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Answer Line: About those missing sales tax figures

Oct. 19, 2017 at 12:18 a.m.

QUESTION: The Oct. 13 edition of the News-Journal had a chart on the October sales tax allocations for East Texas from the state comptroller. However, the chart listed Gladewater twice, but failed to give data on Carthage, Marshall and Tatum. Can we get those figures?

ANSWER: Of course, you can, but only because I like you. (OK. Just kidding. I do like you, but I'll answer just about anyone's questions. I say, "just about" because Mr. Answer Line complains that I never respond to his questions.)

But I digress. ... Tatum, Carthage and Marshall saw bigger sales tax checks in October just as many other East Texas cities did. The Texas Comptroller's website shows those cities received the following October payments:

Tatum: $21,872, compared with $19,451 in October 2016;

Carthage: $304,928, compared with $282,031 in October 2016; and

Marshall: $661,997, compared with $648,839 in October 2016.

Q: Does Garrison Keillor still do live solo performances since he retired from the radio show? Would not it be great to have him perform at the Belcher Center?

A: He is still touring. On Friday, he's in Eugene, Oregon, and on Monday, he's in Berkeley, California. Then, on Nov. 1 – which just happens to be Answer Line's birthday – he's in Knoxville, Tennessee.

It would be a great idea to have him perform at LeTourneau University's Belcher Center. In fact, it's such a great idea, that the folks there already brought him to Longview in 2015. University spokeswoman Janet Ragland said, at this time, there aren't plans to bring him back.

A LITTLE MORE ABOUT THE LOBOS: A reader asked recently about the origin of the Longview Lobos' mascot. I have confidence someone out there has some information about this missing piece of history, and I'm waiting for that person to let Answer Line know. In the meantime, I wanted to share another little interesting story about Longview High School mascot history, which is also from the book "Friday Night Howl." Jeremy Cotham, a 2004 Longview High School graduate, started working on the book in 2009, but he was diagnosed with leukemia just a few months later. He worked on the book until his death in 2015, when his parents, David and Sharon Cotham, and some friends took over its completion. Jeremy's book found the first team mascot was a velvet ribbon, in 1912. Team captain G.R. "Cush" Moore wore a black velvet ribbon on his arm, and his teammates realized they won every game when he wore it, but lost the one game during which he didn't wear it. After that, they always made sure he wore the velvet ribbon,

The team was called the "Loboes" by 1924, but David Cotham said they were unable to find an explanation for the mascot's selection.

A limited number of the books are still available, at Louis Morgan Drugs No. 4 at Johnston Street and Judson Road and the Longview High School Athletic Office, or by calling or emailing the Cothams at (903) 736-4637 or They cost $40.

— Answer Line appears Thursday and Saturday. Email questions to, leave a message at (903) 232-7208 or write to P.O. Box 1792, Longview, TX 75606.



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