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A Book and a Treat

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Jackson Green, 2, checks out a book from Sulphur Springs Public Library employees Lolitha Peoples and Karmon Wright during Teasure Chest Tuesdays at the library. On Tuesdays, children who check out a book will get to choose a free toy from the SSPL treasure chest. Treasure Chest Tuesday ends Aug. 19.

Staff Photo Jon Lance

Hopkins County property values increase 2.4 percent

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Biggest gains are in Yantis, SS school districts

    The numbers are in and they are official, according to Hopkins County Chief Appraiser Cathy Singleton, who said overall property values in the county are up 2.4 percent over last year's figures.
    The increase will mean more to both the taxpayer and the taxing entities.
    “The county stands to collect more in taxes because the value of property went up,” she said. “For some taxpayers, yes, their taxes will go up. They had an opportunity to protest in the protest period in May.”
    When the preliminary appraisal values were sent out in May to the more than 8,000 property owners whose property values increased, few protested the increases.
     “When I sent out preliminary values, it looked like the values were going to be pretty flat to last year,” Singleton said. “We had a slower than expected protest period and held on to that value. We ended up with a 2.4 percent increase in taxable values countywide.”
    Property values increased the most for school districts in Yantis (5 percent), Sulphur Springs (4.4 percent) and Sulphur Bluff (4 percent) and decreased the  most in the city of Como (down 4 percent).
    “We held most of the values in those subdivisions that we looked at,” Singleton said. “Some classes of houses, we changed the schedule upward because they are selling for more and what we have to base everything on is market value.”
    Singleton said she felt the county is beginning to see some growth that could be attributed to expansion from the Dallas area.
    “I think we will begin to see that — I can't really track that as of now,” she said. “I would attribute the schedule changes we had to institute on the higher-end houses to some of those people trying to get away from the Metroplex.”
    She said there was no county-wide adjustment to property values. The appraisal district adjusters looked at specific types of property. Singleton said  there is always the “hot” neighborhood, where homes are selling quickly and at some surprising prices.
    “There are homes out there selling for $100-a-square-foot and they are selling quickly,” she said. “Now, these are high-end type homes. We don't have enough of them on the market, so they are selling rather quickly.”
    The net taxable values per taxing entity are:
    n City of Como, down 4 percent.
    n City of Cumby, up 2 percent.
    n City of Sulphur Springs, up 1.4 percent.
    n Hopkins County, up 2.4 percent.
    n Hopkins County Memorial Hospital District,  up 2.2 percent.
    n Como-Pickton CISD,  up 1.6 percent.
    n Cumby ISD, up 1.6 percent.
    nMiller Grove ISD, up 3 percent.
    n Mount Vernon ISD, up 1.6 percent.
    n North Hopkins ISD, up 2.5 percent.
    n Saltillo ISD, up1.3 percent.
    n Sulphur Bluff ISD, up 4 percent.
    n Sulphur Springs ISD, up 4.4 percent.
    n Winnsboro ISD, up 1.3 percent.
    n Yantis ISD, up 5 percent.
    With the taxable values holding at a countywide average increase of 2.4 percent, the chief appraiser said county taxpayers are fortunate.
    “I felt like we were pretty fortunate that we could hold on to values and saw increases in most of the entities,” she said.

Blood drives scheduled next month

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A local business, hospital and church will host Carter BloodCare’s mobile bus this weekend to help bolster the regional blood bank’s supplies.


Investigation continues in deaths of young Quitman girls

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Quitman police and Texas Rangers are continuing the investigation in the deaths of two young sisters last week at a Quitman apartment complex.
    “We are still waiting on some other stuff to come in,” Quitman Police Chief Kelly Cole said Monday morning. “It's still ongoing.
    Cole said investigators were waiting on results of autopsies ordered in the deaths.
    The deaths were discovered last Thursday when police responded to a call for help from the Dogwood Villa Apartments in the 600 block of East Lane Street and found two young girls, ages 1 and 3, unresponsive.
    Quitman officers arrested Thomas Wayne Liles, 19, for tampering with or fabricating physical evidence after a number of witnesses said they saw the man run from the apartment and throw a  large item into a dumpster before help could arrive for the two little girls.
    In that dumpster, officers found items they suspect came from the apartment the girls were in.
    Chief Cole would not speculate as to whether the discarded items were related to the deaths of the children.
     Thomas Wayne Liles is being held in lieu of $25,000 bond in Wood County jail in Quitman on the tampering with or fabricating evidence charge.

Police asking for help in locating 2 robbery suspects

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Sulphur Springs Police Department is seeking the public’s help in identifying and locating two men who reportedly robbed an E-Z Mart Sunday night.

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