Cleburne City Council members on Tuesday approved purchase of a new dome for Splash Station to replace the one that was vandalized and deemed a complete loss on Dec. 7. The cost of the new dome, which will be replaced by Charter Matrix Group, totals $110,900.

Cleburne Parks & Recreation Director Burton Barr said insurance will cover the total cost minus the deductible.

Charter Matrix, Barr said, has also donated $500 towards a reward for credible information leading to the arrest of the person or persons who destroyed the dome. Cleburne Police Chief Rob Severance said investigation into the crime remains ongoing.

The new dome will be about 12 percent heavier and made of a different material, Barr said. 

Cleburne Mayor Scott Cain took issue with the “low-life vandal” who destroyed public property and hurt the Cleburne High School swim team and others who are able to use Splash Station in the fall and winter thanks to the dome.

“You can add to it if you want that when we find this perpetrator I am going to post his or her photo on social media and once they’re convicted of this crime I want to have their picture throughout the community to where they can’t even go to the grocery store without having to answer to our residents why they were destroying public property that had a direct impact on students who do nothing but study hard and try to bring a good name and reputation to our community,” Cain said. “So my hope is that this person, once we catch them, that their face is going to be more recognizable than mine in this community and not in a good way.”


Trucks and facades

Council members approved purchase of a new ambulance for the fire department at a cost of $197,914. The ambulance replaces a 2003 unit with 115,740 miles on it, Cleburne Fire Chief Clint Ishmael said. 

The new ambulance, which should become operational by mid January, will give the department two front line and one reserve ambulance, Ishmael said.

Ambulance expenses this year have totaled $829,868 while revenues have totalled $839,523, he said.

The department began functioning as the city’s primary ambulance service about two years ago.

“Far exceeded expectations,” Ishmael said when Councilman Bob Kelly asked him how ambulance service is going. “We’ve seen great numbers and made great relationships with other medical providers in the area. Those relationships are important to us because they help us improve our services.”

Council members approved a $5,000 facade improvement grant to ATG Design Group for properties located at 10 and 12 N. Caddo St. The owner plans to repaint the exterior and replace awnings, a project estimated at $11,740.

The city recently initiated the facade grant, which grants a 50 percent match up to $5,000 for improvements to buildings in the downtown and certain other areas of town.

Council members also approved a requested change to the planned development agreement for the Liberty Events Center to increase the permitted uses from a multi-use event center to a theater and/or indoor playhouse as well. Plaza Theatre Company is in the process of moving into the center and will soon debut a 271 seat theater in the round facility.


He’s a star

Cleburne police officer Colton Bedford received the city’s STARS Award for the month of October. Fellow employees nominate employees for the award, which goes to employees who go above and beyond the line of duty.

Bedford, Human Resources Director Debra Powledge said, recently answered a call concerning a woman threatening to kill herself. Bedford determined that the woman was suffering from dementia and assisted her in getting the help she needed.

“It says a lot about a community when we take care of those who can’t take care of themselves,” Cain said.

Police officer commended

React to this story: