County honored for innovative, money-saving juvenile defense program

GideonAwardFor immediate release Dec. 23, 2013

For media follow up, please contact Jim Fredricks at (936) 520-6098.

Montgomery County recently was honored by a state commission for its work to provide representation for indigent juvenile defendants, leading to reduced county costs for juvenile detention and better outcomes for the juveniles themselves, according to officials.
The Texas Indigent Defense Commission recently honored Montgomery County with its Gideon award; one of several local governments across Texas honored for meeting high standards for indigent defense. Counties are recognized based on how well their programs meet the principles of the Fair Defense Act and the American Bar Association’s Ten Principles of a Public Defense Delivery System.
Precinct 2 County Commissioner Craig Doyal was one of several county officials invited to go to Austin to receive the award. He was one of the members of the court who voted to launch the program nearly three years ago. Also present at the award presentation were 284th state District Judge Cara Wood, 359th state District Judge Kathleen Hamilton, County Court-at-Law No. 4 Judge Mary Ann Turner, Director of Juvenile Detention Ron Leach, Juvenile Board Member and Judge Olen Underwood, and attorneys Bill Patillo and Chris Allen, two of three attorneys with whom the county contracted for the service. The third attorney is Carolyn Atkinson.
The program, in which the county has contracted with three attorneys to provide legal representation to indigent juvenile defendants, has been good for both taxpayers and juveniles, said Doyal, a candidate for county judge in the GOP March primary in 2014.
“They’ve done a great job in representing the indigent youth of our county, and they’ve done it at great savings to the taxpayers,” Doyal said.
The Contract Defender attorneys provide representation for indigent juvenile defendants in Montgomery County. If the juvenile qualifies for appointed counsel, the program attorney is assigned prior to the detention hearing.
According to a press release from the commission, the contracted indigent defense program is a one-year contract approved by the Juvenile Board for the Montgomery County, and attorney fees are paid by Montgomery County. After the initial award of the contract in 2011, the same attorneys have been awarded the contract in the subsequent years.
But according to Doyal and officials familiar with the program, the county’s expenditure on the program has yielded taxpayers savings well in excess of the expense.
According to data from the county provided for the award submission, the number of days juveniles have spent at taxpayer expense in the county’s juvenile detention center has been drastically reduced.
A comparison of the detention data before and after the launch of the program shows that the average daily population of juveniles held in the detention center has decreased from 38 to 32.
During the same period, the number of bed days used has decreased by 5,529 days. The state average cost per bed day is $162 per day. Montgomery County’s average cost per bed day is $100 – significantly lower than the state average cost. At the $100 per bed day rate, the savings to Montgomery County for this 32-month comparison period is $552,900.
“They have done an exceptional job,” Doyal said.
Ron Leach, the county’s director of Juvenile Detention, said the program has benefits for not only taxpayers, but the juveniles themselves and the broader community.
“The key benefit is that you have three defense attorneys who are all board certified in juvenile law, and all three are former juvenile prosecutors; they have an established working relationship with the juvenile department,” Leach said.
“We’ve always had this approach that we’re all going to work together to help these juveniles.”
The contract defender program identifies indigent juveniles more quickly and pairs them with an attorney to establish a plan for supervision, thus helping get them in front of a judge more quickly and reducing the need for detention. By doing that, it connects juveniles more quickly also with the consequences of their action.
“It expedites getting the juveniles through the system; the more immediate the consequences are, the better the impact this is going to have.”
Chris Allen, one of the three attorneys board-certified in juvenile defense who work under the contract, said the program only makes sense.
“We’re representing kids at their initial detention hearing; that didn’t always occur in the past,” Allen said.
“Now that we’re on board and there is a lawyer who can put a game plan together with the family, we can get them through their hearing faster than they have in the past.
“Folks like Commissioner Doyal had the foresight to see we could save the county money in the long run because we’re specialists.”

