GUSHER: For AAON Inc. and Boss Crane and Rigging, both of which are adding hundreds of jobs. AAON is planning to relocate a manufacturing line to Longview from Oklahoma, a move that will create 125 new jobs in our city as part of an expansion fueled by $28 million in capital investment. AAON already employs about 375 people here. The company’s president said Longview’s quality workforce played a role in the move, which would be supported by tax breaks from Longview and Gregg County. And Boss Crane is expanding into the wind energy business, with plans to hire 230 people for crews that would replace aging wind turbines. It already employs about 175 here. Good news, Longview!
DUSTER: For the broken-record report that shows more Gregg County children are living in poverty. Despite our growing economy, the number of children in households having difficulty meeting basic nutrition needs is nearing 25 percent, according to a new report. On the bright side, numbers of uninsured children are continuing to decline under the Affordable Care Act, and more healthy babies are being born.
GUSHER: For efforts by Longview and area firefighters, police and other emergency crews to raise awareness about drownings, and provide training for young people and information for parents about water safety. While we love boating and swimming, poor choices and inattentive adults too often lead to tragedy. We hope to get through the summer with no drowning deaths in Northeast Texas.
DUSTER: For U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, who suggested there should be a test for whether he considers concerns from his constituents about family separations occurring at our southern border. This continues Gohmert’s shameful practice of ducking and dodging those who disagree with his fringe right views, leaving him a representative of only some. East Texas deserves better.
GUSHER: For the appointment of state Sen. Bryan Hughes to the committee that will work ahead of the next legislative session to prepare for redrawing political boundaries across the state. In an earlier session, the Mineola Republican has shown a willingness to break with his party on redistricting when its policies would negatively impact the largely rural area he represents. We’re optimistic he’ll represent us well again.
DUSTER: For those who disgrace the uniform of the Border Patrol and our nation by espousing racist, sexist and otherwise hateful speech when they think they’re in private. An investigative report that uncovered a “private” social media group allowed many agents to make clear they are not fit to wear any uniform. Every agent who belongs to the group should face scrutiny.
GUSHER: For restoration of NASA’s Apollo-era mission control in Houston. The room where flight controllers and technicians worked to get astronauts into space and back to Earth is an important part of our nation’s history. It had fallen to neglect, but a major fundraising campaign has it up and running again just in time for the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 flight that got America to the moon. We can’t wait to get to Houston to see it.