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The City Council of the City of Taylor met on April 26, 2005, at City Hall, 400 Porter St., Taylor, Texas.  Mayor Don Hill declared a quorum and called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. with the following present:

 

Mayor Don Hill                                             City Manager Frank Salvato

Mayor Pro Tem John McDonald                   Assistant City Manager, Charles Cunningham

Council Member Bernabe Gonzales               City Clerk Susan Brock

Council Member Ella Jez                                

Council Member Tim Mikeska

 

CONSENT AGENDA

 

1.  Minutes from April 14, 2005.

2.  Concur with financials for March, 2005.

Mayor Pro Tem McDonald made a motion to approve the consent agenda as presented and Council member Gonzales seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

REGULAR AGENDA – REVIEW/DISCUSS & CONSIDER/ACTION:

 

3.  Consider Adoption of Ordinance 2005-6 Budget Amendment.

Jon-Etta Ross, Director, Finance, outlined significant changes contained in Ordinance 2005-6, Budget Amendment Number 2.  She stressed the primary changes that could occur would be with any action taken regarding police officer salaries.  Susan Brock, City Clerk, read the caption to Ordinance 2005-6:

 

ORDINANCE NO. 2005-6

 

AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF TAYLOR, TEXAS AMENDING ORDINANCE NO. 2004-12 ADOPTED ON SEPTEMBER 1, 2004, MAKING APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE SUPPORT OF THE CITY FOR FISCAL YEAR BEGINNING OCTOBER 1, 2004 AND ENDING SEPTEMBER 30, 2005; BY AMENDING THE AMOUNT OF APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE GENERAL FUND AS WELL AS OTHER FUNDS THAT PROVIDE FOR THE PAYMENT OF OPERATING EXPENSES AND CAPITAL OUTLAY AND BY CHANGING THE AMOUNT APPROPRIATED FOR VARIOUS DEPARTMENTS OF THE CITY.

 

Police Chief Jeff Straub asked Council members to refer back to the Compensation Study distributed at the previous council meeting.  He asked Council to consider Compensation Plan 3 based on the overall benefits package of the plan.  Council member Mikeska made a motion to approve the Ordinance 2005-6, amending the budget with the adoption of Compensation Plan 3 for a salary increase for police officers.  Mayor Pro Tem McDonald expressed his concern for retaining officers and asked if this plan provided for any type of credit for those entering the plan with prior years of service.  It was determined that a separate ordinance would be necessary to institute such a policy.  Staff agreed to bring back additional information on a seniority pay plan at the next meeting.  Mayor Pro Tem McDonald seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.


 

4.  Consider change in Personnel Policy regarding retiree’s benefits under the City’s medical plan.

Starla Hall, Director of Human Resources, presented new information to the council regarding the proposed changes in retiree benefits for health insurance.  Five different options were presented for the Council to consider.  Ms. Davidica Blum a representative with the Scott and White Health Plan addressed the Council regarding an option to carve out the retirees from the current employee’s coverage.  Under this agreement, the retiree’s would be in their own pool and any claims they might have would not affect rates for current City employees with coverage under the Scott and White Health Plan. 

 

Ms. Mary Bartlett, former police officer and currently on the Scott and White Health Plan, addressed the Council and asked that they consider reevaluating the current health benefits for police officers and firefighters in an effort to attract and retain more applicants.  Council member Mikeska made a motion to allow current retiree’s to continue on the Health plan until October 1 and to pay their own premiums at the current rate.  Prior to the next enrollment period, Council will have an opportunity to readdress this issue and determine any additional changes to the policy.  Council member Gonzales seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

5.  Consider contract with Halff Associates for Phase I Design of Dickey Street Drainage Project. 

David Simons, Director of Engineering, presented a proposal to Council for a contract agreement with Halff Associates for Phase I Design of the Dickey Street drainage project.  Council previously asked staff to proceed with this part of the project at a meeting on February 22, 2005.  Since that meeting, staff and Halff Associates have been working with Williamson County to complete the environmental review for the project and submitted a grant application for additional funding.  The proposed project includes the installation of storm sewer lines and inlets on Pecan, Dickey, Bland, and Sturgis streets.  The final design and construction of this project is being funded by HUD grants and a $200,000 match previously authorized by the Council.  Halff Associates proposes to have construction plans and contract documents by November, 2005.

 

Mayor Pro Tem McDonald made a motion to approve the design contract with Halff Associates not to exceed $123,300.  Council member Jez seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

City Attorney, Ted Hejl joined the meeting.

 

6.  Introduce Ordinance 2005-7 Substandard Buildings.

Bob VanTil, Director of Community Development, presented background information regarding Ordinance 2005-7 on substandard buildings.  Mr. VanTil explained how this proposed ordinance is in direct response to the Council’s recent Strategy 2.3 to “Develop an aggressive community improvement strategy by May 1, 2005.”  A primary goal of this ordinance is to adopt Chapter 214, 214.001-214.005 of the Local Government Code thereby improving and streamlining the repair or removal of substandard structures.  This ordinance would allow the City to file a lien on a property, pursue the ownership of the property, and ultimately, put the City in a position to sell the property to a non-profit homebuilder and place a new home on the site.