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For media inquiries or to speak with the commissioner, call Jim Fredricks at (936) 520-6098 or email jfredricks@thefredricksgroup.com

Political Advertising Paid by Craig Doyal Campaign

Huge crowd marks Doyal for Judge kickoff event

For immediate release Dec. 2, 2013. For media follow up, please contact Jim Fredricks at (936) 520-6098. Supporters go to http://www.craigdoyal.com

Speaking to a crowd of roughly 700 supporters and elected officials at his kickoff campaign event for County Judge, County Commissioner Craig Doyal said his years of experience make him an ideal candidate not because he had “done the time,” but because he had “done my job.”

Doyal is running against two opponents for the GOP primary race for Montgomery County Judge.

He is by far the most experienced candidate in the field, having served as county commissioner for Precinct 2 since 2001. He served in a variety of regional roles as well during that time, including chairman of the Houston-Galveston Area Council and on the2013-12-12 Comm Doyal Event 183 HGAC’s Transportation Policy Council. In  addition, he spearheaded numerous mobility projects, including the Fish Creek Thoroughfare, the 242 flyovers currently under construction, and the widening of FM 1488.

Prior to holding the office of County Commissioner, Craig served for 15 years as the Administrative Assistant to Commissioner Malcolm Purvis, where he handled the day to day operations of Precinct 2.

“I’ve spent the last 12 years building relationships and gaining experience,” Doyal told his supporters at the Dec. 12 event at the Lone Star Convention Center.

“I would like to use those now to help build Montgomery County. It’s not because I’ve done my time; it’s because I’ve done my job.”

Doyal was joined on the stage by numerous local leaders and officials, including Sheriff Tommy Gage, who lead the Pledge of Allegiance, and State Rep. Cecil Bell, R-Magnolia, who lead the opening prayer.

Conroe Mayor Webb Melder, who helped introduce Doyal on stage, noted that he and Doyal had gone to Conroe High School together and that Doyal was a fellow Conroe Tiger, class of ’79. He lauded Doyal for his support of mobility and economic development benefiting the county, including Conroe.

In comments to supporters, Doyal stressed the importance of mobility to the community, and his efforts to advance it, including his work helping secure state transportation funding for 249 Tollway and what will eventually become the “Aggie Superhighway” connecting Houston to College Station.

“That project had been talked about for 50 years, and the first portion of it has been started today.”

Doyal also stressed his support of economic developing, including tax abatements offered to numerous corporations, including Anadarko, Royal Purple, and CB&I.

“These tax abatement agreements provided quality jobs and a strong tax base, and higher annual incomes to build stronger school districts.”

“We’re going to make sure we move Montgomery County forward.”

Andy Dill, former East Montgomery County Community Chamber of Commerce president, said Craig had added to his public service by serving the community on numerous organizations,

“He’s served the community,” Dill said, noting Doyal has been a longtime Meals on Wheel volunteer, past president of the Magnolia Parks Council, a board member of the 2013-12-12 Comm Doyal Event 192

Friendship Center, current member of The Woodlands Rotary Club, and a lifetime member of the Montgomery County Fair Association.

Craig is a native Texan, 4th generation Montgomery County resident, and a proud Aggie.  He is married to Amy and has three children, 30 year old Brian, 27 year old Lindsey, 20 year old Jennifer, and 7 year old granddaughter, Laylee.

In closing his comments, Dill, to thunderous applause, told the crowd “Ladies and gentleman, this is your next County Judge – Craig Doyal!”

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For media inquiries or to speak with the commissioner, call Jim Fredricks at (936) 520-6098 or email jfredricks@thefredricksgroup.com

Political Advertising Paid by Craig Doyal Campaign

Doyal files for Montgomery County Judge in GOP primary

DOYAL CITES EXPERIENCE, CONSERVATIVE VALUES AS HE FILES FOR COUNTY JUDGE

 

For immediate release Dec. 2, 2013

For media follow up, please contact the Craig Doyal Campaign at (936) 520-6098. Want to join us? Go to www.craigdoyal.com.

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Craig Doyal filed for Montgomery County Judge in the GOP primary Monday, Dec. 2, 2013. He is joined by Dr. Walter Wilkerson, chairman of the Montgomery County GOP.

