Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meeting (Sept. 14)

(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 meeting on Thursday, Sept. 14. It’s not the official minutes.

The meeting starts after 6 p.m. and is streamed live on Optimum Channel 19 and You can participate online through Microsoft Teams by entering Meeting ID: 223 427 023 174 and Passcode: MvPmTr. You can also call 833-240-7855 and enter Conference: 952 310 468#. 

6:02 p.m.

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

6:08 p.m.

Constitution Week

Mayor John Nichols proclaimed Sept. 17-23 as Constitution Week with a presentation to the Brazos Valley Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The annual observance commemorates the U.S. Constitution’s history and importance and highlights how it still serves us today.

(L-R): Councilwoman Linda Harvell, Hayley Ellisor, Mayor John Nichols, Leonora Owre, and Karla Devin.

6:21 p.m.

Hear Visitors

The council is conducting Hear Visitors, when citizens may address the council on any item that does not appear on the posted agenda.

  • Karl Mooney spoke about the YMCA coming to College Station.
  • Jennifer Weber, speaking on behalf of a group of nine, spoke against a College Station sewer line going underneath Rosemary Drive.
  • Mark Karbotly spoke about a potential convention center and the city’s partnership with Santa’s Wonderland.

6:26 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve the entire consent agenda:

  • A $1.5 million contract with Elliot Construction for decommissioning the Carter Lake Lagoon, plus the city’s contingency of $149,580 for a total appropriation of $1.65 million.
  • A $709,136 contract with Binkley & Barfield for professional services for the rehabilitation of Marion Pugh from Luther Street to George Bush Drive.
  • The city’s investment policy, broker-dealer list, and strategy for FY 24.
  • The $1.35 million purchase of a new fire engine from Siddons-Martin Emergency Group. The engine would be located at the future Fire Station No. 7 approved by voters in November.
  • Appointments to the project steering committee for the Bryan/College Station Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Comprehensive Safety Action Plan.
  • An Interlocal Agreement with Brazos County and the City of Bryan for the 2023 Byrne Justice Assistance Grant Program. The City of College Station has been allocated $17,329 for law enforcement programs.

6:39 p.m.

City Hall Room Use Policy

The council voted unanimously to approve a city hall room use policy that sets usage terms and guidelines.

7:19 p.m.

Parks & Recreation Update

The council received Parks and Recreation’s annual update summarizing the department’s many events, facilities, programs, and activities.

7:28 p.m.

FY 23 Budget Amendment

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to approve a $1.59 million amendment to the city’s FY 23 budget to cover additional street maintenance, water repair supplies, an intergovernmental rescue vehicle, and technology replacement. For a complete list of amendment items, see pages 247-48 in the meeting packet.

7:29 p.m.

The Graham Road rezoning has been pulled from tonight’s agenda.

7:41 p.m.

Vassar Court Rezoning

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to approve a request to change the zoning from Duplex to Multi-Family for about 0.35 acres at 710 Vassar Court. Rather than individually platted lots, the applicant intends to have townhomes on a single multi-family lot, allowing for higher density and more cost-effective living options.

7:42 p.m.

The council is taking a break and will resume shortly.

7:50 p.m.

The meeting has resumed.

8:40 p.m.

Greater Southwood Valley ROO

After a public hearing, the council voted 6-1 to approve a request for a Restricted Occupancy Overlay for about 48 acres between Southwest Parkway and Guadalupe Drive in the Greater Southwood Valley subdivision. Councilwoman Elizabeth Cunha voted against the motion.

The ROO would provide subdivision-specific occupancy regulations of no more than two unrelated persons per single-family dwelling or accessory living quarter.

8:45 p.m.

Middle Housing Parking

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to amend parking and access standards for Middle Housing zoning district developments. The change increases the maximum number of parking spaces in front yards to no more than four if the parking area does not make up more than 50% of the yard.

Single-family, duplex, and townhouse users are allowed to park in the front yard, and shared housing users and multiplex developments must park in the rear yard.

9:44 p.m.

High Occupancy Overlay District

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to create a High Occupancy Overlay zoning district to allow shared housing uses. The council will consider an amendment next month to remove shared housing as a permitted use in Middle Housing zoning districts.

9:48 p.m.

MPO Project Steering Committee

The council voted unanimously to appoint Randell Smith (senior city traffic engineer), Katherine Beaman-Jamael (city graduate engineer), Neo Jang, Dennis Christiansen, and Doug Bramwell to the BCS Metropolitan Planning Organization‘s Project Steering Committee.

The MPO’s planning effort will include public meetings and outreach.

10:04 p.m.

HOME-ARP Funding Agreements

The council voted unanimously to approve a pair of HOME-American Rescue Plan funding agreements with Twin City Mission.

  • A $1.48 million agreement for supportive services for eligible College Station residents.
  • A $174,026 million agreement to increase capacity and operate the Family Support Services program for eligible residents.

10:19 p.m.

Mayor John 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, Sept. 28.

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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