Outdoorsman should now have easier access to Old River Cove (on Sabine Lake) on Lake Street in Bridge City after the Orange County Commissioners’ Court approved the measure at their meeting on Monday afternoon.

Precinct 3 Commissioner John Dubose introduced the item that would apply for grant funds from the Sabine River Authority to construct a small boat ramp on Lake Street. This is a joint project with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the SRA. He also said County Engineer Clark Slacum has done a good job with the project.

Dubose said there’s a duck lease in the area and boaters must go underneath the bridge from the dock on the south side. Dubose wanted to start the application process to the SRA board of directors when they meet in July so the county wouldn’t have to wait until their next meeting in October. The county’s portion for the grant will be in-kind.

The boat ramp will now be on the north side for easier access.

The commissioners next turned their attention to election matters.

Tina Barrow, elections administrator, presented early voting locations for the July 31 primary run-off elections from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday, July 23 through Friday, July 27 at the following:

• Orange Public Library (Main early voting location), 220 N. Fifth St.

• First Baptist Church of Mauriceville, 11540 Highway 12

• Bridge City Public Works Building, 220 Nitsche

• The Raymond Gould Community Center, 385 Claiborne in Vidor

All of the races will be statewide with no local races. On the Republican side, David Dewhurst will face Ted Cruz for the U.S. Senate; Stephen Takach will face Steve Stockman in the United State Representative, District 36 race; Warren Chisum and Christi Craddick will vie for Railroad Commissioner; Greg Parker and Barry Smitherman are also in a Railraod Commissioner race; and John Devine and David Medina for Place 4 Justice on the Texas Supreme Court.

For Democrats, Paul Sadler will face Grady Yarbrough in the U.S. Senate race.

The elections administration office will also purchase four or five advertisements to run on billboards reminding residents to register to vote in the General Election in November. Voters must register no later than 30 days before the election.

The court also approved hiring election judges and workers for the run-off election. Barrow said 10 are needed — two for Bridge City, two for Mauriceville, three for Orange and three for Vidor.

Precinct 2 Commissioner Owen Burton asked if the state could pay for the run-off election since there are no local races. County Judge Carl Thibodeaux answered the state will not pay for the election and the county will have to pay. Burton called it an unfunded mandate.

An evaluation committee was  formed consisting of Precinct 1 Commissioner David Dubose, MIS Director Lisa Reeves, Maintenance Supervisor Mark Wimberley, Emergnecy Management Coordinator Jeff Kelley, Assistant County Attorney Douglas Manning and MIS Programmer Jeff Newton. The committee will evaluate the proposals for data, voice and internet connectivity for the Shelter of Last Resort.

Kelley reported the interior partition walls on the shelter are now up.