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In This Issue


Welcome to the December 2013 edition of Commissioner's E-Corner! As we round out the year, I'd like to wish each of you peace and joy this holiday season. Now is a time for reflection: a time to look back on what we've accomplished and what we can do better moving forward. We strive to offer Precinct 4 residents the very best. I'm proud to serve you as Commissioner and look forward to a dynamic and productive 2014!


Don't forget that you can access past issues of Commissioner's E-Corner on the Precinct 4 website. When you visit Precinct 4 online, you can also learn more about the road projects taking place, as well as the upcoming events at Precinct 4's community centers and parks, and Senior Adult Program activities through Fun4Seniors. 



Commissioner R. Jack Cagle
Harris County Precinct 4
Commissioners Court Streams Live!
Harris County recently began live streaming meetings of Harris County Commissioners Court to the public, a step designed to make county government even more transparent.
Anyone with access to the internet can watch entire scheduled court meetings online.
Links to the live streaming will also be posted on Harris County's main website under the "Court Agenda" heading, and Commissioner Cagle also provides a link to the live streaming at 
Members of Commissioners Court unanimously approved a proposal this summer to make their meetings available to the public by internet as soon as possible. Officials with the county's Information Technology Center implemented the policy and were able to complete the process quickly. The result is a more open and transparent Harris County government. Archived court meetings are available and will serve as a valuable research tool.
Commissioner Cagle's Responsibilities Expand
Commissioners Court recently approved the addition of Commissioner Cagle as an alternate delegate to the Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC) General Assembly Board of Directors.
H-GAC is made up of the region's local governments and elected officials, and works together with public and private sector organizations along with a host of volunteers. Through H-GAC, local governments initiate efforts in anticipating and preventing problems, saving public funds.
H-GAC's mission is to serve as the instrument of local government cooperation, promoting the region's orderly development and the safety and welfare of its citizens.
H-GAC provides many tools: information, region-wide plans, and services to support the region's local governments. Key H-GAC governmental services include transportation planning, cooperative purchasing, homeland security, air and water quality planning, forecasting, and mapping. H-GAC also serve the region through workforce development, criminal justice, 9-1-1, small business finance, and other programs contributing to the region's quality of life and economic competitiveness. 
The 13 counties in H-GAC's service region are: Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Colorado, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, Walker, Waller, and Wharton. There are more than 100 member cities in the region.
County Judge Ed Emmett serves as the delegate and Commissioner Cagle joins Precinct 2 Commissioner Jack Morman as another alternate. For more information about H-GAC, visit 

Mercer Celebrates 40 Years of Connecting People with Plants

Mercer Arboretum & Botanic Gardens, a Harris County Precinct 4 park, will celebrate its 40th anniversary with various festivities scheduled throughout 2014, starting with an open house Wednesday, January 8 beginning at 11 a.m.


Commissioner Cagle will kick off this momentous year with the rededication of a statue of Thelma Mercer, which was recently relocated to the entrance of the botanic gardens to greet visitors. A presentation of Mercer's history, including images of the gardens through the decades, will be on display in the Visitor Center where all guests will be invited to enjoy birthday cake and refreshments.


Mercer Arboretum & Botanic Gardens is located one mile north of FM 1960 at 22306 Aldine Westfield Road in Humble, 77338. For more information, please contact Mercer at 281-443-8731 or visit


Special Thanks to Zachry-Odebrecht
Precinct 4's annual food drives received a hearty boost from the employees of Zachry-Odebrecht, a developer of the Grand Parkway for the Texas Department of Transportation, when they donated 3,082 pounds of dry goods to Big Stone Lodge.

All of the items collected at Big Stone Lodge throughout the holiday food drive, including this generous donation, were transferred to the Northwest and Spring Assistance Ministries.

