Victoria Council OKs capital improvement projects

OTHER COUNCIL ACTIONS

During Tuesday's special session the Victoria City Council also:

Approved a resolution supporting Geanie Morrison's House Bill 2556 changing the University of Houston-Victoria to the Texas A&M System. Councilman Gabriel Soliz voted against the resolution.

Approved a resolution granting an exception to the city code that will allow the demolition of the building at 106 W. Rio Grande St. for the construction of Wells Fargo Bank. The city code requires a 60-day waiting period for demolition in the downtown historic district. Councilwoman Denise Rangel voted against.

The city of Victoria plans to reconstruct John Stockbauer Drive, one of the projects approved by the city council during its capital improvements workshop on Tuesday.

The two-part project will cost $8.8 million. The first part would be done in 2014 and the second in 2015.

The first will consist of a concrete four-lane roadway with curbs and gutters from Lone Tree Road to U.S. Highway 59. The second will include the same work from Lone Tree Road to Business U.S. Highway 59.

The city council meets twice a year to discuss five-year capital improvement projects.

Other projects approved and their anticipated dates include: Bridge Street overlay (2011); Greenbriar Addition Rehab/Overlay (2012/2013); Conti Lane Sanitary Sewer Extension (2012); U.S. Highway 77 utilities extension (Phase I, 2012/Phase II, 2013); and Huvar Street Rehabilitation and Overlay (2012).

City Manager Charmelle Garrett also received approval for several mid-year projects to be paid for from the General Fund.

These projects include: two sets of vehicle extradition equipment for the fire department; repairs in two public restrooms at the library; irrigation improvements at the library; a restroom roof at Riverside Park; portable restrooms for Lowe Field; skate park improvements; new uncovered picnic sites at Riverside Park; repair of the Rose Garden fence; Tonkawa Nature Trail improvements; and electrical improvements at the Special Events arena next to Riverside Stadium.

Public Works Director Lynn Short reported that Victoria residents will see their water and sewer rates rise about $2 during the next two years to pay for issuance of two revenue bonds.

In 2012, $19.7 million in revenue bonds are expected to be issued to pay for a new wastewater treatment plant.

In October 2011, 52 cents will be added to water rates, and in April 2012, 50 cents will be added to sewer rates to pay those bonds.

In 2013, $4 million in revenue bonds will be issued to pay for Phase III of the downtown pipe replacement projects.

Repayment of those bonds will require a 53 cents increase in water rate in October 2012 and a 55 cents increase in sewer rates in April 2013.

To pay both revenue bonds, the total rate increases by April 2013 will be $2.10.