Mason County News
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City Corner
Wednesday, June 8, 2011 • Posted June 8, 2011

During the past few weeks we have had several incidents that have required prompt response from our City crews, and I can proudly report that they have met every challenge. Three weeks ago there was the unfortunate accident when a truck ran into Commercial Bank and created a hazard to the bank employees as well as the public at the northwest corner of the square. Very luckily no one was seriously injured in that accident, but the removal of the truck from the bank building as well as the cleanup and removal of the debris created some serious problems for our City crews. There were issues with the electric power disconnect and then the prompt restoring of power once the area was safe, and the removal of tons of debris that littered the sidewalk and the street corner that was accomplished with speed and care even in the unseasonably warm weather. One bank office was completely destroyed and the bank was shut down for the rest of that day, but because of the quick response of emergency personnel, the City crews, some willing help from the community including some TXDOT employees who were on the scene, and the preparedness of the Bank staff, Commercial Bank was ready to open for business again the next morning. Two weeks ago, on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend, we had another incident when the trash truck snagged a telephone guy wire behind the Clinic and inadvertently toppled a set of three transformers. The pole and these transformers were scheduled to be replaced soon, along with another that fell during the cleanup process, but we had not anticipated this type of “emergency” replacement. The clinic had to be closed that afternoon, and because of the danger of fire the volunteer fire fighters promptly responded along with a crew from Central Texas Electric Coop that assisted with the cleanup and started the rebuilding process for this part of our city electric system. Our city electric department assisted by several other City employees jumped into the job of straightening out a major problem with calm assurance that they were capable of handling this emergency. With just a short break for graduation, the electric crew changed their holiday weekend plans and worked many hours of overtime to be sure that everything was back to normal for the clinic and other businesses affected by Tuesday morning when they came back to work. One pickup was damaged in the initial “accident” and several electric service entrances had to be repaired, but with the willingness of the City electric crew to meet every challenge, and assisted by CTEC employees, I can proudly say that what started out looking like a dramatic “mess” turned into a very reasonable cleanup and upgrade during a hot holiday weekend. Last week we continued to have problems that caused extra work for our city crews. On Thursday a primary electric switch turned off indicating a short in the system, and as a result the northeast quadrant of town was out of power for several hours. We had several city staff taking an extra day off to compensate for the hard work during the previous holiday weekend, but they immediately came in to work to help locate the problem and find a solution. Several other city departments contributed employees to help with this challenge, and within a few hours we were able to restore power to all of our residents. We also had two major water leaks last week, and like most emergencies these chose after hours times to show up. Our city water crews worked late into the night both times, once not finishing up until nearly dawn on a Saturday morning. With the hot dry weather our water system is under extra pressure and we cannot afford to allow water to just “run down the street” when there is a leak, and so our Water Department quickly responds to the challenge of any leak. The past three weeks have given us some extra work and problems, but with a “can do” attitude our City crews have worked together and met the challenges. Many different crews and citizens have helped in each situation, and we thank each of them, and I am pleased to report that the City employees are working as a team on every level of challenge, and each and every day. In the six years I have been in office, I have not often seen such a willingness to jump into any and every challenge and work together to find the solutions that will best serve the community. The City of Mason is proud to have such a dedicated crew of workers, and if you see them around town please take a moment to thank them for their service to our town. Next week may bring us a new problem we have not even thought about, but with the teamwork that is evident I have no doubt that our City crews will meet every challenge. I might also mention that we are looking for a few more specific employees, so if you or someone you know is interested in joining a successful team consider checking out the employment ads in this paper or stop by the City office and fill out an application. This is your town and our goal is to make it the best hometown in Texas, and I can proudly say that with the employees the City has today that each day brings us closer to being the very best!Your friend and neighbor, Brent Hinckley

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