Port Arthur

A company proposing exploratory drilling in the backyard of a Port Arthur church has gotten the “go-ahead” from city leaders. In a meeting held at the Port Arthur City Hall on Friday, Nov. 9, elected leaders heard from Ben Balagia, a representative of the Houston-based Tri-C Resources exploration company, who was in town asking for the city’s permission to drill thousands of feet below a 400-acre tract off Highway 73 in search of oil and natural gas.

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A damning June audit performed by the HUD Office of the Inspector General has resulted in people leaving the Port Arthur Housing Authority.

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A scam targeting seniors and persons receiving disability benefits made its way through Jefferson County the past few months, with residents of Port Arthur impacted at a significant rate. Those perpetrating the scam duped victims by promising them access to a federal stimulus check, allegedly administered to all Social Security recipients, even though no such provision exists. Victims supplied the scammers with copies of their driver’s license, Social Security number, and banking information.

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God, family members and voters were all the big winners and thanked tremendously Tuesday morning when the Port Arthur City Council welcomed two new members to its chambers while welcoming back two incumbents.

In one of the larger City Council races in recent memory, 24 candidates competed for the six open City Council positions, and the four winners were honored with the swearing in by Port Arthur Mayor Deloris “Bobbie” Prince in a ceremony held at the Council Chambers in City Hall and was followed up with a reception.

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Dead man walking.

That’s how doctors in Houston described Ronnie Patteson after he somehow survived a savage beating on a Friday night in Port Arthur in February, and then managed to cobble together an improbable series of events that led to a Houston hospital room where the 52-year-old Port Acres man was taken off life support and pronounced dead a mere 96 hours later on Valentine’s Day.

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Despite an otherwise tepid voter turnout, especially on election day, the citizens who did cast their vote at the ballot box ousted four incumbents Saturday night, with the suprise of the evening coming from District 1, where Jack Chatman was unseated by Raymond Scott, 507-336.

In District 2, Liz Segler held on to her seat by a comfortable 57-vote margin, outlasting Cal Jones 287-230.

In District 3, Mayor Pro-Tem Morris Albright III had no problem dispatching former Port Arthur Mayor Oscar Ortiz, tallying 704 votes to Ortiz's 206.

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A source with knowledge of Port Arthur's City Council Incumbent D. Kay Wise's previous employment said Thursday afternoon that her assertion that she lives at 735 Stilwell is untrue and that the company, GP Industrial Contractors, based out of Port Arthur, who used to employ Wise, paid approximately $17,000 in rent for her over a 17-month period as part of her fringe benefit package.

Attempts to reach Wise for comment were unsuccessful.

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Faced with questions regarding the legitimacy of her residency as she tries to hold on to her Position 7 seat on the Port Arthur City Council, D. Kay Wise denied that she lives in another district and said she is the victim of “dirty politics” from her opponents.

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If only solving murders was as easy as they make it look on television.

The Beaumont and Port Arthur Police Departments are currently working two murder investigations that have detectives beating the streets and looking for leads wherever they can find them.

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