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Agenda set for long Tuesday council meetings

Written by Bobby Vasquez. Posted in News

2015 City Hall SmallIN NEWS
Deer Park City Council will hold its regular workshop and meeting Tuesday evening at City Hall. The workshop begins at 6:30 p.m. followed by the regular meeting at 7:30 p.m. The agenda includes discussion and action on an item which would allow the 2016 Street Bond Project to go for bids.

Tuesday’s Deer Park City Council workshop begins at 6:30 p.m. and will open with an executive session. When council reconvenes, it will discuss the sale of Certificates of Obligation, Series 2017-A. In September, Council authorized the sale of $5.19 million of certificates of obligation debt. These proceeds will be used to fund critical water and sewer infrastructure repairs, including updates to the City's water treatment plant, rehabilitation and construction projects on the sanitary sewer system, and work on the ground storage tanks. This will be an action item later in the evening.

Recently, Standard & Poor’s sustained the city’s AAA bond rating for this sale.

Also on the agenda is discussion on engineering design services for a project at Center Street and Railroad Avenue. Earlier this year, council authorized a traffic study at this intersection after multiple incidents of damage to city property caused by the unlawful turning motions of large tractor trailers.

Council’s consensus was to accept the addition of a “right turn only” diverter on Railroad Avenue at Center Street, followed by the possible addition of a non-traversable directional median on Center Street to be installed at a later date. This diverter will be made of raised concrete in a Y-shaped island placed within the pavement at the east end of Railroad Avenue. The island will channelize east bound traffic from Railroad Avenue forcing a right-turn only onto Center Street.

If illegal turning movements persist and vehicles continue to cross the Center Street median to head north bound from Railroad Avenue, the non-traversable directional median on Center Street could be installed that would provide a raised barrier along the center line of Center Street and would also channelize north bound Center Street left turn movements turning west onto Railroad.

Also during the workshop, council will discuss bids for the Girls Softball facility and Soccer Complex projects. This item is also on the evening’s regular agenda.

For the softball facility project, the apparent low bidder is Tandem Services in the amount of $2,635,392.45. The low bidder with the soccer complex is IKLO in the amount of $3,127,049.45. However, staff recommends the bid not be awarded to IKLO due to performance issues the city experienced during the firm’s work on the Police Firing Range project. The next low bidder for the soccer complex then is Tandem Services in the amount of $3,325,655.65.

The city manager’s memos state both projects have additional items such as lights, shades and bleachers to be purchased by the city which are not part of the contractor’s bid. The city also must pay Halff Associates for architectural fees associated with both projects. The cost of these two projects exceed DPCDC funding by a total of $556,827.10 ($449,630.45 for girls softball and $107,196.65 for soccer). Staff recommends the City budget be amended to fund all costs of these projects which exceed available DPCDC funding, rather than re-bidding the projects and/or reducing the projects’ scopes and then rebidding them.

During the regular meeting, council will take action on the purchase of services from SKE Construction to perform the Water/Sewer Building driveway project; a referral to the planning and zoning commission for a specific use permit request from Sandwood Investment to construct a warehouse at 4600 Underwood; the purchase of equipment for the fire department’s new ladder truck and amending the city’s personnel manual.

Council will also take action on an ordinance amending the city’s commercial solid waste fees. The city’s contract for commercial garbage services allows contractor Waste Management to increase rates annually to reflect changes in the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index for the Houston area. Any such changes become effective on Dec. 1 of each year. Waste Management recently informed staff they will exercise that right this year, at an increase of 2.327 percent. With this action, Council is setting the city’s commercial garbage rates to reflect this change, effective with the December 2017 billing cycle.

This item does not affect residential garbage services provided by the city.

In other business, council will also take action on casting a ballot for Mike Sullivan as the city’s vote to the Board of Directors for the Harris County Appraisal District; amending the park maintenance budget; amending the water and sewer budget; the library budget; and awarding the bid for the South Lift Station-Discharge Header Modification project.