Mayor's Message 9/12

Mayor's Message 9/12 - technical difficulties loading this on the City's web site. Here it is in its entirety:

A Message from Mayor Wax

September 12, 2017 Although these letters come through the City, please know that it is a multi-jurisdictional effort that includes Aransas County and the Town of Fulton. Our level of cooperation is unmatched. We are truly One Voice --working together to rebuild.
We’re all working hard to make the area even better than it was three weeks ago. It will be a long process – a marathon rather than a sprint – but strides are made every day. Although the Hummer/Bird Festival was cancelled, plans are still underway for SeaFair, the Film Festival and Tropical Christmas.
New News:
1. Household garbage pickup will resume its regular route this week.
2. Local Businesses. As businesses open, the Chamber will add them to a list and publish it on their web site. This is for ALL businesses, not just Chamber members. http://www.rockport-fulton.org/…/Rockport%20Fulton%20Open%2…
3. Boil Water Advisory is still in effect.
4. Well/Septic. If you have a private well and septic system, you may want to have them tested to ensure there was no damage from the hurricane. Special testing kits are available through Environmental Health. Call 361-790-0121 for more information.
5. Utility Bills. We are aware that it is impossible to pay utility bills online and/ or to pay in person. We will let you know when our billing system is up and running. Do not be concerned about penalty fees, or water being shut off. Also, remember to report any leaks.
6. Hummingbirds. Sadly, they weren’t aware of the fact that we had a hurricane and that the annual Hummer/Bird Festival was cancelled. Now, more than ever, they need your help with feeding for them to finish their migratory route.
7. Rebuilding Update. By decision, City Council has waived restrictions of the use of RVs on a residential or business property where reconstruction is taking place. If there had been an existing, non-conforming structure, all reconstruction must meet current building codes.
Worth Reminding:
1. Electricity. AEP announced that the circuits are up at all the transformers.Almost the entire area is back on the power grid. If you don’t have power, it may be one of several issues: a) your main circuit breaker was turned off, b) there is a connectivity issue with the power lines or c) severe damage to the electrical systems in the structure. If neighbors have power and you don’t, please make sure your meter is “energized,” i.e. little hands moving around and dials turning. If not, call the AEP Outage line at 866-223-8508. If you have another concern, call AEP Customer Service at 877-373-4858.
2. Other Utilities. Water and Sewer are now up and running 24/7, but not quite at peak effectiveness. WE NEED YOUR HELP – if you notice a leak or seepage that we may not have been able to identify, please call 729-1111 or 729-2222 to alert us to the problem.
Due to Hurricane Harvey and reduced distribution system pressure, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has required the City of Rockport public water system to notify all customers to boil their water prior to consumption (e.g., washing hands/face, brushing teeth, drinking, etc). Children, seniors, and persons with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable to harmful bacteria, and all customers should follow these directions).
To ensure destruction of all harmful bacteria and other microbes, water for drinking, cooking, and ice making should be boiled and cooled prior to use for drinking water or human consumption purposes. The water should be brought to a vigorous rolling boil and then boiled for two minutes.
In lieu of boiling, individuals may purchase bottled water or obtain water from some other suitable source for drinking water or human consumption purposes.
When it is no longer necessary to boil the water, the public water system officials will notify customers that the water is safe for drinking water or human consumption purposes.
Once the boil water notice is no longer in effect, the public water system will issue a notice to customers that rescinds the boil water notice in a manner similar to this notice.
If you have questions concerning this matter, you may contact the City of Rockport’s Water Department at 361-790-1160 during normal business hours. If there is an emergency, please call 361-729-1111 or 729-2222.
3. The list of Verified Contractors is on the City’s web site is updated regularly. To date, more than 560 contractors have been verified and over 2500 decals distributed. Go to:http://www.cityofrockport.com/DocumentCenter/View/13304.
4. Sacred Heart. The school sustained some serious damage. Recovery teams are on site. Parents and students will be alerted when plans are finalized.
5. Tarps for homeowners are now available at no charge at the Point of Distribution site in the parking lots of the old HEB.
6. Aerial Views. Drones have been taking photos of the Hurricane Harvey aftermath. Residents who wish to view before and after views of the area, should visit Harvey2017.eagleview.com
7. Curfew. Hours have been changed to 10 pm – 6 am
