Dry, hot weather conditions have forced Bexar County Commissioners to order a new burn ban.
The court order bans outdoor burning in unincorporated Bexar County for the next 90 days, but it’s still okay under the ban to burn household trash or other domestic waste in a burn barrel with a wire mesh screen to prevent the spread of sparks and flames.
Thanks to some good rainy days at the beginning of summer, San Antonio has not been under a burn ban since early June.
Bexar County property owners will soon be able to pay their property taxes on a monthly basis rather than waiting until the end of the year in a move that should make things easier for people on fixed incomes.
Seniors and disabled property owners have been able to use a four-payment program, paying smaller payments to the tax office from January through July.
Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector Albert Uresti said most property owners who pay their taxes directly to the county have had only two options to pay their taxes: Once a year or in half-payments.
It’s been more than two months since the flood, and the process of recovery in the Espada area is moving forward slowly. The San Antonio River Authority has offered residents a few options, but so far no action has been taken.
SARA is offering Espada residents three options: A direct buyout, an option to remain on the property and rebuild their homes to flood standards, or Bexar County will buy a flood easement where owners would retain their property for agricultural purposes but live elsewhere.
The Rim shopping center on the city’s Northwest side has avoided a sticky situation with its retail tenants by writing a $1 million check to Bexar County, which may be the largest single delinquent property tax payment collected in the county’s history.
The high-fashion shopping center on IH-10 draws thousands of shoppers every day, but even with all that money changing hands, The Rim has been in tax trouble for at least four years.
Bexar County has been selected by the state legislature to test a pilot program for email voting. For the first time next year, ballots will be sent and returned by email from 200-300 military members.
Voters eligible for the program will be able to cast ballots by email for the first time in the 2014 primary elections.
The old Toudouze Building on Comal St., which was used previously for a jail annex, will be built out in a campus-like setting to provide education and counseling services to repeat misdemeanor offenders.
Bexar County is moving ahead to the next step in their effort to reduce the number of non-violent repeat offenders in county jails, which costs the county millions per year.
The county’s re-entry program, which was proposed in a think-tank that met in San Antonio last year, now is getting a building and a curriculum.
The new center will be constructed in an old jail annex building down the street from the existing jail. Mike Lozito is designing the program according to the different needs identified by the committees in the re-entry council.
The July 4th holiday is one with pool parties, barbecues and time spent with family, but according to the Texas Department of Transportation, it is also one of the deadliest holidays on Texas roads.
"This story reaches across races, genders, male, female, children are even impacted by drunk drivers and we just want to remind people if you're going to celebrate, take the time to plan ahead," said Robbi Smith of TxDOT. "Think about yourselves, think about your family members."