SCHOOL INSURANCE NEWSLETTER

June 0608:43 AM
 

For schools in the first two counties from the Gulf the Property insurance news has been good. We have seen mostly rate discounts up to 10% with improvements in coverage. And just this week we received a renewal for a Dallas area district with a 14% Property rate reduction and a 6% Casualty increase. view article arw

Before dawn on a fall day in 2022, Texas air analysts approached a mobile monitoring van parked on the edge of Odessa in West Texas. They were hit with the stench of rotten eggs, the telltale sign of hydrogen sulfide. The invisible poisonous gas had seeped in, saturating the van. Breathing it in, the state workers grew sick: racing heartbeats, headaches, nausea. Their equipment had picked up what internal notes later would call “insanely high” levels of gas in the neighborhood. The analysts fled. view article arw

Tomball ISD says vandals caused significant damage to Creekside Park Junior High, forcing the board of trustees to pass a motion for the superintendent to execute a contract for emergency repairs in order for the school to be ready for the upcoming school year. view article arw

The latest rounds of storms that have swept through East Texas early Wednesday morning has led to further power outages and continues to complicate restoration efforts. Smith County emergency personnel responded to 27 weather-related calls over night after the latest storms. A shelter remains open in Bullard for people who have suffered property damage and/or power outages. Bullard Intermediate School, located at 218 School House Road, is open for those who need a place to go. Electrical providers have struggled to restore and maintain customers power on throughout the relentless weather events the past couple of weeks. At last check, providers in East Texas were reporting over 80,000 outages, the majority of which are coming out of Smith County. view article arw

Element Fuel Holdings LLC is spending between $3 and $4 billion on the project, which will produce more than 160,000 barrels per day of gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel from shale oil production, according to a report by the Houston Business Journal.  "Since no one's built a refinery in 50 years, there's probably a better way to do it. Let's optimize it," Element Fuels founder and co-CEO John Calce told the business outlet.    The refinery will be located in the Port of Brownsville and constructed in three phases. The first construction phase includes building a naphtha hydrotreater and reformer, which is expected to be operational by 2027. Element will also build a power plant that uses hydrogen and natural gas to produce energy and include carbon capture and storage to reduce the facility's carbon footprint.  view article arw

The Texas Legislature created the court last year, with proponents saying it would increase efficiency and opponents arguing that it was an effort by Republicans to circumvent Democrat-dominated courts. view article arw

The Jefferson ISD Board of Trustees recently chose to table a proposal on student UIL insurance bids in an effort to ensure coverage meets the district’s needs. The presentation of insurance bids with regards to students who are participating in UIL events as given by the JISD Business Manager Michael Wood at a regularly held school board meeting on May 14. The companies who provided bids included Health Special Risk (HSR), Texas Kids First, and Monarch Management/Players Health. view article arw

Belton ISD confirmed to KWTX that some of their facilities sustained damage from the May 22 storms. The district says their biggest concern is addressing roof damage and water leaks. Additionally, Belton ISD says fences, outdoor lights, rooftop HVAC systems and outdoor equipment were impacted by strong winds. Repairs have begun on the most immediate needs and Belton ISD says it will take weeks to work through the repair process. view article arw

Severe storms lashed through Central Texas on Wednesday, May 22, causing damage across the area in places like Temple, Belton, Killeen and more, and leaving many communities without power. Several local school districts have announced closures and changes in the aftermath of the storms. view article arw

Strong winds like those in Houston can strike anywhere. The whole state needs stricter building codes and a more reliable electric grid. view article arw

Dozens of Houston ISD schools remain closed Tuesday as more than 124,000 people were still without power days after Thursday’s deadly storm. Follow along below for live updates on the aftermath of the storm. Here's a recap of Monday's coverage. To support our journalism, please consider subscribing to the Chronicle. view article arw

At least four people were killed and much of the state’s largest city was brought to a standstill. Crews are racing to restore power and remove debris. view article arw

Trump told a reporter in Texas this weekend that Paxton is “a very talented guy.” view article arw

Severe storms tore through the Houston area Thursday evening, causing widespread damage, killing at least four people and leaving hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses without power. Gale force winds up to 100 mph knocked over power lines, blew out windows and toppled trees throughout the region. Houston Office of Emergency Management spokesperson Brent Taylor said officials will begin the recovery process once debris and damage are cleared. In the meantime, Houston Mayor John Whitmire and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo urged residents to avoid all unnecessary travel. The storm ravaged Harris County — from transmission towers crushed in suburban Cypress to stricken oak trees blockading traffic to high-rise windows shattered throughout downtown Houston. Here’s a look at some of the damage wrought, reported by Houston Landing: view article arw

