Photo:  Pinehurst Fire Chief Shon Branham, left, joins Captains David Wagstaff and Mike Wiley and Assistant Chief Jayson Wells in taking oaths of office at Tuesday night’s City Council Meeting.

RECORD PHOTO: Dave Rogers

Dave Rogers

For The Record

Shon Branham, elected for his seventh one-year term as Chief of Pinehurst’s Volunteer Fire Department, was sworn in along with department officers Tuesday night.

Joining Branham in taking the oath of office from Tommy Gunn, city attorney, were Assistant Chief Jayson Wells, and captains Mike Wiley and David Wagstaff.

Branham, in an earlier report to council, said his department had responded to 595 calls in 2019, about triple what the department had handled the year he came on board as chief.

The department is set to begin construction of a new 300-square foot meeting hall/classroom in February and will top off its building fund with a “Fill the Boot” fundraiser Saturday, Jan. 25.

Police Chief Fred Hanauer said his department is anticipating receiving grants from TxDOT to monitor traffic on Interstate 10.

“These grants will be targeting several areas that TxDOT has located based on crash reports,” the chief said. “Our officers work [for TxDOT] on their days off at their overtime rates and we get any fines that may result.

“I think it’s a great deal.”

Certified accountant Keri Michutka delivered the annual audit of city funds to council, declaring it a “clean audit.”

She said the county ended Fiscal Year 2019 on Sept. 30, 2019 with $1,595,000 in its general fund, of which $1,562,000 was unassigned. That means the city had available funds equal to 10 months of expenses.

“That’s a really good financial position,” she said.