Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meetings (Feb. 14)

Sitting (L-R): Mayor Pro Tem Linda Harvell, Mayor Karl Mooney, Eleanor Vessali. Standing (L-R): Bob Brick, Jerome Rektorik, John Nichols, Dennis Maloney.

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, Feb. 14. It’s not the official minutes.

The meetings can be watched live on Suddenlink channel 19 or online. An archive of previous council meetings is available on the website.

5:14 p.m.

The workshop has started. No action was taken out of the executive session.

5:18 p.m.

Consent Agenda Discussion

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

  • TxDOT Funding Agreements: The consent agenda includes a pair of advance funding agreements with the Texas Department of Transportation that cover work for the Barron-Capstone Realignment Project and the Royder Road Phase II Project that’s not covered under the mutual maintenance agreements.
  • Eastgate Utility Project Change Order: The Eastgate Utility Rehabilitation Project, which replaced water and wastewater lines in the area, cost less than expected. The change order reduces the contract by $345,655.42 and allows the purchase order to be closed.

5:23 p.m.

Competitive Bidding Advertising

The council discussed the city charter amendment passed in the November election that allows the city to use its online bidding system to meet notice requirements for competitive bid and proposal solicitations. The amendment eliminates the need to publish newspaper notices, which is expected to save the city more than $25,000 a year.

The council will vote on the ordinance amendment as part of tonight’s consent agenda.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

5:43 p.m.

Roundabout Policy

The consensus of the council was to move forward with a city policy favoring roundabouts over signals or stop signs at smaller intersections based on safety and efficiency.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

5:55 p.m.

Lick Creek Treatment Plant Expansion

The council received an update on the expansion of the Lick Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant. The estimated costs have increased to about $36 million because of a variety of reasons, including labor shortages and tariffs on aluminum and steel.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

5:57 p.m.

Mayor Mooney adjourned the workshop after the council discussed its calendar and received committee reports. The regular meeting will start after a short break.

6:10 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

6:16 p.m.

Brazos Valley 2-1-1 Day

The mayor proclaimed Feb. 11 as 2-1-1 Day. 2-1-1 Texas is a program of United Way of the Brazos Valley in partnership with the State of Texas Health and Human Service Commission.

6:20 p.m.

Shen Yun Performance Day

The mayor proclaimed Feb. 21 as Shen Yun Performance Day.

6:23 p.m.

Hear Visitors

One person spoke during Hear Visitors when citizens might address the council on any item that doesn’t appear on the posted agenda.

  • Councilwoman Elianor Vessali recognized Army 1 Lt. Dustin Vincent as part of The American Fallen Soldiers Project. The 25-year-old Mesquite native died Nov. 3, 2011, in Kirkuk Province, Iraq, of wounds caused by enemy small-arms fire.

6:25 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve the entire consent agenda:

  • Renewal of an annual price agreement not-to-exceed $592,895 with Techline for di-electric switchgears.
  • A $128,900.31 contract with ASAP Security Services for video monitoring equipment for electric substations.
  • An annual purchase not-to-exceed $103,150 for replacement outdoor breakers for substations.
  • An advance funding agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation regarding the Barron Road and Capstone Drive Realignment Project.
  • An advance funding agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation regarding the Royder Road Phase II Project.
  • A change order that reduced the contract with Elliott Construction by $345,655.42 for the East Gate Utility Rehabilitation Project.
  • A $595,900 contract with Kimley-Horn & Associates for engineering services related to the Northeast Sanitary Sewer Trunk Line Phase 3 Project.
  • An amendment to the city’s Code of Ordinances regarding truck routes and prohibitions and restrictions for oversized vehicles and overweight vehicle loads.
  • Renewal of the annual master purchase agreement not-to-exceed $150,000 with the Reynolds Company for Rockwell Automation SCADA products and services.
  • An amendment to the city’s Code of Ordinances relating to providing notice for competitive bids and proposals.

6:27 p.m.

BioCorridor Board Appointment

The council unanimously appointed Jeremy Osborne and Elizabeth Cunha as College Station’s representatives to the BioCorridor board of directors.

6:28 p.m.

Brazos Beautiful Board Appointment

The council unanimously appointed Senior Planner Lauren Hovde as the city’s representative on the board of directors of Keep Brazos Beautiful. 

6:29 p.m.

Audit Committee, Parks Board Appointments

The council unanimously appointed Carolyn Franklin to the Audit Committee and Don Hellriegel to the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board.

8:24 p.m.

Heart of Southside Neighborhood Overlay

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to add a Neighborhood Conservation Overlay zoning district for about 127 acres in the College Park, South Oakwood, Dulaney, and Woodson Village subdivisions. Councilwomen Linda Harvell and Eleanor Vessali recused themselves from the vote. 

The area is located southeast of George Bush Drive between the lots on the west side of Fairview Avenue and those on the east side of Lee Avenue. Representatives from the neighborhood submitted a petition signed by the majority of property owners requesting the zoning change in response to recently constructed houses that are seen as out of character with the neighborhood.

The overlay includes these additional single-family restrictions:

  • Maximum building height of 33 feet.
  • Minimum lot size of 8,500 square feet and retaining the average lot width requirements for all new subdivisions.
  • Eight-inch caliper trees outside the buildable area to be barricaded and preserved during construction.

Twelve people spoke during the public hearing, all but three in support of the overlay.

Here are the PowerPoint presentations:

Heart of Southside:

Chantal Vessali:

City of College Station:

8:29 p.m.

The council discussed and reviewed future agenda items.

8:29 p.m.

Mayor Mooney adjourned the meeting. The council meets again on Monday, Feb. 25.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


About the Blogger

Public Communications Manager Colin Killian (@ColinKillian) has been with the City of College Station since 2010 after serving 23 years as associate media relations director for the Texas A&M Athletics Department. Killian has also worked as a reporter and editor for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and Lewisville News. A native of Hobbs, N.M., he graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.


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