Lamar Electric Awards Six $1,000 Scholarships

Chase Ramsey

Chase Ramsey

Lamar Electric Cooperative has announced the six $1,000.00 scholarship winners that were drawn at the Co-op Annual Meeting on Saturday, April 19th.  The winners are Chase Ramsey and Ashley Miller of North Lamar High School, Kelby Cole of Prairiland High School, Madison Harper of Honey Grove High School, Katy Bridges of Detroit High School, and John Herrmann of Chisum High School.

Ashley Miller

Ashley Miller

The six winners can use their scholarship at any accredited university, college, junior college, technical school, or any other post-secondary educational institution of their choice.

 

 

 

 

Madison Harper

Madison Harper

Chase is the son of Kyle and Stacy Ramsey of the Caviness Community, Ashley is the daughter of Michael and Sarah of Sumner, Kelby is the son of Todd and Mendy Cole of Pattonville, Madison is the daughter of Richard and Gina of the Harmon Community, Katy is the daughter of Leanna Watson of Detroit, and John is the son of James and Taunya Herrmann of the Broadway Community.

Katey Bridges

Katey Bridges

According to Lamar Electric General Manager Jerry Williams, “The money used for these scholarships is from unclaimed deposits or refunds from our members.”  Williams also stated “The law allows Lamar Electric to use a portion of these funds for scholarships, otherwise the money is turned over to the state.”

Each member can still file a claim with the state of Texas for unclaimed checks.

John HerrmannLamar Electric Director of Communications, Dena Beason said, “Lamar Electric has provided more than $44,000 in scholarships to students in our community since 1999.”  Beason continued “We are proud that Lamar Electric can help these students achieve their educational goals and we encourage every co-op member to take this opportunity to submit the name of your son or daughter next year.”

Kelby Cole

Kelby Cole

Study shows huge economic benefit of ASA Archery Tournament, Tour de Paris

In a press conference this morning at the Love Civic Center, the results of a recent study on the economic impact that two annual events have on our community were released.

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Dr. Steven Schwiff, Dean of the Department of Economics, Accounting and Finance at Texas A&M-Commerce, delivers his results from a recent economic impact study of two annual events this morning at a press conference at the Love Civic Center.

The findings showed huge benefits. The Tour de Pars, which is a one-day event, brings in $114,764 of local spending, while the two-day ASA Archery Tournament brings $1,109,195. The two combine for more than $1.2 million of local spending, according to the study.

Dr. Steven Schwiff, Dean of the Department of Economics, Accounting and Finance at Texas A&M-Commerce, was commissioned to conduct the study by the Paris Convention and Visitors Council and the Lamar County Chamber of Commerce.

Dr. Schwiff’s findings concluded an estimated $600,000 of additional spending is generated within the county that is directly related to the two annual events, with 13 jobs that exist within the county that directly depend on the Tour de Paris and the ASA tournament.

It is this additional spending — or ‘new money’ — that the events bring in from tourists that shows the real economic impact they have on our community, not just the total event spending. For example, Dr. Schwiff said, if you have a sporting event in your community and the only people that come to the event are those in the community, that is not an economic impact.

The study also showed that overnight attendees spend a substantial amount more than non-overnight attendees, however 70% of those attending the events are non-overnight. It is estimated that overnight attendees average a group of three and spend $800, while non-overnight individuals spend $115 per person.

The three most effected sectors of our economy by these events are retail, hotel/motel and food/beverage. Since overnight attendees tend to spend more and the ASA tournament is a two-day event, it is able to bring in more spending to our county, as many of the attendees are tourists and non-county residents. Tourism spending from non-county residents generates additional economic activity within the county, according to the study.

Dr. Schwiff’s findings also say that it is estimated that an additional $300,000 to $400,000 in local impact could occur if the county were more diverse.

The ASA Archery Tournament will return to Lamar County for the eighth straight year on Thursday with the Scottie Narrell Memorial Chamber Shoot. The tournament concludes on Sunday. The Tour de Paris will celebrate its 30th anniversary on Saturday, July 19.

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From left: Chamber of Commerce Chairman Erik Roddy, Dr. Steven Schwiff, Tourism Director Becky Semple, and Chamber President Melissa Cook

Smoking ban — complete with fines — goes into effect Thursday

600px-No_smoking_symbol.svgThe city-wide smoking ban for public places in Paris — adopted a month ago by the Paris City Council — goes fully into effect Thursday.

It actually went into effect the moment it passed the council on March 24, but the council also ordained a 30-day grace period from imposition of fines — a minimum of $50 plus court costs.

Police Chief Bob Hundley said there were few problems during that 30-day grace period.

“To date, we have received very few complaints, but responded to these complaints and issued warnings,” Hundley said.

The Paris Police Department is asking for the public’s voluntary compliance with the amended ordinance, as they do with all statutes.  The statute in its entirety is listed on the city of Paris website, www.paristexas.gov.

The ban covers all restaurants, plus any bars contained within restaurants, or bars that open into restaurants, motels, or any other public place where smoking is banned. The ban extends to within 30 feet of entrances to any public place where smoking is prohibited.

Electronic cigarettes (vapor cigarettes) are not included in the ban.

 

Update: Paris City Council candidate forum is at 6 p.m.Thursday

alcr logoThe Association of Lamar County Republicans will host a Paris City Council Candidate forum at 6 p.m. Thursday in the district courtroom on the second floor of the Lamar County Courthouse in Paris.

The forum comes four days before early voting begins on Monday (April 28).

Six of the eight candidates have announced they will participate, forum coordinator Jimmie Kruntorad said.

Early voting continues Monday through Friday of next week, plus Monday and Tuesday of the following week, leading up to the Saturday, May 10 election.

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To help educate voters, eParisExtra.com will follow the forum with word and photo coverage of the candidate responses.

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Participating will be:

  • From District 1: Incumbent Aaron Jenkins (opposed by former District 1 councilman Joe McCarthy, who has declined the invitation);
  • From District 2: Incumbent Sue Lancaster and challenger Kelly John Collins;
  • From District 3: Incument John Wright (opposed by Benny Plata, who has declined the invitation);
  • From District 6: Incumbent Cleonne Holmes Drake and challenger Edwin Pickle.

The six candidates who accepted the invitation to participate have been provided nine questions concerning the city and individual districts, Kruntorad said.

As time allows, the questions will be asked of all candidates, Kruntorad said. The candidates themselves were invited to suggest possible questions to be included in the mix.

As opposed to county, state and federal elections, city council elections are non-partisan.

Kruntorad said the Association of Lamar County Republicans is offering the forum “to promote an informed electorate through political education and involve citizens in the political process.

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eParisExtra will follow the forum coverage with a separate report on candidates’ responses to other questions submitted by eParisExtra columnist/city council reporter Charles Richards to provide further insight into candidate positions on the issues.

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Council terms are for two years. The City Charter allows individuals to serve up to three consecutive 2-year terms, after which they must sit out at least two years before they may serve again.

Charles Richards, eParisExtra

 

Study results of the economic impact of the Tour de Paris and the archery tournament to be released Wednesday

Tour de Paris 2013

Tour de Paris 2013

The Paris Convention and Visitors Council, in partnership with the Lamar County Chamber of Commerce, recently commissioned Dr. Steven Schwiff, CPF, Dean of the Department of Economics, Accounting and Finance at Texas A&M-Commerce to conduct a Study to measure the Economic Impact that both the ASA Archery Tournament and the Tour de Paris have on Lamar County.

These results will be released at 9 a.m. Wednesday at Love Civic Center.

“Both of these events bring a great deal of visitors to our area who utilize our hotels, motels, restaurants, etc. and to be able to put a dollar figure on what kind of investment they are making in Lamar County is an enormous tool for the area, as far as attracting other complementing events” said Bobby Walters, Chairman of the Paris Visitors and Convention Council.

The ASA Archery Tournament will be returning to Lamar County for its eighth year and begins Thursday with the Scottie Narrell Memorial Chamber Shoot and concludes on Sunday. The Tour de Paris will celebrate its 30th anniversary on Saturday, July 19.

ASA Archery Tournament

ASA Archery Tournament

Schwiff is department head of the School of Economic, Accounting and Finance as well as a Professor at the China University of Geosciences – Beijing, College of Humanities and Economics.

He also is principal of Econgroup, Economic and Demographic Forecasting and is a certified professional forecaster, with many articles published on economic forecasting. He is an author several times over.

Anyone needing more information may contact the Lamar County Chamber of Commerce at 903.784.2501 or at Melissa@paristexas.com.