Seminole/Gaines County News

Commissioners Approve 2016 County Tax Rolls

Gaines County Commissioners approved the 2016 tax roll for three different taxing funds by the entity as part of their regular, semi-monthly meeting held Monday morning at the Gaines County Courthouse.

For the 2016 calendar year, Gaines County was assessed a total taxable value of $2.865 billion by the Gaines County Appraisal District, which was a 31.6-percent decline in values compared to the 2015 calendar year.…

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TWC: Gaines’ Jobless Rate Remains 3.7-Percent for 4th Straight Month

Gaines County saw a slight decline in available workforce and employment numbers in the month of September 2016, but saw its jobless rate remain at 3.7-percent for a fourth straight month, according to a release of data by the Texas Workforce Commission on Friday.

Gaines’ 3.7-percent jobless rate, still considered as a “fully-employed” County by many economic insiders, remains the highest rate seen in the 2016 calendar year.…

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US rig count up 14 this week to 553; Texas gains 10

HOUSTON (AP) — The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by 14 this week to 553.

A year ago, 787 rigs were active. Depressed energy prices have sharply curtailed oil and gas exploration.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. said Friday that 443 rigs sought oil and 108 explored for natural gas this week.…

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Associated Press News

Child Protective Services chief: We need 550 more caseworkers

Amid increasing concerns that the state is regularly failing to protect endangered children, the Department of Family and Protective Services this week asked state leaders for $53.3 million to hire 550 additional staffers.

On Thursday, Department Commissioner Hank Whitman told state leaders in a letter that the agency is planning to hire a robust combination of caseworkers and investigators so that more children can be seen on time “and ensure that children who have sadly never been seen will finally be contacted.”

“Texas children remain at risk,” Whitman wrote.…

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AT&T’s $85.4B deal for Time Warner: A new bet on synergy

NEW YORK (AP) — AT&T’s $85.4 billion purchase of Time Warner represents a new bet on synergy between companies that distribute information and entertainment to consumers and those that produce it.

The acquisition would combine a telecom giant that owns a leading cellphone business, DirecTV and an internet service with the company behind HBO, CNN, and some of the world’s most popular entertainment, including “Game of Thrones,” the “Harry Potter” franchise and professional basketball.…

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NTSB to investigate bus crash that left 13 dead, 31 injured

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. (AP) — A maintenance crew had slowed down traffic on a California highway through the night, and the work had gone on for hours without problems. Then a tour bus returning to Los Angeles from a casino trip slammed into the back of a semi-truck. Passengers who were asleep on the bus woke up to loud screams and the sound of crushing metal.…

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Free News Briefs

‘Citizen,’ ‘Keenager’ Nominations Due Friday

Nominations for Seminole’s two top civic honors are being excepted through 5 p.m. this Friday afternoon by Seminole Area Chamber of Commerce officials ahead of their Wednesday, Nov. 16 Chamber Banquet.

According to Chamber officials, nominations for the group’s “Citizen of the Year” and “Keenager of the Year” awards are to be submitted, in writing, to the Chamber’s offices, located at 119 S.E.…

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CASA Seeking Seminole, Gaines County Volunteers

Officials with a West Texas division of a national child advocacy organization is again seeking local Gaines County volunteers to help assist representing foster care children within a seven county region — including in Gaines County — during what could be one of the more difficult times in those children’s lives.…

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NWS: Cold Front to Drop Thursday, Friday Daytime Temps

MIDLAND — Cooler temperatures will be experienced in the West Texas region today, as the week’s second cold front moved through the area overnight.

“It will be breezy and cooler areawide today,” said National Weather Service officials on their Midland regional website Thursday morning. “There is a chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly in and near the Davis Mountains.”

Locally, in Seminole, highs on Thursday were expected to be near 70 degrees, with a low Thursday evening around 41 degrees.…

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