Horn says lower caps come with a price

Denton County Judge Mary Horn is gearing up for a familiar battle in the 84th Texas Legislature. Horn and fellow Commissioners Court members are hoping a proposed bill to lower the caps on annual increases in residential property appraisals and revenue will be defeated because they say it would limit the prerogatives of local elected officials to set tax rates, create budgets and deliver needed services to Denton County residents.

Jurors indict former deputy

Former Denton County sheriff’s deputy Joe Edward Cummings has been arrested on child pornography charges.

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Cold, hard reality

Should Mother Nature choose to dump a slew of winter precipitation on top of Denton County, she will find county officials decidedly more prepared for it than last year.

Les Cockrell: Holiday event takes cues from past

Area residents are invited to take a trip back in time to experience a Victorian American Christmas from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Denton County Historical Park.

Les Cockrell: Holiday gift wrapping available at mall

Young people from First United Methodist Church of Denton will be offering their holiday gift-wrapping service at Golden Triangle Mall again this year.

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Church on the range

SANGER — The red building looks more like a barn than a church. A black sign with a silhouette of a cowboy kneeling in front of a cross is the only indication that this is a place of worship.

Les Cockrell: Donations taken around the clock

North Texas Trinity Cowboy Church of Sanger will hold its third G6 project to help the community beginning on Sunday, according to an announcement from the church.

County gives OK to recommended projects

Denton County commissioners gave approval Tuesday to recommendations made by the capital improvements committee for proposed projects over the next 10 years.

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New districts keep towns on their toes

Fall in Denton County was once a time of year when fields of coastal hay, wheat and even peanuts lined U.S. Highway 380. Combines, tractors and truckloads of workers labored from sunup to sundown harvesting crops and taking them to market. Evenings were spent by the fire or on a neighbor’s front porch swapping tales until the Sandman arrived.

Les Cockrell: A twist on shopping

An alternative gifts fair is planned for Friday through Sunday at Miller Center, located inside Denton’s First United Methodist Church, 201 S. Locust St.

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Poll watchers keep eye on skies

Denton voters will need to bring boots and an umbrella along with their voter guides to the polls today. Meteorologists expect a steady rain, with an occasional embedded thunderstorm, as a cold front arrives in time for Election Day. Whether it affects overall voter turnout remains to be seen.

Spreading warmth

An Aubrey fifth-grader is now seeing proof that kids can make a difference — contrary to what he once thought. In less than a month, 10-year-old Zachary Hamilton has collected more than 340 blankets for the less fortunate. He plans to deliver the new and gently used coverings Nov. 15 to Our Daily Bread.

Answers come at polls Tuesday

The time has finally come to settle things. After months of campaigning, debates and rhetoric, Denton County voters will head to the polls on Tuesday to determine, among many other ballot issues, who will lead the state for the next four years and just what will be the fate of hydraulic fracturing within Denton city limits.

United Way to pursue legislative action

United Way of Denton County continues to pave the way for the community it serves as the agency gears up to advocate for three key issues during the upcoming legislative session.

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Feds probe company

Which federal agency was behind the raid on the offices of Alan Ritchey Inc. on Wednesday in Valley View? That’s a mystery several people were wondering about Thursday morning after federal agents stormed the business in unmarked cars and blocked the parking lot in their search for evidence.

Voting turnout heavy so far

Heavy voter turnout countywide includes the city of Denton, where twice as many people have already cast ballots during early voting than did in all the spring election.

neighborsgo

Family from Little Elm goes all out with Halloween display

After two years in Little Elm, Chris and Jennie Fuller had never decorated the outside of their home for the holidays.

Victim in crash was Sanger woman

Denton County’s chief death investigator on Tuesday identified April Moore, a 30-year-old Sanger resident, as the victim of a head-on collision Monday.

County briefed on Ebola

Denton County commissioners received some positive news on the Ebola front Tuesday. Matt Richardson, director of the Denton County Health Department, and Jody Gonzalez, emergency services director, made a joint presentation to commissioners about monitoring for the virus and preparations emergency officials have made in case anything happens.

Friends raise funds for officer’s widow

April Jones’ voice cracked as she described the final days and moments of her husband, Northeast police Officer Johnnie Jones, before he succumbed to a bacterial infection Monday morning. “To hear your best friend tell you they are tired and they want to go is the worst pain ever,” she said.

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Driver dies in two-vehicle collision in Sanger

One person died at the scene of a Monday afternoon accident on FM455 near Sanger High School.

Courtesy photo

Gainesville to honor hanging victims

In October 1862, a local militia in Cooke County hunted down and arrested 150 farmers suspected of being Unionists, Indian sympathizers or abolitionists living among residents of a Confederate North Texas.

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Hope for restoration: Sanger group raises money to refurbish 112-year-old church

SANGER — The Presbyterian Church of Sanger is a building out of time. Built in 1902, it’s weathered severe storms, several droughts and the gas drilling boom that has changed the surrounding landscape. Paint, once a vibrant shade of white, flakes from siding worn by age as the noontime sun peaks over the lone steeple reaching toward the cloudless heavens.

