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Boat ramp to honor Ed Holder

BEAUMONT — Jefferson County’s commissioners approved a resolution for Ed Holder’s “Great Outdoors” Boat Ramp this week.

Holder’s son, Fred Holder, spoke on behalf of his late father.

“My dad wasn’t big on self-promotion,” Holder said. “His main concern was that the boat ramp be built so that families could use it. It’s a beautiful place and I appreciate it.”

Precinct 3 Commissioner Michael Sinegal said improvements were being made to the ramp.

“I remember reading (Holder’s) articles that he put in The Port Arthur News,” Sinegal said. “I used to fish. I never hunted, but I used to fish a lot. Just to give an update on that boat launch — the court did allocate funding to try and get it fixed where boats wouldn’t get damaged. My guys are working on that as we speak. Hopefully, we’ll have it corrected before the big rush in the fall. It’s a very nice area.”

The boat ramp is located at Pleasure Island.

Airport Crash

In late June, a man driving a 2014 Dodge Ram — authorities said he was traveling at an unsafe speed — crashed through the terminal at Jack Brooks Airport in the early hours of the morning.

Jefferson County Judge Jeff Branick said driver Kyle Stelly initially reported he had liability insurance, but said the insurance company is claiming otherwise.

“He went through the travel agency that’s in the Jerry Ware terminal, deep into the bowels,” Branick said. “Looking from the front of the building, seeing the big center piece and the concrete columns, I still can’t figure out how he threaded that needle and didn’t get killed.”

Jefferson County Commissioners approved and authorized Branick to execute an office lease agreement because employees needed to be relocated due to the damage caused by the accident.

“The insurance company sent a very curt letter saying there was no coverage,” Branick said. “Normally, they give you an explanation saying that the individual is excluded on this policy or that he failed to pay his premiums, or his policy lapsed on this date. There was no explanation whatsoever. That’s what we are trying to find out right now.”

Risk Management and Human Resources Director Cary Erickson said the county turned in the claim to their insurance.

“We turned all of the information we received so far over to our insurance company and they have a team of investigators that are looking into why that coverage was denied,” Erickson said. “We’re following that investigation.

“We’re actually waiting on an asbestos and lead paint tests to be done. We’re also waiting on the structural tests. We’ll turn that over to the insurance company to get a better picture on the loss itself. As soon as we get that we can get a quote on doing those repairs.

“It’s a lengthy process, unfortunately.”