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo says it could take “weeks” for power to be restored in some parts of Houston following fierce storms with winds of up to 100 miles per hour.  HOUSTON (AP) — Power outages could last weeks in parts of Houston, an official warned Friday, after thunderstorms with hurricane-force winds tore through the city, knocking out electricity to nearly 1 million homes and businesses in the region, blowing out windows on downtown high rises and flipping vehicles.The National Weather Service said it confirmed a tornado with peak winds of 110 mph (177 kph) touched down near the northwest Houston suburb of Cypress in Harris County.  Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, the county’s top elected official, said crews were still trying to determine the extent of the damage and the number of casualties from Thursday's storms. Houston Mayor John Whitmire said four people, and possibly five, had died.  The story has been updated to correct that school districts across the Houston area canceled classes Friday, not just the Houston Independent School District, and also the spelling of Cypress. view article arw

We hope this message finds you well. We regret to inform you that Lomax Elementary is still experiencing a power outage. Consequently, all students and staff are asked not to report to the campus on Monday, May 20.  We understand the disruption this may cause and are working diligently to restore power as soon as possible. We will keep the Lomax Elementary community updated with any new information regarding the restoration of power to the campus. Thank you for your patience and understanding.   read more arw

HARRIS COUNTY — After the floodwaters earlier this month just about swallowed two of the six homes that 60-year-old Tom Madigan owns on the San Jacinto River, he didn’t think twice about whether to fix them. He hired people to help, and they got to work stripping the walls, pulling up flooring and throwing out water-logged furniture. What Madigan didn’t know: The Harris County Flood Control District wants to buy his properties as part of an effort to get people out of dangerously flood-prone areas. Back-to-back storms drenched southeast Texas in late April and early May, causing flash flooding and pushing rivers out of their banks and into low-lying neighborhoods. Officials across the region urged people in vulnerable areas to evacuate. view article arw

Many schools across the Houston area are closed Friday after a severe thunderstorm left a trail of destruction through the Houston region Thursday evening. At least four people are dead and hundreds of thousands of people are still without power. Here are the latest updates. view article arw

Celina City Council members denied a request to rezone 1 acre on the outskirts of downtown for a My Swim Buddy swim school during a May 14 meeting. The school would be located on Malone Street, which is in a unique position due to its proximity to downtown, Director of Development Andy McAfee said. The land is also surrounded by both existing and planned development, including Celina ISD properties and an incoming mixed-use neighborhood. view article arw

Houston ISD closed all campuses on Friday, May 17 due to the widespread damage across the city. Schools will reopen on Monday, May 20th In addition, Spring Branch, Cy-Fair and Sheldon Independent School districts announced they will cancel classes Friday as a result of the storms. "HISD has coordinated with the City of Houston and is closing all campuses Friday, May 17," an email from the district read.   In addition, Spring Branch, Cy-Fair and Sheldon Independent School districts announced they will cancel classes Friday as a result of the storms.  "HISD has coordinated with the City of Houston and is closing all campuses Friday, May 17," an email from the district read. view article arw

Due to weather-related power outages, the Katy Independent School District (Katy ISD) will close several storm-damaged campuses today, Friday, May 17. In a press release distributed late Thursday night, the school district said that students, staff, and families assigned to these schools or student support facilities should refrain from reporting to the buildings. view article arw

The Houston Independent School District canceled school Friday due to the deadly and destructive storms that tore through the Houston area Thursday. "Due to the widespread damage across Houston, HISD has coordinated with the city of Houston and is closing all campuses Friday, May 17," the district said in a statement. "Schools will reopen Monday, May 20." view article arw

Tornado warnings were issued Thursday amid damaging wind and rain. Severe storms caused widespread damage throughout the Houston area Thursday evening, with the destruction ranging from downed trees and power lines to blown out office building windows in Downtown. view article arw

Every April, Bill Read starts preparing his League City home for hurricane season. “It’s an occupational hazard,” he jokes. Until 2012, Read was the director of the National Hurricane Center. Even in retirement, he trains meteorologists every year at the National Tropical Weather Conference in South Padre Island. That conference takes place in early April, two months before the start of the Atlantic hurricane season. “That gets the spark going, and I’ll just go through my mind: What are the things that I need to get done this year?” view article arw

Another wet Sunday in Houston could see the formation of tornados in the area, according to National Weather Service (NWS) reports.  A Tornado Watch was issued by national meteorologists on Sunday afternoon for portions of Southeast Texas and the southwestern heel of Louisiana, including Lake Charles. The alerted region could see "a couple" potential tornados, as well as scattered hail up to two inches in size. Residents may also witness 70-mph wind gusts nearing the strength of a Category 1 hurricane on Sunday as severe storms move west to east across Texas. view article arw

A bridge over the Trinity River in Romayor is closed after it buckled and collapsed in a washout. According to the Liberty Vindicator web site, FM 787 was closed early Monday because of a washout on the west side of the bridge, which collapsed in the same area Tuesday morning. view article arw

Even Mayor John Whitmire said "I wish all the school districts would realize if you don't have basic services, you can't study."  In the wake of last week's catastrophic storm, in which the death toll is still rising and over 200,000 citizens are still without power, several Houston ISD schools reopened on Monday despite problems with air conditioning and food service. view article arw

HOUSTON (AP) — Floodwaters in the Houston area and parts of Southeast Texas began to recede on Monday, allowing residents to begin returning to their homes and assess damages after days of heavy rainfall that pummeled the area and led to hundreds of rescues — including people who were stranded on rooftops. While officials in Harris County, where Houston is located, reported no deaths or major injuries from the flooding, Gov. Greg Abbott said there were at least three deaths in the state. Among those killed was a 4-year-old boy in North Texas who died after riding in a car that was swept away in fast waters. After days of heavy rainfall in the Houston area and other parts of Southeast Texas, Monday’s weather was dominated by mostly sunny skies and little if any rain. view article arw

Though recent rainfall is tracking above last year's totals for this time of year, the threat of wildfire remains a concern among officials as summertime conditions approach. In a joint press conference, Williamson County Emergency Services and Texas A&M Forest Service officials discussed strategies to prepare for this year's wildfire season. “Right now our seasonal outlooks for wildfire activity this summer, especially into the fall, is showing at normal. Of course, normal [in Texas] being that we are expecting some wildfires. Everything that is growing right now will eventually dry out later this year when the rain stops,” said Kari Hines, a spokesperson for Texas A&M Forest Service. view article arw

HOUSTON (AP) - High waters flooded neighborhoods around Houston on Saturday following heavy rains that have already resulted in crews rescuing more than 400 people from homes, rooftops and roads engulfed in murky water. Others prepared to evacuate their property. A wide region was swamped from Houston to rural East Texas, where game wardens rode airboats through waist-high waters rescuing both people and pets who did not evacuate in time. One crew brought a family and three dogs aboard as rising waters surrounded their cars and home. A flood watch was in effect through Sunday afternoon, as forecasters predicted additional rainfall Saturday night and the likelihood of major flooding.

Texans can expect more 100-degree days and longer wildfire seasons in the coming years, according to a new report from the state climatologist at Texas A&M University. Rising temperatures will also exacerbate severe weather conditions from droughts to strong rainstorms and flooding. State climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon used historic weather data to forecast climate trends through 2036—the year Texas turns 200—and beyond. The April 22 report is an update to information released in 2021. What you need to know In 2036, average temperatures in Texas are expected to be 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than averages from 1991-2020, researchers predict. view article arw

Dozens of families are dealing with the aftermath of high water getting into their homes. Channelview, at the mouth of the San Jacinto River, saw flooding over the weekend, but finally the water level is going down. The local school district is trying to help students and their siblings and parents recover from the disaster by canceling classes Monday. view article arw

4-year-old dies after being swept away in North Texas flood waters texas JOHNSON COUNTY — A 4-year-old child died after being swept away by flood waters Sunday morning. According to Johnson County Emergency Management, someone called 911 around 2 a.m. to report a car that was stuck in swift-moving water. The caller saw two adults and a young boy try to get out of the car and get to dry land. But all three were swept into the flood waters. Johnson County Emergency Management director Jamie Moore rushed to the scene off CR 528 in rural Johnson County. Police, fire and other first responders searched for the victims through the night. A man and woman were found around 5 a.m. and taken to a local hospital but the 4-year-old was found dead two hours later. view article arw

Dozens of evacuees, including the elderly and barefoot children, crowded in an old school building Friday, praying for clear skies on Monday.  LIVINGSTON — Clinton Jones looked across the emergency shelter Friday. His children were going stir crazy. His wife, Samantha, and mother-in-law, Lee Farrell, were making the best of the cots and blankets they received from the Red Cross. The 27-year-old’s family was one of thousands who fled their Southeast Texas homes as heavy rains saturated land in multiple counties and filled lakes and streams. An unknown total of homes, businesses and other property has been damaged this week by unrelenting storms stretching across Polk, Montgomery, Harris and other counties.  Thunderstorms will wrack the region throughout Saturday, and showers are likely on Sunday, according to the National Weather Service. Conditions along the Trinity River, which runs through Polk County, have become too dangerous for first responders to access, according to Polk County Emergency Management. Flooding has begun to encroach on subdivisions surrounding the lake to the East and West, evacuation crews began making their final calls for people seeking assistance. view article arw