New 10-digit dialing procedures for 254 area code begin Oct. 24

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 Older medical, security devices may need updating… Those with phone numbers in the 254 area code should get in the habit of dialing 10 digits (area code + telephone number) for all local calls due to a change that takes effect this month. In July of last year, the … Continue reading New 10-digit dialing procedures for 254 area code begin Oct. 24

Aquilla homecoming royalty crowned

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 Aquilla crowned 2021 Homecoming Queen Bailee Sheddan in a halftime ceremony during the Friday night, October 8, homecoming football game. This year's king was Levi Ihlenfeldt, and also recognized were First Princess Kyndall Huffhines and Second Princess Brynn Rains. dfgdfgd dfgdfgg dfgdfgdfg dsfgdfgdg sdfgdfgdfg dfgdfgdg Don't want to miss … Continue reading Aquilla homecoming royalty crowned

HCSO deputy shoots armed man at Hill County business

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 The Hill County Sheriff’s Office released information over the weekend regarding a shooting involving a deputy that occurred Saturday, October 9. According to reports, the sheriff's office received a 9-1-1 call at approximately 1:19 a.m. Saturday regarding a man who appeared to be passed out in the driver's seat … Continue reading HCSO deputy shoots armed man at Hill County business

George G. & Alva Hudson Smith Foundation awards 2021 grants

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 The George G. and Alva Hudson Smith Foundation has announced its grant awards for 2021. The foundation is committing $126,800 to eight organizations across Hill County. In the 27 years of its existence, the foundation has awarded over $2,300,000 to area organizations. This year’s grants were awarded to a … Continue reading George G. & Alva Hudson Smith Foundation awards 2021 grants

Hill County Grand Jury returns October list of indictments

October 13, 2021 The following cases were presented to a Hill County Grand Jury by District Attorney Mark Pratt Friday, October 1, with indictments returned: Dillon Wayne Christian, 36, of Itasca, assault family or household member with previous conviction Mark Lee Courtney, 44, of Cleburne, burglary of a building Jordan Anthony Dilworth, 28, of Whitney, … Continue reading Hill County Grand Jury returns October list of indictments

Sales tax numbers continueto show strong local economy

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 October sales tax allocations for both Whitney and Hill County remain above last year's numbers, according to monthly data released by State Comptroller Glenn Hegar last week. Whitney’s October payment came to $61,367.69, up seven percent compared to last October. Looking back at pre-pandemic figures in October 2019, Whitney’s … Continue reading Sales tax numbers continueto show strong local economy

County’s free clinic to be open Saturday

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 Mission Hillsboro Medical Clinic (MHMC) will see patients Saturday, October 16, during a half-day clinic. Sign-in begins at 6 a.m. To be seen inside the clinic by a doctor and for lab draws, patients must show a COVID vaccination card at the time of sign-in. Phone calls will be … Continue reading County’s free clinic to be open Saturday

Marker to be dedicated at area cemetary

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 The Texas Historical Commission (THC) has recognized the Covington Cemetery as a significant part of Texas history by awarding it an Official Texas Historical Marker. The designation honors the Covington Cemetery as an important and educational part of local history. A dedication ceremony to commemorate the event will be … Continue reading Marker to be dedicated at area cemetary

Hill County Retired Teachers meeet

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 Lynn Brown, a retiree from Hewitt, is shown choosing a gift from the door prize basket at the September 28 meeting of Hill County Retired Teachers. Brown was one of four new members to be at the first meeting held since March 2020 when TRTA shut down in-person meetings. … Continue reading Hill County Retired Teachers meeet

COVID numbers still trending down locally

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 13, 2021 Numbers received at the county level Friday, October 8, show that new cases of COVID-19 continue to be on a downward trend in Hill County. Two-week data shows that between September 23 and October 7, there were 77 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Hill County. Two-week data released … Continue reading COVID numbers still trending down locally

Whitney Celebrates 46th Annual Pioneer Days

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 6, 2021 The Lake Whitney Chamber of Commerce's annual Pioneer Days festival was well attended this year as members of the community and visitors filled the streets of downtown Whitney. With carnival rides, food, vendors, music, dancing and the annual parade, there was fun for everyone. The Lake Whitney Chamber of … Continue reading Whitney Celebrates 46th Annual Pioneer Days

