Volunteer Opportunity: Work HCSO Inventory

Margaret Vieger, HCSO Inventory Specialist, is always looking for assistance in her new office at the jail. We are setting up Mondays and Wednesdays to work with Margaret, since we are no longer doing volunteer work as PSB Greeters on those days. You just go in the main entrance of the jail and she is the door immediately on your left. Thank you!

Lackland AFB: TSA Canine Training Session

On October 25th, eight Alumni members traveled to the TSA Canine Training Center at Lackland AFB to observe how the dogs and their handlers are trained. The TSA National Explosives Detection Canine program trains and deploys both TSA-led and state and local law enforcement-led canine teams in support of day-to-day activities that protect the transportation domain. These highly trained explosives detection canine teams are a reliable resource at detecting explosives and provide a visible deterrent to terrorism directed towards transportation systems.

TSA trains canine teams to operate in the aviation, multimodal, maritime, mass transit, and cargo environments. Considered the “center for excellence” for explosives detection canine training, the program is the largest explosive detection canine program in the Department of Homeland Security and the second largest in the federal government after the Department of Defense.


Special Items Up For A Vote @ August Meeting

Good evening Alumni!

There are a couple of items that we will place on the Agenda to vote on at the upcoming Dinner/Social meeting on TUESDAY, AUGUST 16th @ 6:30 p.m.; I will be sending out the agenda next week; but, I wanted everyone to have a chance to review what we will be voting on and ask any questions you may have. The Executive Board has unanimously approved each of these items to be brought to the members for a vote:
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HCSO Advanced Citizens Sheriff’s Academy

As discussed at the July 20th meeting, the Hays County Sheriff’s Office will host an Advanced Citizens Sheriff’s Academy. Classes will be held on Wednesday evenings from 6:30p to 9:30p for seven weeks from August 17th through September 28th. Class size is limited to 16 with priority given to first time attendees. Applicants must have already completed the Basic Citizens Sheriff’s Academy. Applications are now being accepted with a submission deadline of August 10th.

Link to Application (.PDF)

NOTE: The first class will be held at the Firing Range. For that reason, the following information is required in addition to the completed application:
 
Firearm Criteria:

    Do you own a handgun?

  • Semi-auto 9mm, .40 or .45 preferred.
  • Academy will provide 50 rounds
  • Holster
  • Spare Magazine
  • Magazine Holder
    Firearm Experience

  • Little or No experience with handgun?
  • LTC?
  • Prior Military or LE?

President’s Blog

Hi Alumni!

It’s been a while since I’ve sent out a PBlog; thought I’d catch everyone up on some happenings since the last one…I’ll be brief (LOL!)

We’ve had a lot of activities happening since back in March; I’d like to share a few highlights in order to remember some significant HCCSAAA moments.

The cheeseburger fundraisers we did in April and May to raise funds for the Sunshine Kids were amazing! Once again, we sold burgers at the Government Center and with pre-sales and walk-ups, we completely sold out all 400! We received many compliments on how delicious the burgers were and people really seemed to like the double patty presentation this year; something we will more than likely continue as it also helps in the cooking time. We did okay in Wimberley with pre-sales; however, the walk-ups were not as fruitful as we had hoped quite possibly due to the location we chose. Even with that, the sales in Wimberley worked out well and between the two locations and donations, the funds raised were phenomenal and greatly contributed to the Sunshine Kids Hill Country Adventure.

Based upon the work the Marketing & Fundraising Committee put in to ensure both events went off without a hitch, it was determined that the Committee needed to secure additional members to assist with ‘behind the scenes’ duties. Jack Diamond, Marketing & Fundraising Chair, has been working on securing additional active committee members to assist with Marketing & Fundraising Committee duties and as of now, the committee has a total of 5 active members including the Chair. This growth and the commitment from committee members will significantly help the Committee to continue to succeed in meeting the Association’s Marketing & Fundraising goals. Many kudos to Jack, Ruth, and the Committee for all the arduous work they continue to do not only to make these events fun; but, to put so much blood, sweat, and tears into researching and doing the things necessary to accomplish remarkable things!

The most recent Citizen Academy Graduation ceremony was held on June 2nd ; it was a great turnout, and everyone enjoyed the camaraderie, food, swag-bags, and door prizes. We had several graduates sign up to become members of the Alumni that evening: Goldie Kruger, Teri Holtzclaw, Nicholas Costilla, James Bryant, Jr., Michael O’Dell, Don William, Matt Wells, John Gagliardi, Bridget Fidler, and Stephen Albright. We also picked up another member from the Academy since then, Thaddeus Foster.

Welcome to our new members; we are excited to have you join us! Our new members have already become quite active; you may see Teri working the front desk at the PSB as she has signed on as a greeter. Bridget and Thaddeus have become members of the Marketing & Fundraising Committee. If you haven’t met our new members, please be sure to introduce yourself and let them know how happy we are to have them on board.

