CITY OF LAREDO

CITY COUNCIL MEETING

M2001-R-25

PLANNING AND ZONING MEETING

CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS

1110 HOUSTON STREET

LAREDO, TEXAS 78040

OCTOBER 1, 2001

5:30 P.M.

 

 

I.          CALL TO ORDER

 

            With a quorum present Mayor Elizabeth G.  Flores called the meeting to order.

 

II.        PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

            Mayor Flores led in the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

III.       ROLL CALL

 

            In attendance:

           

            Elizabeth G.  Flores,                                                                 Mayor

            Alfredo Agredano,                                                                    Council Member, District I

            Louis H.  Bruni,                                                                        Council Member, District II

            John C.  Galo,                                                                          Council Member, District III

            Johnny Amaya,                                                                         Council Member, District IV

            Eliseo Valdez, Jr.,                                                                     Mayor Pro Tempore, District V

            Joe A.  Guerra,                                                                         Council Member, District VI

            Jose A.  Valdez, Jr.,                                                                 Council Member, District VII

            Juan Ramirez,                                                                           City Secretary

            Larry Dovalina,                                                                         City Manager

            Cynthia Collazo,                                                                       Assistant City Manager

            Jaime Flores,                                                                            City Attorney

 

IV.       MINUTES

 

Approval of the minutes of July 16, 17 and 23, 2001.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Cm.  Agredano was not present.  He arrived at 5:50 p.m.

 

V.        COMMUNICATIONS AND RECOGNITIONS

 

Announcements

 

Invitations

 

Recognitions

 

Communiqués

 

Cm.  Bruni submitted the South Texas Rain Enhancement Association reports to be on file at the City Secretary’s Office.   

 

Cm.  Galo expressed his concern about deregulation for Central Power & Light. He also stated that the Meadow Creek Bridge would be completed by the weekend.     

 

Larry Dovalina stated that the effort for deregulation would be implemented for some areas of Texas, but it is improbable that it will apply to South Texas.

 

Cm.  Amaya said it was an honor and a privilege to attend a tribute to America held at the F. S. Lara Annex. 

 

Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez mentioned that he had the honor of representing Council and the City of Laredo in the signing of a proclamation for our Sister City Ceremony held in San Miguel De Allende.  He presented the Mayor with a key to our City.   

 

Fire Chief Sosa reported he visited Salamanca where the local firefighters were holding a reunion.  He encouraged the Director of Guanajuato to work with the City of Laredo in leasing the City’s Training Center for the training of their firefighters.  He also noted that Pemex holds an interest in leasing the facility. 

 

Cm.  Guerra thanked City staff for their hard work and diligence in the projects at District VI.   

 

Mayor Flores asked the City Attorney, Jaime Flores, to read the following letter into the record:

 

“Estimada Betty

 

“Los veteranos de la Segunda Guerra Mundial, Fuerza Aérea Expedicionario Mexicana Escuadrón 201, nos dirigimos respectuosamente a usted y a sus ciudadanos para hacerles patente nuestro mas sincero pésame, y dolor que sentimos no solamente los veteranos y familiars de esta agrupación, sino también todo el pueblo mexicano, por este infame y cobarde atentado por un grupo terrorista contra victimas inocentes de su gran nación.

 

Nuestra unidad tuvo el honor de combatir en 1945 contra las potencies del Eje, hermanados combatimos con el Ejercito Americano en los frentes de Guerra del Pacífico, Islas Filipinas en el año 1945, en aquellos tiempos también era un enemigo común que puso en peligro la paz y libertad de nuestra nación y unidos con los ejércitos aliados, combatimos exitosamente en contra de los ejércitos totalitarios saliendo victoriosos de esa contienda mundial y derrotando al enemigo que atacó sorpresiva y cobardemente a nuestras naciones.

 

Hoy nuevamente nos vemos amenazados por un enemigo que no da la cara y que amenaza nuevamente La Paz Mundial pero confiamos en usted y en su gran nación que erradicarán las menazas del terrorismo para que vuelva a reinar la paz y libertad del mundo.

 

Nuestra más sinceras condolencias a la ciudadanía que, sufrió este deplorable agravio, Los Veteranos y Familiares nos solidarizamos con La Nación Americana donando sangre para ayudar a salvar a las victimas inocentes de este genocidio.

 

Nuestras oraciones e incondicional simpatía y apolyo con la sinceridad de poder ayudar a cicatrizar esa gran herida que sufre la heroica Nación Americana.

 

Atentamente

Ing.  Fernando Nava y Musa

Ave. Temaulipas 117-503 Col. Condesa; México”

 

Mayor Flores announced that she was named to serve on a Security Airport Committee that was formalized nation wide by the President of the U. S. Conference of Mayors.  

 

Daniel Groselle, Regional Vice President of OMI, spoke in favor of selecting OMI for the privatization.  He asked Council to consider the variables in privitilization and not just the cost. 

 

Jim Creeton, Senior Vice President of United Water, assured Council that United Water guaranteed superior customer service and pledged a smooth transition processes if Council chooses their company.  

 

June Leyendecker read the following letter:

 

“My name is June Leyendecker.  I am here because I feel that perhaps Council does not realize the impact of what you are doing to us and to our property.  Neither my husband nor I realized the full impact until I talked with our engineer, Michael Lucci, P. E. , a specialist in drainage and development.  My husband and I are in our 70’s and inexperienced in development and drainage issues.    We only knew our property will be divided if Springfield is cut thru diagonally as planned, no utilities are near our property (or planned), we feel our property values will be lowered, and that the City has virtually backed us up against a brick wall.

 

In September, 2000, you assured me the City would work with us to try to find a route for Springfield that would not bisect our property.  We were ecstatic.  I hired Mr.  Lucci to assist us.  We met with the City on November 7, 2000, and again about two weeks later. At the second meeting we were given a number of alternate routes to choose from and were given only a few days to make this decision.  On the advice of our attorney and our engineer, we chose three, agreeing to donate our property for the Springfield extension, if our property would remain undivided.  The City asked for and had our answer in less than a week.