Hill County approves tax abatement for solar farm

Editor: Shannon Cottongame October 6, 2021 The Hill County Commissioners Court heard comments from the public before approving a tax abatement agreement for a solar farm Tuesday, September 28. Hill Solar I, a project of Core Solar of Austin, requested a tax abatement on its planned solar energy project in Hill County. Commissioners previously approved … Continue reading Hill County approves tax abatement for solar farm

Missing child recovered after crash kills reported abductor

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 29, 2021 A missing eight-year-old girl was found and hospitalized over the weekend after a crash that killed her abductor and the driver of a second vehicle. The investigation began when the Bosque County Sheriff's Office (BCSO) responded to a residence in Walnut Springs at 10:45 a.m. Saturday, September 24, after … Continue reading Missing child recovered after crash kills reported abductor

COVID-19 numbers trending down, new fatalities reported

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 29, 2021 Data received at the county level Friday, September 24, showed that 142 new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Hill County over the previous two weeks. That number is down from the 176 cases that were reported in the two-week data released the previous Friday. Over the past month, … Continue reading COVID-19 numbers trending down, new fatalities reported

Council adopts budget, tax rate for FY 2021-22

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 29, 2021 The Whitney City Council approved the city budget and tax rate in a meeting held Monday, September 20. The council adopted a tax rate of $0.638400 per $100 valuation, which is the same as the 2020 rate but above the no-new-revenue rate, which would raise the same amount of … Continue reading Council adopts budget, tax rate for FY 2021-22

Updated information released about vaccines at Hill Regional

Submitted by Tricia Shelton, Hill Regional Hospital September 29, 2021 This news release about COVID-19 vaccinations contains the latest information from the FDA and CDC at this time, as of September 24. “At this time” is the caveat for this article.The following is information for those who received the Pfizer-BioNTech (Pfizer) vaccine series and wish … Continue reading Updated information released about vaccines at Hill Regional

Free clinic to offer flu shots in October

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 29, 2021 Flu shots will be available October 4 and October 16, according to Mission Hillsboro Medical Clinic (MHMC) officials. Weather permitting, the flu shots will be available beginning at 8 a.m. outside the clinic facility due to the current COVID-19 situation in Hill County. Mission Hillsboro Medical Clinic will not … Continue reading Free clinic to offer flu shots in October

Plans already underway for LWMA’s 2021 Joint Committee For Christmas programs

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 29, 2021 Lake Whitney Ministerial Alliance’s Joint Committee for Christmas will distribute Angel Tree gifts from a new location this year. Committee members pictured in front of the Lake Whitney Senior Center, where the distribution will take place, are (l to r): Beth Wolsey, Kim Montgomery, Bonnie Jaskie, Linda Jones, Lisa … Continue reading Plans already underway for LWMA’s 2021 Joint Committee For Christmas programs

Hill County ESDs adopt tax rates

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 29, 2021 In special meetings held last week, the Emergency Services District (ESD) 1 and 2 boards of commissioners approved 2021 tax rates that are lower than the districts’ 2020 rates. A rate of $0.028800 per $100 valuation was adopted by ESD 1, which is down from last year’s tax rate … Continue reading Hill County ESDs adopt tax rates

Hill County resident expresses concerns about biosolids

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 22, 2021 The Hill County Commissioners Court heard concerns from a citizen about the use of biosolids on area farms, made appointments to local boards and considered other agenda items during a regular session held Tuesday, September 14. In open forum, Barbara Jenkins, who lives between Peoria and Vaughan, spoke to … Continue reading Hill County resident expresses concerns about biosolids

Lakeview VFD fills a vital role in its fleet with addition of 2021 tender

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 22, 2021 Lakeview Volunteer Fire Department recently updated its fleet with the help of a $200,000 grant from the Texas A&M Forest Service. Pictured are (l to r): Assistant Fire Chief Chris Jackson, firefighters Lisa Silas and Waymond Weaver and Fire Chief Bob Wilkins. Lakeview Volunteer Fire Department received the first … Continue reading Lakeview VFD fills a vital role in its fleet with addition of 2021 tender