I can’t say enough about how much love, joy, and inspiration the Sunshine Kids (SSK) brought to our community! This was my first year to participate in this event and everything I had been told about how amazing it would be was absolutely on the mark! I am so incredibly grateful for what the HCCSAAA was able to contribute to these precious kiddos due to our fundraising efforts! We had the honor to pay for lunch at the State Capitol when the SSK took their ride into Austin for a tour; it was great to see the kids so happy, I even heard one of the kids overjoyed when she asked, “we can get anything we want?!!” The Alumni was also able to provide all the incredible prizes for the Bingo night; the kids adored the prizes and were so enthusiastic in sharing the game. A couple of tear-jerker moments where when some of the kids would win more than one prize and would automatically, without any prodding, give it up to another kid who hadn’t won yet. To say these kids are phenomenal is an understatement! The Nurses and the SSK staff were incredibly grateful for the ‘swag-bags’ the Alumni provided to each of them and the Jersey Mike’s lunch was enjoyed by all; one of the staff members had never had Jersey Mike’s before and she absolutely loved it!

I’d like to once again thank those who were able to volunteer and/or contribute to raising funds for these events. Without our incredible members, we would not have been able to share so much love and joy with these very special kiddos! If you weren’t able to join us this year, it is definitely something you should plan to help with next year; just being around these kids reminds us of how precious life is and that every moment is a chance to dance like no one is watching!

I’d like to take a moment to remember a true light in our world that was extinguished way too soon, Carol Cutler. Carol was a delightful inspiration to many; she spoke with the Sunshine Kids at the BBQ dinner night @ Rio Vista Park and cheered them on to fight the good fight. It was heartbreaking to hear of her passing, her light will continue to shine through the love she shared and the difference she made. Please keep the Cutler family in your thoughts and prayers.

Following SSK week, Gary Anderson, Ruth & Jack Diamond, and I attended the TCPAAA Conference @ Margaritaville on Lake Conroe; it was a fantastic conference as it provided the opportunity to talk with other Alumni groups and hear what they are doing in their area; in addition, there were very informative and incredible speakers. I connected with a couple of people who will be sharing some interesting concepts that we may be able to incorporate in our group; I look forward to speaking with them more when we are able to hook up. Unfortunately, the gift my husband and I brought home from convention was COVID and I have to say that it totally kicked our tails! I’m not used to being down for so long and was extremely disappointed that I had to miss the June meeting and the wonderful speaker we had. Thank you to those who checked in to be sure the buzzards weren’t circling; I appreciate your well-wishes!

I’m finally feeling like my Tigger tail has some bounce back and I am ready to be back in the saddle! I’m looking forward to hearing what the Marketing & Fundraising Committee presents for our Fall fundraiser (heck, I look forward to FALL!). Interviews for the HCSO History book were put on hold; but will kick off again within the next couple of weeks. Also, I haven’t forgotten about he HCSO T-shirts; we’ll be sending that order soon so if you haven’t already added your name to the list, please do so.

I’m sure I forgot something; but I’ll blame it on COVID. I look forward to seeing everyone at the July meeting! I’ll let you know who the guest speaker is as soon as it has been confirmed. In the meantime, enjoy your day and always remember that your time, effort, suggestions, and support considerably contribute to our success!

Thank you!

Cathy Gieselman, President
HCCSA Alumni Association
(512) 944-5569

 

Volunteer Opportunity: Sunshine Kid Sponsors

There will be twenty-four Sunshine Kids and six Pediatric Cancer Nurses arriving on Monday, June 6th for their one week Hill Country Adventure. The Hays County Citizens Sheriff’s Academy Alumni Association (HCCSAAA) is still looking for Sponsors to “adopt” Sunshine Kids. Each Sponsorship is $100 but any amount will help!

Your donation goes directly to the Sunshine Kids in the form of a gift card for them to purchase souvenirs or pay for incidentals during their week long stay and visits to the State Capitol, SeaWorld, Schlitterbahn, and other cool places. In some instances, offices have pooled money together to sponsor a Sunshine Kid.

Venmo, cash, or checks are accepted.

Checks or cash may be sent to (or dropped off at):
HCCSAAA
ATTN: Gary Anderson
810 S. Stagecoach Trail
San Marcos, TX 78666

In the past, Hays County has been a huge part of our success in helping these kids battling cancer to enjoy a week away from hospitals, treatments, and pain.

If you have questions please contact please contact Cathy Gieselman via e-mail at president@hccsaaa.org or via phone (512) 944-5569 OR Gary Anderson at gary.anderson@co.hays.tx.us.
The QR code attached goes directly to HCCSAAA Venmo Account.

Thank you for any help you can give!

