City Council Preview (March 8 Meetings)

Here’s a quick overview of some of the items the College Station City Council will be discussing at its workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, March 8. This blog is not a complete and official agenda.

The workshop and regular meetings can be watched live on Suddenlink Ch. 19, or online. Previous council meetings are archived on the website. A detailed live blog from the meetings will be posted on this site and can also be accessed through the city’s Facebook page.

Workshop Meeting (4 p.m.)

NOTE: The workshop is starting an hour later than usual so the council can attend a special beam-signing ceremony at Fire Station No. 6, which is being built at the corner of Tarrow and University Drive.

Revenue Rescue Cost Recovery Program

The council will hear a presentation from Fire Chief R.B. Alley on the Revenue Rescue Cost Recovery program, which is designed to recover costs for responding to certain vehicle accidents, vehicle fires and hazardous material spills or leaks. The council unanimously approved program’s concept in November. Estimates indicate that about $126,000 — costs currently paid by taxpayers — could be recovered each year through the program. Examples include responses to accidents where hazardous materials such as gasoline, diesel fuel, antifreeze are spilled and have to be properly cleaned up, and accidents where injured people have to be cut from their vehicles with the hydraulic rescue tools such as the Jaws of Life.

Funds would be collected from the responsible party’s insurance company and are already included in most insurance premiums. Private property that’s not commercially owned, operated or zoned for individuals without insurance would be exempt. Other communities using the program include Bryan, Brazos County, San Angelo, Georgetown, Greenville and Dallas. College Station would piggy back on the City of Bryan’s existing contract with Revenue Rescue. The council will consider approving a contract and fees for the program as part of the regular meeting’s consent agenda.

Transportation Capital Improvement Projects

The council will discuss the public engagement process for transportation capital improvement projects. To streamline the capital project delivery process and make the most efficient use of staff time, council will consider requiring only one public hearing on each transportation project before advertising for construction bids. 

Regular Meeting (7 p.m.)

Consent Agenda

This is not a complete list of consent agenda items. Refer to the regular meeting agenda for a list of all the consent items.

Cooner Street Reconstruction Project

The council will consider approving a professional services contract for $297,239 with Bleyl & Associates, Inc., for planning, design, and construction of the Cooner Street Reconstruction Project. Cooner Street is located north of University Drive and east of Texas Avenue. The existing asphalt pavement has deteriorated to a point where rehabilitation is necessary to prevent constant maintenance. Other improvements include drainage and replacing the existing utilities. The project design and most of the construction will be paid for with federal Community Development Block Grants, but $127,366 of the balance of the Barron Road authorization will be needed to supplement the construction cost. The water and wastewater utility rehabilitation construction will be paid from capital funds.

Highway 6 and Southwest Parkway Signal

The council will consider approving an advanced funding agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation to powder coat the signal poles as part of its project to improve the interchange at State Highway 6 and Southwest Parkway. The cost to the city will not exceed $8,000. TxDOT plans to widen the pavement of the east frontage road to accommodate dual eastbound left turns from the bridge onto the frontage road. TxDOT also will be reconstructing the traffic signals. The agreement will maintain the uniform appearance of traffic signals throughout the city.

Incentive Funding for TIPS

The council will consider authorizing the third of five economic development incentive payments of $250,000 to Texas A&M’s Texas Institute for Preclinical Studies (TIPS) for performance in 2010-2011. In 2006, the city council unanimously approved a five-year, $1.25 million incentive for the development of TIPS as part of a larger economic development agreement with the Research Valley Partnership. In return, TIPS has invested in more than $40 million in real and personal property and constructed a large facility on Raymond Stotzer Parkway. TIPS also committed to create jobs each year for the term of the agreement. In Fiscal Year 2011, TIPS hired eight employees and maintained 29 total workers, not including students. The City of Bryan and Brazos County also provide incentives.

Regular Agenda

Rezoning of Property at University Drive and Texas Avenue

After a public hearing, the council will consider rezoning 11 acres at the northwest corner of the Texas Avenue and University Drive intersection to allow a vertical mixed-use and multi-family redevelopment. All existing buildings, including the former Plaza Hotel tower, will be demolished before building permits will be issued.

Keep Brazos Beautiful Board Appointment

The council will consider appointing a city representative to the Keep Brazos Beautiful board of directors.  Staff will recommend the appointment of Venessa Garza, the city’s Greenways Program manager, to fill the three-year term.

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