Dear editor:

The cutting and removal of the old growth live oak trees, just outside the city limits of Rockport, in the public right of way on FM 1069, between Eller Lane and FM 1781, is nearing completion.

TxDOT directed the removal of these trees to facilitate adding three feet of pavement to each side of FM 1069, between SH 188 and FM 1781.

With a tape measure and some research on the internet, it appears these trees were already on their life journey before John Hancock signed the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776, were 100 years old when the Civil War began, and 200 years old when man first landed on the moon.

The lifespan of these trees was cut short last week, solely at the direction of TxDOT. The reason given for their removal was because they were within 30 feet of the pavement and they don’t want vehicles colliding with the trees.

Power poles and signs don’t appear to fall into this category.

Did anyone give any thought to installing a guardrail on the outer curve radius?

How about moving the centerline of the road three feet towards the inside radius, and adding six feet to the side where there are no trees?

It is too late to save these trees, they are gone forever, and their previous splendor is now in short chunks, and reside in the Aransas County dump.

I understand there is an ordinance inside the city limits of Rockport to avoid removal of old growth trees. Outside the city limits, there appears to be no restriction. Moving forward, I think we owe it to ourselves, and future generations, to at least have a rational discussion to explore potential options, before removal of old growth trees on public property.

Jon and Janet Gaskamp

Dear editor:

The new Visitor’s Guide that was included with my Pilot today is just fabulous!! I really like the glossy front and back covers.

I do want to tell you about two corrections. On page 33, the Fulton Schoolhouse Museum is not open at present due to the pandemic. Also, on page 28, for the December events, our committee will not have the Christmas Tour of Historic Homes, again due to the pandemic. We hope to have the tour in 2021.

Sincerely,

Kam Wagert

Dear editor:

I would like to give a very big hand to the people working at the elections office in Rockport.

I was an early voter, a couple of days after it started. I drove to the office on Concho and, as expected, a lot of cars there.  The line of voters was down to the street. Oh, groan, I’ll be here for an hour. I parked and stood in line. What an efficient group of employees there. One person was outside with us and checked IDs, etc. to make sure we had the proper information to vote.

The line moved fairly fast and two more helpers were inside checking us in. An extra window was open to take care of problems, so as not to clog the progress. Another kept us moving. Once in the room with the voting booths, two kept us going, one to give us our voting code, and another to keep us moving as soon as a booth was available.

Basically, it took less than a half hour and I was all done. What a nice surprise!

The folks at the Aransas County Elections Office are really organized to deal with the crowds of people voting and it shows. They also kept us social distanced and wearing masks, so I felt very safe.

Thank you elections people. You made my experience very pleasant and efficiently done.

Roberta Cox

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