President’s Blog

3/25/22

Hello Alumni!

As Bruce explained at our March meeting, our guest speaker from Texas Parks & Wildlife originally scheduled for the meeting fell through; fortunately, Jeffrey Jordan graciously agreed to step in as our guest speaker at short notice which was great because the topic is something particularly important to our community, Hays County Crime Stoppers!

The meeting gave members the opportunity to hear from Jeffrey who is currently serving as the Executive Director of Hays County Crime Stoppers. Jeffrey not only shared the interesting history of Crime Stoppers but provided an informative overview of the ins and outs of the organization and all of the amazing work going on.

If you are interested in learning more about Hays County Crime Stoppers, please check out their link: http://crimeinfo.net/sitemenu.aspx?P=statistics&ID=224 or download free P3 mobile app! P3tips.com. Visit and like their social media: Facebook @ https://www.facebook.com/HaysCountyCrimeStoppers/ Twitter @ https://twitter.com/CrimeStopHays. You may also contact Jeffrey Jordan should you have any questions.

Jeffrey shared two upcoming fundraising events hosted by Hays County Crime Stoppers; please plan to stop by if you are able to do so:

  1. Chick-fil-A Buda Spirit Night:
    Monday, May 2, 2002; 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
    Location: 15500 S Interstate 35, Buda
    Place your order through the Chick-fil-A app. In the comments section on the order, type Hays County Crime Stoppers.
     
  2. Chick-fil-A Kyle Spirit Night:
    Monday, June 6, 2022; 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
    Location: 5289 Kyle Center Drive, Kyle
    Mention Hays County Crime Stoppers Spirit Night when you place your order for dine-in or drive-thru, or in the Chick-fil-A app when you place your order, in the comments section on the order, type Hays County Crime Stoppers.

Thank you again to Mary Capps for providing the delectable St. Patrick’s Day treats for the meeting; the décor was delightful and brought a wee bit fun to us all!

The Scramble Fore Kids Golf Tournament is on the schedule for Friday, April 8th @ Quicksand Golf Course in Wimberley. Several Alumni have signed up to volunteer for the event.

National Public Safety Telecommunications Week (Dispatchers) is coming up the week of April 10th-16th. We discussed providing lunch as we had done last year; a couple of suggestions were brought up as to what we would like to bring in this year. After consulting with Lt. Mallow to determine what dispatchers may prefer; it has been determined that we will bring in Jersey Mike’s for a total of 27 meals which includes HCSO (14) Kyle (9) and Texas State (4) dispatchers. Gary will coordinate with Jersey Mike’s to get a ‘set’ price for meals and will provide a menu to dispatchers, so they are able to select what they like. Lunch will be brought in on Monday, April 11th and Wednesday, April 12th at 11 a.m. in order to cover all shifts. If you are interested in being there on either or both of those days, please let me know.

The June meeting has been shifted to Wednesday, June 22nd as Gary, Ruth, Jack, and I will be attending the TCPAAA Convention the week of the regularly scheduled meeting. Looking forward to the convention and to sharing what we learned upon our return!

We have a tentative date scheduled for the Trophy Case reveal; Tuesday, April 26th @ 2:00 p.m. Additional information will be provided once the date has been ‘cast-in-stone’ but for the meantime, please keep the 26th open if you would like to attend this well-anticipated reveal!

The second round of HCSO shirts was a hit! This fundraiser had no outlay costs, and we were able to raise $1,007.48 each for the HCCSAAA and the HCSO! Thank you to Sheriff Cutler for looping us in on his idea for these great shirts! If you ordered a shirt, Gary Anderson has them in his office, please pick them up when you can, or they will be available for pick up at the April meeting.

We are still working on what we may be able to do for an Alumni gathering outside of the PSB regularly scheduled meeting. Ruth did some research on possible locations and there would be some overhead costs associated with renting a facility if we were to hold at a park pavilion. We will continue to work on the logistics for a gathering but may shift to later in the year due to multiple activities going on within the next few months; further information will be provided as this idea develops. This might also provide us the opportunity to include any new members that we may pick up from the current Academy which graduates in June.

Jack provided an update on Marketing & Fundraising; we have two upcoming fundraisers for Sunshine Kids. Please be looking for sign-ups which will be coming out soon to ensure we are able to secure adequate coverage for both of these events. The first fundraiser will be held on Thursday, April 28th @ the Government Center. Due to rising food costs, we were unable to get a reasonable pricing for the Cinco de Mayo plate idea; however, we will be doing our usual ½ lb. cheeseburger plate at $12 per plate which is an increase of $2 from last year. We will be providing dine-in, pick-up and deliveries. The second cheeseburger fundraiser will be held on Wednesday, May 11th @ the Wimberley VFW. It will be important to get the word out about these two events as the funds raised are exclusively for Sunshine Kids and we want to be sure to have a phenomenal turnout so we are able to provide the best we can for these amazing kiddos!