Single-vehicle crash claims the life of Whitney resident

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 22, 2021 A Whitney woman died in a single-vehicle crash in Whitney Thursday, September 17. Whitney police, fire and emergency medical services were dispatched to the intersection of State Highway 22 and Farm Road 933 at approximately 3:20 p.m. after a report of a vehicle striking a signal pole. According to … Continue reading Single-vehicle crash claims the life of Whitney resident

Hill County Retired Teachers plan first meeting of 2021-22 year

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 22, 2021 HCRTA officers are (l to r): Front row - Linda Yeary, Treasurer/Technology Contact; Linda DeWitt, 1st Vice-President; and Sammye McPherson, Hospitality Chairperson. Back row - Kay Brown, President; Monte Geren, Immediate Past President; and Sandra Pepper, Secretary. Last year, the Hill County Retired Teachers Association (HCRTA) was instructed by … Continue reading Hill County Retired Teachers plan first meeting of 2021-22 year

Hill County Grand Jury returns September indictments

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 22, 2021 A Hill County Grand Jury that convened Friday, September 10, returned the following indictments: Fred Adams, 25, of Forney, bail jump and failure to appear Jamyua Monet Baysinger, 22, of Lancaster, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle; evading arrest/detention with a vehicle Levi Benjamin Bentsen, 34, of Whitney, violation … Continue reading Hill County Grand Jury returns September indictments

Free COVID-19 testing center returns to Hill County this week

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 15, 2021 A free COVID-19 testing center is once again operating in Hillsboro this week as the latest surge in cases has caused long lines at some testing facilities. "We have been looking for additional COVID-19 testing resources for Hill County for some time," said Hill County Judge Justin Lewis Saturday, … Continue reading Free COVID-19 testing center returns to Hill County this week

Hill County budget, tax rate adopted for Fiscal Year 21-22

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 15, 2021 The Hill County Commissioners Court met in a special session Tuesday, September 7, and adopted the county’s budget and tax rate for Fiscal Year 2021-22. Adoption of the budget and tax rate wrapped up a series of budget hearings and workshops, a review of budget requests from county officials … Continue reading Hill County budget, tax rate adopted for Fiscal Year 21-22

Local officials sign Constitution Week proclamations

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 15, 2021 Constitution Week is one of the events that the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) is proud to promote and celebrate. Chapters all across the United States are busy collecting proclamations from local governmental officials that urge all citizens to study the U.S. Constitution and reflect on … Continue reading Local officials sign Constitution Week proclamations

August TDCJ sentences handed down in 66th District Court

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 15, 2021 The office of District Attorney Mark Pratt prosecuted felony criminal cases in the 66th Judicial District Court of Hill County, presided over by District Judge Lee Harris, in August. The following Texas Department of Criminal Justice sentences were handed down: Jesus Mancera, assault impeding breath or circulation, family member … Continue reading August TDCJ sentences handed down in 66th District Court

Hillsboro’s Autumn Fest rescheduled

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 15, 2021 Hillsboro Main Street announced last week that the AutumnFest event scheduled for this month has been postponed due to the pandemic. “Due to the recent spike in COVID-19 cases and the emergency situation in Hill County with no hospital beds available, the City of Hillsboro has visited with local … Continue reading Hillsboro’s Autumn Fest rescheduled

MHMC closed to in-person services Saturday

Submitted by Mission Hillsboro Medical Clinic Due to the increase in COVID-19 cases in Hill County, Mission Hillsboro Medical Clinic will not be open for face-to-face patient care Saturday, September 18. Patients are asked to call 254-479-1489 for questions and/or refills. Callers should leave their name, date of birth, phone number and a short message. … Continue reading MHMC closed to in-person services Saturday

Covington’s mayor charged with violation

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 8, 2021 The Hill County Sheriff’s Office arrested the mayor of Covington Wednesday, September 1, after an investigation into an alleged open meetings act violation. George L. Burnett, 72, of Covington was charged with a violation of the Texas Open Meetings act, which is a Class B misdemeanor. According to Hill … Continue reading Covington’s mayor charged with violation

