Pinehurst joined the other Orange County cities in passing the resolutions to recognize the month of April as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, as well as National Crime Victims’ Rights Week. Mayor T.W. Permenter presented the proclamations to Cindy Fertitta of the Rape and Crisis Center of Southeast Texas.

Pinehurst Code Enforcement Officer Harry Vines reported on the condemned property at 3628 Mockingbird. The property is owned by Sandra Quine. Quine had planned to have a family member demolish the property, but those plans did not work out as originally planned. Vines requested that the city grant a 90 day extension of the scheduled demolition. Vines will attempt to work with a contractor that will be able to demolish the property at a savings to the city.

Vines further reported on the new businesses coming into Pinehurst. Inspections are underway at the new Dixie Glass location on MacArthur Drive. Plumbing has been inspected and as other utilities are completed the inspections are being done. The business should be opened sometime in late May.

Fuzzy’s Tacqueria is progressing with the remodeling to open. They are waiting on installation of new equipment. The installation and inspections should be done for an opening in mid May.

A new upholstery shop is being made ready for business on Martin Street. The new owners are clearing the property, and repainting the building.

The city has been mowing 10 abandoned lots and is identifying the owners so that the city may begin billing them for the mowing.

The council must annually approve the Homestead Exemptions, the Over 65 Exemption, and the Disabled Exemption for each tax year. The council voted to approve the exemptions and keep the rates at the current levels of 20% for the Homestead and $10,000 for the Over 65 and Disabled exemptions.

The May council meeting will fall within the regulations for the canvass of the votes and the swearing in of the new council members. The date for the meeting will be May 22.

There has been discussion of the beautification of Pinehurst by planting Crepe Myrtle trees along Strickland Drive. City Administrator Joe Parkhurst was authorized to pursue available grant money for the project. The city will make up the difference in cost and will plant and maintain the trees.

The council adjourned into closed session to discuss the hiring of a police dispatcher vacancy and the solicitation of bids for the sale of the old city hall and fire station property on Mockingbird Street.

When the council reconvened in open session Mayor Permenter reported that they took no action on the hiring of a dispatcher, but did give Parkhurst authority to solicit bids on the sale of the city property.

In his Administrator’s report, Parkhurst reported that there have been some roof repairs done on the old city hall, but after the rain there was a leak. The contractor will return to attempt a repair on the leaky site.

Some needed street repairs will begin in the near future. The county will resurface one mile of street within the city limits each year. The city is in the process of working with the county to begin the repairs.

Early voting for the city election will begin April 30 at the Orange Public Library from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Election Day will be May 12. Voting will be at the Salvation Army building on Strickland and MLK Drives from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m.

“I would like to remind everyone that it is only five months until the annual Senior Citizens picnic. It is not too early to begin to make plans. We want this picnic to be the best ever,” said Mayor Permenter.