 

Council member Gonzales raised concerns over the implementation of this ordinance and the effect it might have on those property owners who are making a good faith effort to improve their properties, but not proceeding as quickly as might be expected for a variety of reasons.  Mayor Hill asked that Mr. VanTil compare our proposed ordinance with those of other cities of comparable size and report back to the Council.  Council member Gonzales made a motion not to introduce the ordinance at this meeting.  Council member Jez seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion to NOT INTRODUCE the ordinance passed.

 

7.  Consider calling a joint conference of taxing entities regarding the establishment of a TIF Zone.

Mr. VanTil asked Council to call a joint conference on May 12th to meet with representatives from the Taylor Independent School District (TISD) and from the County to discuss the establishment of a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District in the City.  Legislation requires that the City call a meeting of all effected taxing units to discuss any proposed TIF project and financing plan.  Council member Mikeska made a motion to call the joint meeting between the City, TISD, and Williamson County on May 12th to discuss the creation of a TIF District in Taylor.  Council member Jez seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

8.  Consider funding for Moody Museum repairs.

Mr. VanTil presented a request to Council to consider approving additional funds to repair the Moody Museum.  Council approved $20,000 in the 2004-05 budget for repairs with the directive that staff would seek alternative funding through grant applications.  Staff submitted a grant application to the Meadows Foundation earlier this year and the grant request was not funded.  Susan Komandosky, President of the Moody Museum Advisory Board, reported to the council that they are continuing to plan several fundraising events and to seek additional grant monies when possible.  She  urged the Council increase the amount budgeted so that essential repairs can be made.  Council member Jez made a motion to increase funding to the Museum by $15,000 to equal a total of $35,000 for repairs.  Mayor Pro Tem seconded the motion. VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

9.  Consider change in Personnel Policy  Section 6.13 “On Call” or “Standby” time  for Street Department employees and change in Section 6.03 Work Period and Schedules – Fire. 

Charles Cunningham, Assistant City Manager, presented a request to Council to consider changing current personnel rules and regulations to allow for payment of “on call” or “standby” pay for Street Division employees consistent with that paid to utility employees.  Under the current policy the City is not required to pay for “on call” time for street employees, if they are going to essentially be “on call”, they should be compensated for the inconvenience.  The proposed revision will allow them to be paid for this time and become effective May 2.

 

The second change would codify the method by which wages are calculated for uniformed Fire Department employees and become effective immediately.  Mayor Pro Tem McDonald made a motion to approve the changes in Personnel Policy Section 6.13 and Section 6.03 as presented.  Council member Mikeska seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

10.  Consider developer agreement for Mallard Park Phase II.

David Simons, Director of Engineering, presented a request to consider a developer agreement with Mallard Park Taylor, LP to allow the City to use the detention pond in Mallard Park Phase II to relieve problems caused by poor drainage in existing properties east of the detention pond.  In order to provide enough detention capacity in the Phase II the developer must build a deep pond that will require pumping after each rain.  Developer and staff have designed a plan that allows the City to discharge storm water from the off-site properties in to the detention pond and provides incentives for the Developer to provide extra capacity in the detention pond and pump station to handle the off-site flow.  However, the proposed pond is expensive to build and operate with high capacity pumps.  Proposed incentives include the waiving of specific platting and engineering fees and city maintenance and operation of the detention pond and pump station after completion. 

 

Mayor Pro Tem McDonald made a motion to approve the developer agreement subject to the following additional requirements: 1) the developer will be required to enclose the pond in a fencing material acceptable to the neighborhood and to the city 2) the developer will be required to sod the entire pond area and maintain the sod until it is established 3) the city manager, city attorney, and developer will craft language regarding the sharing of ongoing maintenance expenses between the city & homeowner’s association, based upon a percentage benefit of the drainage pond to each party and 4) the city manager, city attorney, and developer will craft language regarding the ongoing maintenance of the detention pond area such that the pond area will be mowed regularly and in a timely fashion in perpetuity, at the home owner’s association expense, such that if said mowing is not performed, the city will perform the mowing and bill the home owner’s association an appropriate amount to include all mowing costs plus appropriate noncompliance penalty.  Council member Gonzales seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.   

 

 

11.  Consider City Council meeting schedule for May.

Susan Brock, City Clerk, requested Council consider moving the regularly scheduled council meeting on May 24th to May 31st since there will not be a quorum present on the 24th due to a scheduled conflict with three of the council members.  Mayor Pro Tem McDonald made a motion to move the council meeting from May 24th to May 31st.  Council member Jez seconded the motion.  VOTE:  Five voted AYE.  Motion passed.

 

ADJOURN

With no further business, the council meeting was adjourned at 8:05p.m.

 

                                                                                 _________________________

                                                                             Donald R. Hill, Mayor

 

 

 

ATTEST:

 

___________________________

Susan Brock, City Clerk