by Michael G. Maness
Mayor Floyd Petri proclaimed April "Tyler County Child Abuse Prevention Month" for Chester at their regularly scheduled council meeting Monday evening, April 3, at the request of Tonya Sheffield of the Tyler County Welfare Board.
Petri led in the pledges allegiance to the U.S. and Texas flags and the invocation.
Petri allowed Councilman John Wayne Davis to call in his vote for the paying of bills and the previous minutes to help the council make quorum.
Petri welcomed Tonya Sheffield to read the mayoral proclamation on behalf of Chester to designate April Child Abuse Prevention Month. The several reasons included the tragic news that last year, there were 289,334 reported cases of child abuse, 268 of those in Tyler County with 63 of those confirmed. Sheffield called the attention of the council to notice the sign on the Tyler County Courthouse square that also noted 222 children killed last year from child abuse. The area below the sign is loaded with 222 blue crosses and small wind spinners. Chester was the first city to make a proclamation, Sheffield said, hoping to secure such from the rest of the cities. The proclamation went on to note the responsibility of all people in the county, professional and citizens, to do their part, and included Sunday, April 30 to be additionally designated "Blue Sunday" to raise awareness in this critical effort in prevention.
Petri gave the essence of a letter from Senator Robert Nichols on property taxes, affecting mostly those residents in cities that have a property tax, which Chester did not levy. The most important part of the letter was Nichols' support for SB 2 that rolled back the ad valorem property tax from eight to five percent. That may still affect county taxes.
Lastly, Councilman Vincent Incardona gave his written resignation from the city council because of his move to Livingston. He expressed his honor and gratefulness for the citizens who placed their trust in him the last 16 or 17 years, not quite sure how long it had been. He said he valued very much his time in Chester. He really loved the country town, leaving a piece of his heart behind, and Petri expressed appreciation from himself and the city. Petri accepted the resignation, sadly, and will be looking to appoint a replacement soon.