KETR

City of Commerce

West Nile Virus can be spread to humans by infected mosquitoes.
NPR

The City of Commerce along with the assistance of Texas A&M University-Commerce recently tested mosquitoes for various diseases by collecting and sending samples to the Department of State Health Services for analysis.  On July 28th, 2017 Emergency Management Officials were notified of a positive test for the West Nile Virus. The location of the positive test was near the City Park on Pecan Street.

City Manager Darrek Ferrell, attorney Julia Gannaway and Mayor Wyman Williams presented to attendees at the June 26 meeting.
Mark Haslett

City of Commerce Chief of Police Kerry Crews will resign and accept an administrative job with the City of Commerce, city officials announced Monday evening.

Carmen Ponder was arrested on May 20 in the parking lot of the Commerce Wal-Mart.
still image from video provided by City of Commerce

The City of Commerce plans to hold a public meeting tonight in order to share the findings of an internal investigation of the role of Chief of Police Kerry Crews in the arrest of a Texas A&M University-Commerce student. The meeting has been scheduled for 5:30 p.m., and is scheduled to include a public presentation, followed by a private session to discuss the city’s plans for Crews. The meeting has been scheduled to happen at the First Baptist Church, located at 1401 Washington St.

Negotiations continue between the city's attorneys and Chief Crews' legal representation, City Manager Darrek Ferrell said.
Mark Haslett

Commerce Chief of Police Kerry Crews remains on administrative leave, although City Manager Darrek Ferrell has said that Crews' employment status should be resolved soon. Crews has been on leave since the aftermath of a highly publicized incident on May 20 in which he was involved in the arrest of a Texas A&M University-Commerce student.

Dr. Ray Keck, interim president of Texas A&M University-Commerce
TAMUC Photo

Texas A&M University-Commerce interim president Dr. Ray Keck, III, is working alongside City of Commerce mayor Wyman Williams in order to create an environment that encourages University employees to not only work in Commerce but to choose to live there, too.

The idea of a "University village" is explored by Williams and Keck alongside Jerrod Knight during the September airing of The President's Perspective, a monthly half-hour radio conversation with Keck.

Hear the full program here. A transcript follows.

Wyman Williams
Mark Haslett

The City of Commerce is set to get a new mayor next week. Wyman Williams won the mayoral election last Saturday, and he’s scheduled to be sworn in before the city council begins its regular meeting next Tuesday evening.

Mosquito
James Gathany/CDC / Public Domain

 The City of Commerce along with assistance from Texas A&M University-Commerce has been testing mosquitoes for various diseases by trapping them and sending them to the Department of State Health Services.  On August 12, 2015, emergency management officials released information notifying citizens that a positive test was received for the West Nile virus. Although the areas that tested positive on August 12 are now testing negative, the City has received two additional tests that have come back with a positive reading for West Nile virus. 

Mount Moriah Baptist Church
Mount Moriah Baptist Church

Commerce's Norris Community will hold a reunion Friday and Saturday, July 24-25.  Ivory Moore park is the location for the Norris Community Reunion. This is an event sponsored by Alliance Bank, the Commerce Community Action Program, the City of Commerce-Tourism & Events, Mt. Moriah Baptist Church and Texas A&M University-Commerce. The day starts at noon with Fun in the Park for families & kids. At 6 p.m., Alliance Bank will grill hamburgers and hot dogs.

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.

Marketing Communications

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.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Texas A&M University-Commerce associate professor of counseling and Commerce school board member Dr. LaVelle Hendricks discusses a campaign involving the University, the city of Commerce, and the Commerce ISD to encourage University faculty, staff, students and others to shop in Commerce, October 5-11.

Dr. John Ballotti
TAMUC-Photo

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is considering what is needed to prevent the South Sulphur River from causing floods in southeast Commerce.  The mayor says a new restaurant will open soon in the former Mi Casita location.  And he says, despite delays, the current street construction project is on target to be completed on schedule.

Texas A&M University-Commerce / TAMUC-Photo

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the Farmers Market on Bonham Alley returns Saturday morning, May 24.  Also, murals will be painted on some of the blank walls in downtown Commerce this summer, and the city has received a grant to demolish and rebuild two local homes.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti says the city has received a grant to make repairs to the runway at the Commerce Municipal Airport north of town, and has hopes of extending the airline in the near future so that jets could land there.  And the city and A&M-Commerce will cooperate so that Commerce citizens can swim at the Morris Recreation Center pool this summer.  Also, the mayor says Phase 2 of the street improvement project is on schedule.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Commerce Mayor John Ballotti says, even though the emergency pick up period for limbs from last December's ice storm is over, the remaining limbs are being picked up as part of the city's regular series of curbside refuse pickups.  And the mayor says he's appointed a committee to bring back the Farmers' Market on Bonham Alley in downtown Commerce.

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Commerce Mayor Dr. John Ballotti reports that progress is being made on starting the feasibility study for a U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded regional hospital in Commerce, and on the Tipitina's music facility that would be located in the old A.L. Day Elementary School building.

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