Mayor of Venus, TX Talks About Strong Partnership with MTC’s Sanders Estes Unit
“They’ve always been very good to our community,” says James Burgess, mayor of Venus, Texas, referring to the nearby Sanders Estes Unit which is proud to call Venus, home, where the community support and dialogue has been exceptional.
“It’s always been very friendly,” continues Mayor Burgess, “very open, and quite responsive. If you’ve got an issue or a problem that you need help with, they’ll call you back. And we try to do the same with them. If they have a problem, we try to address it right away.”
Warden Randy Treon expresses his gratitude to the city. “And they’re very, very supportive. Not just in their time and energy, but with their ideas. And so, it’s been kind of a mutual benefit for both of us.”
Sanders Estes staff and residents provide various service to the city.
“They’ve helped a lot, in all different facets,” explains Venus Fire Chief Richard Allen, “whether it’s been homecoming celebrations that we’ve put on, they’ve helped out with that; they’ve helped out with the painting. Just different things that have needed to be done, the manpower is there, and the city’s accessed it. It helps tremendously.”
Mayor Burgess agrees. “I could just go on and on and on about the benefits of having them in our community.”
One of the city’s recent projects in which the facility provided assistance and resources was launching a website. Sylvia Allen, who is the president of the Venus Chamber of Commerce, explains. “The city is going to be able to now go to a website that’s going to tell them what’s going on at the school, business opportunities, building communications between schools and the citizens, and the businesses and the citizens. And we couldn’t have done that without the facility helping us.”
Warden Treon hosts a quarterly community relations council meeting with key members of the community to learn of their needs, to communicate what’s happening at the facility, and to take advantage of the many resources the community can provide to the facility including volunteer programs which benefit the residents.
“We’ve been able to talk over issues and problems,” says Warden Treon, “and I’ve gotten some good advice from them, and a little bit of help from them, and they’ve got some from us. So, I think it’s been mutually beneficial.”
Sylvia Allen agrees with the warden. “He’s very responsive. He cares about the city. He is always saying he wants to be a good neighbor. We want to also be good neighbors, we want to be a good city, and also give them the help that they need. So, we’re really proud that we can reach out and get a quick response and get the help that we ask for. They’ve never told us no.”
About Sanders Estes Unit
Sanders Estes Unit is accredited by the American Correctional Association—achieving
over 99% compliance for both mandatory and non-mandatory standards in its most
recent audit. Other accreditations and certifications include the Correctional Education
Association and the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA).