Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meetings (Oct. 9)

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This is a live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, Oct. 9. It’s not the official minutes.

Both meetings are being broadcast live on Suddenlink Channel 19 and can also be watched online. An archive of previous council meetings is available on the website.

5:48 p.m.

The workshop has started. Councilman James Benham is absent tonight.

6:01 p.m.

Council Agenda Discussion

The council will vote on items listed on the consent agenda during tonight’s regular meeting. These items were pulled for workshop discussion:

  • Interlocal Library Agreement: This item would renew the interlocal agreement with the City of Bryan for management of the Larry J. Ringer Library, which will soon be expanded. Under the new agreement, custodial responsibilities will move from the City of Bryan to the City of College Station, and a policy will be implemented to reduce the number of full-time staff through attrition to supplement the library materials budget. The agreement also revises the Twin City Inter-Library Loan Program to allocate expenses more equitably.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

 

  • Techline Increase: This item increases an existing bid award to Techline by $127,164.56 to allow the purchase of additional needed materials until the annual price agreement can be re-bid next year.

 6:14 p.m.

Change Order Audit

The council accepted the city internal auditor’s change order report, which determined that the city’s processes are effective but need improvement.

The audit found that the city is mostly compliant with relevant statutes, policies, and procedures, but approval practices need to be strengthened. Controls against fraud and abuse are moderately strong, change orders appear to be justified, and controls over prices appear to be sufficient.

However, the study also found that documentation needs to be improved, greater emphasis should be placed on negotiation, and the city should make its ethics hotline available to vendors and their employees. No change orders were identified that shouldn’t have been approved.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

 

6:34 p.m.

University Drive Pedestrian Safety Improvements Phase II

The council was updated on the University Drive Pedestrian Safety Improvements Phase II Project, which will run from Tauber Street to South College Avenue. Phase I was completed in 2012.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

 

6:43 p.m. 

After the council discussed its calendar, future agenda items and committee reports, the workshop meeting was adjourned. The regular meeting is scheduled to start at 7 p.m.

7:03 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

7:13 p.m.

Proclamations

Mayor Nancy Berry presented proclamations recognizing Oct. 16 as B-CS Habitat for Humanity Day and Oct. 9-11 as College Station Professional Firefighters’ Fill the Boot Days to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Accepting the Habitat for Humanity proclamation (below) was Marco Maina, executive director of Habitat’s local chapter.

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Pictured with Mayor Berry (below), from left to right, are Carrie Dalton, director of business development for the local chapter of the MDA, Assistant Fire Chief Paul Gunnels, student Peter Ramirez, Firefighter Association President Mike Clements, and Firefighter Second-Class Jeffrey Keefauver.

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7:17 p.m.

Hear Visitors

One person spoke during Hear Visitors, when citizens may address the council on any item that doesn’t appear on the posted agenda. Ben Roper recognized Marine Pfc. Chad E. Bales as part of the Fallen Heroes Memorial. A 20-year-old from Coahoma, Bales was killed in a non-hostile vehicle accident in Iraq on April 3, 2003.

7:18 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council unanimously approved the entire consent agenda:

  • Renewal of the interlocal agreement with the City of Bryan for management of the Larry J. Ringer Library.
  • A three-month extension to the Chimney Hill lease with DVA Renal Healthcare.
  • A bid award of $563,601 for the annual purchase of three phase pad-mounted transformers to be maintained in inventory. The bid will be awarded by line item to the lowest responsible bidder.
  • Renewal of a $78,000 bid award for city-branded uniforms for parks athletic programs and other city departments with CC Creations ($45,000) and Monograms and More ($33,000).
  • A $127,164.56 increase (for a total not to exceed $635,822.81) in an existing award to Techline for electrical items to will be stored in inventory.
  • Renewal of a contract not to exceed $750,000 annually with Payment Processing for electronic credit card processing and merchant account services.
  • A $386,400 funding agreement with the Arts Council of the Brazos Valley for FY15 affiliate funding, including annual program and marketing.
  • The FY15 budget and a $100,000 funding agreement with the Arts Council of the Brazos Valley for operations and maintenance, with $35,000 coming from the General Fund and $65,000 coming from the Hotel Tax Fund.
  • The FY15 budget and a $25,000 funding agreement with the Bryan/College Station Chamber of Commerce.
  • A $15,000 FY15 funding agreement with the College Station Noon Lions Club.
  • A $250,000 FY15 funding agreement with the B-CS Convention and Visitors Bureau to administer the CVB Grant Program.
  • The FY15 budget and a $1.32 million funding agreement with the B-CS Convention and Visitors Bureau.
  • A $350,000 FY15 funding agreement with the Research Valley Partnership.
  • A $698,659.38 contract with Dudley Construction for the 30-Inch Water TransmissionLine Reinstallation Project.

8:14 p.m.

Oil & Gas Drilling and Operations Permit

After a public hearing, the council voted 5-1 to approve an oil and gas operations permit requested by Halcon Operating Co. for a well on a 71-acre tract located northeast of the Holleman Drive South-Cain Road intersection. Councilman Karl Mooney voted against the motion. Seven citizens spoke during the public hearing: Four were against the proposal, one was for it and two expressed concerns.

The proposed site is classified as High Impact under city ordinance since 12 residential buildings are within 1,000 feet of the site. In the original proposal, the well site was within 600 feet of several residential structures, which would have required waivers from those property owners and residents. However, the applicant moved the site outside the 600-foot area. CME Testing and Engineering evaluated the public impact and concluded that the distances to the nearest residential backyard fences should not have a significant adverse effect on human health.

A truck route map also was provided to define and limit the acceptable route, as well as a $250,000 bond to repair road and other damage that may occur through drilling and operations. Access to the site will be from a private drive off Holleman.

The College Station Fire Department will provide emergency response and limited firefighting services, but the operator will be responsible for firefighting within the site in accordance with state regulations. The applicant must also provide and maintain an earthen drive access path at least 10 feet wide outside the site for wildland firefighting access.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

 

8:31 p.m. 

Temporary First Street Parking Removal

After a public hearing, the council unanimously voted to temporarily remove parking along the 300 Block of First Street from Dec. 1-July 1 to allow for emergency vehicle access while an adjacent development is under construction.

Letters were mailed to affected property owners, and the project engineer met with the property owners to discuss the plan. The Northgate District Association was also notified of the temporary parking removal. No Parking signs will be installed by the contractor.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

 

8:31 p.m.

Lick Creek Park Right-of-Way and Easements

After a public hearing, the council unanimously voted to establish easements and street right-of-way across Lick Creek Park needed for development of the Lick Creek Nature Center and the 63-acre tract being sold by the city. The park and adjacent tract for sale are located on Rock Prairie Road south of W. D. Fitch Parkway.

The right-of-way and easements are not expected to have any negative impact to the park or its operations. Announcements of tonight’s public hearing were posted in the Bryan/College Station Eagle on Sept. 11, 18, and 25, and Oct. 2.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

 

8:31 p.m.

The regular meeting has been adjourned. The next regular meeting is Monday, Oct. 20.

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