Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meeting (Oct. 13)

Standing (l-r): John Crompton, Bob Brick, John Nichols, Dennis Maloney. Sitting (l-r): Linda Harvell, Mayor Karl Mooney, Elizabeth Cunha.

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council‘s regular meeting on Thursday, Oct. 13. It’s not the official minutes.

The meeting starts after 6 p.m. and is streamed live on Suddenlink Channel 19 and To join online, go to Zoom or call 888-475-4499 and enter webinar number 967 2839 3278. If the call-in number isn’t working, access will be limited to Zoom.

6:17 p.m.

The meeting has started. The council took no action after its executive session.

6:24 p.m.

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Mayor Karl Mooney presented a proclamation recognizing October as National Disability Employment Awareness Month. The annual observance celebrates the contributions of workers with disabilities, past and present, and showcases supportive, inclusive employment policies and practices.

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6:29 p.m.

Arteriovenous Malformation Awareness Month

Mayor Mooney presented a proclamation recognizing October as Arteriovenous Malformation Awareness Month. The Aneurysm and AVM Foundation focuses on public awareness, research, and fostering a community of support for those affected by brain aneurysms and other vascular brain malformations.

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6:34 p.m.

Weinerspiel Day

Mayor Mooney presented a proclamation recognizing Sunday, Oct. 16, as Weinerspiel Day. Weinerspiel raises funds for non-profits that help homeless, unwanted, and neglected animals, and organizations that support the human/animal bond and advocate in city and state governments.

Weinerspiel’s annual Wiener Dog and Wanna-Be-Wiener Dog Races are Saturday and Sunday at the Wolf Pen Creek Amphitheater. The event is free and open to the public. Proceeds benefit local non-profits that help homeless, unwanted, and neglected animals.

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6:39 p.m.

Municipal Court Week

Mayor Mooney presented a proclamation recognizing the week of November 7-11 as Municipal Court Week in appreciation for the dedicated municipal judges, court clerks, court administrators, prosecutors, bailiffs, and warrant officers who comprise the Texas municipal courts. The observance recognizes how much municipal courts do and the vital role local courts and their personnel play in the criminal justice system.

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6:44 p.m.

Community Planning Month

Mayor Mooney presented a proclamation recognizing October as Community Planning Month to celebrate the critical role community planning plays nationally and locally. Community planning helps manage the constant changes affecting all cities, towns, and places and harnesses that change to provide better choices for those living, working, playing, and attending school. It also presents a way for residents to be meaningfully involved in making choices that determine their community’s future.

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6:52 p.m. 

Hear Visitors

Two people spoke during Hear Visitors, when citizens may address the council on items that don’t appear on the posted agenda.

  • Eric Schulte asked the council to support the creation of a Museum of Grand Junk consisting of items he’s collected through the years.
  • John Nicks spoke about issues affected people who are disabled.

7:25 p.m.

Economic Development Update

The council received an update on the city’s Economic Development Master Plan, industry and retail recruitment, business retention and expansion, redevelopment efforts, and key economic indicators.

7:33 p.m.

Short-Term Rental Housing

The council heard an update about short-term rental housing regulations, including enforcement actions and the hotel occupancy tax collection.

8:10 p.m.

Family Definition Enforcement

The council discussed enforcement of the family definition in the Unified Development Ordinance, including FY 22 statistics about investigations, legal actions, and fine totals.

9:54 p.m.

Unlimited Potential

The council directed staff to identify $2 million in potential funding for Unlimited Potential‘s new facility at 1115 Anderson St., contingent upon the organization working with staff to produce a detailed design and business plan. Councilwoman Elizabeth Cunha was against the direction.

9:54 p.m.

The council is taking a short break.

10:08 p.m.

The meeting has resumed.

10:22 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve these consent agenda items:

• Annual price agreements not to exceed $150,000 each with Corn’s Collision Center and George’s Paint and Body for vehicle painting and body repair services.
• A $2 million contract with Altitude Energy for switch station substation upgrades.
• A contract not to exceed $292,998.44 with Avinext for a Microsoft Teams upgrade.
• A three-year software license and subscription agreement not to exceed $271,830 with ESRI.
• A $70,444.14 change order to the contract with CSA Construction for the Carters Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant Centrifuge Improvements Project.
• A contract not to exceed $419,667.96 with FreeIT Data Solutions for data storage system hardware, support, and installation services.
• A three-year contract not to exceed $343,957 with AESI for NERC compliance consulting.
• An amendment to the city’s FY 23 fees, rates, and charges.
• A resolution accepting a $1.94 million federal Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant.
• A resolution nominating FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies for designation by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism as a Texas Enterprise Project.
• An ordinance renaming Biomedical Way as Fujifilm Way.
• A resolution authorizing the city manager to accept Community Development Block Grant mitigation funding from the Texas General Land Office distributed by the Brazos Valley Council of Governments.

The council voted on this item separately:

• Voted 6-1 to extend the mayor’s disaster declaration to allow the city to remain eligible for emergency funding. Councilwoman Cunha voted against the motion.

10:36 p.m.

Texas Independence Ballpark Phase 1

The council voted unanimously to approve a $16.6 million contract with Vaughn Construction for Phase 1 of the Texas Independence Ballpark project. The project’s second phase is part of next month’s bond election.

Phase 1 includes four baseball fields, parking, lighting, batting cages, concession and restroom space, seating, landscaping, and supporting infrastructure.

10:40 p.m. 

Richards Street Land Use & Rezoning

The council voted unanimously to approve a request to change the land use from Neighborhood Center to Mixed Residential for .356 acres at 217 Richards Street. The applicant plans to replat the property into three residential lots.

10:43 p.m. 

Bethel Baptist Rezoning

The council voted unanimously to approve a request to change the zoning from Rural to General Commercial for Bethel Baptist Church at the intersection of Harvey Road and State Highway 30. The change allows the church to install a freestanding sign.

11:14 p.m. 

Shared Housing Use

The council voted unanimously to approve a new use called Shared Housing, which typically allow more than four unrelated residents. Since the structures are categorized as single-family, they have been allowed to develop as single-family in residential neighborhoods.

11:24 p.m.

Mayor Mooney adjourned the meeting after the council discussed its calendar, items of community interest, committee and board reports, and future agenda items.

The council meets again on Thursday, Oct. 27.

<em><strong><mark style="background-color:rgba(0, 0, 0, 0)" class="has-inline-color has-medium-gray-color">About the Blogger</mark></strong></em>
About the Blogger

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

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