Live Blog: Monday’s city council meetings (May 18)

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By Colin Killian, Communications Manager

This is a live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Monday, May 18. 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.

Originally scheduled for May 14, the meetings were moved to Monday to accommodate Mayor Nancy Berry’s trip to Washington, D.C. as part of the Bryan-College Station Chamber of Commerce’s annual B/CS in DC Delegation.

5:36 p.m.

The workshop meeting has started.

5:50 p.m.

Consent Agenda Discussion

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

  • Ringer Library Expansion: This is a $106,800 contract for the programming and conceptual design for the Larry J. Ringer Library Expansion Project, which was approved by voters in the seven-year 2008 bond election. The project includes a 10,000 square foot expansion and renovation to the existing facility, parking improvements, a new children and youth area, and technology upgrades.
  • Lick Creek Hike & Bike Trail: This is a $3.2 million contract for a hike and bike trail from Creek View Park to Lick Creek Park as part of the Lick Creek Hike & Bike Trail project. The work will include on-street improvements and a multi-use path through mostly city-owned property and along Pebble Creek Parkway.
  • Halcon Oil and Gas Franchise: This is the first of two readings of a non-exclusive pipeline franchise ordinance for oil and gas operations with Halcón Field Services, which will pay the city an annual fee of $5,534. The franchise is the next step in Halcón’s Bistonte #3H Well and Buey #1H Well permitting and would enable the collection and transportation, via pipeline, of natural gas and other petroleum products produced by the wells.

6:04 p.m.

Delinquent Accounts Audit

The council received a report from Internal Auditor Ty Elliott that found Utility Customer Service to be well managed and effective in collecting, managing, and writing off delinquent accounts. However, Elliott said procedures could be more efficient, policies and procedures aren’t always consistently applied, and write-off policies and procedures have control deficiencies.

Elliott recommended that policies and procedures be updated and that controls for the collections and write-off process be strengthened.

With 29 employees and an annual budget of $2.3 million, Utility Customer Service handles more cash transactions than any other city business unit. In 2014, USC processed about half a million utility payments totaling $141 million.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

6:40 p.m.

Distributed Antenna System

The council discussed a license agreement with ExteNet for the installation and operation of a network of antenna nodes to provide wireless service. Known as a Distributed Antenna System, these antennas would be connected to existing utility poles and require additional ground-mounted infrastructure.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

6:47 p.m.

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

6:57 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

7:06 p.m.

Proclamations and Recognitions

The council recognized College Station High School’s first graduating class and presented proclamations recognizing May 17-23 as National Public Works Week and May as National Bike Month

For National Public Works Week, Mayor Nancy Berry recognized the City of College Station’s Public Works Department  for the excellent work provided to citizens and visitors throughout the year. From street construction to sanitation, these professionals are truly the backbone of the city organization. Pictured with Mayor Berry (below) are Assistant Directors Pete Caler and Emily Fisher, and Director Donald Harmon:

PublicWorks_2

National Bike Month serves as a chance to showcase the many benefits of bicycling and to encourage more people to give biking a try. Mayor Berry (below) presented the proclamation to Jon Denton and Mayor Pro Tem Blanche Brick, who serve on the city’s Bicycle, Pedestrian and Greenways Advisory Board:

BikeMonth_2

Mayor Berry (below), flanked by College Station ISD Superintendent Clark Ealy, College Station High School Principal Mike Martindale, and representatives of the CSHS Class of 2015, recognized the group for the school’s first-ever graduating class. Commencement will be May 29:

CSHS_2

7:08 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 Army Sgt. Daniel K. Methvin as part of the Fallen Heroes Memorial program. The 22-year-old Belton native died when a grenade was thrown from a window of the civilian hospital he was guarding on July 26, 2003 in in Ba’qubah, Iraq. 

7:36 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve these consent items:

  • A $106,800 contract with Komatsu Architecture for the programming and conceptual design for the Larry J. Ringer Library Expansion project.
  • A bid award of $166,753 with S.D.P. Manufacturing for the purchase of a track-mounted mini-digger.
  • Annual bid awards totaling $194,762.50 with Priester-Mell & Nicholson($122,179), Summit Electric Supply ($25,292.60), Texas Electric Cooperatives ($9,714), and HD Supply ($37,576.90) for electric meters and sockets.
  • Annual water meter purchases of $315,199.06 from Aqua Metric Sales Company through the Houston-Galveston Area Council contract.
  • Annual bid awards totaling $420,644.34 with Hill Country Electric Supply ($26,600), Wesco ($8,242.50), Stuart C. Irby ($10,378), Texas Electric Cooperatives ($64,584.64), Techline ($232,214.50), KBS Electrical Distribution ($42,624.70), and Priester-Mell & Nicholson ($36,000) for various electrical items to be stored in inventory.
  • The first of two readings of a non-exclusive pipeline franchise ordinance for oil and gas operations with Halcón Field Services to construct, operate, maintain, remove, replace, and repair pipeline facilities, with equipment and appurtenances, for the transportation of petroleum products and byproducts.

These consent items were voted on separately at the request of Councilman James Benham:

  • By a 5-2 vote, the council postponed voting on a $3.2 million contract with Kieschnick General Contractors for a hike and bike trail from Creek View Park to Lick Creek Park. The majority asked staff to look into the possibility of using some of the funds for road and street repairs. Voting against the postponement were Councilmen John Nichols and Steve Aldrich.
  • The council unanimously approved the FY16 Brazos Valley Wide Area Communications System budget and the city’s annual payment of $202,270; and the FY16 Capital Equipment Replacement Reserve Fund budget and the city’s annual payment of $96,047.61.

7:40 p.m.

Standard of Care Ordinance

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to adopt a Standard of Care ordinance for Parks & Recreation programs to comply with the state’s child care licensing exemption.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

8:01 p.m.

Rock Prairie Road West Comp Plan Amendment

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to deny a proposal to change the land use designation from Suburban Commercial to General Commercial for about two acres at the southwest corner of Rock Prairie Road West and Holleman Drive South to allow for the development of a convenience store with fuel sales.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

8:11 p.m.

Rock Prairie Road West Rezoning

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to change the zoning district boundaries from Suburban Commercial to  Planned Development District for about two acres at the southwest corner of Rock Prairie Road West and Holleman Drive South to allow for the development of a convenience store with fuel sales.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

8:14 p.m.

Krenek Tap Rezoning

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to change the zoning district boundaries from General Suburban to General Commercial for about ¾ acres at 107 Krenek Tap Rd.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation received by the council:

8:16 p.m.

Historic Preservation Committee

The council voted unanimously to appoint Edelmiro Escamilla and Annette Naylor to the Historic Preservation Committee to fill two terms that expire in January 2017.

8:20 p.m.

The regular meeting has been adjourned. The next regular meeting is May 28.

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