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Why We Can’t Wait: Rep. Thierry Urges Governor To Call A Special Session Addressing  Mass School Shootings

Austin, Texas — On Monday, May 21, 2018,  Representative Shawn Thierry (D-Houston) submitted a written appeal to Governor Abbott deeming the issue of gun violence a crisis worthy of calling the Texas legislature back to special session.With 22 national school shootings in 2018 and the Santa Fe High School shooting being the deadliest in Texas since the 1966 UT Tower Shooting, Rep. Thierry stated, “We cannot successfully protect our children, teachers, and families if we continue to operate in a ‘business as usual’ or ‘thoughts and prayers’ mentality.  As a woman of faith, I fervently pray against evil, however, I am also reminded that scripture teaches ‘faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead’. (James 2:17).”

Gov. Abbott recently announced his decision to convene roundtable discussions with diverse stakeholders to discuss more effective ways to protect students from school shootings. Representative Thierry also requested the opportunity to have a seat at the Governor’s roundtable discussions and stated that the legislature must act swiftly, putting politics aside in order to save lives.

As a member of the Texas legislature and a mother of a rising first grader, Representative Thierry has a unique standing and passion to work on legislation to solve the issue of gun violence in our schools.  She shared, “My constituents are fearful about the safety of their children, and I must take action to address their concerns.  In my role as a mom, when taking my daughter to school, I too, now live under the fear of whether my child is going to make it back home to me alive. ”

“This is a pivotal moment in time for the leadership in Texas to set an example for the nation.  We must demonstrate that our great state of Texas has the resolve and the will to provide the necessary resources to better ensure the safety of our children.  We also need action from our federal government, but in the meantime, we must show that Texas will lead the way,” remarked Rep. Thierry.

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Breaking News: Horror at Santa Fe High School

Houston Sun News Service

The 40-year-old neighboring town 30 miles South of Houston started the day with a tragic domestic terrorist attack allegedly by a 17-year old student at his Santa Fe High School of about 1,400 students. The high school serves a population of about 12,200 (US 2010 Census) residents in the rural town of Santa Fe, (Holy Faith in Spanish) in Galveston County.  Police sources have stated that a young man has been placed in custody and nine people are dead while others have been taken to the League City Hospital and the UT Medical Center in Galveston.

Students report that there was a shooting threat in February at the high school and that they were in lockdown mode for two hours. A freshman student reported that he heard two bombs and the gunshots and a weeping 10th graders speaking through tears said that her friend was shot in the leg.

Students were evacuated to the Alamo Gymnasium at 13360 off Highway TX 6.

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Ms. Ruth Campbell Stewart is dead

With great regret, the family of Ms. Ruth Campbell Stewart announces the passing.  She was born October 20, 1916, in Savannah, Georgia.  She was preceded in death by her parents,  and her brother. She is survived by her sister, Saramae Richardson, niece, Yvonne Richardson James, great-nieces Sara James and Paige James and nephew James Stewart, Jr.   She has cousins and many life-long friends.

Her family, former students, and friends will gather Saturday, April 21, 2018, to celebrate


 her life. While she was a member of Salem Lutheran Church, the Funeral service will be celebrated on Saturday, April 21, 2018, at 11:00 am in the sanctuary of Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church.  The eulogist will be the founding pastor emeritus, Dr. William A   Lawson. The viewing will be from 10:00 am, an hour before the funeral service which will begin promptly at 11:00 am. After the service, the motorcade will pass by the Stewart-Rollins Music Building, for a salute by the Ocean of Soul Marching Band, as well as other music students. The public is welcome to be part of the salute. The Interment will be at Houston Memorial Gardens Cemetery, 2426 Cullen, Pearland, TX 77581.

On March 1954, Ms. Stewart arrived to teach voice and become the director of the Women’s Glee Club at Texas State University for Negroes (later to become Texas Southern University). During her 29-year tenure at Texas Southern University, she co-produced several operas, including “Cavalleria Rusticana,” “Madama Butterfly,” “La Boheme,” “Amahl and the Night Visitors,” “The King and I,” “Requiem” (Verdi), and “Messiah” (Handel).

Ms. Stewart entered Columbia University the fall of 1943, studying voice with the late Dr. Robert Wilson. She also enrolled in applied piano sight singing, theory and the History of Music. In May 1949 she auditioned and won a pivotal role in the premiere production of “Troubled Island” by William Grant Hill, presented at City Opera, New York City.   In 1951 she was awarded the prestigious Fulbright Scholarship to study at St. Cecelia Conservatory Rome Italy with Maestro Maria Pediconi.