Craig Doyal filed for county judge in the Republican Primary Monday, Dec. 2, saying his conservative values, his years of service to Precinct 2 and his leadership on regional projects had prepared him to serve all of Montgomery County as county judge.

“I love Montgomery County, have lived here all my life, and I share the great values of conservative government and responsible leadership that have made this one of the greatest places to live in Texas,” Doyal said.

Educated in Conroe ISD schools and a proud “Aggie,” Craig is married to wife Amy and has three children, 30-year-old Brian, 27-year-old Lindsey, 20-year-old Jennifer, and 7-year-old granddaughter, Laylee.

A native Texan and 4th-generation Montgomery County resident, Craig Doyal has served as Precinct 2 County Commissioner since August 29, 2001. Prior to holding the office of CountyCommissioner, Craig served for 15 years as the Administrative Assistant to Commissioner Malcolm Purvis, where he handled the day to day operations of Precinct 2.

“I grew up here and have spent my career in Montgomery County learning how this county operates and taking the lead on key projects, like the construction of the Fish Creek Thoroughfare, the expansion of FM 1488 through the pass-thru program, and acquisition of right of way for future thoroughfares. Those experiences have prepared me to handle the diverse challenges our county faces as we prepare for rapid population growth that is headed our way.”

Craig said he will focus on four key areas as county judge:

Responsible economic growth and development

“The county needs to take a thoughtful, conservative and responsible approach to ensure its infrastructure is prepared to cope with its rapid population growth, and I am prepared to do that.” Doyal has taken a leadership role on projects like the 249 Tollway (the Aggie superhighway), which will ease congestion and promote economic growth, and the Camp Strake project, which will provide a quality commercial and residential development on Conroe’s doorstep that will add millions of dollars to the county’s tax base without requiring much, if any, of county services.

Open and transparent service

Craig is committed to maintaining an open-door policy for all county residents and will push for transparency at all levels of county government.

Conservative values on budget, social issues

Doyal has voted repeatedly to keep the county tax rate flat, allowing the county’s expanding tax base to take care of its growth needs. He has opposed wasteful spending, and has supported responsible approaches to county facilities such as the Joe Corley Detention Center, whose sale generated $22 million for the county along with approximately $3 million in operating revenue, and now is permanently on the county’s tax rolls, generating annual revenues.

Protecting natural resources

Doyal has consistently opposed threats to our groundwater from projects like the controversial proposed wastewater injection well east of Conroe. He also is concerned about the county’s sole surface water resource, Lake Conroe, and will work to ensure it is protected from depletion as the cities of Conroe and The Woodlands turn to it to end their longstanding reliance on groundwater for their water needs.

As County Commissioner, Craig’s role in meeting the many challenges of a rapidly growing county have dramatically changed.  Today he works closely with county department heads to manage the expenditures of a $279 million budget and establish policies and procedures for the operation of county government.  Along with these duties, Craig works closely with the Texas Department of Transportation and other county and state officials to make sure our mobility issues are addressed countywide.

Commissioner Doyal has served as past Chairman of Houston Galveston Area Council and the county representative to the Transportation Policy Council, and currently serves as chairman of the SB1420 Committee that will determine funding options for portions of the proposed Grand Parkway and is the Montgomery County representative to the Gulf Coast Rail District.

Commissioner Doyal has served as a Montgomery ISD Board Trustee and a board member of the Montgomery County Committee on the Aging ‑ better known as “The Friendship Center”.  He was a “Meals on Wheels” volunteer for nine years, president of the Magnolia Parks Council and is a member of the South County, Magnolia, Magnolia Parkway and Conroe Chambers of Commerce. Craig is also a member of the Woodlands Rotary Club and a lifetime member of the Montgomery County Fair Association. Additionally, he is a longtime financial supporter of several area Republican groups.

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Political Advertising Paid by Craig Doyal Campaign

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Area residents invited to train for endurance events, save lives, with Team in Training

Date: Sep. 10, 2013

For inquiries: call Jim Fredricks at (936) 520-6098

 

Team in Training Fall and Winter
Team in Training participants at a recent training event

  

An organization that has trained thousands of people from all walks of life to complete endurance events and raise funds to battle cancer is inviting area residents to learn about the program at a series of upcoming Happy Hour mixers.

