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Orange County Outlines Debris Removal Guidelines

in Government/Weather

Orange County Emergency Management and Orange County Road and Bridge are coordinating debris pickup for those areas in Orange County impacted by the tornado activity. This debris pickup will only be in the affected areas of the county.

Vegetative/green waste piles (tree limbs, branches, and cutting) will picked up.  There will not be a pickup for construction, demolition materials, or white goods. If there are construction and/or demolition materials with vegetative/green waste piles, the pile will not be picked up.

The vegetative/green waste should be cut into 10 feet or fewer pieces. Place the debris to the side of the road in a manner that is not blocking the roadway in any way. The debris should be accessible for pickup with a grappling truck.

The Road and Bridge Department employees are only allowed to get what they can reach from the road with their equipment. They are not allowed to go on private property. It is recommended that homeowners take pictures of debris that is placed curbside for pickup to ensure proper documentation.

It is further recommended each homeowner verify with their insurance carrier any other additional documentation requirement they may have.

The Orange County Citizen Collection Station, 11265 FM 1442 in Orange, is open to receive demolition/construction debris from homeowners. The fees will be waived for these residents. The hours of operation are Saturdays and Sundays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. These extended hours will last for two weeks.

Building permits are required for rebuilding from tornado damage and can be obtained at the Environmental Health and Code Compliance Department in the Expo Center at 11475 FM 1442 in Orange. The permit fees will be waived for homeowners only. If the damaged structure is located in a special flood hazard area, an elevation certificate is required.

Orange County Disaster Rebuild Offering Storm Reporting Assistance

in Government/Weather

With damage assessments ongoing, impacted families are encouraged to report damages sustained to homes and businesses during this last week’s tornado event using the Individual State of Texas Assessment Tool (iSTAT) damage survey.

The iSTAT damage survey can be filled out online at damage.tdem.texas.gov.

If you are having trouble entering your information, Orange County Disaster Rebuild will be offering in-person assistance to help families enter their damaged information into iSTAT starting Monday, January 30, 2023, located at the Orange County Convention & Expo Center;11475 FM 1442; Orange, Texas 77630 from 8 am to 5 pm.

The information provided by you will aid emergency management officials in gaining an understanding of damages that have occurred and helps officials determine if the state meets federal requirements for various forms of disaster assistance, as well as identify any immediate resource needs.

Candidate Packets Available for City of Vidor Elections

in Government

Candidate Packets are now available for the May 6, 2023, City of Vidor General Election. Packets contain an Application for a Place on the Ballot, Texas Ethics Commission’s Form CTA – Appointment of a Campaign Treasurer by a Candidate, as well as other candidate forms and instructions.

Note: The Application for a Place on the Ballot must be signed in the presence of a Notary.

Terms expiring this year are Mayor and Wards 1, 4, and 6. Filings for candidates will be accepted in the City Secretary’s office from January 18, 2023, through February 17, 2023, at 5 p.m. during regular office hours, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

* Filing requirements are per state statute, available on the Texas Secretary of State website, and those of the City of Vidor City Charter, Article III on the City of Vidor Code of Ordinances. Please visit www.cityofvidor.com for more information.

Texas Homeowner Assistance Fund Still Has Funds Available to Help Texas Homeowners

in Government

Texas still has millions of dollars in funding available from the federal government for homeowners who may have struggled financially in the past few years.

Through the Texas Homeowner Assistance Fund Program, which launched in March 2022, more than $600 million was available to help Texas families cover utility and mortgage payments.

So far, nearly $300 million in assistance has been paid out to just over 27,000 households, and there are still millions left for anyone who qualifies.

“Through the Texas Homeowner Assistance Program, we are helping keep families in their homes, the lights on, and the water running,” Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement. “I encourage Texans who qualify for assistance to apply for this program to receive help with past due and future utility payments.”

Each household can receive up to $65,000 in total assistance provided in the form of a grant. To be eligible, homeowners must meet the following criteria:

  • Experienced a qualified financial hardship due to the pandemic after January 21, 2020, such as lost income or increased expenses
  • Are behind on one or more payments: mortgage loans, property taxes, property insurance, homeowner/condo association fees, and/or utility bills
  • Have a household income at or below 100% Area Median Income (AMI) or 100% of the median income for the United States, whichever is greater
  • Own and occupy a home in Texas as a primary residence

Texans who own a home, condo, duplex, or manufactured home are all eligible. Assistance is available for both past and future mortgage payments, as well as past and future utility bills, including electricity, natural gas, propane, water, and wastewater services.

Anyone unsure if they meet the income criteria, which differ from county to county, can press the “Do I Qualify” button on the Texas Homeowner Assistance website for help finding out. People who want to apply can also do so on the same website.

For additional information or guidance, people can call the Texas Homeowner Assistance Fund toll-free call center at 833-651-3874 between Monday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Help is available in multiple languages.

City of Orange Hires Gravett as Assistant Economic Development Director

in Government
Pictured L to R: Mayor Larry Spears Jr., Hillary Gravett, and Divon Williams

The City of Orange has hired Hillary Gravett as the newly appointed Assistant Economic Development Director.

Gravett first came to the City of Orange in April of 2016 as the city’s Social Media Coordinator. In that time, Gravett has assisted in event planning with the Convention & Visitors Bureau and has worked closely with each city department to create a presence through social media and other digital avenues. In addition to her experience with the City of Orange, she also holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from Lamar University.

Pictured L to R: Mayor Larry Spears Jr., Hillary Gravett, and Divon Williams

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