Bowie man arrested in cruelty to livestock case
A Bowie attorney was arrested on Oct. 26 by deputies from the Clay County Sheriff’s office on a complaint of cruelty to livestock animals, a state jail felony.
Investigators report they found malnourished and deceased animals found on property in southern Clay County allegedly owned by Edward Michael Ratliff, 66, Bowie.
According to the arrest warrant affidavit submitted and signed by Justice of the Peace John Swenson on Oct. 25 the investigation by the sheriff’s staff began after Precinct Three Commissioner Retta Collins and her ranch hand Aletha Hagis observed two malnourished horses on property located on the east side of Armstrong Road. The property and animals are reportedly owned by Edward Michael Ratliff, 66, Bowie.
The warrant sought the arrest of Ratliff for the offense of cruelty to livestock animals, a state jail felony. In addition, a seizure warrant for the animals and a search warrant also were obtained from JP Swenson.
Read the full story in the mid-week Bowie News.
Bowie Council to hear Nelson Street repair presentation
Members of the Bowie City Council will see a design presentation on the Nelson Street Bridge project at its 6 p.m. June 12 meeting.
Mike Tibbets with Hayter Engineering will meet with the council to review the design that would make repairs to the closed section of Nelson Street.
The block of Nelson Street at Kiwanis Park and Mill was closed on Aug. 21, 2022 after a section on the north side of the road failed and collapsed. This area along Nelson, Lamb and Rock have experienced ongoing drainage problems for many years.
City crews have undertaken significant work in the Kiwanis Park and Lamb Street area to slow the flow of water, but major work is needed to replace the large culverts that go under the street at Nelson and nearby drop boxes, as downstream at Rock and Pillar.
Hayter has estimated the Nelson Street repairs and the connecting work on Mill would run around $2 million. However, Public Works Director Stony Lowrance had told the council if they make repairs at Nelson that will only push more water down the channel and possibly blow out the culverts that need replacing at Rock and Pillar. Adding those repairs could add another million or more to the project.
The council will consider not only the Nelson Street repair, but alternate bids for Pillar and Rock. City Manager Bert Cunningham has said the city has funds to pay for the Nelson and Mill work if it is around $2 million, but any additional work may require borrowing money or using reserves, which he emphasized they do not want to reduce by too much in order to protect overall general operational costs.
In the city manager’s report, Bert Cunningham will report on the electric grant application he has been preparing. He said the city’s substation needs some improvements, especially a new transformer, and he is pursuing all avenues to help find funding for the substation work.
In new business, the Montague County Tax Appraisal District has submitted its 2024 budget for council action.
An ordinance amendment for the mobile food vendors ordinance will be reviewed, along with a recommendation for a new member to the park’s board.
Public comments wrap up the agenda along with the consent topics.
Tourism blitz makes a stop in Bowie
The World’s Largest Bowie Knife was a stop on the North Texas Travel Information Centers’ Blitz hosted by the Texas Lakes Trail Region on Friday morning. Bowie Mayor Gaylynn Burris welcomed the group to the city. The tour included representatives from Grapevine, Granbury, Cedar Hill, Glen Rose, Lewisville, Weatherford, Denison, Dallas and Waxahachie. Cindy Roller, executive director for Bowie Community Development, which is a member of the region, also took part. The Blitz visited Grapevine, Bowie, Wichita Falls, Gainesville and Denison all in one day. (Photo by Barbara Green)
County to begin budget preparations
The Montague County Commissioner’s Court is expected to begin its budget preparations with a workshop set on the 9 a.m. June 12 agenda.
With preliminary values recently released the court can begin considering elected and department officials’ budget requests, along with any new improvements or projects being considered for the new year’s budget.
Certified values will not be available until early July at which point the court can establish a proposed tax rate. The preliminary values, which usually fluctuate when the certified values are set, were up by $171,233,923 above the 2022 certifieds. Based on the 2022 tax rate of .5036 cents per $100 in property value the county could see additional revenue of $862,334.04.
In other financial items, the 2023 Montague County Tax Appraisal District budget will be presented for court approval.
Commissioners will consider the sheriff’s office request to purchase an incinerator and propane tank.
Read the full story in the weekend Bowie News.
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