City of Katy

Tax Grant Approved for Katy Rice Festival

By George Slaughter A $75,000 Convention and Tourism Bureau hotel occupancy tax grant application for the 2019 Katy Rice Harvest Festival was approved by the Katy City Council Monday night. The festival, a local tradition since 1981, is scheduled for Oct. 11-13 in downtown Katy, between 1st Street and 4th Street and Avenue A and Avenue D. The city last year took over the festival sponsorship from the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce, which declined […]

Katy Fire Department’s Improved Class Rating Could Mean Lower Insurance Bills

Mayor Chuck Brawner and Fire Chief Russell Wilson at a April 17 news conference announcing the fire department's achieving a Class 1/1X ISO rating - George Slaughter photo

By George Slaughter Katy city officials said Wednesday that Katy homeowners and businesses could save money on future insurance premiums thanks to a rating achieved by the Katy Fire Department. The Class 1/1X ISO (for Insurance Services Office) came after the ISO completed and sent its survey, review, and results to Katy Fire Chief Russell Wilson. He accepted the results and forwarded them to the state’s fire marshal, who is expected to issue a formal […]

City Working to Authorize CMV-Certified Officer

By George Slaughter Given Katy’s growth, it’s to be expected that commercial motor vehicles (CMVs)—concrete trucks, construction trucks, dump trucks, and 18-wheelers—are on the streets. But not all roads and bridges are graded for some CMVs. In other cases, trucks can be overloaded and spill debris. Roads get damaged and other safety issues might arise. “Trucks are not made to carry 100,000 pounds,” Mayor Chuck Brawner said. “Drivers and the owners of trucks get paid […]

City Appoints Three to Keep Katy Beautiful Board of Directors

By George Slaughter The Katy City Council Monday night appointed Sharon Rhoads as an emeritus member, and Katy Heerssen and Kesley Moebes as regular members, of the Keep Katy Beautiful Board of Directors. Rhoads has been a long-time volunteer with Keep Katy Beautiful. Heerssen works for a travel agency in Katy. She has been a local volunteer and formerly worked at at Katy Mills Mall. Moebes is a kindergarten teacher at Bethke Elementary School. The […]

Noe Diaz Becomes Katy Police Chief

Municipal Judge Jeffrey Brashear swears in Police Chief Noe Diaz. Mayor Chuck Brawner is on left - George Slaughter photo

By George Slaughter Katy Police Chief Noe Diaz was sworn into office Monday in front of a packed Katy City Hall council chamber filled with law enforcement personnel from various agencies. Before becoming chief, Diaz was a Texas Ranger for 11 years. He began his career as a correctional officer in 1986 with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. He later became a deputy constable in Harris County Precinct 5 in 1994, then joined the […]

City Honors Firefighters for Saving Drowning Child

Katy Firefighters were honored Monday at City Hall. Pictured are, from left, Mayor Chuck Brawner, Harry Haynes, Rolando De Leon, Julio Garcia, Michael Ondruch, Taylor Kunicki, Neil Lange, Trey Lee, and Chief Russell Wilson. Not pictured, but part of the crew, are Christian Kugler and Geffrey Argao - George Slaughter photo

By George Slaughter The City of Katy honored firefighters Monday night for their efforts in saving a drowning child. On Sunday, March 3 at 6:33 p.m., dispatch received a 911 call for a drowning three-year-old male at the Homewood Suites pool. The Katy Fire Department responded out of Fire Station #2 and arrived at the hotel pool in just 47 seconds. Firefighters and EMS immediately performed CPR and was able to revive the child. The […]

Texas Ranger Noe Diaz Appointed Katy Police Chief

Noe Diaz

By George Slaughter The Katy City Council Monday night approved Texas Ranger Joel “Noe” Diaz Jr. as Katy’s fourth police chief. Diaz will be sworn in as chief Monday afternoon at City Hall. Diaz Discusses Goal to Grow Department Diaz said he hoped to make the police department “a little friendlier,” and that his top priority would be officer retention. He said he wants to see the department grow because the Katy community is growing. […]

Katy Police Chief Appointment Expected Monday; Diaz Receives Endorsement

By George Slaughter The Harris County Deputies’ Organization this week endorsed Texas Ranger Noe Diaz for Katy police chief. The Katy City Council is expected to approve his appointment at its Monday meeting. David Cuevas, the organization’s president, said in a memo to Mayor Chuck Brawner and the Katy City Council that the organization “wholeheartedly supports and endorses” Diaz’s appointment. Diaz will succeed Bill Hastings, who retired in January to run for mayor against Brawner. […]

City to Open New Fire Station Saturday

By George Slaughter It’s been a long time coming for Katy city leaders, but the city will open its second fire station at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at 25420 Bell Patna Dr. The dedication has long been anticipated by city officials after following some unexpected delays. The original location for the station was supposed to have been on west of Katy Mills Mall, but that site was left covered in water following the 2016 Tax Day […]

Downtown Square Renovation Underway

Ward A Council Members Janet Corte and Frank Carroll, Council Member-at-Large Chris Harris, Mayor Chuck Brawner, City Administrator Byron Hebert, and Tourism Director Kayce Reina make the ceremonial groundbreaking - George Slaughter photo

By George Slaughter Katy officials broke ground Wednesday morning for the renovation of the Katy Square across the street from City Hall. When finished, the square will have a new visitors center, public restroom, and open space. The project is expected to be complete by the Katy Rice Festival in October. The iconic water tower standing on the square will remain, but only for decorative and historical purposes. It will no longer be used for […]