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By Margaret Toal
For the Record 

County health clinic closer to opening

 

Last updated 7/11/2023 at 9:23pm

Orange County should be having its first Health Services office in more than 20 years after Commissioners Court Tuesday approved a building rent's first payment, water deposit, and internet service.

The new health office will be on Strickland Drive in Pinehurst where the Immunization Clinic was opened in 2021 during the Covid pandemic.

Many years ago, county commissioners transferred the local health services to Hardin County, though an Orange County health services director oversaw county business. When the pandemic hit in 2020, the current Commissioners Court wanted to get more control over public health.

The county obtained grants to start a county clinic and has been working toward getting Orange County health services back under local control. No date was given for the new clinic to open. Jennifer Blankenship is Orange County Health Services Director.

At the beginning of the meeting, Precinct 2 Commissioner Chris Sowell thanked the Orange County Sheriff's Office and Chief Deputy Mark Dubois for collecting $615,000 in back property taxes this past week. Dubois said it was the most back taxes collected in one day. Sowell said the taxes will really help the Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD.

Tax Assessor-Collector Karen Fisher reported her office collected $3 million in taxes last month with the county's share being $455,200.

Commissioners gave the okay for a regional organization of disc golfers to improve the disc course at Claiborne West Park. A representative of the group said they are hoping to make the course up to standards to host a future state disc golf championship. He said the group had raised $7,500 to improve the course on Pleasure Island in Port Arthur, but the city received a grant. So now, the group will work on the Orange County course.

The representative said the group will work on 18 tee boxes on the course at first, and then finish the rest of the 32 holes when more money is raised. The volunteers with the group will be overseen by county park personnel.

The court also approved letting surveyors on the Claiborne West acreage to scope a possible route for a possible pipeline for CO2. Permission to install the pipeline would be needed in the future.

Commissioners renewed a three-month contract with KMY Consultants with the Local First program. Chevron Phillips donated money to the county for the Local First program to assure local individuals and businesses get a chance to get jobs or contracts for the construction of the new $8.5 billion Golden Triangle Polymers petrochemical plant. The Local First program has an office and has been hosting job fairs.

 

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