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Commissioners to address PJC’s proposed expansion Monday at 9 a.m.

in Lamar County/Paris Junior College by

Lamar County Commissioners will meet Monday, Oct. 10 at 9 a.m. to discuss a possible resolution supporting Paris Junior College’s expansion of its taxing district to include all of Lamar County.

PJC’s tax district is currently limited to the Paris city limits and the old Cunningham school district, a small area in the southeastern part of the county.

Community colleges rely mainly on property taxes from their district, tuition/fees, and funds from the state to operate, and PJC has one of the smallest tax districts out of the 50 community colleges in the state.

In a recent interview with KETR, PJC President Dr. Pamela Anglin said tuition is right at the state average.

“If you look at the surrounding community colleges, we have some (where) tuition is lower than ours. So there is that point that we really can’t go any higher,” Anglin said.

The clearest benefit from voting yes would be the decrease in tuition for residents in the county.

Those who live in the county could expect to add $85 a year to thier property taxes for every $100,000 their home is valued at.

At the same time, however, tuition would drop from $100 per credit hour to the in-district rate of $55 per credit hour, ideally making PJC more affordable to Lamar County residents.

What that looks like on paper

Students from outside the tax district pay $300 in tuition for a 3 semester credit hour course while in-district students pay $165 for the same course, based on literature provided by PJC.

According to an economic impact study completed by Economic Modeling Specialists International in 2014, Paris Junior College employed 485 people in 2012-13. During this same time, enrolled more than 10,000 students in total.

Commissioner’s Court is a public meeting, and therefore the public can come to express their opinions on any agenda items or other county issues.

Citizens of Lamar County can voice their support or concerns by attending at 9 a.m. or calling their commissioners. Contact information can be found here, and you can determine which precinct you reside in by using this map.

For background reading, click through to the following articles:

  1. PJC’s 2015 report (Paris Junior College)
  2. PJC Fact Sheet Summer 2016 (Paris Junior College)
  3. PJC’s annexation fact sheet (Paris Junior College)
  4. PJC eyes taxing district election (Herald Banner July 2016)
  5. New Paris Junior College taxing district?  (KSST July 2016)
  6. Anglin: PJC threatened if tax district vote fails (Herald Banner August 2016)
  7. PJC Tax Annexation Interview with Dr. Pam Anglin (KSST August 2016)
  8. PJC’s new proposed tax rate is confusing (Sulphur Springs News Telegram September 2016)
  9. Voters to decide on PJC property tax question (KETR September 2016)

Also on the agenda:

  • Receive an update on repairs to Lamar County Courthouse and county property
  • Public hearing and decision on 2016-17 annual county clerk records management and archive plan that will call for the continuation of a $10 filing fee
  • Allowing Reverend Rodney C. Slaughter and other community leaders to use courthouse parking lot to conduct a “Community Revival” to promote peace, understanding, and good will in our area
  • A potential contract with RWCS Janitorial Services
  • A potential contract with Northweast Texas Pest Control
  • Line-item transfers for various county offices

PJC’s production of “The Giver” opens to the public tonight at 7:30

in Events/Paris Junior College by

The Paris Junior College Drama Department is getting ready to kick off this year’s theater season with showings of The Giver beginning Thursday, Oct. 6 through Sunday, Oct. 9. and stars Saveuyon Brown as The Giver and Caleb Curtis as Jonas.

The Giver is based on the Newbery Award-winning novel of the same name by Lois Lowry.

“(The play) is a very close translation of the book,” said director Robyn Huizinga, who is PJC’s Technical Director and Instructor of Speech and Drama.

The Giver is set in something like a dystopian future, Huizinga said, where everyone has given up choice.

“They’ve given up every little thing- like color. There’s no more sunlight. Everything is artificially climate controlled. They live in this very controlled, orderly society and everyone has a place,” she said.

At the age of 12, children are assigned a job that they’ll perform for nearly the rest of their lives.

The story follows a protagonist named Jonas, who is assigned to be, ‘The Receiver of Memory.’ He goes to meet ‘The Giver’ who gives him all of the memories of the entire world.

“They’re the only two people in the world that understand anything beyond The Community itself,” Huizinga said, explaining the disconnect between the world now and the world before.

The first memory transmission from The Giver, played by Saveuyon Brown (right) to Jonas, played by Caleb Curtis (left) is of snowfall. (Courtesy photo)

While Jonas and the Giver are the only two who understand the pleasantries of holidays, family, and love, they’re also the only ones who know of the terror of warfare, hunger, and poverty that plagued the world in the past, Huizinga said.

“No one else in The Community had experienced anything tragic like that,” Saveuyon Brown said, “because it’s a community of ‘Sameness’– a utopia where people don’t feel anything.”

Jonas struggles with the gravity of the new emotions bestowed upon him in this drab, emotionless world, and is left with questions about the nature of society’s existence. He takes the audience with him through these woes as he must make a choice in a world without choices.

Huizinga said they’re hearing positive things from the students who saw The Giver earlier this week, with one who said she enjoyed how closely the play follows the story of the book.

The Giver is required reading for many elementary and middle school students, but Brown said that it’s a play for the whole family.

“Anyone who is a fan of the book– or the movie– can (come) see the actual production brought to life in front of them,” Brown said.

The cast of “The Giver,” gets ready for a production for middle school students on Tuesday. (Courtesy photo)

The Cast

  • The Giver: Saveuyon Brown
  • Jonas: Caleb Curtis
  • Father: Adrian Hobbs
  • Mother: Crystal Lanece Finney
  • Lily: Brenna Mills
  • Asher: Carlton Bell
  • Fiona: Eden Godwin
  • Chief Elder: Sarah Stogner-Dickinson
  • Rosemary: Amber Nelms
  • Announcer: Eric Shelton
  • Voice: Donna Massoud
  • Ensemble: Kaleya Davis, Gary Dodd, Danbri Erwin, Diana Godsell, James Greer, and Kala Vickers

The Crew

  • Stage Manager: Heather Collins
  • Assistant Stage Manager: Kierra Miller
  • Light Design/ME: Cameron Beshirs
  • Light Board Operator: Antavius Draghn
  • Sound Board Operator: Alex Greer
  • Spot Light Operator: Ethan Brown
  • House Manager: Raven Maxwell
  • House Crew: Ashley Palmer and Mieshea Green; Running Crew: Michael Gunter, Cameron Beshirs, Danbri Erwin, Diana Godsell, Kaleya Davis, James Greer, Gary Dodd, Kala Vickers, Sarah Stogner-Dickinson, Donna Massoud, and Eric Shelton
  • Makeup Design: Sarah Stogner-Dickinson
  • Makeup Crew: Danbri Erwin
  • Costume Design: Paula Vaughan
  • Costume Construction: Celia Stogner, Kaye Weist, and William Walker
  • Set Design: Robyn Huizinga
  • Set Construction by the Stagecraft I Class, Theater Practicum Class, and members of Delta Psi Omega

If you go

  • Admission is $15 for the public and free for students, faculty, and staff with a current PJC ID.
  • The show starts at 7:30 p.m each night Thursday through Saturday with a matinee at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
  • It will be at the Ray E. Kerrar Theater, which is just inside the main entrance at PJC. (2400 Clarksville Street)
  • Tickets will be available at the door
  • To reserve tickets in advance– or for additional information– email
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