The second half of 2013 was marked by a tragic downtown fire, the naming of the Palestine Area Chamber of Commerce's Citizen of the Year, the Hot Pepper Festival and the city of Palestine's annual holiday celebration.
Some of the other newsmakers during the second six months of 2012 included:
3 — Officials with AAA report a drop in fuel prices just in time for summer vacation, at about $3.21 per gallon locally for regular unleaded gasoline.
3 — A Palestine food ministry director reports an increased need for food among Anderson County families, serving 245 families — up from the 210 average — the week before.
5 — Law enforcement officials warn citizens to be aware of a phone phishing scam targeting PC users, where “phishers” gain access to a computer and then can install or will get the computer’s owner to install malicious software that could capture sensitive data.
7 — Two Palestine men were arrested and a third man was being sought for their role in the burglary of an Elkhart residence in late June. A neighbor contacted law enforcement while witnessing the three suspects attempting to steal a washing machine from a yard on ACR 174 near Elkhart.
8 — The Palestine City Council unanimously approved raises for the city’s police force, including 4 percent raise for patrol officers and cadets; a just over 1 percent raise for corporals and sergeants; and a 1 percent raise to lieutenants.
9 — Texas conservative Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Pauken spoke to the Anderson County-Palestine Texas Tea Party/Citizens for the Constitution during a stop in Palestine about his plan to form a grassroots campaign for governor, touching upon the need for more vocational education for students, border issues and term limits for state officials.
9 – The Palestine Hospitality Association met to discuss their desire to see city officials get serious about attracting tourism dollars to Palestine – especially sports tourism dollars – and supporting the Texas State Railroad.