New housing planned in Whitney, businesses also on the increase

Reporter: Ellie Mahan September 1, 2021 The Whitney population is growing, along with the number of housing and business developments underway. There are currently three active housing developments in Whitney, and the number of certificates of occupancy for new businesses has increased by roughly 15% this year, according to Chris Bentley, city administrator and chief … Continue reading New housing planned in Whitney, businesses also on the increase

Hill County commissioners discuss COVID-19, budget

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 1, 2021 The Hill County Commissioners Court met in a regular session Tuesday, August 24, and continued discussing the latest COVID-19 surge, the county budget for the coming fiscal year and other regular business. In his comments to the court, County Judge Justin Lewis reiterated the seriousness of the current situation … Continue reading Hill County commissioners discuss COVID-19, budget

Bosque County Grand Jury returns August indictments

Editor Shannon Cottongame September 1, 2021 A Bosque County Grand Jury that convened Friday, August 20, returned the following indictments: Robby Don Johnson, 51, of Cleburne, manslaughter; aggravated assault with a deadly weapon (two counts) Jamie Charles Cook, 40, of Clifton, engaging in organized criminal activity Mario Garcia, 41, of Clifton, engaging in organized criminal … Continue reading Bosque County Grand Jury returns August indictments

Hill College Performing Arts Series to return with Irish Folk on September 16

Editor: Shannon Cottongame September 1, 2021 The Hill College Visual and Performing Arts Department has announced that performances for the Phillip H. Lowe Performing Arts Series are returning in person this year. Dr. Brad Bolick, Hill College Coordinator of Visual and Performing Arts, said that it is exciting to host in-person performances again and he … Continue reading Hill College Performing Arts Series to return with Irish Folk on September 16

Area officials warn that hospital transfers are becoming difficult

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 25, 2021 The latest surge of COVID-19 cases is straining the resources of medical facilities throughout the area and the state. Hill County Judge Justin Lewis said Friday, August 20, that he had been informed that with elective surgeries canceled, Hill Regional Hospital's pre-op area was being used to care for … Continue reading Area officials warn that hospital transfers are becoming difficult

DPS urges drivers to be cautious this school year

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 25, 2021 With the school year underway for many districts across the state, the Texas Department of Public Safety is reminding the public of steps they can take to keep students and staff members safe. This includes slowing down in school zones, staying off cell phones and being aware at all … Continue reading DPS urges drivers to be cautious this school year

BARK now registering for first annual LW fishing tournament

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 25, 2021 Bosque County Animal Rescue Kennels has announced plans for its first annual bass fishing tournament at Lake Whitney Saturday, September 11. The tournament will take place at Lofers Bend Park near the Whitney Dam. All proceeds benefit Bosque Animal Rescue Kennels, with a combined $20,000 in cash prizes for … Continue reading BARK now registering for first annual LW fishing tournament

FEMA funeral assistance still available

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 25, 2021 The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continues to offer assistance to families with COVID-19 related funeral expenses during the pandemic. Apply for FEMA Funeral Assistance by calling 844-684-6333 or TTY 800-462-7585. Phone lines are open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Central Time, Monday through Friday with multilingual services available. … Continue reading FEMA funeral assistance still available

Commissioners hold hearings, propose tax rate and budget

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 18, 2021 The Hill County Commissioners Court held a series of meetings last week leading up to the annual process of adopting a budget and tax rate. Elected officials and department heads visited with commissioners throughout the hearings to present requests, most of which involved only minor adjustments to their individual … Continue reading Commissioners hold hearings, propose tax rate and budget

Hubbard man indicted on murder charge

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 18, 2021 A Hubbard man who was arrested in June after a Maypearl man was found dead along a Hill County roadway was indicted on a capital murder charge by a Hill County Grand Jury recently. Ricardo Ramos, 48, was taken into custody after the body of 26-year-old Sabastian Sullivan was … Continue reading Hubbard man indicted on murder charge

Hill Regional announces restrictions on visitation

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 18, 2021 Hill Regional Hospital announced Friday, August 13, that it is restricting visitation at the hospital due to the current high COVID-19 infection rates in the county. Effective immediately, Hill Regional Hospital will no longer allow visitors in the Emergency Department, Surgery or the Medical/Surgical Department without prior approval from … Continue reading Hill Regional announces restrictions on visitation