Two-tire attack

Ken Ballard of Aubrey looks like a warrior suited up for battle. Black riding gloves, an orange Cheesy Riders jersey, a black helmet and sunglasses are his gear, and his 2009 Cannondale Six 5 road bike is his weapon as he rides to end multiple sclerosis.

Les Cockrell: Patch Adams prescribes joy for events in Denton

Denton Community Health Clinic will play host to Patch Adams, the physician whose early career was the subject of a 1998 movie starring the late Robin Williams, for special events on Friday.

Courtesy photo

Civic leader Buddy Cole dies

“He was just a good dad,” Alan Cole said of his father, Buddy Cole. Buddy Cole — a former county judge, Texas Master Naturalist and a member of the National Guard, among a litany of other community service positions — died Thursday morning at the age of 80.

Report: Sheriff's deputy tests negative for Ebola

The Texas Department of State Health Services in Austin says negative results were returned Thursday, indicating that a Dallas County deputy does not have the Ebola virus.

Explosions in fire ignite home

Burning trash in northwest Denton County nearly turned deadly Tuesday afternoon when a series of explosions caused flames to ignite three structures on a property just west of Bolivar.

County notes center concerns

Denton city officials were back in front of the Denton County Commissioners Court on Tuesday morning to discuss the proposed hotel and convention center project.

Crash kills Pilot Point man

A 25-year-old man from Pilot Point was killed in a one-vehicle crash west of Sanger early Sunday.

Denton County prepares for disease

Denton County emergency officials say they are preparing in case the deadly Ebola virus is reported here. Jody Gonzalez, emergency management coordinator for the county, said staff members have been reviewing guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention since August.

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Festival celebrates Aubrey’s peanut farming past

AUBREY — Roy Lantrip, 74, knows a thing or two about farming. Like many Aubrey residents, he farmed peanuts with good buddy Doyce Looper, who died a few years back at the age of 81.

Woman gets aid to fight cancer

Tonight’s Dig For the Cure volleyball benefit in Aubrey will support a school district administrator who is fighting a second bout with cancer.

The Dallas Morning News

Crash probe to take time

As remembrances for four members of the North Central Texas College softball team continue, those investigating the team bus’ collision with an 18-wheeler Friday night in Oklahoma describe a process that will take weeks, if not months.

AP

No sign of truck braking in crash

The tractor-trailer that collided with a bus and killed four members of the North Central Texas College women’s softball team drove straight through an interstate median without any signs of braking or trying to avoid the collision, federal investigators said Sunday.

Les Cockrell: Aubrey’s fest will put peanut on a pedestal

“Keep Aubrey Nutty” is the theme of the 29th annual peanut festival planned on Saturday in downtown Aubrey.

Four die in crash

Softball players Grace Blagg and Emily Gibbons had just reached the North Central Texas College campus in Gainesville on Friday night when news of what happened to their teammates started spreading.

Denton County to spray in light of West Nile mosquito

A third West Nile virus positive pool, this one west of Sanger, has been discovered. Denton County Health Department officials announced another three-night bout of ground spraying for the area late Wednesday.

County meeting heats up

Denton County commissioners got a bit chippy with each other Tuesday morning concerning the reappointment of Mike Nowels to the North Texas Tollway Authority board.

Board weighs site for school

Future planning is on the Denton school board agenda tonight. The board is slated to consider the location for its 23rd elementary school and amend the guaranteed maximum price for comprehensive High School No. 4.

Rest of year could be rainy

It looks like it could be a wetter than normal fall and winter for North Texas, according to meteorologists who claim El Niño is brewing in the eastern Pacific.

Knack for apps

Thirteen-year-old Preston Parks has never been the athletic type, his mother Hope said. Computers, video games and entrepreneurial aspirations are more his speed, she said.

Les Cockrell: Tractor revivalists to show antique implements

The Denton County Antique Tractor, Farm Equipment and Primitives Club will have its annual fall meeting and picnic from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Les Cockrell: Benefit auction set this morning

A silent auction and a five-week grief support group are among upcoming events announced by VNA Ann’s Haven.

Reigning in reining

AUBREY — Yellow Jersey looks like a champion as he performs in the arena. Muscles firm and thick, a sleek tan coat, a blond mane and a tail that flows with his graceful movements as he spins, slides forward, moves backward as if he were dancing to music only he can hear.

Flu season prep work underway

Flu season is on the horizon and Denton County health officials are keeping an eye on vaccine supplies and finalizing plans for an awareness and prevention campaign.

Event drums up funds

More than 80 nonprofit agencies in Denton County will take part in Thursday’s North Texas Giving Day.

Les Cockrell: Mighty words to be read aloud for Constitution Day

The Benjamin Lyon Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution will sponsor a public reading of the U.S. Constitution at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Courthouse on the Square in Denton.

Aubrey ISD names Jones as interim Early Bird principal

AUBREY — The Aubrey school district this week named Delore Jones interim principal for its Early Bird Learning Center. Jones will serve in the position through the first semester.

Local schools commemorate Sept. 11

Steven Scher, assistant band director at Krum High School, was a ninth-grader at Lawrence High School in Cedarhurst, N.Y., on Long Island on Sept. 11, 2001. It was the fifth day of school and he was sitting in his second-period world history class. He said he remembers not paying attention that day, instead looking out the classroom window. Scher said the view was the airspace above New York City.