 

After waiting expectantly for eight months, we were stunned, when at a meeting with the City officials (who kept us waiting for 45 minutes), on August 9, 2001, we were told that Springfield would go thru as planned originally.  I do not understand why the Council is allowing this. We really tried in good faith to work with the City and were so hopeful there would be a solution. We assumed the City would review a number of alternative routes considering the equality of sharing the impact of the new roadway with adjacent landowners and the fact that we are willing to donate our property for Springfield extension if our property is not bisected.

 

The City did not try to work with us, as promised.  There is no equality of sharing the burden of the new road with adjacent landowners.  I have now learned from Mr.  Lucci there are plans for a very large drainage ditch approximately eight feet deep and eight feet wide between the South part of our property where we live and Springfield.  This will severely limit access to our Northern property as well as to the newly constructed Springfield.  Our Southern Property would now be bordered by a “moat”.

 

On August 9th when Mr.  Selman advised us of the final decision, the reason given was “it is less expensive”.  He gave us a copy of the cost of paving Springfield from the West border of the property to the East side to connect with the existing pavement of Springfield on Dominion Del Mar.  Being fair and to all property owners was not mentioned.  The “moat” (or cost of a box culvert) was not mentioned.

 

I ask you to please reconsider all action you have taken on this issue over the last two years. I only ask you to do what is fair.”

           

Sandra Leyendecker, daughter of Gilbert and June Leyendecker, said she believes that her parents have experienced undue stress that has caused health problems because of the Springfield Extension issue.  In addition, she stated that her parents are willing to work with the City.  She said that the issues should be dealt with honestly and fairly.  Finally, she urged City Council to reconsider their plans to bisect her parent’s property.  

 

Luis (T. J.) Tinajero approached Council with a plea to promote 16 individuals who are on the list for sergeants.  He commented that there are times when the City is not adequately supervised.  He added that Council should take the opportunity to improve the services provided by Laredo Police Department and prepare for the future growth of the department by increasing the number of first line supervisors or sergeants.  Finally, he said long range planning and opportunity is the main purpose of the proposal.  He said justification for this request is to ensure that the future department operations will be adequate to meet the increasing demands that will come with future growth of Laredo.    

 

Benito Navarro, a City employee, approached Council in reference to the privatization of the Utilities Department.  He stated that staff has many questions that they would like answered before a final decision is made.  

 

VI.       APPOINTMENTS TO COMMISSION, BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

 

a.  Resignation of Leroy Morin from Airport Advisory Committee with

     appointment of Leroy Morin to Planning and Zoning Committee.

 

     Motion to approve.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Agredano

                 Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                 For:      8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

b.  Appointment of Christi Swisher to the Airport Advisory Committee.

 

     Motion to approve

    

     Moved:  Cm.  Agredano

     Second:  Cm.  Amaya

     For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0                   

VII.     PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

1.  Public hearing amending the City of Laredo FY 2000-2001 annual budget in the amount

of $613,344.63 to fund the Laredo Financial Disruption Task Force from the Office of the National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) at no cost to the City.  Funds will be used to pay for personnel salaries, travel and operational expenses beginning January 1, 2001 through December 31, 2001.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the City of Laredo FY 2000-2001 annual budget in the amount of $613,344.63 to fund the Laredo Financial Disruption Task Force from the Office of the National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) at no cost to the City.  Funds will be used to pay for personnel salaries, travel and operational expenses beginning January 1, 2001 through December 31, 2001.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction: City Council

 

2.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning

3.20 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located S. of Del Mar Blvd. and E. of Laguna Del Mar Ct., from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District) to B-3 (Community Business District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning 3.20 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located S. of Del Mar Blvd. and E. of Laguna Del Mar Ct., from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District) to B-3 (Community Business District); providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Agredano

Second:   Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:   Cm.  Bruni

 

3.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of  Laredo by

rezoning the M 1/3 of the W 1/2 of Lot 3 and M 1/3 of Lots 1 & 2, Block 500, Western Division, located at 1611 San Ignacio Ave., from M-1 (Light Manufacturing District) to R-3 (Mixed Residential District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning the M 1/3 of the W 1/2 of Lot 3 and M 1/3 of Lots 1 & 2, Block 500, Western Division, located at 1611 San Ignacio Ave., from M-1 (Light Manufacturing District) to R-3 (Mixed Residential District); providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Ramirez

Second:  Cm.  Bruni

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Ramirez 

 

4.  Public hearing authorizing the issuance of a Special Use Permit to Michael Petroleum

for oil and/or gas extraction on 5.00 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located south of Concord Hills Subdivision and east of Los Presidentes Subdivision, known as E.G. Ranch No. 1 Gas Well.  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed Special Use Permit.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Authorizing the issuance of a Special Use Permit to Michael Petroleum for oil and/or gas extraction on 5.00 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located south of Concord Hills Subdivision and east of Los Presidentes Subdivision, known as E.G. Ranch No. 1 Gas Well; providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:                                                Abstain:

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Agredano

Second:  Cm.  Galo

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Agredano

 

5.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning

91.899 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located west of the proposed Sinatra Parkway extension, east of the Laredo International Airport, and south of the proposed Jacaman Road extension, from R-1 (Single Family Residential District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning 91.899 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located west of the proposed Sinatra Parkway extension, east of the Laredo International Airport, and south of the proposed Jacaman Road extension, from R-1 (Single Family Residential District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ron Whitehawk spoke in favor of the zone change.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:                                                Abstain:

 

Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Bruni

 

6.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning

1.592 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located south of San Lorenzo Drive and east of Mines Road, from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District) to M-1 (Light Manufacturing District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning 1.592 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit "A", located south of San Lorenzo Drive and east of Mines Road, from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District) to M-1 (Light Manufacturing District); providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

 

7.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning

Lot 6 and the W. 1/2 of Lot 8, Block 244, Western Division, located at 1417 and 1419 San Eduardo Ave., from B-1 (Limited Commercial District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed zone change.

