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Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meetings (May 24)

(L-R): Bob Brick, Linda Harvell, Jerome Rektorik, Karl Mooney (mayor), John Nichols, Barry Moore, James Benham.

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, May 24. 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.

5:32 p.m.

The workshop has started. Mayor Karl Mooney is absent tonight. Mayor Pro Tem James Benham will preside. No action was taken out of executive session.

5:33 p.m.

Consent Agenda Discussion

The council will vote on items listed on the consent agenda during tonight’s regular meeting. No consent items were pulled for workshop discussion.

5:56 p.m.

Northgate Pedestrian Safety

The council heard a presentation about temporary measures to enhance pedestrian safety in the Northgate area, including the closing of Boyett Street at University Drive on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. An ongoing comprehensive study will help determine permanent changes.

Here are the PowerPoint presentations:

6:13 p.m.

Texas 4-H Horse Show

The council unanimously approved $25,000 in College Station Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) funds per year to support the Brazos County Expo Center’s bid to host the Texas State 4-H Horse Show for the next five years. 

Other possible funding partners and their annual HOT fund commitment are Experience BCS ($35,000), the City of Bryan for ($25,000) Brazos County ($50,000), and Expo Rewards Program ($12,000). The combined commitment for all partners is $147,000 per year for a total of $735,000 over five years.

The Texas State 4-H Horse Show is an eight-day event in July. The Abilene Convention and Visitors Bureau estimated an economic impact of $887,400 and 1,416 room nights for the 2017 show in Abilene. For the 2019 event, Experience BCS estimates an economic impact of $809,884 with 2,000 hotel room nights.

6:16 p.m.

Mayor Pro Tem Benham adjourned the workshop after the council discussed its calendar and received committee reports. The regular meeting will start immediately.

6:16 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

6:24 p.m.

Hear Visitors

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

  • The president of the Woodland Hills Homeowners Association spoke about maintaining the trees as a buffer between the subdivision and Lowe’s.
  • A resident spoke about issues with development in her Woodlands Hills neighborhood.
  • A resident spoke about the importance of trees and green areas in maintaining a healthy environment.

6:24 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve the entire consent agenda:

  • Renewal of a contract with the Texas Department of State Health Services, Vital Statistics and a data use agreement for access to confidential information.
  • The $135,814.39 purchase of new grounds maintenance equipment from Professional Turf Products for the Parks and Recreation Department.
  • The Semi-Annual Report on Small Area Impact Fees and System-Wide Impact Fees for Water, Wastewater, and Roadway.
  • A three-year, $1.2 million contract with SEL Engineering Services for electrical engineering services.
  • An ordinance repealing and terminating the Medical District Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone.
  • A $600,000 real estate contract for property for the planned Fire Station No. 7.
  • The second restatement of the inter-local agreement with the City of Bryan, City of Brenham, Brazos County, Washington County, Texas A&M University, and Grimes County for the construction, acquisition, implementation, operation, and maintenance of the Brazos Valley Wide Area Communications System.
  • A $337,182.47 general services agreement with ASAP Security Solutions for a video surveillance system in the Northgate District and in the Northgate Parking Garage.

6:31 p.m.

FY18 Budget Amendment

After a public hearing, the council unanimously approved a $4.13 million amendment to the city’s FY18 budget. Most of the amendment covers Phase II of the Veterans Park & Athletic Complex Build-Out ($1.55 million), the Fun for All Playground ($1 million), a design contract for Southeast Park ($400,000), and land for a new fire station.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

6:34 p.m.

Wellborn Road-Royder Road Rezoning

After a public hearing, the council unanimously approved a request to change the zoning designation from Planned Development District and Suburban Commercial to Wellborn Commercial for about four acres at the intersection of Wellborn Road and the future Royder Road.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

6:37 p.m.

Wellborn Road Rezoning

After a public hearing, the council unanimously approved a request to change the zoning designation from Rural to Wellborn Commercial for about 4.4 acres south of the Wellborn Road-Greens Prairie Road intersection.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:01 p.m.

College Station Business Center

After a public hearing, the council unanimously approved the College Station Business Center Development Plan, formerly known as the Spring Creek Corporate Campus.The Spring Creek Local Government Corporation will work with staff to implement the next phases of the Business Center, including platting, infrastructure design, deed restrictions, development standards, naming, signage, and branding.

The plan includes the development of about 250 acres of city-owned property along the east side of State Highway 6 South, north of W.D. Fitch Parkway, and south of Lick Creek.

The city began purchasing property in the area almost 20 years ago for the eventual development of a business park. The city owns about 485 acres, including significant areas of preserved greenway. The council’s Economic Development Committee and the Spring Creek Local Government Corporation have jointly overseen the development plan process.

The plan acts as an internal guide for the development of the business park and includes assessment of existing conditions, flexible land planning, potential industry targets, infrastructure demands and financing, and marketing and branding efforts. Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:02 p.m.

The council discussed and reviewed future agenda items.

7;02 p.m.

Mayor Pro Tem Benham adjourned the meeting. The council meets again on Thursday, June 14.

 


About the Blogger

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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You could learn to save a life in just 10 minutes

By Greg Rodgers, CSFD Division Chief

If someone you love – or a complete stranger – were to go into sudden cardiac arrest, would you know what to do?

Would you stand by helplessly waiting for help to arrive as precious seconds tick away?

Several years ago, an older man was walking in the local mall one morning when he suddenly dropped to the ground.  He was having a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), a condition in which the heart suddenly stops beating. With blood no longer flowing to the brain and other vital organs, SCA usually leads to death if not treated quickly.

Fortunately for him, someone nearby had been trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), took quick action, and saved his life.

In my 35 years in the fire service, I’ve witnessed sudden cardiac arrest three times. Two had positive outcomes, thanks to the immediate application of CPR.

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) affects hundreds of thousands of Americans each year and is a leading cause of death. According to the American Heart Association, survival rates can double or even triple if someone administers CPR until emergency medical services personnel arrive. Without CPR, about 90 percent of those who suffer SCA outside of a hospital don’t make it.

That’s made me a strong believer in proactive CPR training programs.

Learn Basic CPR on Thursday

If you’ve ever wanted to learn this life-saving technique but never seemed to find the time, here’s your chance.

The College Station Fire Department will participate in the World CPR and Stop the Bleed Challenge on Thursday from noon-6 p.m. at Fire Stations 2, 3 and 6. Perhaps the most extensive bystander CPR training event ever, the initiative is designed to teach compression-only CPR in 10 minutes to as many people as possible in a single afternoon. Participation is free, no registration is required, and family and friends are welcome.

Experienced College Station firefighters will conduct the short training sessions. Since compression is the most effective element of CPR, that’s the focus. No mouth-to-mouth techniques will be involved. Here’s the five-step process you’ll learn:

  1. Check for responsiveness.
  2. Call 911.
  3. Push hard and fast in the center of the chest.
  4. Send someone for an automated external defibrillator (AED).
  5. Keep it up until help arrives.

Knowing effective CPR techniques can have a direct effect on your friends, family, and everyone around you. CPR training may not guarantee a positive outcome, but it dramatically increases the odds.

For more information, contact me at 979-229-6625 or grodgers@cstx.gov.

 


About the Blogger

Greg Rodgers is in his 31st year with the College Station Fire Department, where is a division chief and serves as the department’s public information officer. A native of San Antonio, Greg earned a bachelor’s degree in emergency management administration from West Texas A&M in 2008.


 

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5 things to watch at Thursday’s city council meetings

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

The College Station City Council gathers Thursday at city hall for its workshop (5 p.m.) and regular (6 p.m.) meetings.

Here are five items to watch:

  1. Northgate Pedestrian Safety: The council will hear a workshop presentation on proposals for temporary measures to enhance pedestrian safety in the Northgate area, including the closing of Boyett Street at University Drive on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. An ongoing comprehensive study will help determine permanent changes.
  2. Fire Station No. 7 Property: As part of the consent agenda, the council will consider a $600,000 real estate contract to purchase about four acres on Wellborn Road for the city’s seventh fire station. The item is part of the budget amendment on the regular meeting agenda.
  3. Northgate Video Surveillance: Also on the consent agenda is a $337,000 general services agreement with ASAP Security Solutions for the first phase of a video surveillance system in the Northgate District and Northgate Parking Garage.
  4. FY18 Budget Amendment: After a public hearing, the council will consider a $4.13 million amendment to the city’s FY18 budget. Most of the amendment covers Phase II of the Veterans Park & Athletic Complex Build-Out ($1.55 million), the Fun for All Playground ($1 million), a design contract for Southeast Park ($400,000), and land for a new fire station.
  5. Rezonings on Wellborn Road: After public hearings, the council will consider requests to rezoning two properties along Wellborn Road south of Greens Prairie Road to allow for commercial development. One is for about four acres, and the other is for 4.4 acres.

The meetings can be watched live on Suddenlink Channels 19 or online. We’ll post a detailed live blog on this site.

Related Links:                                                                 

 


About the Blogger

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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Public works enhances our community’s quality of life

By Wally Urrutia, Sanitation Superintendent

Most of us take for granted that our trash will be picked up on time, our drinking water will be clean, and our public facilities will be adequately maintained. But College Station’s public works infrastructure, facilities, and services wouldn’t be possible without the dedicated professionals of the Public Works Department.

Efficient and professional public works programs manage our water, sewer, streets, traffic operations, stormwater drainage, fleet maintenance, public building maintenance, recycling and solid waste collection. These services are vital to the safety, health and high quality of life we enjoy in our growing community.

This week marks the 58th annual National Public Works Week, which celebrates the thousands of men and women across the United States and Canada who provide and maintain the infrastructure and services known as public works. This year’s theme is “The Power of Public Works,” which celebrates the impact public works has on modern civilization.

National Accreditation

Did you know that College Station is the only city of our size (80,000-150,000 population) in Texas to be nationally accredited in both Public Works and Water Services? Administered by the American Public Works Association (APWA), the accreditation program recognizes agencies that go beyond the requirements of established industry practices.

The College Station Public Works Department consists of eight divisions — Capital Projects, Facility Maintenance, Streets Maintenance, Drainage Maintenance, Traffic Operations, Sanitation, Fleet Services and Administration. Our 124 employees deliver sanitation services and plan, build and maintain the infrastructure that allows our community to grow and prosper.

About Public Works Week

Since 1960, the APWA has sponsored National Public Works Week as a way for its 28,000 members to educate the public on the importance of public works in their daily lives. The occasion is marked each year with scores of resolutions and proclamations from mayors, governors, and presidents.

As we observe National Public Works Week, we honor and thank the employees of our Public Works and Water Services departments for their professionalism, hard work and the high level of dedicated service they provide to our community every day.

Mayor Karl Mooney proclaimed this Public Works Week in College Station at the May 14 city council meeting:

(L-R) Mark Mcauliffe, Troy Rother, Raquel Gonzales, Susan Monnat, Mayor Karl Mooney, Donald Harmon, Martin Mcgehee, Jason Best.

Read the Proclamation

 


About the Blogger

Sanitation Superintendent Wally Urrutia is in his 31st year with the City of College Station. He was named Solid Waste Manager of the Year in 2016 by the Texas Public Works Association.


 

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Podcast: Bridget Russell, College Station’s Pool Shark

By Jay Socol, Public Communications Director

May is Water Safety Month, which obviously highlights the importance of knowing how to swim and how to watch family and friends when at the lake or at the pool.

In this podcast, College Station Pools Supervisor Bridget Russell talks about the challenges she and her staff face, how they’re not to be considered babysitters, and how you can stay safe this summer.