Those interested in the program are invited to come and enjoy some complimentary beverages and refreshments and learn about Team in Training, a program that since 1988 has raised more than $1.32 billion in the fight against cancer and that has trained more than 570,000 to complete endurance events such as a marathon or triathlon.

Dan Walmer, campaign manager for Team in Training, said the organization gives residents a chance to push themselves to achieve an extraordinary endurance goal while also helping others.

“They’re getting fit, they’re getting in shape, and they’re accomplishing this important goal that they have never done before, whether it’s a marathon, half-marathon, or triathlon,” he said.

“But at the same time they’re learning to do it for a bigger cause.”

Walmer recalled one woman, named Debby, who had a very personal reason to join Team in Training. Her experience with blood cancers involving both her husband and daughter illustrate the tremendous progress that has been made as a result of donations to research.

“She told me she wanted to do an event, and her daughter is about to do her first,” Walmer said.

“In 1982, her husband was diagnosed with Acute Lymphatic Lymphoma, and he was given at the age of 40 a 10 percent chance of survival; he passed away within a year,” he said.

Then in 2010, cancer struck again. Debby’s 35-year old daughter, who was 7 at the time of her father’s death, was diagnosed with the exact same disease – except this time she was given an 80 percent chance of survival.

“That benefit has come from the money we’ve raised,” Walmer said.

“She’s been in remission for two years, and she is about to do her first (Team in Training) event.”

For those interested in Team in Training, “this is a way for them to join the battle and raise money for research that really does make a difference.”

The mixers will present information about opportunities to sign up for some upcoming events in Team in Training’s Winter Season. Events include the Houston Marathon and Half Marathon, a Cycle Century Ride in Tucson. Az/ and the Rock and Roll New Orleans Marathon and Half Marathon

At these events area residents will be able to meet the coaches for the winter season and interact with TNT alumni who can explain the program and answer questions.

cancer.

Residents are invited to attend any of the following events:

Thursday, September 19 or Sunday, September 29

Time: 6-8 p.m.

Place: Sharkey’s Waterfront Grill

1660 West Lake Houston Parkway

Kingwood, TX 77345

http://sharkyswaterfrontgrill.com

https://www.facebook.com/sharkysgrill

 

Sunday, September 22

Time: 6-8 p.m.

Place: Pappasita’s Cantina

10005 FM 1960

Humble, TX 77338

 

Thursday, September 26

Time: 6-8 p.m.

Place: Nico’s Bar & Grill

22610 Loop 494 / Kingwood, TX 77339

http://www.nicosbarandgrill.com

https://www.facebook.com/nicosbarandgrill

For more information about the events, call TNT Coach Mary Carter at (281) 684-5354. More information on Team in Training is available at www.teamintraining.org/txg.

For media inquiries or to speak with Team in Training Coach Mary Carter, call Jim Fredricks at (936) 520-6098 or email jfredricks@thefredricksgroup.com

We’ve beat the last market peak! June sales jump 23 percent; in Houston, 13 percent

We’re back.

According to the latest figures compiled by the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, Montgomery County has officially climbed out of the pit from the national collapse of the housing market, with June sales this year exceeding sales during the peak of the market in 2006.

A total of 937 homes, townhomes and condos were sold in June of this year – the next-highest recorded sales for a June in Montgomery County was 929. Houston very nearly reached the June 2006 market peak, with 7,924 homes sold this June compared with 8,628 home sold in June 2006.

County monthly  median price since 2006 Median prices likewise have clearly eclipsed the last market peak. The June 2013 median price was $238,200, compared with the June 2008 median price of $196,300.

It is a trend that reflects full recovery of the housing market – and by all indications the market continues on an upward trajectory.

Houston-area home sales continued to surge in June, especially in the area’s hottest housing markets like The Woodlands and Montgomery County, according to the latest reports from the Houston Association of Realtors.

                    What’s my home worth?

The continued strong pace of sales has been accompanied by an increase in median prices for homes and a decrease in the Days on Market.

