol. 162, No. 46, Ed. 1 Wednesday, January 11, 2012, newspaper, January 11, 2012; Rusk, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth614732/m1/1/: accessed April 24, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Singletary Memorial Library.