She was voted Regional Governor of the National Association of Teachers of Singing “NATS” including Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico, for two years.  After her first term, she was voted to continue to lead the organization by acclamation.  She also organized with the help of the late Clifford Smith, a Men’s Group – called “The Men of Houston, consisting of 28 men from all walks of life, with one goal in mind – to sing.  During a seven-year tenure, the group gave many concerts, performed on many programs and on television.

Ms. Stewart has many students who have had successful careers in teaching and performing. Among those who have achieved success are Faye Robinson, internationally acclaimed soprano; Gloria Harrison-Quinlan, soprano; the late Lionel Stubblefield, tenor, and April Sloan-Hubert, Houston’s premier soprano. Ruth Stewart retired on May 31, 1983. The modern facility, which now houses the Music Department, has been designated as the Rollins-Stewart Music Building in honor of her tenure. ,

Special thanks to McCoy & Harrison Funeral Home, 4918 MLK, Houston, TX 77021, 713.659.7618

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Businesses Must Report Taxable Property By April 2

Houston — If you own a business and have tangible personal property used to produce income such as office equipment or inventory, you must report that property to the Harris County Appraisal District (HCAD) by April 2.

The deadline to file a rendition is usually April 1, but because that date falls on a Sunday this year, the deadline is extended until Monday, April 2.

HCAD is reminding all business owners that they must report personal property to the appraisal district by filing a rendition listing the property.  Personal property is tangible property that can be owned, but it does not include land or other structures attached to the land such as buildings or fences.  Examples of personal property include computers, desks, chairs, office supplies, business inventory, machinery and vehicles used to produce income, along with other items used in the business.

A rendition is a report that lists all the taxable property the business owner owned or controlled on January 1 of this year.  Owners do not have to render exempt property, such as church property with an approved religious exemption or an agriculture producer’s equipment used for farming.

Some renditions may be filed electronically using HCAD’s iFileTM system.  If a unique iFileTMnumber is printed on the rendition form below the account number, the owner may render online by going to and clicking “iFile A Rendition.”    If no iFileTM number is printed on the rendition form, the owner will need to complete and file the form manually.

“The appraisal district may use the information submitted in the rendition to set business property values,” said Roland Altinger, chief appraiser.

If a rendition is not filed, filed late or not complete, a 10 percent penalty may be imposed.  Filing a fraudulent rendition carries a 50 percent penalty if found guilty.

Property owners who need more time to file their renditions may file a written request with the chief appraiser on or before April 2 to receive an automatic extension to May 1.  The chief appraiser may also grant an additional 15 days after the postponed deadline, for good cause.

The appraisal district has already mailed personal property rendition forms to businesses known to have been operating in Harris County during 2017.   However, all business owners are required to file renditions whether or not they have received notification.   A rendition form is available on the appraisal district’s website at under the “Forms” tab along with information on the rules of the process.

For more information about rendering property, deadline extensions, penalties and rendition forms, taxpayers may call the appraisal district’s Information Center at 713.957.7800.

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Breaking News: Demontrae Jefferson lights up NC Central in NCAA First Four, Makes Texas Southern University History

Texas Southern University takes the first game in 2018 NCAA Tournament, making history for the 90-year-old Historically Black University.

Texas Southern University beats NC Central, 64-46

Demontrae Jefferson from Milwaukee put on a show in Texas Southern’s First Four win over NC Central. The Sophomore and SWAC MVP recorded a game-high 25 points to go along with 8 rebounds. He has put up 1,000 points in his young career shooting 8-18 to lead TSU to history for the school first win in an NCAA Tournament after eight attempts.

Their next stop comes against an East Region top seed Xavier in Nashville on Friday night.

The Tigers got off to a slow start in the First Four bracket against the North Carolina Central Eagles making only two of their first nine shots. There star Jefferson hit a jumper and the Tigers seems to have gotten their footing and hit 8-13 baskets. Jefferson had 17 points at halftime and TSU was ahead 36-26.

The Eagles made a push early in the second half to no avail. The Tigers thwarted all attempts after an 11-2 run, NC Eagle, Pablo Rivas’ ended the drought but Tiger Donte Clark quickly answered.

Clark ended the night with 18 points for the Tigers on seven free throws and just 4-14 from the field. Trayvon Reed helped the Tigers to victory by blocking six shots and scoring 10 points off the bench.

Coach Mike Davis coached the Tigers to historic victory after an early season of playing top national teams throughout the country. The Tigers are now 16-19 as they head to Nashville for Friday’s game against Xavier.