Latest Case:  Blueberry Hill Water Works files suit against county, city
Attorneys for Blueberry Hill Water Works, LLC and Abeja Properties, LLC, filed suit against Bee County and the City of Beeville on May 4.  The lawyers cited breach of contract and failure to work out a compromise with owners of the water system to provide clean water to Bee County residents.  “It’s regrettable that we were forced to file this lawsuit to protect the health and well-being of the Blueberry Hill community,” said Linda Unger.

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Blueberry Hill Water Works Case

by Gary Kent, www.mysoutex.com

The owner of Blueberry Hill Water Works and Abeja Properties said she decided to file the suit after more than five years of trying unsuccessfully to reach an agreement with the city and county.  “I grew up in Beeville and I’m just trying to get safe, sustainable drinking water and to provide much-needed, affordable housing for the area,” Unger said.  The plaintiff in the suit said that in September 2009, Beeville and Bee County were awarded a $500,000 grant from the state to help finance water improvements to the city’s water system and to help improve Blueberry Hill’s water distribution system.  The city also was to provide wholesale water to Blueberry Hill’s customers.

“However, neither the city nor the county has used the grant funds to make the necessary improvements to the water system,” Unger said.  The suit also contends that in March 2011 the city began discussions regarding an annexation plan for areas adjacent to the city limits.  Unger said that plan would include “all of the land within the Blueberry Hill’s certified water service area and all of the land owned by Abeja Properties on the western edge of Beeville’s corporate limits.”

She said annexation of that land would allow Beeville to control the proposed new developments by Abeja and the annexation would allow Beeville to control the provision of water utility service by Blueberry Hill in its certificated water service area.  When contacted on the morning of May 12, City Attorney Frank Warner said he had no comment on the suit itself.  However, Warner said any talk by the City Council on the subject of annexation came during a “general discussion during a workshop session.”  Warner said the city has never discussed any specific plans to annex the Blueberry Hill area.

Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at reporter@mySouTex.com.

Hollis Henley II joins Ronnie Jones Law
Ronnie Jones welcomes Hollis Henley II, a May 2008 graduate of University of Texas School of Law in Austin, TX. Hollis interned at the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), Public Interest Counsel and performed as a Judicial Intern for the The Honorable William Wayne Justice, U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas. With his already immense experience, Hollis is a great addition to the firm.
Ronnie Jones participates in Principal for a Day Program
Ronnie Jones participated in Round Rock ISD's Principal for a Day program at Purple Sage Elementary. After spending the morning at the school, Ronnie and the principal were invited to lunch with Superintendent Jesús Chávez at the RRISD Performing Arts Center.
Kim Johnson joins Ronnie Jones Law
Ronnie Jones welcomes Kim Johnson as a paralegal in the firm. Kim has worked as a Legal Assistant for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. at the home offices in Bentonville, AK. Her experience includes providing excellence customer service, working closely with counsel, preparing budgets, planning international travel, and performing a wide array of administrative duties.


This Week at Your Urban League
The weekly publication, This Week at Your Urban League, sent from the President & CEO's office, congratulated Ronnie Jones on his Board Chair for the Austin Area Urban League's 2008 Board of Officers.
Click here to see the publication. (PDF)
National Urban League’s 2007 Annual Conference: “You, Your Money, Your Future
The National Urban League’s 2007 Annual Conference, this year originating from the “ Gateway City,” located inside the “Show Me State”, St. Louis, Missouri. This year’s theme, “You, Your Money, Your Future,” brings the Urban League’s mission front and center. Bringing the conference to Missouri shows the civil service’s organization’s commitment to inform, enlighten and be engaged in every aspect of economic empowerment.

On July 26, 2007, Ronnie attended the NUL Conference, as the Chair-Elect of the Austin Area Urban League. Also in attendance were Senator Hillary Clinton, former Senator John Edwards, Senator Barack Obama, U.S. Representative Dennis Kucinich, and the Mayor of New York, the Honorable Michael Bloomberg. The organization sent out a special thanks to the AAUL's Board Chairperson Larry Davis, Chair-elect Ronnie Jones, and AAUL Young Professionals Member Shelia Patrick of Applied Materials for "spending their time and resources to participate in St. Louis." The Urban League is the nation's oldest and largest community- based movement devoted to empowering African Americans to enter the economic and social mainstream.

Click here for details on the conference and more info on NUL.

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Visit, Seattle, WA
AAUL’s President and CEO, Jeffrey Richard, was invited to Seattle, Washington to meet with Bill Gates, Sr., head of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The Foundation is the world's largest private foundation and it is enthusiastic about making a difference in the world. Foundation co-chair Bill Gates, Sr. shared the core value of the Foundation to Jeffrey, namely that "Every human being is of equal value." He also said that "our battle is against ignorance, and our side is winning!"

The meeting was the site for a conference, All Kids College Ready -- and the following Central Texas leaders also participated: AISD Superintendent Pat Forgione, Hispanic Chamber President Andy Martinez, Austin Voices for Education and Youth Executive Director Amy Averett, and Dr. Ken Ewing, Director of AISD's redesign office.

Jeffrey was also able to engage the Foundation co-chair in conversation and asked, "How did you raise a kid like Bill Gates, Jr. (the founder of Microsoft)?" Mr. Gates, Sr. replied: "I have no idea!" He then added, "you give a lot of love, emotion, and support, and you hope for the best."

