Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

January 15, 2013

Commissioners chip their way through a chilly morning meeting

Ben Tinsley
Jacksonville Daily Progress

RUSK — The owner of local highway and street construction company Traylor & Son was appointed as the new  Cherokee County representative to the North East Texas Regional Mobility Authority Monday.

Jack Traylor was selected to the slot Monday morning by a mostly-unanimous vote of the Cherokee County Commissioners (One commissioner called in sick.) Traylor did not personally attend the meeting.

Cherokee County joined the authority in 2006 to compete for state transportation dollars and possibly someday acquire a toll road to be built in the county. Other potential perks that drove county officials to join were possible airports, pedestrian and bike facilities, border crossings, and even public utility facilities.

Traylor replaces Barry Hughes, the chairman of the  Jacksonville Development Corporation Board.

"Barry did a fantastic job during his two terms, and Jack is very willing to serve the transportation needs of the area," County Judge Chris Davis said prior to the commission's semi-unanimous vote.

The judge did not say why Hughes was being replaced.

The appointment was part of a relatively small county commission agenda Monday. The meeting at the county courthouse, 135 S. Main, was notable because of the inclement weather that dipped temperatures below freezing.

Icicles literally clung to benches outside in front of the county courthouse. Grand jury proceedings were rescheduled.

The cold blast was part of a front that  brought bitterly cold conditions to much of the central and western U.S., with temperatures 10 to 25 degrees below normal, the National Weather Service reported Monday.

The majority of commissioners trudged in to work Monday, but Commissioner Katherine Pinotti called in sick.

“There are a lot of people on the ill list today,” the judge noted.

Those commissioners present quickly worked their way through the agenda — which was brief, with little discussion and the actual votes.

A resolution supporting the Keystone Pipeline Gulf Coast project was unanimously approved.

No one was there to speak during a hearing regarding a proposal to set a 35 mph speed limit on County Road 4910, so it passed unanimously and with minimal comment.