Burn ban approved

In a special-called meeting this morning, Ellis County Commissioners’ unanimously approved a 90-day burn ban at the recommendation of Fire Marshal’s Investigator Jim Pharr.

“This morning the (Keetch Byram Drought Index) was 615,” Pharr said. “All the counties to the south of us are already in a burn ban, and with the Governor’s proclamation, I expect more.”

Traditionally, Ellis County has declared a burn ban during time periods when the KBDI, a drought index that ranges from 0 (no drought) to 800 (extreme drought) and is based on the soil capacity in eight inches of water, reaches 500 or more.

On July 15, Governor Rick Perry declared a state of disaster in 167 Texas counties “based on the existence of such threat” of wildfires. The declaration directs “that all necessary measures both public and private as authorized under Section 418.017 of the Texas Government Code be implemented to meet that threat.”

Any questions about the burn ban in Ellis County may be directed to Pharr at jim.pharr@co.ellis.tx.us or 972-825-5555.