DPS announces enhanced holiday enforcement
The Texas Department of Public Safety is urging drivers to help make the holidays safer by driving sober and using extra caution.
In an effort to protect travelers on the roadways, DPS Troopers, as well as local law enforcement across the state, will conduct traffic patrols throughout the holiday weekends of Dec. 23 – 26 and Dec. 31 – Jan. 1, looking for drunk drivers, speeders, seat belt violators and other dangerous drivers.
“Impaired driving or reckless behavior on the road can turn holiday celebrations into tragedies, and these DPS patrols are designed to help save lives by identifying drivers who disregard the law and endanger others,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “By always driving sober, obeying traffic laws, and slowing down or moving over a lane when vehicles are stopped on the side of the road, Texans can help make our roads safer for everyone.”
During the eight-day Christmas/New Year holiday enforcement effort last year, DPS troopers made 466 DWI arrests. DPS enforcement efforts also resulted in 9,174 speeding citations, 893 seat belt/child safety seat citations, 320 fugitive arrests and 286 felony arrests during the enforcement period.
DPS offers the following additional tips for safe travel during the holidays:
• Don’t drink and drive. Designate a driver or take a cab.
• Slow down – especially in bad weather, construction areas and heavy traffic.
• Eliminate distractions, including the use of mobile devices.
• Buckle up everyone in the vehicle – it’s the law.
• Slow down or move over for police, fire, EMS and Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks that are stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated – it’s the law. Also, show the same courtesy to fellow drivers stopped along the road.
• Don’t drive fatigued.
• Drive defensively, as holiday travel may present additional challenges.
• Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained and check the weather forecast before your trip begins.
Citizens asking: What’s up with my homestead as appraisal notices arrive
By BARBARA GREEN
The staff of the Montague County Tax Appraisal District has fielded hundreds of phone calls since notices of appraised property value went out two weeks ago as owners question perceived possible losses in their homestead exemptions.
Chief Appraiser Kim Haralson said while the wording has been in place since 2019 when the Texas Legislature made sweeping changes in the way values are presented and documented, this has been the first year so many have questioned it or confused it with their homestead exemption.
That was the number one question to the staff: “Why has my homestead exemption gone down?” The chief appraiser said the confusion comes from the mandated wording calling what was previously called “capped value,” now called homestead savings, but does not apply to homestead exemptions at all.
Read the full story in the mid-week Bowie News.
Summertime arrives with a big splash
These youngsters dive into the Bowie City Pool after it opened on June 6. The Nocona community pool also has opened this week. Watch for more photos in your weekend Bowie News. (Photos by Barbara Green)
Motorcycle, truck-trailer crash kills one
A 60-year-old Bowie man was killed when the motorcycle he was driving collided with a trailer being towed by a pickup truck Tuesday afternoon southwest of Montague.
Texas Department of Public Safety Sgt. Marc Couch of media relations said the crash occurred at 1:55 p.m. on May 30 at the intersection of Lone Star Road and Hildreth Pool Road. 2.5 miles southwest of Montague.
The accident involved a 2006 Suzuki motorcycle driven by Raymond Melton Mills, Bowie, and a 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 pickup towing a 2020 Easton Car & Construction utility semi-trailer.
According to the preliminary investigation, the DPS report the motorcycle was traveling north on Lone Star Road, while the pickup and trailer were going south on Lone Star Road at the intersection with Hildreth Pool. The truck was turning right onto Hildreth Pool when the motorcycle failed to yield half the roadway to the truck and trailer driven by Israel Lozano, 39, Decatur striking the towed trailer.
Mills was ejected from the motorcycle striking the trailer. He was transported by air ambulance to Medical City Denton for treatment of his injuries, but died under a doctor’s care due to the sustained injuries.
This accident was investigated by Trooper Bradly S. Slade, Nocona, who was assisted by several other troopers and county sheriff’s office deputies. The report states Melton was not wearing a helmet.
Correction- The print story stated the victim’s name was Raymond Melton, but it has been corrected to read Raymond Melton Mills. We apologize for this error.
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