 

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lot 6 and the W 1/2 of Lot 8, Block 244, Western Division, located at 1417 and 1419 San Eduardo Ave., from B-1 (Limited Commercial District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date. 

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ron Whitehawk stated that the property owner asked Council to withdraw his rezoning application without prejudice at this time. 

 

Motion to close the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Ramirez

Second:  Cm.  Galo

For:     8                                         Against:                                                Abstain:

 

8.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning

Lots 3, 6, 7, and 8, Block 1491, Eastern Division, located at 2510 and 2516 Market St., from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District).   The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed zone change. 

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lots 3, 6, 7, and 8, Block 1491, Eastern Division, located at 2510 and 2516 Market St., from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date. 

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ron Whitehawk, representing the Laurel Family, spoke in favor of the zone change.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Bruni

 

 

9.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning

Lots 1, 2, 9, and 10, Block 1491 Eastern Division, located at 2502 Market St., from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed zone change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lots 1, 2, 9, and 10, Block 1491 Eastern Division, located at 2502 Market St., from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:   Cm.  Bruni

 

10.  Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of

Laredo by rezoning  the S 51 ft. of Lots 4 and 5, Block 1491, Eastern Division, located at 2516 Market St. (rear), from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed zone change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning  the S 51 ft. of Lots 4 and 5, Block 1491, Eastern Division, located at 2516 Market St. (rear), from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date.   

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:   Cm.  Bruni

 

11. Public hearing amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of

Laredo by rezoning All of block 748, Western Division, located at the 2400 block of Jefferson St., from M-1 (Light Manufacturing District) to R-3 (Mixed Residential District).  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the Zoning Ordinance (Map) of the City of Laredo by rezoning All of block 748, Western Division, located at the 2400 block of Jefferson St., from M-1 (Light Manufacturing District) to R-3 (Mixed Residential District); providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

 

12.  Public hearing amending Subsection (b), "Amounts", Section 8-23, "Same

Fees Charged", Article II, "Cemetery Manager", Chapter 8, "Cemeteries", of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Laredo thereby increasing and adding cemetery fees; providing for severability and effective date.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending Subsection (b), "Amounts", Section 8-23, "Same Fees Charged", Article II. "Cemetery Manager", Chapter 8, "Cemeteries", of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Laredo thereby increasing and adding cemetery fees; providing for severability and an effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Horacio De Leon, Parks and Recreation Director, presented the following information:

 

Cemetery requires a funeral arrangements in advance

Current

Proposed

Cemetery Plot Prices

Adult (3 ½ X 8’ & 3 ½’ X 9’)

-0-

$900.00

Adult (4 X 10’)

$500.00

$1400.00

Baby ( 2’ x 4’)

$75.00

$275.00

Baby (2’ X 5’)

-0-

425.00

Grave Services

Adults – 1” interment & 2nd interment

$350.00

$475.00

Extra deep

$50.00

$300.00

Baby (2’ X 4’ – No Tent)

$100.00

$225.00

Baby ( 2’ X 5’)

-0-

$350.00

Vault or Liner

Extra Wide (If purchased with the funeral home)

$25.00

$50.00

Cremation Grave Services

 

 

Opening & closing of the gravesite (Adult no tent)

$200.00

$300.00

Opening & closing of the gravesite (Baby no tent_

$100.00

100.00

Weekday - Overtime

Monday thru Friday (After 3:30 p.m.)

$100.00

$200.00

Saturday 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

$100.00

$200.00

Saturday 11:01 a.m. to 2 p.m.

$100.00

$250.00

Sunday 8 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

$100.00

$300.00

Disinterment

Excavate only to the top of the container – Monday - Friday

$150.00

250.00

Funeral Directors are required to follow Cemetery Policy for

 

 

Safety procedures.  Double Plot 8’

$150.00

$375.00

On call for funeral arrangement (Week-ends)

-0-

$50.00

Removal of Monument or Marker Fees for Burial Services

 

 

1.  Pillow and flat markers (Max. 12” X 24”) Small

No charge

$35.00

2.  Monument or markers (Max. 18” X 36”) Medium

No charge

$75.00

3.  Family will contact a monument Large

No charge

Family must hire

4.  Non-solid granite, marble, cement, or statue

No charge

monument dealer

5.  Solid marble (Due to delicate nature of material)

No charge

Family must hire

If family request cemetery personnel to remove a non-solid

Small – No charge

$50.00

monument or marker, it must sign a form releasing the city

Medium – No charge

$75.00

from liability for any damages

Large – Family

Family

Monument Permit Fee

No charge

$35.00

Foundation Fees

(Foundation policy level) 10” X 10” to Maximum 12” X 24”

No charge

$35.00

Over 12” X 24” to Maximum 19” X 36”

No charge

$70.00

Over 18” X 36” to Maximum 18” X 48”

No charge

$105.00

Over 18” X 48” to Maximum 24” X 72”

No charge

$135.00

Scrap Metal (Tri-pods & Baskets)

$1.00

$1.00

Cancellation of Burial Service Set Up

No charge

$475.00

(Person responsible changed date without advising office)

 

 

Dig for vacant space (remains found)

No charge

No charge

Dig for vacant space (No remains found)

$150.00

$150.00

Temporary Markers

-0-

$13.00

All Private Organizations

No charge

Cemetery Committee

Existing organizations will be responsible for maintaining

 

Recommendation

the area.  Abandon organizations will have a fee for

 

 

maintenance.

 

 

Central Welfare

 

 

Plot fees and grave services shall increase 30% October 1, 2001, 60% October, 2002 and 100% October 1, 2003.

