On behalf of the Texas City-La Marque Community Advisory Council, I would like to thank our community, who, in partnership with businesses, educators, and industry, helped make 2017 another successful year.

Just consider that 26 years ago, in 1992, the Community Advisory Panel began as an entity driven by local industry, focusing on health, safety and environmental issues. Then, 14 years ago in 2004, the panel was restructured as the advisory council using an “industry-sponsored, community-driven forum” model rather than the “industry-led membership-based forum.”

The council’s mission is based in the belief that together we can and should live in harmony while working to continuously improve our quality of life. Our objectives are twofold, to:

1. Advise and afford industry and citizens the opportunity to exchange viewpoints, express concerns and strive to develop an ongoing sense of mutual respect and trust; and,

2. Address issues of mutual interest such as health, safety, the environment, education and economic development.

In 2017, we thank our speakers, often traveling from afar, to present these interesting programs:

January: “Small Businesses & Economic Development” by Doug Baumann, director, Galveston County Small Business Development Center and Carolann Peters, Senior Business Advisor, GCSBDC.

March: “Texas City Community Emergency Notification System Update” by Tom Muñoz, emergency manager, city of Texas City and “Texas City’s Levee System Update” by Michael Shannon, P.E., county engineer, Galveston County.

May: “Port of Texas City: An Update” by Jason L. Hayley, director of operations rail and waterfront and “Hurricane Preparedness Update” by Tom Muñoz.

July: “Galveston County Economic Development: Unparalleled Opportunities” by C.B. “Bix” Rathburn, Ph.D., director of economic development for Galveston County.

September: “ITC Program Introduction & Background” by Richard Chapa, director of career and technology education and tour of the Industrial Trades Center.

November: “Floating Roof Tanks 101 by Darrell Massey, EPP, L.P. Texas City site supervisor, “HSE 101” by Samantha Scruggs, HSSE manager, BP Texas City Chemicals and a brief “Local Air Quality Update” by yours truly.

We also owe a debt of gratitude to:

• Our generous meal hosts; Sea Lion Technology, Marathon TRD, NuStar Energy, Valero Refining, Ashland and Enterprise Products; and,

• Valero Refining, the city of Texas City and the Nessler Center staff for providing the meeting documents, equipment and meeting room; and, Cathy Gillentine for assiduously summarizing our programs in the local newspaper.

Council meetings are open to the community with dinner generously provided by our local industries; as such, we request attendance notification. During 2017, we have had outstanding participation with 70 to 80 folks attending each one of our meetings.

In 2018, meetings will again be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Jan. 25, 2018, March 15, 2018, May 17, 2018, July 19, 2018, Sept. 20, 2018, and Nov. 15, 2018, in the Captain’s Room at the Nessler Center, 2010 Fifth Ave. N., in Texas City. Notices will be posted in local newspapers and sent by email, as well.

This is your Community Advisory Council. Help us make 2018 another successful year.

Merry Christmas and have a healthy, peaceful and prosperous new year in 2018.

Jose Boix is the coordinator for the Texas City-La Marque Community Advisory Council.

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