Total run time: 26:01

  • 00:00 — Show open
  • 01:52 — About Adamson Lagoon
  • 02:53 — About Bridget
  • 04:26 — A pool supervisor does…everything.
  • 05:53 — How tough is it to get teens to be lifeguards?
  • 07:30 — Why is Water Safety Month so important?
  • 08:49 — Bridget does lakes and pools WAY different than the rest of us.
  • 09:48 — How people enjoy water has changed: “Flat water” is out.
  • 11:05 — About CS’s two OTHER pools (Hallaran, Thomas)
  • 13:20 — Habits of parents are different now
  • 14:54 — We are NOT babysitters!
  • 16:33 — Teaching adults to swim, too.
  • 18:22 — CS Baby Boomers still love the water
  • 19:40 — Resources for keeping your family safe in and around the water
  • 20:50 — Weird things at the pool (Spoiler alert: POOP)
  • 22:52 — Final thoughts + upcoming events and essential tips.

 

 


About the Blogger

Jay Socol (@jaysocol) is in his ninth year as College Station’s public communications director. A 1991 graduate of Texas A&M. Jay has also been communications director for the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service, public information officer for the City of Bryan, and news director at several Bryan-College Station area radio stations. A native of Breckenridge, he also serves as president of the Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers.


 

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Texas Weekend of Remembrance to honor our fallen

By Gabby Salazar, Tourism Events Supervisor

While other cities in Texas are known for space exploration, kolaches, and live music, College Station has a well-earned reputation for its enthusiastic support for our nation’s armed forces, especially our veterans.

After all, College Station happens to be home to Texas A&M University, which produces more officers than any institution besides the military academies and maintains a 2,000-member Corps of Cadets. More than 1,400 veterans were enrolled at the university last fall.

That makes College Station a natural venue for a Memorial Day weekend event designed for Texans to pay their respects and honor the servicemen and women who sacrificed their lives for our country.

The inaugural Texas Weekend of Remembrance will be May 25-27 (Friday-Sunday) at Veterans Park & Athletic Complex. Our goal is to grow the event into an annual Memorial Day mainstay for military members, veterans, their families and the public to remember the fallen.

The commemoration begins Friday, May 25 with softball and flag football teams dedicating their competition to fallen soldiers. The tournaments are coordinated by Heroes Sports, an organization that supports service members and veterans by providing ways to maintain active lifestyles, bond through teamwork, and become active in their communities.

The weekend officially starts Saturday with opening ceremonies at 10 a.m. The schedule includes a motorcade, parachute jump, presentation of colors, rifle salute, and roll call with a ship bell from the USS Kearsarge, which served in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. Brig. Gen. Joe E. Ramirez, Jr. (Ret.), commandant of the Corps of Cadets, will provide opening remarks, and Maj. Gen. Paul T. Calvert of Fort Hood will give the keynote speech.

Since good music has a unique way of bringing people together, we’ve invited some outstanding artists to entertain our visitors. Saturday’s opening act (6 p.m.) is the Scooter Brown Band, which will be followed by Joe Nichols and Jamey Johnson. On Sunday beginning at 2:15 p.m., Cody Wayne and Aaron Watson will perform.

Before Sunday’s concerts, join us at 8 a.m. for the kid’s mile fun-run and the 5K run/walk. All proceeds will benefit Brazos Valley Cares for the support of veterans and their families who experience financial hardship. After the races, a free breakfast will be provided by the West End Elixir Company at the American Pavilion. Chaplain Benjamin T. Mayhugh of the U.S. Coast Guard will be the speaker.

Concessions will be available for purchase throughout the weekend, with part of the proceeds donated to the Texas A&M University Veterans Resource & Support Center to assist with scholarships. No outside food, drinks or pets are allowed, but you may bring plastic water bottles. Ample parking is available on-site.

The Texas Weekend of Remembrance embraces the tradition and history College Station is known for by highlighting Memorial Day weekend events and related facilities around the community.

For a complete schedule of events and other information, go to cstx.gov/TWR or call 979-764-3486.

 


About the Blogger

Tourism Events Supervisor Gabby Salazar is in her third year with the City of College Station. Before joining the city staff, she was the night manager at Texas A&M’s Reed Arena. A product of A&M’s sports management program, Gabby earned her bachelor’s degree in 2014 and is working toward her master’s. A native of Alamo, she was also a member of the Aggies’ nationally-ranked track and cross country teams.


 

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