 

 

 

 

1st year 30%

2001

Plot Fees

1st year 30%

2001

Grave

Services

2nd year 60%

2002 Plot Fees

2nd year 60%

2002

Grave Services

3rd year 100%

Plot Fees

2003

Grave Services

3 ½ x 8 Indigent, Pauper

100.00

100.00

200.00

200.00

450.00

450.00

Amount Subsidized

800.00

656.00

700.00

556.00

450.00

306.00

3 ½ x 8 Unknown

100.00

100.00

200.00

200.00

450.00

450.00

Amount Subsidized

800.00

72.00

700.00

-28.00

450.00

-222.00

2 x 5 Infants (Medium)

30.00

30.00

60.00

60.00

225.00

225.00

Amount Subsidized

317.00

140.00

290.00

110.00

125.00

105.00

2 x 4 Infants

30.00

30.00

60.00

60.00

225.00

225.00

Amount Subsidized

195.00

140.00

165.00

110.00

50.00

55.00

Webb County is obligated to pay these fees to the City of Laredo/Cemetery in 30 days from the burial services.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce and withdraw County position.

 

Moved:  Cm.  J.  Guerra

Second:  Cm.  Bruni

For:    7                                          Against:  1                                            Abstain:  0

     

      Ordinance Introduction: City Council except Cm.  Ramirez

 

13.  Public hearing amending the City of Laredo fiscal year 2001-2002 Annual Budgets for

Fire Training Facility and Police Trust Fund in the amount of $700,000 to partially fund the contract with Marshall Company of Corpus Christi, Texas for the Fire Fighting/Law Enforcement Training Facility.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

Amending the City of Laredo fiscal year 2001-2002 Annual Budgets for the Fire Training Facility Fund and Police Trust Fund in the amount of $700,000 to partially fund the contract with Marshall Company of Corpus Christi, Texas for the Fire Fighting/Law Enforcement Training Facility.

 

  Motion to open the public hearing.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

  Second:  Cm.  Agredano

  For:     8                                       Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

  There was no public input.

 

  Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

  Second:  Cm.  Amaya

  For:     8                                       Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

  Ordinance Introduction:   City Council

 

VIII.    GENERAL COUNCIL DISCUSSIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

 

14.  A.  Request by Council Member Louis H. Bruni

 

1. Discussion with possible action on the Highway 359 Water Point,

    with possible action.

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, informed Council that the Highway 359 Water point is complete, except for the testing of the units. 

 

Cm.  Bruni stressed the importance of assisting the residents of the outlying areas of the county and colonials with a temporary water point until the City can install final water transmission lines out to the outlying areas.  He suggested placing a sign at the water point to inform the public that the City operates the facility. 

 

                  B.  Request by Council Member John C. Galo

 

1.  Authorizing staff to utilize $2,500.00 for the upgrade of street lights

in the Market Street Tennis Court Area and $25,000.00 for improvements to the Market Street Tennis Courts from District III Discretionary Funds.

 

Cm.  Galo publicly announced that he authorized staff to utilize $2,500.00 for the upgrade of streetlights at the Market Street Tennis Court area and $25,000.00 for improvements to the Market Street Tennis Courts from his discretionary funds.    

 

2.  Discussion with possible action on the prevention of tractor-trailers driving

     through residential streets.

 

Roberto Murillo, Traffic Director, notified Council that an ordinance does allow staff to install signs preventing tractor-trailers from entering residential streets.  He noted that tractors might move to another area, which would cause other residents to complain. 

 

3.  Discussion with possible action on liability of City hired contractors pertaining to

     damages caused to personal and real property. 

 

Gabriel Martinez with the City Engineering Department, stated that per the construction contracts, the contractor is bound to recover damages caused to personal and real property. 

 

Cm.  Galo asked how the City enforces the contract.

 

     Larry Dovalina, City Manager, answered that the City withholds the payment to

     the contractor until he complies with all areas of the contract.    He added that  

     private citizens should obtain a claim form from the City Secretary’s Office and

     they will forward the claim to Risk Management for processing.  

   

                 C.  Request by Council Member Johnny Amaya

 

1.  Requesting the use of discretionary funds for the upgrade of street lights at Villa

     San Luis Rey Housing Project.

 

Cm.  Amaya agreed to use $2,937 of his discretionary funds for the upgrade of street lights for the Via San Luis Rey Housing Project. 

 

2. Discussion with possible action on the status of Ochoa Park. 

 

Horacio De Leon, Parks and Recreation Director, stated that the Ochoa Parks Project basically entails the installation of the playground structure to compliment the existing one and the replacement of the jogging track from crushed cinder material to an asphalt base material. He stated completion is at 30% on the playground structure, and 40% on the track.  He said that staff has deferred the paving of the jogging trail at the request of some of the users in the area who have stressed a satisfaction with the current track.  Finally, he said the intent at this time is to report an estimated construction cost of the remaining of the track to be resurfaced with crushed cinder keeping the existing surface.  He said he would have a cost estimate in the next four days, and he will report back to council with the cost.

 

                   D.  Request by Council Member Joe A. Guerra

 

1.  Requesting to re-classify sixteen (16) positions within the Laredo Police

     Department with possible action.

 

Jaime Flores, City Attorney, stated that the Council is allowed to freely discuss the appointments with the City Manager or his subordinate.  He emphasized that the Charter strictly prohibits automatic appointment.  He added that if Council approves the appointment of positions, it would result in automatic appointment.    

 

Cm.  Guerra noted that Council has re-classified in prior years.  He said it is the  responsibility of City Council to look into issues that affect the safety of citizens and the community. 

 

Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez expressed a desire to obtain more information about the department and what is nationally accepted for all police departments.  He asked for the City Manager and the Chief of Police to submit a report with concerns and recommendations.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that he had not seen the report that Luis Tinajero submitted to Council.  He stated the assertions may or may not be true. 