Your local library: More than a place to check out books

Reporter: Ellie Mahan August 18, 2021 Denise Carter, who has been the director of Lake Whitney Public Library for 15 years and a librarian for 44 years, has a passion for helping people and sharing her love for books with others. She said The Wonkey Donkey is one of her favorite books because, “It’s one … Continue reading Your local library: More than a place to check out books

Local sales tax allocations up over last August

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 18, 2021 Local sales tax allocations remained strong when Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar released monthly sales tax data last week. Whitney's August allocation came to $80,194.44, up nine percent from last August. From January through August 2021, the city's allocations are up over 10 percent for a total of $511,934.32. Hillsboro's … Continue reading Local sales tax allocations up over last August

Meals On Wheels volunteer teaches children to give back

Reporter: Ellie Mahan August 18, 2021 Rebecca Church and her three daughters pictured above: Mattelyn, age 8, Micah, age 6, and McKenna, age 10 have been delivering with Meals On Wheels for more than five years. Founded in 1967, Meals on Wheels Waco is a nonprofit agency that works to nurture the bodies and spirits … Continue reading Meals On Wheels volunteer teaches children to give back

Registration open for fall at Hill College

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 18, 2021 Registration is open for the fall 2021 semester, and Hill College is ready to welcome students to campus. The college will operate at full capacity, which means students can benefit from a full college experience. Full-term classes begin Monday, August 23, and run for 16 weeks until December 9. … Continue reading Registration open for fall at Hill College

“Battle of the Bench” activities set for this Saturday downtown

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 11, 2021 Anne Chastain, who now operates Juniper Cove Winery at the location of the original Battle of the Benches, has refurbished the bench at the corner of Brazos Street and Washington Avenue in downtown Whitney. Residents of Whitney are invited to attend the "Battle of the Bench" event set for … Continue reading “Battle of the Bench” activities set for this Saturday downtown

COVID-19 cases rising, local vaccination rates up slightly

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 11, 2021 The number of reported COVID-19 cases continues to climb in Hill County and the state as the delta variant fuels a spike in new cases. While there was little change in the area's vaccination rates over the summer, the latest wave of cases seems to be leading to a … Continue reading COVID-19 cases rising, local vaccination rates up slightly

Church reopens after last year’s fire

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 11, 2021 One year after a fire destroyed Woodrow Baptist Church near Covington, the congregation is once again worshiping on site after rebuilding the church. Services had been held at First Baptist Church activity center in Blum since the fire in July of last year. The first service in the new … Continue reading Church reopens after last year’s fire

Salvation Army offers energy bill assistance

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 11, 2021 The Hill County Salvation Army is notifying the public that it can now help some residents with their TXU Energy bills. Most people who are eligible to receive benefits may be granted up to $300 annually to assist with TXU Energy bills. For more information, contact the Hill County … Continue reading Salvation Army offers energy bill assistance

County requests return of COVID-19 testing site with new cases rising

Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 4, 2021 Hill County Judge Justin Lewis reported last week that he has requested that the state once again provide funding for COVID-19 testing as the numbers continue to rise. “Currently, there is not a place in Hill County to get tested without a doctor’s order. We anticipate doing the testing … Continue reading County requests return of COVID-19 testing site with new cases rising

Pratt honored by area cattle raisers Assn.

Hill County District Attorney Mark Pratt (right) was recognized as the Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association’s prosecutor of the year at the recent Cattle Raisers Convention & Expo. The association selected Pratt for his efforts in prosecuting livestock and agricultural crimes. Editor: Shannon Cottongame August 4, 2021 The Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association … Continue reading Pratt honored by area cattle raisers Assn.

Hill Regional Hospital Celebrates one-year anniversary

Hill Regional Hospital Employees Gather To Celebrate One Year Under New Ownership Submitted by Hill Regional Hospital August 4, 2021 Raji Kumar, CEO of Hill Regional Hospital, saw the importance of having a community hospital for Hill County and the vital role it plays in the health and welfare for people living in the area. … Continue reading Hill Regional Hospital Celebrates one-year anniversary