Burn ban tabled as rains green up area; budget debates continue

Thanks to recent rains that have “greened up” the county, Montague County Commissioners declined to implement a ban on outdoor burning Monday tabling the ban for consideration at the next meeting.
Commissioner Mark Murphey, also a Nocona volunteer firefighter, said the county is below the drought level in the KBDI due to the recent rainfall. A check of the index shows a range of 600-700 in the southern part of the county to 400-500 in the northwest, plus a small patch of green in the 300-400 range. The index has a maximum of 800 for full drought.
Murphey also said he talked to five local fire chiefs and all but one agreed they don’t need a ban at this time although it should be closely monitored. Commissioner Bob Langford said a little more than a week ago it looked like things were heading toward a ban with the triple-digit temperatures and no rain. Since that time rains ranging from one to four inches across the county have fallen creating improved conditions. The ban was tabled.
The court breezed through an agenda of mostly routine business before going into a budget workshop.
Sheriff Marshall Thomas provided a update on the six-month old K-9 program with Deputy Chase Pelton and Ace. The K-9 team has seen 35 deployments and made 38 arrests.

The district attorney also had her request to have Kevin Benton come work part-time at her office to wrap a few investigations he has been spearheading before he takes over at justice of the peace in the new year. A lengthy round of budgets hearings also were conducted.

Read the full story in the mid-week News.