 

Cm.  Guerra said there was a timeline for the appointments. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, told Council if staff continues to erode the eligibility list in police and fire then we should not have a test and just promote people that come before council who indicate they want to be promoted. 

 

Mayor Flores asked if the officers were allowed to confront Council Members. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, informed Council that under their civil service rules there is a specific instance where it states that the officers themselves will not publicly criticize the department.  He said there is also another section where it states the officers will not seek the assistance of private citizens.

 

Agustin Dovalina, Police Chief, stated that an individual needs to study hard. Depending on the amount of vacancies that are available, and depending on where the application falls within the eligibility list, that an officer’s scores will dictate whether they are promoted or not. He said that classification is not a viable option because he stated that it is best left up to the department head or the City Manager to come back with a recommendation after a considerable study and analysis to find out where we might be able to utilize the positions. 

 

Cm.  Guerra said that the desire for more sergeants should have been submitted to Council. 

 

Cm.  Agredano asked how long an individual is eligible for sergeant.   

 

Chief answered for one year and that it could not be extended.  He expressed a desire to give a workshop presentation to Council about their 5-year plan. 

 

Jaime Flores, City Attorney, advised Council to not dictate or mandate in any manner in which it might affect the reclassification of these position. 

 

Motion to instruct City Manager and the Police Chief to do an analysis of positions according to national standards to assure the department is adequately staffed and return to Council for information purposes only with all deliberate speed. 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Guerra  

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Guerra

For:     8                              Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

2. Discussion and possible action on extension of Springfield Avenue.

 

Erasmo Villarreal, Community Development Director, stated that staff has established a right of way alignment, and they are in the process of identifying the ownership through an abstract company.  They will be declaring a necessity to acquire that particular parcel for the project.  

 

Cm.  Ramirez said he did not agree with the proposed alignment.  He noted his dissatisfaction and stated that it was not proper or fair to the Leyendeckers to bisect the Leyendecker property. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, mentioned that there were a number of staff members that were involved in the different deliberations related to the alignment that is being proposed.  He said that staff went through the scenario of all the different alignments and the reasons why those alignments would not work.  He said that one would go up Michigan and would skirt the property on the northern side of the property, and by doing that the City would impact the different mobile home owners.  He added that in another area there is a church.  The City discarded two of the different alignments for those particular reasons.  He also stated that there was another alignment that was discusses which would go up the middle of the properties and would force the City into condemnation for two different property owners.  Staff felt by doing that alignment that it would become more costly for the City to follow that alignment through.  Finally, he said the consensus of the staff was the option, which was shown to you by

Ms. Leyendecker, being the one that bisects the property.  He mentioned that there is a drainage creek that is already bisecting that property that almost fits the alignment as it comes across the land.  He said there was discussion about construction of the roadway and the culverts almost within the immediate area to have the least amount of impact on the particular piece of property.  He stated that staff feels, as a whole, that the property won’t get devalued but will increase in value because of the fact that there will be a roadway within the middle of the property, and both tracts of land will have a much greater value as far as commercial appeal to be able to develop in the future. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, encouraged the Council to go forward with the project.  

 

Motion to accept staff’s recommendations with the concurrence of the landowners.

 

    Moved:  Cm. Guerra

    Second:  Cm.  Bruni

 

    Cm.  Ramirez questioned Cm.  Guerra’s desire to extend Springfield and bisect

    the Leyendecker property. 

 

     Cm.  Bruni stated that he sympathized with the landowners, and he expressed a  

     desire to work with the Leyendecker family. 

 

     Cm.  J.  Valdez asked for a copy of the Mr. Lucci’s report.

 

     Keith Selman, City Planner, stated that the City anticipated condemnation in all           

     routes. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, informed Council that he would give a comprehensive report at the next council meeting with the six proposals and a cost estimate for each proposal.  He said that Council should declare the public necessity to acquire the proposal.

 

     Cm.  Guerra retracted his motion.

 

                E.  Request by Council Member Jose A. Valdez, Jr.

 

1. Discussion with possible action regarding Vehicles for Hire Ad Hoc Committee. 

    (Co-sponsored by Council Member Juan Ramirez)

 

    Cm.  J. Valdez gave a directive to hold the first meeting within the next month

    for the Vehicles for Hire Ad Hoc Committee. 

 

2. Discussion with possible action on initiating a traffic study for possibly placing a

    signal light (or other staff recommendation) at the intersection of Las Cruces and

    Mines Road (FM 1472).

 

Roberto Murillo, Traffic Department, informed Council that an analysis and traffic study is underway at the intersection of Las Cruces and Mines Road.  He said that he has consulted with TxDOT and if the intersection does merit a traffic signal then TxDOT will possibly furnish the equipment. 

 

3.  Discussion with possible action requesting a list of all vacant properties by

     district owned by the City.

 

     Cm.  Valdez stated that he did receive the information in the packet.

 

               F.  Request by Council Member Juan Ramirez

 

1.  Discussion with possible action regarding the status of Bridge Fund revenues

     since the September 11th event.

 

Rafael Garcia, Bridge System Director, stated that since the September 11th event  the non-commercial traffic has dropped 28%, the pedestrian has increased 12%, and the commercial has increased 3%.  

 

Mayor Flores thanked all entities that have assisted in creating a safe atmosphere at the bridges.

 

Cm.  Guerra requested the revenue amount instead of percentages.

 

Rafael Garcia, Bridge System Director, noted that he would provide the information in revenue amount rather than percentages.

                  

2.  Discussion with possible action regarding the status of  Airport Fund revenues

     since the September 11th event.

 

Jose Flores, Airport Director, said that the Airport did experience a drop.  He said that there was a 40 percent decline in passengers and a 50% in cargo.  He stated that cargo has dropped because of the slow economy.  He noted that revenues are 23 thousand dollars less for this year in the month of September.  He noted that the department had extra expenditures in the amount of $17,000.   