Speaking of Sunshine Kids, they will arrive the week of June 5th! We will give updates as provided so we are able to adequately plan for what the HCCSAAA will assist with.

There was a wonderful turnout at the Basic Peace Officer Graduation held on Thursday, 3/24! Congratulations to the seven graduates! It was nice to see them and their family and friends enjoying this very important ceremony. Thank you to those who volunteered to assist with this event as the help was greatly appreciated!

Please be sure to review the upcoming dates listed on the back of the monthly Agenda’s; this information may also be found on our website: http://www.hccsaaa.org. Please let me know if you have any questions, comments, ideas, concerns…it’s important for members to communicate/engage so we can ensure we are hitting the mark when it comes to what keeps members involved and active in the HCCSAAA.

Thank you!

Cathy Gieselman, President
HCCSA Alumni Association

(512) 944-5569

“Communication is what makes a team strong” ~ Brian McClennan

HCSO: Scam Alert

Sheriff Gary Cutler says the Hays County Sheriff’s Office has been responding to several reports of scams in the recent days. This week a citizen received a call from a local 512 number. The caller identified themselves as an employee of the Sheriff’s Office using a real employees name. Upon call back, the voice mail answers as “Hays County Sheriff’s Department Warrant and Citation Division”.

Scammers often obtain names from staff directories and pose as those employees while soliciting money in the form of cash, gift cards, or other payments. Scammers will “spoof” the phone number presented on caller ID and make it appear the call is coming from a legitimate business; however, recent scam calls have been coming from a 737 area code. 737 is a new area code in the San Marcos area, but all of Hays County Sheriff’s Office numbers have a 512 area code.

The Hays County Sheriff’s Office would like to remind everyone: No legitimate business will ever request/demand payment by gift card. If anyone requests payment by gift card, hang up on them and block the number from future contact.
Found on the consumer.ftc.gov website, they say: “Gift cards are a popular and convenient way to give someone a gift. They’re also a popular way for scammers to steal money from you. That’s because gift cards are like cash: if you buy a gift card and someone uses it, you probably cannot get your money back. Gift cards are for gifts, not payments. Anyone who demands payment by gift card is always a scammer.”

The Hays County Sheriff’s Office never calls to request payment over the phone for any reason. If you are not sure about a call, hang up and call the agency back and speak with a representative at 512-393-7896.

Below are 10 tips by the Federal Trade Commission on how to avoid common scams.

1. Spot imposters. Scammers often pretend to be someone you trust, like a government official, a family member, a charity, or a company you do business with. Don’t send money or give out personal information in response to an unexpected request — whether it comes as a text, a phone call, or an email.

2. Do online searches. Type a company or product name into your favorite search engine with words like “review,” “complaint” or “scam.” Or search for a phrase that describes your situation, like “IRS call.” You can even search for phone numbers to see if other people have reported them as scams.

3. Don’t believe your caller ID. Technology makes it easy for scammers to fake caller ID information, so the name and number you see aren’t always real. If someone calls asking for money or personal information, hang up. If you think the caller might be telling the truth, call back to a number you know is genuine.

4. Don’t pay upfront for a promise. Someone might ask you to pay in advance for things like debt relief, credit and loan offers, mortgage assistance, or a job. They might even say you’ve won a prize, but first you have to pay taxes or fees. If you do, they will probably take the money and disappear.

5. Consider how you pay. Credit cards have significant fraud protection built in, but some payment methods don’t. Wiring money through services like Western Union or MoneyGram is risky because it’s nearly impossible to get your money back. That’s also true for reloadable cards (like MoneyPak or Reloadit) and gift cards (like iTunes or Google Play). Government offices and honest companies won’t require you to use these payment methods.

6. Talk to someone. Before you give up your money or personal information, talk to someone you trust. Con artists want you to make decisions in a hurry. They might even threaten you. Slow down, check out the story, do an online search, consult an expert — or just tell a friend.

7. Hang up on robocalls. If you answer the phone and hear a recorded sales pitch, hang up and report it to the FTC. These calls are illegal, and often the products are bogus. Don’t press 1 to speak to a person or to be taken off the list. That could lead to more calls.

8. Be skeptical about free trial offers. Some companies use free trials to sign you up for products and bill you every month until you cancel. Before you agree to a free trial, research the company and read the cancellation policy. And always review your monthly statements for charges you don’t recognize.

9. Don’t deposit a check and wire money back. By law, banks must make funds from deposited checks available within days, but uncovering a fake check can take weeks. If a check you deposit turns out to be a fake, you’re responsible for repaying the bank.

10. Sign up for free scam alerts from the FTC at ftc.gov/scams. Get the latest tips and advice about scams sent right to your inbox.