From left are Eastex FD Asst. Chief Al Sterkx, ESD. No. 10 Board President Mike Tucker, ESD No. 10 Treasurer Robyn Hoekstra, Eastex FD Fire Chief Bryan Harris, Phillip Bradley of the Insurance Service Office, Jimmy Williams of the Texas State Fire Marshals Office, and ESD No. 10 Commissioners Rebecca Todd and Richard Givens. The new ISO rating, presented at a recent Eastex FD board meeting, gives the district and fire department the best grade awarded by the Insurance Service Office.


Harris County ESD No. 10 and Eastex Fire Department were recently presented with official recognition of their new ISO (Insurance Service Office) rating of “Class 1.” A rating of Class 1 generally represents superior property fire protection and Class 10 indicates that the area’s fire suppression program does not meet ISO’s minimum criteria. Among the communities included in this coverage area are Fall Creek, Canyon Lakes, Sunset Ridge, Balmoral and Deerbrook Estates. Among the items taken into consideration for the grade are: emergency communication systems, water supply, fire departments (including staffing, equipment, training and proximity), and the area’s fire prevention codes and enforcement, including public fire safety education.


For more than 30 years, the Texas Department of Transportation’s “Don’t mess with Texas” campaign has forged partnerships with the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughan, George Strait, Willie Nelson, LeAnn Rimes and Grupo Fantasma to share its important message. Now the search is on for a new amateur musical talent to represent the iconic litter-prevention campaign. The “Don’t mess with Texas” Song Search Contest invites undiscovered Texans to compose an original 30-second song incorporating the campaign’s anti-litter message. The entries, submitted via video, will be collected online where the public will have the opportunity to vote on their favorites. The contest is open to all Texas residents, ages 18 and above, and runs through October 2018. Contest rules can be found at


District Judge Robert K. Schaffer, administrative judge for the state district courts in Harris County, is accepting applications from Harris County citizens interested in service on the Appraisal Review Board (ARB). The ARB was created by the Texas Legislature to provide an independent judicial review of taxpayer protests of valuations established by the Harris County Appraisal District (HCAD). Service on the board would begin in January 2019. Applications must be submitted by the applicant directly to Schaffer through the HCAD human resources division and received no later than Oct. 15. The ARB is a citizen board that sits in panels of three to hear testimony and review evidence in order to determine property owner protests which cannot be resolved informally with HCAD. Candidates must be current residents of Harris County, having resided in the county for at least two years. Application forms are available at Application forms and eligibility information may also be obtained by calling 713-957-5265. Applications should be submitted to: Judge Robert K. Schaffer c/o HCAD Human Resources Division; P.O. Box 920975; Houston, TX 77292-0975.

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