           

3.  Discussion with possible action regarding actions taken at 2615 San Agustin.

 

Benny Salinas, Building Director, stated that the property owner has been cited five times and is now pending jury trial. 

   

IX.       INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCES

 

15.  An ordinance amending Chapter 19, "Motor Vehicles and Traffic", Article

VIII; "Stopping Standing or Parking," of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Laredo specifically Section 19-364 titled "Restricted Parking Areas"; thereby adding a subsection 19-364(3) to the code which establishes a no parking anytime/tow away zone on U.S. 83 (Zapata Highway) between Zacatecas Street and the southern city limits of Laredo; providing severability and providing for an effective date and publication.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

16.  Authorizing the Municipality to establish the fair market value of thirty

(30) City owned lots located within the Three Points Subdivision and specifically identified as Lots 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16, of Block 1781-A; and Lots 1,2,3,4A, 5A, 6A, 9A, 10A, 11A, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, of Block 1780-A, Eastern Division, Laredo, Webb County, Texas as per Exhibit "A" delineated on attached copy of City Plat; and authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to effectively convey these said lots to the Laredo Affordable Housing Corporation in support of the Three Points Affordable Housing Corporation-First time Homebuyer Project, and providing for an effective date.  The City will incorporate a deed restriction in the form of a second lien forgivable loan to guarantee the affordability of the units.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

17.  Repealing Ordinance 2001-O-052 to reverse an erroneous appropriation of  $314,956

       previously appropriated on February 26, 2001.

 

       Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

X.        FINAL READINGS OF ORDINANCES

 

Motion to waive the final readings of Ordinance # 2001-O-217, # 2001-O-218, # 2001-O-219, # 2001-O-220, # 2001-O-221, # 2001-O-222, # 2001-O-223, # 2001-O-224, # 2001-O-225, # 2001-O-226, # 2001-O-227 and # 2001-O-228.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

18.  2001-O-217  Amending the City of Laredo Code of Ordinances as follows:  Chapter 2

Article II, Division 3, Section 2-58 (a), Holidays, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Laredo by adding one additional holiday, a personal holiday, for all City of Laredo employees, except as otherwise stated in a collective bargaining agreement.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-217.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2001-O-218  Amending Ordinance #98-O-279 by adopting the City of Laredo

Investment Policy and amending the City of Laredo Investment Policy to comply with Public Funds Investment Act Chapter 2256, Texas Government Code.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-218.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2001-O-219  Authorizing an increase in the bridge toll rate schedule for southbound

   non- commercial vehicles as further described in Exhibit "A", and

   authorizing a u-turn violation fee for southbound commercial traffic as 

   further described in Exhibit "A" and hereby repealing all conflicting

   sections in all ordinances currently in effect.

 

   Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-219.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2001-O-220  Authorizing the City Manager to amend the City of Laredo's FY 2000-

    2001 annual budget in the amount  $169,525 for the Local Law

    Enforcement Block Grant from the U.S.  Department of Justice.  This

    grant funds the salaries, fringe benefits, overtime, and equipment for

    support personnel.  The U.S. Department of Justice will designate

   $119,525 and the City of Laredo will designate $50,000 to fund this grant

   from October 1, 2001 through September 30, 2003.

 

    Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-220.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

 2001-O-221  Authorizing the City Manager to grant a Right-of-Entry- Permit to the

    Texas Department of Transportation in order for that agency to conduct

    feasibility studies on certain City owned properties, for a proposed grade

    separation of U.S.  Highway 83 (Guadalupe and Chihuahua Streets) over

    the Texas Mexican Railroad tracks.  The area encompassed by said City-

    owned properties, includes:  All of block 88-A (except State R.O.W.),

    Lots 4A, 4B, 4C, 5 & Parts of Lots 6 & B, Block 89A (except State

    R.O.W.), all being situated in the Eastern Division, City of Laredo, Webb

    County, Texas, being delineated on attached copies of City Plats; and

     providing for an effective date. 

 

    Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-221.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2001-O-222  Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to

effectively convey fee simple title to the "Surface Only", at its combined market value of $15,063.00, for certain properties described as follows to their respective abutting property owners and providing for an effective date.

 

Parcels  A & B - Consisting of 1,524.03 sq. ft., more or less, and 893.85 sq. ft., more or less; respectively, to  Juventino Gonzalez and wife Maria B. Gonzalez, at the total combined market value  of $5,803.00;  said parcels being out of South Urbahn  Avenue between Bismark Street and the east right-of-way line of South Meadow Ave. situated in the Eastern Division, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas being described in attached Exhibits "A", and  "B"; Parcel C - Consisting of 3,858.36 sq. ft., more or less, to Domingo Hernandez at the market value of $9,260.00. Said parcel being out of South Urbahn Avenue between Bismark Street and the east right-of-way line of South Meadow Ave. situated in the Eastern Division, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas being described in attached Exhibit "C".

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-222.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2001-O-223  Authorizing the City Manager to purchase from the Utilities Department

at fair market value, on lots number one (1) through four (4), block number three hundred and eight (308) including improvements, in the Eastern Division of the City of Laredo, also commonly known as the 600 block of Reynolds in order to establish the centralized office for the Environmental Services Department.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-223.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

                 2001-O-224  Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to

   effectively convey fee simple title to the “Surface Only", at its adjusted   

   market value of $6,112.00, for certain property described as 6,945.00 sq.

   ft. tract of land, out the north half of the Garden Street right-of-way

   between the east right-of-way line of Sta. Isabel Avenue and the west

   right-of-way line of Vidaurri Avenue to Felix J. Canales Treviño; provided

   that the City of Laredo retains the entire north half of said former street as

   a utility easement; said tract being situated in the Western Division, City of

   Laredo, Webb County, Texas being described in Exhibit "A"; and        

   providing for an effective date.