Click here for details on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

2006 Findings of the Chamber of Commerce’s Task Force of the Education Progress for Round Rock, Bastrop and Austin ISDs
On December 8, 2006, the Chamber of Commerce’s Task Force of the Education Progress for Round Rock, Bastrop and Austin ISDs presented the “2006 Education Progress Report” at the Chamber’s December Education Roundtable in Austin, Texas. Ronnie is a member of the Task Force that was formed by the Austin Chamber in 2005 to identify the key academic performance measures most important to business to show trends over time and make them much more accessible to the community. The Task Force worked in the first year with Austin ISD to create the state’s first Chamber-driven progress report. Last year’s baseline report received national attention. More information about the “2006 Education Progress Report” can be found at http://www.austinchamber.com.
Ronnie Jones selected as the 2006 Chair-elect of the Austin Area Urban League Board of Directors
Ronnie was selected as the Chair-elect of the Austin Area Urban League (AAUL) Board of Directors. The AAUL is an affiliate of the National Urban League that has been serving the Austin community since 1977. The mission of AAUL is to assist African Americans and disadvantaged citizens in the achievement of social and economic equality.

Learn more about the Austin Area Urban League.

Ronnie Jones appointed to the City of Austin's Water and Wastewater Commission
On August 10, 2006, Ronnie Jones was appointed to the City of Austin's Water and Wastewater Commission. He was nominated by Council Member Cole and confirmed on a 7-0 vote of the council.
Central & South Texas Minority Business Council
Ronnie has met all the requirements for certification as a bona fide minority business enterprise (MBE) as defined by the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) and as adopted by the Central and South Texas Minority Business Council.
Ronnie Jones - Moderator at the Bench Bar Conference
Ronnie will be the moderator at the administrative law and government breakout session entitled “What’s the 411? Administrative Law Update” at the Bench Bar conference on April 21, 2006 at the Lakeway Resort in Austin, Texas. The speakers for the session are Barbara Dean, Division Chief of the Administrative Law Division of the Office of the Texas Attorney General, and Justice David Puryear, Third Court of Appeals.
Ronnie Jones will speak at a State Bar of Texas Minority Attorney Program
Ronnie has accepted an invitation from the State Bar of Texas Racial Diversity in the Profession Committee to be a speaker at the Texas Minority Attorney Program on May 12, 2006. The topic will be “Pathways to Success for Women and Minorities in the Public Sector”.
Ronnie Jones will speak at a State Bar of Texas Law Practice Management Program
Ronnie has accepted an invitation from the State Bar of Texas to speak at a program entitled “Planning to Conquer the Real World of Private Practice”. The program is geared toward third year law students and recent law school graduates (licensed 1-3 years). The program will be held on January 21, 2006 in Waco, Texas from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Baylor law School.
SCTRCA’s Small, Disadvantaged, and Minority Business Enterprise Program
On January 05, 2006, our firm’s application for certification in the South Central Texas Regional Certification Agency’s (“SCTRCA”) Small, Disadvantaged, and Minority Business Enterprise Program was approved. Our firm has met the requirements of 49 CFR Part 26 and SCTRCA standards. The benefits under this program include certification eligibility in the City of Austin, Texas, City of San Antonio, Texas, and the 17 surrounding counties. SCTRCA’s certification program also has reciprocity with 3 other MBE entities across the State of Texas.
Ronnie Jones Has Met the Requirements of the State of Texas HUB Program
On December 14, 2005, the Texas Building & Procurement Commission (TBPC) certified that Ronnie Jones, Attorney at Law, has successfully met the established requirements of the State of Texas Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Certification and Compliance Program to be recognized as a HUB. This certification allows state agencies and institutions of higher education (universities) to be credited for utilizing his law firm as a HUB.
Ronnie Jones Appointed to the Board of Directors of the Austin Area Urban League
On November 23, 2005, the Board of Directors of the Austin Area Urban League (“AAUL”) extended their heartfelt congratulations to Ronnie as a prospective member of AAUL’s Board of Directors. The Board unanimously approved his nomination as a prospective board member. His recommendation as a new board member was voted on and approved by the general membership of the AAUL at its Annual Business Meeting and State of the Urban League Luncheon on December 7, 2005. His nomination was based on his dedication and service to the Austin community and the Board of Directors belief that an individual of his caliber is well suited to be one of the policy makers of the AAUL.

Learn more about the Austin Area Urban League.

Ronnie Jones Featured in an Austin Business Journal Article
Ronnie Jones was recently featured in an Austin Business Journal article entitled "Shades of Gray: Black business professionals grapple with population loss, disconnected community" as one of the leading African American business professionals in the city of Austin. Click here for the entire story (PDF).
Ronnie Jones appointed to a City of Austin Corporate Citizens Panel
Ronnie Jones was recently appointed to the Corporate Citizens Panel at the City of Austin's Quality of Life Forum. The panel was comprised of a group of corporate professionals in Austin, Texas and was a group discussion on actions that could be taken to enhance the quality of life for minority residents within the City of Austin.

Click here for more information about the forums.

Ronnie Jones Law
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Austin, Texas 78750

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