By Kent Brunette
From The Pages Of The December 21, 2005
Hearne Democrat Newspaper
If you see Randy Werner around town, make sure to thank him for all of his efforts to get
Union Pacific to clean some of its rights of ways through Hearne. A longtime UP employee and
Robertson County resident, Randy is responsible for bringing a bulldozer to clean both sides of
UP’s east/west tracks from Shear’s Liquor on the west to San Jose Street and beyond on the
This bulldozer and its operator, Chris Phillips, have been on the ground in Hearne for
almost two weeks now. The areas behind Dollar General, Brookshire Brothers, U.S. Post Office,
and Stark Truss have already been cleared and are awaiting debris removal.
When working to the west of the post office last week, Chris had to jump ship after a
swarm of bees emerged from a rotting crosstie to attack him and his dozer. This past Saturday,
Chris started cleaning areas along the Old Franklin Highway.
In Chris’ aftermath, city crews are using the Daewoo and dump trucks to load-up and
haul-off the considerable number of trees and other debris being created. City crews also
removed several unused and unsightly poles near where Fulton/Cedar Street crosses the tracks.
These efforts were in addition to the city’s house demolition activities on the north side of town.
A Better Hearne Project crew has been doing some finishing work alongside UP and city
crews. The BHP crew is cleaning out the cyclone fence line next to the old Hearne Lumber Yard
and the drainage ditch adjacent to the old County Barn. Both of these sites are slated for major
clean-ups after the first of the year. The BHP also recently shredded several acres out at the
Camp Hearne WWII POW Camp site.
Fred Burton, head of vegetation control for UP in this area, was recently in town meeting
with local officials. It is hoped that Fred will be able to obtain additional UP resources for other
local clean-up projects on railroad properties.
On a separate track, a formal proposal is being readied for submission to senior UP
officials. This proposal seeks to have UP deed to the Hearne 4A Sales Tax Board all UP
properties in Hearne that are not being actively used by UP for railroad purposes. This would
make it much easier for prospective businesses to either purchase or lease local railroad
Of particular interest are six UP-owned properties stretching along UP’s east/west
railroad tracks from Alamo Street on the west to San Jose Street on the east. These properties
are being considered for possible inclusion in a downtown Hearne industrial park. This park
would be suitable for small companies and light industrial use.
All of the railroad properties in Hearne were originally given to UP’s predecessor railroads
by the Hearne family to start the town. If UP is not currently using these properties or is leasing
them for next to nothing, why not return ownership to Hearne?
Robertson County’s burn ban is still in effect. This burn ban applies to all unincorporated
areas of the county. The City of Hearne has an ordinance which prohibits burning. Since this
ordinance is in effect year-round, it is illegal to burn leaves or anything else in the Hearne city
limits at any time.
The city’s burn pile off of Vaughn Lane is outside the Hearne city limits. Thus, it is in an
unincorporated area of the county. The city, however, has been granted permission from the
county to use the burn pile to incinerate trees and other wooden debris. This burning will be done
in a controlled environment, with city workers and machinery on-site, and with the fire department
In recent months, there have been a large number of fires out at Camp Hearne, Hearne
Industrial Park, and Hearne Municipal Airport. A deliberately lit fire or a carelessly discarded
cigarette on a windy day not only stresses volunteer firefighters but also threatens to ignite fires
which could result in deaths / injuries or destroy homes / other valuable property. If you witness
any suspicious behavior in this area, please call the Hearne Police Department at 979.279.5333
to report your observations.
After we get some rain and the county burn ban is lifted, the Camp Hearne site will likely
be control burned. This will occur only after the area has been sectioned-off and properly
prepared. Crews will be standing by on-site to extinguish any errant flames. These areas are
being cleared in anticipation of an April 2006 Camp Hearne historic marker dedication.
Dr. Marc Catalina, Hearne Chamber President, wishes to thank everyone for coming out
and participating in last week’s Christmas Parade. He especially wishes to thank Christmas
Parade planning committee members Sandy Loftus, Meredith Keeling, and Sylvia Montelongo for
their efforts as well as emcee Tim Willett from Stark Truss. Local businessman Derek Scott
served as this year’s Christmas Parade Grand Marshall.
Pam Long, manager of Hearne’s Oak Tree Inn, and James Shear, owner of Custom S
Lawn & Tree Service, are the two newest members of the Hearne Chamber of Commerce board
Pam and James join Dr. Marc Catalina (Hearne Chiropractic Clinic), Brad Ely (Edward
Jones), Derek Scott (Derek Scott’s Auto Park), Ben Luster (Brookshire Brothers), Sylvia
Montelongo (AMA’s Restaurant), Sandy Loftus (Robertson County Printing), Meredith Keeling
(DK Land Company), Marie Coe (First Victoria Bank), Joe David Scarpinato (First State Bank), &
David Deaver (Hearne ISD) on the twelve-member chamber board.
The Hearne City Council recently appointed Joyce (Mrs. Waymon) Richardson as the
newest member of Hearne’s 4A Sales Tax Board. Joyce joins Dr. Tracy Varvel, Cathy Lazarus,
Jim Davis, and Angel Ramirez on the five-member 4A board.
Hearne’s 4A Sales Tax Board has approved engaging Jeff Moore as a technical legal
resource on an as-needed basis. A lawyer who formerly worked in the Texas Attorney General’s
office, Jeff is now in private practice. Since he helped write and interpret many of Texas’
economic development laws, Jeff is a recognized expert in the field. On a case-by-case basis,
Jeff will advise Hearne’s 4A & 4B Sales Tax Boards on whether expenditures for proposed
projects are permissible or non-permissible under Texas law.
Hearne’s Economic Development Director (yours truly) recently spent the day in Austin
attending a legislatively-mandated Sales Tax Training for Economic Development officials.
Information obtained at this training will appear in future Crossroads Reports.
Crossroads Report appears periodically in the Hearne Democrat. Reports are archived
at www.hearnetexas.info. Click on the “Crossroads Report” link to view past reports.
Send comments or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org or 304 S. Market Street.
The views expressed in this report are those of the author & do not necessarily reflect the views
of Hearne’s 4A & 4B Sales Tax Boards or the Hearne Chamber of Commerce.