Gates and Markowitz square off again for House District 28

In January, Republican Gary Gates defeated Democrat Eliz Markowitz in a special election for the position of state representative for House District 28. The vacancy was left by Rep. John Zerwas midterm, which opened the position again for this November. The two candidates are now running against each other for the same seat nine months later.

Both candidates participated in a question and answer series on their respective opinions on issues facing the district.

Tell us a little about yourself. What made you decide to run for House District 28?

Gates: This community has given me so much; I founded my business here and raised my family here; I want to do what I can to give back. Shortly after I was elected, COVID-19 began to devastate Texas, and Fort Bend County was on the front lines. We had the first case in the state. As businesses shut down and seniors were told to stay in, I went to work contacting residents to connect them with the information and resources they needed. We reached out to over 30,000 people and distributed care packets to over 15,000 residents here in Fort Bend

Together, we are weathering the storm, but COVID-19 will not be the last challenge we face. I want to help our community be prepared for what lies ahead and give our families and the next generation every chance to succeed.

Markowitz: I’m a Fort Bend County native with an educational background in computer science, business, healthcare, and education and a professional background in all of the aforementioned fields. I believe that my diverse educational and professional background provides me with a unique perspective on the issues that are most concerning to the constituents of HD 28 and Fort Bend County. I previously ran for the Texas State Board of Education because I wanted to work to improve Texas public schools. While running, I heard about all the challenges that face Texans beyond education, such as healthcare, economic development, criminal justice reform, disaster management and school safety. I also learned that Texans want an honest representative that will conduct herself with integrity and work to improve the lives of all Texans—not just a select few.

I am running because I believe that this district deserves a representative who puts the well-being of people over personal power or prestige and treats every individual with respect and dignity. I am ready to put forth whatever it takes to win this election and ensure that we elect individuals with honesty and integrity who are willing to work for a more equitable Texas.

You’ve both mentioned that education reform is among your top priorities for the district. What are some of the things you would work to change, and what is your plan for enacting those changes?

Markowitz: The pivotal role of our public education system has come to the forefront over the past year, and we must revamp the way

Read more

Idaho Botanical Garden to keep gates open after successful fundraiser

The nonprofit launched a membership and donation campaign to raise $150,000 to keep the garden operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.

BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho Botanical Garden will get to keep its gates open after exceeding its fundraising goal.

On August 1st, the nonprofit launched a membership and donation campaign to raise money to keep the garden operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Their goal was to raise $150,000, and as of September 1st, the garden raised $182,485.

“Over the past couple of weeks, we have been awestruck by support from our community,” said Executive Director Erin Anderson. “Garden memberships are on the rise, donations large and small have been coming in daily, and our Garden community has gone out of their way to get the word out! Thank you, Treasure Valley!”

The pandemic impacted every one of the garden’s programs including admissions, memberships, weddings, field trips, concerts, and education programs that make up their annual revenue. 

With the 2020 Outlaw Field Summer Concert Series canceled, the garden has significantly decreased the capacity of remaining education programs and signature events. Without local tourism, the admissions are at a 13-year low.

You can still support the Idaho Botanical Garden by donating, becoming a member or visiting the garden.

Source Article

Read more

Garden Gates

There are many different fence and gate designs that you can place in your landscape plan. Which you choose depends on two main factors – the design of the surrounding area and the function the gate (and fence) is to perform. In many places, the type of fence and gate you can set up has already been established and there are covenants in place to protect the look of a neighborhood. In some areas, fences and gates are not allowed. But in others, it comes down to individual choice.

There are also a lot of secondary factors to consider. Is the gate intended to keep children in or other people’s animals out of the yard? Will the gate serve as an inviting entry to your property? Will the gate get heavy use, or will it be used only occasionally?

A gate to keep small children inside a fence needs to be sufficiently solid, or made of mesh, so that an adventurous toddler cannot squeeze through or beneath it. Latches should be out of reach. However, if security is not a requirement a more open gate, perhaps of wrought iron, will admit air and light and allow visitors to see through to the property beyond.

Gates should be in keeping with the wall or fence in which they are hung. Thus, a timber gate works well in a timber fence and a picket fence needs a gate that is also made of pickets, to add to its charm. Timber, wrought iron, and aluminum are commonly used materials and gates of various dimensions can be purchased ready-made from many different suppliers if you don’t want to make it yourself. A recycled gate from a demolition yard can be used to good effect within a garden – perhaps to divide a “wild” area of the garden from one that has a more structured appearance.

Gates that get a lot of use need to be well made and at least as strong as the fence. Hinges and latches should be of good quality and the appropriate size if they are to last for some time. Latches should be simple to use, so visitors are not left puzzling as to how to enter your property and if necessary, can open the gate easily with one hand while carrying packages with the other.

Self-opening, automatic double gates are a luxury item that aren’t generally part of most landscape designs. However, if you live in a neighborhood where they are appropriate, you will find them available in a huge range of materials from bronze and copper to wrought iron and aluminum with designs ranging from simple and modern through to ornate and classical to suit the architectural style of your home. They can be opened by simple key pads or from elaborate remote controls. Such gates need to be mounted by a specialist to ensure they work smoothly.

Aside from all the necessary structural factors, garden gates and fences should also be considered as part of the …

Read more