 

   Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-224.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

     2001-O-225  Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to

   effectively convey fee simple title to the "Surface Only", at its market

   value of $9,920.00, for certain property described as a 2,479.88 sq. ft. tract

   of land, more or less, out the southeast section of San Jose Street between

   Milmo and Jarvis Avenues, dedicated as a public easement as per the

   McMillan Park Subdivision Replat recorded in Volume 2, Page 156 of the

   Webb County Plat Records; situated in the Eastern Division, City of

   Laredo, County of Webb, Texas, being more particularly described  in the

   attached Exhibit "A" to Mario Gonzalez and Eleuterio Garza; and

   providing for an effective date.

 

   Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-225.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

 

 

     2001-O-226  Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to

   effectively convey fee simple title to the "Surface Only", at its adjusted

   market value of $11,874.00 of certain property described as a 10,640 sq. ft.

   tract of land, more or less, out of that former section of Poggenpohl Street

   between Sta. Rita and Vidaurri Avenues to Sergio Mares; provided that the

   City of Laredo retains a 6,250 sq. ft. tract of land as a utility easement said

   tracts being situated in the Western Division, City of Laredo, Webb

   County, Texas being described in the attached Exhibit "A" and hereby

   approving the submitted Improvement Plan, as described in Exhibit "B",

   and which is in compliance with Section 10 of the Street Closing/Sales

   Policy Handbook, as approved by Resolution No. 97-R-140; and providing

   for an effective date.

 

   Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-226.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2001-O-227  An ordinance settling and releasing claims against Central Power and Light

Company concerning franchise fee payments; providing no pass through of settlement amounts and specifying terms for future franchise payments.

 

Benjamin Hall, representing over 300 Texas cities against various utilities companies, advised the Council of $785,000 that is payable in a settlement agreement for the City.  

 

Cm.  Guerra stated that he was under the impression that the City was not a party to the suit.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, noted that there were two different lawsuits.  One was the San Juan Case where there was an opt in or opt out situation; however, Mr.  Hall represents the City of Edinburg where the judge declared all the cities a class action. 

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-227.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

   Second:  Cm.  Agredano

   For:     8                                Against:  0                                            Abstain:

 

     2001-O-228  Authorizing the granting to Jerry Resendez Enterprises, Inc., dba

   TRASHCO, a Texas Corporation, a non-exclusive franchise to construct,

    maintain and operate a commercial container refuse gathering and

    disposing services in the City of Laredo, Texas and providing the terms,

    conditions, obligations, and limitations upon and under which franchise

    shall be exercised; providing indemnity to the City; City retains authority

    to regulate rates except for rate increase resulting from increased landfill

    fee which are passed on to the customer; providing for increased service

    rates; providing for franchise payments; and providing for severability. 

    (As amended) (Third and Final Reading)

 

    Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2001-O-228.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

    Second:  Cm.  Galo

    For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

XI.       RESOLUTIONS

 

19. 2001-R-100  Authorizing the City Manager to execute the renewal of a clinical

affiliation agreement between the City of Laredo Fire Department EMS and Mercy Health Center.

 

Motion to approve resolution # 2001-R-100.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

   Second:  Cm.  Amaya

   For:     8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

20.  2001-R-101  Authorizing the use of surplus proceeds for                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

the City of Laredo - Public Property Finance Contractual Obligations (PPFCO), Series 2000, in the amount of $19,190.21, for the purchase of a cargo van for the Traffic Safety Department.  This van will be used by Traffic Signal Specialist for installation and maintenance projects.

 

Motion to approve resolution # 2001-R-101.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

   Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                       For:     8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

21.  2001-R-103  Authorizing the City Manager to disburse a payment in the amount

of $3,750.00 to the Texas Department of Transportation, as the City of         Laredo's contribution to the cost of the right-of-way to be acquired by the State for the widening of Loop 20 from 1.6 miles north of U.S. Highway 59 to McPherson Road.

 

Motion to approve resolution # 2001-R-103.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

   Second:  Cm.  Amaya

   For:     8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

22.  2001-R-104  Nominating candidates for the positions to be filled on the Board of

Directors of the Webb County Appraisal District; and directing the City Secretary to transmit a copy of this Resolution to the Chief Appraiser of the Webb County Appraisal District on October 15, 2001.

 

Motion to approve resolution # 2001-R-104 naming Cm.  Louis H. Bruni and Cm.  John Galo to the Webb County Appraisal District Board of Directors.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

   Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                       For:     8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

XII.     MOTIONS

           

23.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a contract for the purchase of

3,719.8437 acre-feet of class "B" water rights from Sam R. Sparks, Inc, for the sum of $2,157,509.38.  The water rights convert to 1,487.9375 acre-feet of municipal water rights.

 

Motion to postpone.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Bruni

For:     8                                      Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

24.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a contract for the purchase of 2,975.875 acre-

feet of class "A" water rights from Arrow Brook Limited Partnership, for the sum of $2,157,509.38.  The water rights convert to 1,487.9375 acre-feet of municipal water rights.

 

Motion to postpone.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

25.  Consideration to authorize the City Manager to amend a professional services contract

for one month with Zoila Meza, L.V.N., to provide public health services to clients of the City of Laredo Health Department for the period beginning September 1, 2000, through August 31, 2001.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                   Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

26.  Consideration to award contract FY01-160, to the Low bidder, Zertuche Construction

LLC, Laredo, Texas, in the annual amount of $83,040.00, for providing ground maintenance services for the Utilities Department, Parks and Recreation Department and Police Department.  This is a one year contract, with an option for a second year, which requires the contract vendor to complete cutting cycles at the water plants, booster stations, the wastewater treatment plants, storage tank locations, utility easements, the Clark Street median, and the Police Station.  This contract contains a non-appropriation clause that allows the City to cancel this contract if funds are not available for these services.  Funding is available in the Utilities, Police, and Parks and Recreation Department budgets.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                   Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     7                                        Against:  1                                            Abstain:  0

                                                            Cm.  Ramirez

           