A special thanks goes to our friends at Zachry-Odebrecht as well as members of the Precinct 4 Parks staff who helped unload and deliver the donations!
Rudolph's Roundup
Approximately 250 nursing home residents enjoyed a traditional holiday lunch with all the trimmings, beautifully decorated tables, visits/photos with Santa, and Victorian Christmas carolers in full costume at Rudolph's Roundup, an event hosted by Precinct 4's Senior Adult Program. 

Residents, caregivers, activity directors, and volunteers traveled on Harris County-provided buses from their respective facilities to the Humble Civic Center to take part in the festivities.

Thank you to all who participated and made the event such a success!
Upcoming December/January Activities
Jesse H. Jones Park & Nature Center:

Gardening Daze. Wed., December 18, 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Join horticulture coordinator Teri MacArthur for plant identification and weeding in the native flower beds surrounding the Nature Center, or help tend to vegetables in the heritage garden at the pioneer homestead. Closed-toed shoes, gloves, a hat, sunscreen, and a water bottle are recommended.


T'ai Chi. Wed., December 18, 8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. Meet in the green space in front of the Nature Center (weather permitting) for an hour of low-impact stretching, breathing, and range of motion exercises based on the 24-step Yang form of T'ai Chi.


FlyingWILD Workshop. Sat., January 4, 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. This comparison to ProjectWILD highlights bird education and conservation through hands-on lessons, activities, and stewardship projects. Reservations required; please call 281-446-8588.


Twilight Walk. Sat., January 4, 5:30 p.m. Join a staff naturalist for a dusk-to-dark winter forest foray to discover frogs, owls, and other active nocturnal creatures. Ages 10+. Reservations required; please call 281-446-8588.


Second Saturday Settlers: Flint to Fire. Sat., January 11, 1 p.m. - 3 p.m. Learn how to build a campfire using flint and steel as park staff and volunteers bring the Redbud Hill Homestead to life. All ages.


Pioneer Campfire. Sat., January 11, 5:30 p.m. Spend and evening around a warm campfire while listening to Houston Storyteller's Guild members David and Sally Goodroe's captivating stories and songs. All ages. Reservations required; please call 281-446-8588.



Mercer Arboretum & Botanic Gardens: 


Cypress Creek Daylily Society. Sun., December 22, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Meet in the Visitor Center to learn about gardening with daylilies.
Chrysanthemum Society. Fri., December 27, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. These monthly meetings include discussions about growing chrysanthemums and floral arranging. The Society also provides plants for Mercer's collection. For additional information, please call 281-443-8731.
Community Centers/Senior Adult Program:

Mangum-Howell Center: Jolly "Holly"day Catered Luncheon. Tues., December 17, noon. Enjoy this annual "holly"day gathering with entertainment provided by accomplished pianist Stella Fitzgibbon. Celebrate the merriment of the holiday season and traditional feast without all of the stress and work.
Big Stone Lodge at Dennis Johnston Park: "Holidays in the Pines" Catered Luncheon. Fri., December 20, 11:30 a.m. Enjoy this old-fashioned yuletide celebration complete with a crackling fireplace, favorite Christmas music, and a holiday feast.
Mangum-Howell Center: "Get the Facts on Serving Sizes, Fat, and Sodium" Seminar Series. Tues., January 7, 14, and 21, 10 a.m. Join Amy Comer, program assistant with Better Living for Texans, as she presents a nutritional seminar series that will benefit anyone who needs to monitor their diet.
Big Stone Lodge at Dennis Johnston Park: "Hands Down" Party Bridge Tournament. Fri., January 10, 10 a.m. Choose a partner to spend an enjoyable day playing this fascinating game. 
Mangum-Howell Center: A "Kick-Off" Catered Luncheon. Tues., January 14, noon. Start off the New Year by getting back into the swing of things with a catered luncheon and the fun-loving Doss Pickers and Singers following lunch.

Commissioner R. Jack Cagle

Harris County Precinct 4
1001 Preston, Suite 950

Houston, Texas 77002

By phone:  713-755-6444

By fax:   713-755-8801


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