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By Margaret Toal
For the Record 

Commissioners miss quorum on Tuesday, will meet Wednesday


Last updated 1/10/2023 at 5:20pm

Precinct 1 Commissioner Johnny Trahan and Precinct 4 Commissioner Robert Viator were the only two of five members of the court for Tuesday's meeting, which had to be canceled. A quorum is expected for Wednesday.

County Judge Pro-Tem Johnny Trahan called Commissioners Court to the regular meeting Tuesday afternoon, but not enough people were there to make a quorum for a legal meeting.

Two of the commissioners were at a special school to train commissioners, while County Judge John Gothia was called to Austin for business. However, knowing there might not be enough people to hold a meeting, the court advertised a special called meeting for Wednesday at 2 p.m. with identical agendas.

However, the main item of interest on the agendas is not ready. Commissioners Court has been ready to sign a tax abatement agreement with Enterprise Terminals. The company wants to build an $850 million ethane terminal off Mansfield Ferry Road along the Orange County side of the Neches River.

Assistant County Attorney Denise Gremillion said Tuesday the company is requesting a name change on the abatement contract. She said the change in the contract will legally need to be advertised 30 days in advance of commissioners approving it. So the county will start the notification process again.

The same type name change was done late last year for the Chevron-Phillips plant. In late November, ChevronPhillips-QutarEnergy announced the Orange site for construction of an $8.5 billion chemical plant for plastics.

On Tuesday, newly-seated Precinct 2 Commissioner Chris Sowell was at a commissioners training school, while Precinct 3 Commissioner Kirk Roccaforte was also going through more training classes. The classes, through the Texas Association of Counties, are required for the public officials in each county.

The two are expected to be back for Wednesday's meeting, which will include a long agenda of business. Much of the business is routine, including paying bills.

However, the court will look at signing a contract with Architects Inc. for different county building projects to be paid through the federal American Rescue Plan. The court will also vote on contributing $200,000 from the American Rescue Plan toward the new hospital construction project. The county has been without a hospital for several years.

Also, the court will vote to accept a federal Homeland Security grant to prevent cyper terrorism. The grant is for $22,743.


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