Breckenridge Texan

City commissioners extend water surcharge to pay for waterline replacement

City commissioners extend water surcharge to pay for waterline replacement
October 08
08:17 2019

During a short meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 1, Breckenridge City Commissioners approved an ordinance amending the City Fee Schedule and approved an Interlocal Cooperation Contract with the Texas Department of Public Safety. They also approved other contracts and appointments during the meeting.

Amended City Fee Schedule

Commissioners approved Ordinance 19-15 City Fee Schedule which repeals and replaces the current City General Fee Schedule Ordinance 18-11, which was adopted on Oct. 2, 2018. The new ordinance, which goes into effect on Oct. 14, required two public readings before it could be approved and put into effect. Tuesday’s meeting was the second and final reading. The first reading of the amendment was during the Sept. 3 city commissioners meeting.

The amended fee schedule extends for six months the waterline replacement surcharge of $7.50 that was added to local water bills to cover the costs of a waterline replacement that the Texas Department of Transportation required the City of Breckenridge to make.

During the September commissioner meeting, when the fee ordinance amendment was first introduced, City Manager Andy McCuistion said the city had not anticipated replacing the waterline and the cost was not in the budget. Additionally, he said the water fund was looking to be short $200,000 because of a drop in water revenue due to excessive rains the area received earlier in the year which resulted in residents using less water.

“I had told y’all at that last meeting or two that as we got closer to the end of the year I may come to you and ask you to extend that (surcharge), it just depends on what my revenue was doing in the water fund,” he said. “I can tell  you right now, after looking at it today, I’m going to be about $200,000 short in the water fund due to the wet year we’ve had here… There were excessive rains up through June … we’ve had a couple rains in August … during a period when I normally sell more water, it’s hurt me to a tune of about $200,000.”

McCuistion asked commissioners to extend the surcharge for six months and then look at where water revenues are and decide whether to extend the fee again, eliminate it, or increase water rates if it looks like the city is still losing a lot of water revenue.

DPS Contract

Commissioners also approved an Interlocal Cooperation Contract with the Texas Department of Public Safety for the Failure to Appear program through the city of Breckenridge Municipal Court.

The agreement allows TXDPS to provide information necessary to deny renewal of the driver’s license of a person who fails to appear for a complaint or citation, or fails to pay or satisfy a judgment ordering payment of a fine and costs in the manner ordered by the court in a matter involving any offense that a court has jurisdiction of under Chapter 4, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure.

City Cleanup Scheduled

During his City manager’s report, McCuistion said the city-wide clean up will be held Oct. 21-25. He said all brush that’s going to be picked up needs to be put out on the curbside by Friday, Oct. 18.

Housing Authority Board Appointments

Commissioners reappointed Will Thompson, Joyce Toland and Audrey Brown to the Board of Directors of the Housing Authority of the City of Breckenridge. All three members are currently serving on the board and their appointments were set to expire in October 2019. They were  reappointed for a two-year term that expires on Oct. 31, 2021.

Water Treatment Plant Sludge Environmental Consulting Contract

Commissioners also approved Environmental Consultants Incorporated’s proposal to serve as a program coordinator to oversee the land application of water treatment plant sludge from the City of Breckenridge on the MT7 Ranch.

Contract between BEDC and Chamber of Commerce

They also approved a contract between the Breckenridge Economic Development Corporation and the Breckenridge Chamber of Commerce.  The contract has been in place for many years but was scheduled to be renewed on Oct. 1, 2019. The new contract will be in effect from Oct. 1 – Sept. 2022.

Special Meeting Scheduled

Commissioners also scheduled a special meeting for 8 a.m. Friday, Oct. 11, to declare the Park Street construction project substantially completed and authorize payment to the contractors who did the work. McCuistion said they did a walk-through of the project with the engineer, but he still needed to gather additional information from the contractors to complete the report and declare the project substantially completed. McCuistion said because there was such a short time from the walk-through and information gathering before Tuesday meeting, the engineer was unable to complete the report in time for the meeting. Instead, he will present the report to commissioners at the Oct. 11 meeting.

Story by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan

Cutline, top photo: City Manager Andy McCuistion (right) talks with Mayor Bob Sims (center) and Commissioner Tom Cyprian during the Oct. 1 City Commission meeting. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

 

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