8. Garbage. Continue to put your household refuse in your blue and green bins. Do not block the bins with debris or vehicles as the automated trucks are unable to access many bins on their rounds. Make separate piles for building debris, trees/limbs AND appliances. Place them close to the curb or on your property – not the street. The Transfer Station will operate 7 days a week from 7 am – 6 pm for an indefinite period. Residents should enter via Prairie Street. Commercial contractors must take their debris to a landfill.
9. School District Update. All classes will resume within 30 days. Live Oak, Fulton Learning Center and Little Bay students will be in their permanent classrooms. Middle and High school students will have classes in temporary buildings on ACISD property.
10. Warnings and Protection. If you have been staying in Rockport, it’s very important to get a tetanus shot. They are FREE at the Lamar Volunteer Fire Department, County Jail, Code 3 Urgent/Emergency Care at Pearl and Enterprise, and the Urgent Care Center on 35. If you’re cleaning up building debris or rain-soaked areas, be sure to wear gloves, thick shoes and a mask. For those whose homes have been compromised, there is a chance of mold becoming an issue due to the high humidity. We are working on getting truckloads of Damp Rid delivered to the community.
11. Debris Removal. Major debris pickup for residents is underway. Significant resources from Crowder Gulf and Thompson Consulting have cleared the right of ways and are working south of Market Street and North of Henderson. They’ll go to the far edges of the County – north, south and west, then move inward, and start all over again. Concentration is on residential properties. This is a costly and laborious project, but will continue until the major debris is gone. PLEASE assist us with this effort by separating your debris into building materials and yard waste and NOT put materials in the street or impede access by parking in front of the debris.
12. Building Inspections. Members of the Building Officials Association of Texas are visiting ALL buildings (residential and commercial) in the County to assess exterior, structural damage. They will start at the south end of the County and continue north until run out of real estate to review.
If there is a RED sticker, it means the property is unsafe and should not be entered for any reason. A YELLOW sticker indicates caution. Entry is at your own risk. A GREEN sticker or NO sticker means the structure appears to be fine. If you don’t have a sticker, please don’t assume that it’s safe until you check with neighbors to see if they have received an inspection.
Please note that the review is only from the exterior. The inspectors are not gauging damage to the interior including electric, gas and water utilities or water/wind damage.
13. Lost Pets. Animal Control has teamed up with the Houston SPCA to post information on lost or found pets. You may access this information by going to one of two web sites: 1) www.findingrover.com or 2)www.houstonspca.org/harvey.
14. Mail. IF your mailbox withstood the winds and is still standing, you should be receiving your mail. If your mailbox disappeared from your property, you may pick up your mail at the Ingleside Post Office, located on 2230 TX-361.
15. Goods Pickup. Ice, water and MRE (Meals Ready to Eat) are being distributed daily from 8 am – 6 pm at old HEB parking lot and Castaways. The operating hours for the Fats location in Holiday Beach/Lamar are 10 – 6. Numerous churches also have necessities for residents in need and some good Samaritans are setting up throughout the city.
16. Government Assistance. Staff from the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) will be at the La Retama Central Library, 805 Comanche, in the library’s conference room from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, September 9. TWIA (Texas Windstorm) has set up a mobile claims center at GSM Insurors at 1102 Laurel Street in Rockport and the Lindale Recreation Center, located at 3133 Swantner Street in Corpus Christi. The Small Business Administration is now open in the Women’s Club building next to Veteran’s Park, near downtown by the harbor, and processing loans for individuals, as well as businesses. FEMA is already set up at the park so this will make it convenient for everyone.
17. 911. We are receiving an inordinate amount of non-emergency calls on our system. Wellness checks and relative location requests should be directed to the Red Cross. All other calls should be directed to 729-1111 or 729-2222.
18. Save the Tree? Some folks are unsure if their trees can be saved. The Texas A&M Forestry Service will be available to answer questions and look at your property. Informational handouts are being developed and will be available through the Rockport Service Center, Public Safety Center, Chamber and The Pilot. This is being coordinated through the Nueces Extension Office. 361-767-5250. There is a fact sheet available on line to help you make a determination –http://tfsweb.tamu.edu/afterthestorm/canmytreebesaved/. You may contact them directly by calling 936-239-9034.
19. Rebuilding. If you have suffered significant damage and are rebuilding, you will need to obtain a building permit. You may use this link: https://rockport.seamlessdocs.com/f/CQcce or go to the City’s Web site and click on Building Department under the Departments tab. We will be posting more information about post flood requirements in the next few days.
It’s getting better every day!!
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