Closed sales June 2012-2013 Sales jumped by 22.5 percent in June in Montgomery County – a percentage increase nearly twice that of Houston, where sales increased 13.4 percent. It is a testament to the value of the Montgomery County market relative to the Houston region. A total of 894 homes were sold in June in Montgomery County, as opposed to 730 last June. Year-to-date sales in June jumped 24.6 percent, from 3,184 sold as of this point last year compared with 3,966 this year.

          The strength in home sales continues despite rising mortgage interest rates and a slight cooling in employment growth, according to the Houston Association of Realtors. The Texas Workforce Commission reported that the greater Houston area added 91,600 jobs in the 12 months ending May 2013, which is down from 106,000 jobs and a 4.0 percent annualized rate for the 12 months endin  Days on Market YTD June 2013 g April 2013.

Virtually all areas of the county are benefiting from a steadily strengthening housing market, although in Conroe and northeast Montgomery County sales for June were flat compared with last June – an anomaly compared with year-to-date sales, where all regions of the county have improved.

“The Houston housing market plowed full-steam ahead through another month and most REALTORS® I know have never been busier,” said HAR Chairman Danny Frank with Prudential Anderson Properties. “The fact that inventory has leveled off month-over-month suggests that we may finally be starting to see enough homes listed for sale to keep up with demand.”

The county and the Houston region continued to blow out previous home sales records as the area’s strong economy, job and population growth fuel continued demand for housing.

Jim Fredricks is a licensed Realtor® with The Chevaux Group PLLC – ReMax The Woodlands & Spring:

26113 Oakridge Drive, Suite D

The Woodlands, TX  77380

Phone: (936) 520-6098
Email: jfredricks@thefredricksgroup.com

http://www.har.com/JimFredricks

http://activerain.com/blogs/jfredricks

http://www.chevauxgroup.com

Check out my latest listing in the fastest-growing master-planned community in Montgomery County

 

 

Come home to Woodforest 167 Clearmont Place

Price: $339,000
  Buyers, come see this beautiful 2009 Pulte home.
This lovely home has been exquisitely maintained and is located just minutes from The Woodlands in the dynamic Woodforest community, the fastest-growing master planned community in Montgomery County.The neighborhood features numerous attractions for residents, including the acclaimed Woodforest Golf Club, parks, playgrounds, miles of trails, and the eagerly anticipated Forest Island, whose first phase, featuring the new Forest Island Pool and tennis and basketball, is opening this June.

167 Clearmont Pl, Woodforest
This home has it all — a big beautiful kitchen with granite countertops, a large family room and fireplace downstairs and a gameroom upstairs, a formal dining room and office/study downstairs with the master suite, and with 3,241square feet, plenty of room for a growing family!
Sale Price:$339,000 Bedrooms: 4 Baths: 3.5 Sq.ft: 3241 .

 See full report on this home!

 

Description: 2009 Pulte home, large, updated kitchen with granite countertops, master suite down with garden tub and separate enclosed shower, spacious family room down with gameroom upstairs, and an elegant formal dining room and office/study downstairs. Enjoy looking out at the large backyard from your covered porch.

Contact me for a tour 

 

 

formal dining great room kitchen

5 tips for buying in a competitive market It

Aside

It is an all-too-common situation in this hot market in The Woodlands.

My buyers were seeking a townhome; a year ago, that wouldn’t have been too much of a problem.

But the newly surging home market – and the diminishing inventory – had now created competition among buyers for Woodlands properties. My buyers lost out in one multiple offer situation on a home that would have been perfect – losing to a cash buyer after multiple offers had been received within days of the townhome coming onto market.

So we had to get creative. For us, the key was for me to start querying townhome owners about their willingness to put their homes on the market. Through a contact in our office we finally identified one owner who was willing to sell – a pocket listing, in other words.

But what if that strategy hadn’t worked? We would have had to continue to compete in this market if my buyers were to find a home.

To be competitive in a hot market, you need to know the market, No. 1 – and a Realtor is key to that end. For a full list of 5 tips than lead to a successful offer in a competitive marketHere is a report on the top 5 tips.