Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meeting (Jan. 26)

(L-R): Mark Smith, Linda Harvell, William Wright, John Nichols (mayor), Dennis Maloney, Elizabeth Cunha, and Bob Yancy.

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Director

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council‘s meeting on Thursday, Jan. 26. It’s not the official minutes.

The meeting starts after 6 p.m. and is streamed live on Optimum 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.

6:00 p.m.

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

6:06 p.m.

Hear Visitors

One person spoke during Hear Visitors, when citizens may address the council on any item that does not appear on the posted agenda. Charles Coats of the B/CS Habitat for Humanity spoke about the local need for affordable housing.

7:02 p.m.

Housing Tax Credit Program

The council voted unanimously to take no action regarding two applications for the state’s 2023 9% Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program, which directs private capital toward the development and preservation of affordable rental housing for low-income households. Tax credits are awarded to eligible participants to offset part of their federal tax liability in exchange for producing or preserving affordable rental housing.

An earlier motion to approve the application for Avanti Legacy Creekside at 1726 Harvey Mitchell Parkway South failed, 5-2. Councilwoman Elizabeth Cunha and Councilman William Wright voted in favor of the motion.

7:09 p.m.

EV Electric Rates

The council discussed electric vehicle fast charger stations and adding a retail electric rate for EV customers. Since fast-charging stations can add significant demands on the electric system and may not use much energy, they can create a poor load factor not accounted for in existing rates.

An ordinance amendment creating electric rates for electric vehicle fast chargers is on tonight’s consent agenda.

7:28 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve these consent agenda items:

• An amendment to the city’s Code of Ordinances related to bill payment.
• An amendment to the city’s Code of Ordinances creating electric rates for electric vehicle fast chargers.
• A $189,696 change order to the 10-year master service agreement with Axon Enterprise for cameras and storage for eight patrol vehicles.
• A resolution consenting to the issuance of bonds not to exceed $4 million by the Brazos County Municipal Utility District No. 1 for water improvements.
• The purchase of electric meters not to exceed $216,023.96 from Landis+Gyr Technology.
• Annual purchases not-to-exceed $180,000 for auto parts, shop equipment, and services from NAPA Auto Parts through the Purchasing Solutions Alliance purchasing cooperative.
• An annual blanket purchase order not to exceed $250,000 for parts and repair labor for fire trucks from Siddons-Martin Emergency Group through the BuyBoard Purchasing Cooperative.
• Annual tire purchases and retread services not-to-exceed $310,000 from Southern Tire Mart through the BuyBoard Purchasing Cooperative.
• The sunsetting of the Joint Relief Funding Review Committee.
• A resolution accepting a $170,920 grant from the Office of the Governor for police bullet-resistant shields.
• A resolution nominating FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies for designation as a Texas Enterprise Project by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism.

This consent item was pulled for a separate vote:

• The council voted 6-1 to approve an amendment to the city’s Code of Ordinances related to the adopted fees, rates, and charges. Councilwoman Elizabeth Cunha voted against the motion.

7:31 p.m.

Traditions Easement Abandonment

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to abandon 0.274 acres of a public utility easement in the Traditions Subdivision. The applicant plans to construct a new building as part of the Fujifilm Campus Master Plan, and the easement is no longer necessary.

7:41 p.m.

Pavement Maintenance Contract

The council voted unanimously to approve an $8.4 million contract with Brazos Paving for repairing and reconstructing asphalt streets.

7:54 p.m.

CDBG Public Service Agency Funding Review

The council voted unanimously to create a CDBG Public Service Agency Funding Review Committee to review applications for related federal Community Development Block Grant funding and make recommendations to the council.

8:07 p.m.

Committee Appointments

The council made these appointments to city boards, committees, and commissions.

Architectural Advisory Committee: Jonathan Winkler
Audit Committee: Michelle McMillin
B/CS Library: Megan Wilson, Virginia Higdon
Bicycle, Pedestrian, and Greenways Advisory Board: Dennis Jansen, Kathy Langlotz, Neo Jang
Design Review Board: Nicole Gallucci, Barry David Ely
Zoning Board of Adjustments: Roger Winckler

8:17 p.m.

Mayor Nichols 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, Feb. 9.

<strong><em><mark style="background-color:rgba(0, 0, 0, 0)" class="has-inline-color has-medium-gray-color">About the Blogger</mark></em></strong>
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., Killian graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.

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