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2019-2020 Hotel Occupancy Tax Fund Open for Applications

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2019-2020 Hotel Occupancy Tax Fund Open for Applications

The Orange County Hotel/Motel Tax Committee has released applications for non-profit entities within Orange County to apply for a portion of the county’s hotel/motel tax funds. Any 501(C) organization in Orange County that attracts visitors to Orange County Texas can make an application to the committee. There are a number of restrictions by state law as to how the funds can be utilized. Funds must be used in a manner that encourages overnight visitors to Orange County, AND expenditures must fall within one of the following categories.

  • Convention Centers and Visitor Information Centers
  • Registration of Convention Delegates
  • Advertising, Solicitations and Promotions that Directly Promote Tourism and the Hotel and Convention Industry
  • Promotions of the Arts that Directly Promote Tourism and the Hotel and Convention Industry
  • Historical Restoration and Preservation Activities that Directly Promote Tourism and the Hotel and Convention Industry
  • Sporting Event Expenses that Substantially Increase Economic Activity at Hotels
  • Certain Portions of Sporting Facilities
  • Shuttle Services for Convention Activities

The application and guidelines are available on the Orange County Economic Development Corporation’s website. Applications will be accepted through September 9, 2019, at 5:00 pm. Applied funds must be for activities occurring October 1, 2019, through September 30, 2020.

The Hotel/Motel Tax Committee will review the applications and hold a public hearing in October. An open meetings notification will be published. Those submitting applications will be notified directly. The committee will make recommendations to the Orange County Commissioner’s Court for the expenditure of the funds, which will be disbursed through a post-event reimbursement evaluation once all supporting documentation has been received.

Applications may be submitted via email to or delivered by mail or in-person to 123 S. 6th Street, Orange, Texas 77630, Attention: Jessica Hill.

County Tax Rate to Remain Same

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First Case of COVID-19 Reported in Orange County

According to KOGT radio, the Orange County Commissioners voted to keep the county tax rate the same for the coming year. The current tax rate of $0.542 per $100 value was approved as the proposed tax rate by a majority vote of the Commissioners Court, with the lone dissenting vote coming from Precinct 2 Commissioner Theresa Beauchamp, who favored a slight increase in the tax rate.

Despite the fact that increased taxes may mean better services for Orange County residents, I’m glad to see the tax rate remain unchanged. Too many of our residents and businesses are still recovering from Hurricane Harvey in 2017 to be burdened with yet another financial setback. Let’s continue to give Orange County residents at least another year’s respite from tax increases. Residents will have the opportunity to give feedback to the Commissioner Court in two public hearings later this month to get input on the proposed tax rate.

Recycling Ends at County Landfill

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Recycling Ends at County Landfill

According to KOGT Radio, County Road and Bridge Engineer Clark Slacum confirmed that recycling at the Orange County Landfill will stop at the end of the month. Recycling is a very large part of many communities, and it is unfortunate that we cannot seem to support it here in Southeast Texas. The reason that is always given is that the sales price of the recycled items is too low to make the recycling program viable.

Adding more garbage to the waste stream is bad news for the planet. If other states have created successful recycling programs,  shouldn’t Southeast Texas be able to do the same?



Repaving Contract to Be Awarded After Vote

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According to KOGT Radio, on Tuesday, the Orange City Council will vote to award a $1.3 million contract to LD Construction in Beaumont for repaving work on twelve streets north of Interstate 10 and several to the south of Interstate 10. The money is coming from the $8 million bonds the council agreed to issue last year.

The City Council listed the streets to be repaired as follows:

27th Street from Interstate 10 to Eddleman Road

Beagle Road from the dead-end to FM 1130

Bob Hall Road from interstate 10 to Allie Payne Road

Clark Circle east and west

Clark Lane from Highway 87 to Meeks Drive

Eddleman Road from Meeks Drive to 27th Street

Enner Road from Interstate 10 to Bob Hall Road

Holcomb Drive from 27th Street to the dead-end

Luther Drive from Meeks Drive to Carrie Street

Meeks Drive from Allie Payne Road to MLK Jr. Drive

Sikes Road east end

Sikes Road west end from MLK Jr. Drive to the east end

These repairs are long overdue, given the nature of the weather we experience here in Southeast Texas. I have heard from a number of residents who are concerned about the condition of the streets in their neighborhood and want to know how to get their streets on the repaving list.  If you want to lodge a complaint about the condition of your street, please contact your City Councilor. A complete list is found here.


Orange County Awarded $51,171 for Emergency Food and Shelter Programs

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Orange County Receives $51,171 for Food and Shelter Programs

According to KOGT Radio, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/Federal Management Agency under the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program have awarded Orange County $51,171 in federal funds to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in the county.

Public or private voluntary agencies interested in applying for Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds can contact United Way of Orange County located at 1506 W. Park Ave in Orange for an application.  The deadline for applications to be received is July 22, 2019.


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