City of Commerce

Northeast Texas Children's Museum
Northeast Texas Children's Museum

The mayor of Commerce, Dr. John Ballotti, says the city is close to landing a new industry thanks to the efforts of the Economic Development Committee, led by Bonnie Hunter.  The industry, Polara Engineering, is based in California and is a maker of traffic-light switches among other products.

Northeast Texas Children's Museum
Northeast Texas Children's Museum

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the city will soon submit a state grant application for construction of the long-discussed skateboard park, and he's optimistic the grant will be approved.  Also, the city will again host girls state softball tournaments this summer at the much-improved Eddie Moore Sports Complex, and the city has begun filling in the municipal swimming pool, which was in need of major repairs.

City of Commerce
City of Commerce

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the purpose of the city council's recent action of imposing fees for the regular inspection of apartments and rental homes is aimed at safety and beautification, through demolition of substandard housing.  The mayor says the city's rental property inspection procedure will likely continue to change as property owners and the city continue to communicate with each other.

Commerce Community Cares
Commerce Community Cares

Among the local organizations helped by Commerce Community Cares is the city's Parks and Recreation Department.  Ricky Harris, director of the department, says about 700 to 1,000 children participate in Parks and Recreation activities every year, and some would not be able to participate without the help of Commerce Community Cares.  Dick Latson says the organization's annual fund-raising campaign is continuing.

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti discusses plans for sidewalk repairs in downtown Commerce, progress on the Municipal Airport improvement project, and the renaming of the Norris Community Center as the Ann and Harry Champion Community Center.

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the current campaign of demolishing substandard houses will be organized in regions, corresponding to the city's regular curbside pickup schedule for debris.  And the mayor says a state/federal program will fund the construction of three new houses in Commerce.

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the City Council will discuss in January the option of using sales taxes to pay for a repair of the city pool or a new splash park, or neither project.  Commerce is a Type A sales tax city.  Type A sales taxes may be used for recreational projects, if the voters approve, the mayor says.

Commerce City Manager Marc Clayton says an inspector representing the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) visited the shelter and gave positive comments to Clayton, with a favorable formal report expected soon.  Following the recent controversy concerning the shelter, a complaint had been filed.  Mayor Dr. John Ballotti acknowledges that he made an error in not allowing citizens to speak concerning the shelter at the council's most recent meeting, and says if they appear at the next meeting, November 18, they'll be allowed to speak.

Northeast Texas Children's Museum

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the city has developed a localized page of information on the Ebola crisis.  And the mayor says the popular "Halloween on the Square" event will be on Halloween Night, Friday, October 31.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the contractor for the street improvement project is being fined $1,000 per day for not completing the project by the end of August.  The mayor says he expects all street improvements in the current phase of street repairs will be complete by the end of the year.

Northeast Texas Children's Museum

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says it appears that city of Commerce taxes will remain the same for 2014-15.  The mayor credits City Manager Marc Clayton for good fiscal management in avoiding a tax hike.  Dr. Ballotti also discusses what he considers a successful arrangement that allowed Commerce citizens to use the A&M-Commerce Morris Recreation Center and its swimming pool over the summer, and the status of the street repair program.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Texas A&M University-Commerce President Dr. Dan Jones supports the campaign of associate professor of counseling Dr. LaVelle Hendricks to "buy Commerce."  Dr. Hendricks is promoting the importance of A&M-Commerce faculty and staff, and employees of other Commerce organizations, patronizing Commerce businesses.  Oct. 7-11 will be "Shop Commerce" week.

Northeast Texas Children's Museum

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the City Council has decided a tax increase won't be necessary in fiscal year 2014-15, and city employees will see a pay increase.  The mayor says a committee has been formed to study installing fountains in downtown Commerce in the open area next to the new Dr Pepper mural.  Also, the mayor says the current Monroe Street paving project south of Live Oak Street should be complete in mid-September.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says ground breaking should take place soon on a new CVS Pharmacy on State Highway 24/50 near Whitley Hall, the Texas A&M University-Commerce high-rise dormitory.  Already underway near the same location is construction of the new Hunt Regional Healthcare emergency-care facility.

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88.9 KETR has learned through A&M-Commerce professor Dr. LaVelle Hendricks that former Commerce mayor, councilmember, and the first African American administrator at ETSU, Ivory Moore, Sr., has died at the age of 90.

According to Hendricks, a message was received this morning from Deacon Harry Turner at Mt. Moriah Baptist Church in Commerce. The news was confirmed with Moore's son Donnie Brooks, who is in Dallas with Linnie Wilson Moore, Ivory Moore's wife.

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