27.  Consideration for approval of change order no. 2, a decrease of $26,316.44 for the

balance of quantities actually constructed in place, a decrease of $50,400.00 in

liquidated damages, the acceptance of the 60 MGD Intake at the Jefferson Water Treatment Plant and approval of final payment in the amount of $4,197.16 to Reddy Engineers and Contractors, Inc., Houston, Texas.  Final contract amount is $2,565,028.25. Funding is available in the Waterworks Retainage Account.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

28.  Consideration to authorize the City Manager to enter into a contract with Catholic

Social Services of Laredo, Inc. (CSS) in the amount of $120,360.00 to administer the City's Fiscal Year 2002 General Fund Welfare Assistance Program through which rental, utility, burial, transportation, ambulance, and health care assistance is provided to indigent individuals and families residing in the community.  The contract would cover expenditures for the period of October 1, 2001 to September 30, 2002. Up to $108,324.00 of the General Welfare Funds would be designated for the assistance of indigent individuals and families of low income while $12,000.00 (approx. 10%) would be allocated to cover administrative expenses to include:  overhead, wages, and office supplies costs incurred by Catholic Social Services of Laredo, Inc.

 

       Motion to approve with the amendment to remove the word burial from the motion.

 

       Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                   Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

29.  Consideration for approval of amendment no. 1, an increase of $25,000.00 to the

architectural/engineering contract with Freese and Nichols, Inc., Fort Worth, Texas, for Resident Project Representative (RPR) services for the Rehabilitation of Runway 17R/35L.  Funding is available in the New Airport Construction Grant #26 A/E.

 

Motion to approve.

 

 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

           

30.  Consideration for approval of change order no. 1, an increase of $67,446.14 to the

construction contract with Price Construction, Inc., Laredo, Texas, for the Shiloh Drive Widening Project from IH 35 to McPherson Road to provide a safer entrance connection into Manadas Creek and to add an additional 20 working days to the construction contract time.  Funding is available in the Shiloh Widening Project.

 

Motion to approve with an amendment to add the word “bridge” to the motion.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

31.  Consideration for approval of change order no. 2, an increase of $960.00 to the

construction contract with Laredo Class One Builders, Inc., Laredo, Texas, for the Administrative Offices & Scale House of the City of Laredo Solid Waste Division for design revisions to comply with ADA requirements and to add an additional 30 working days to the construction contract time for credit due to rain delays and minor changes requested by the Public Works Department.  Funding is available in the Solid Waste Fund - Buildings.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

32.  Consideration to approve an Interlocal Agreement between the City of Laredo and

County of Webb-Central Agency for cemetery services. This Interlocal Agreement shall be in effect from October 1, 2001, to September 30, 2004.

 

Motion to postpone.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Agredano

       Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

       For:     6                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  2

                                                                                                Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

                                                                                                Cm.  Amaya

 

       Motion to charge the county the same amount for burials as anyone else. 

 

       Moved:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     6                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  2

                                                                                                Cm.  Amaya

                                                                                                Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

 

33.  Consideration to authorize the City Manager to ratify and amend a professional

services contract with Laboratory Corporation of America to perform clinical laboratory testing services submitted by the City of Laredo Health Department and ratifying the contract amendment by increasing the cumulative amount from $300,000 to $450,000.  Funds to be utilized are from the following state grant budgets:  MCH-Title V, La Familia (COPC), HIV/AIDS/STD Program, TB Binational, Nutricion Familiar Project, Haz-Mat, Epidemiology, and Buena Vida Health Program.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Bruni

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

XIII.    STAFF REPORTS

 

34.  Staff report on Dia del Rio to be held on October 20, 2001.

 

Jessica Hein, Assistant to City Manager, gave a brief presentation on the Dia del Rio.

She gave the Council members the following report:

 

The City of Laredo together with the Rio Grande International Study Center and other organization are sponsoring the Seventh Annual Dia Del Rio Celebration to be held on October 14 – 20, 2001.  Laredo and Nuevo Laredo are joining to develop a truly bi-national celebration of the Rio Grande – the River that is vital to the health, well-being and economies of Laredo, Nuevo Laredo.  The City of Laredo and Nuevo Laredo are working together to provide strong support for this year’s celebration.  The RGISC is also working with its counter part in Nuevo Laredo, Proyecto de Investigacion Ambiental del Rio Bravo, to develop environmentally educational activities that will run concurrently on both sides of the river during the entire week.

           

35. Presentation by LMI on the status of the contract negotiations with United

     Transportation Union Local #1670.

 

R. J. Garza with El Metro, mentioned that Peter Behrman apologized for not being able to attend the Council meeting.  He noted that out of 34 articles, approximately 21 articles have been agreed upon.  On May 25th  staff presented the Union a final offer to the negotiations and the Union Membership did not ratify that.  A meeting with Union President William Cain and Peter Behrman is pending.  

 

36. Status report on the site tours pertaining to the privatization of the Utilities

      Department.

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, gave a comprehensive report on several site visits that was attended by several Council Members and staff. The purpose of the visits was to observe and gather information about how other cities operate their Utilities department.  

 

Cm.  Amaya expressed his concerns about the small maintenance problems that he witnessed on the site tours. 

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, stated that deferred maintenance is a sensitive matter.  

 

Mayor Flores mentioned that the amount of savings has never been mentioned.  

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, stated that from the beginning the proposed company will not set up the base line.  

 

Mayor Flores said it was a concern of hers.  

 

Cm.  Galo emphasized that the department should be discussing savings when they are preparing for the yearly budget hearings.  He admonished staff because they failed to have a workshop with all the employees so they could understand the benefits of converting over to privatization.    He said he was very angry about both issues. 

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, answered by saying that City employees are not lazy, ignorant nor stupid.  He stated that staff lacks experience and exposure.  He stated that staff needs the opportunity to be trained   He added that he was under the impression that they would have the workshop once the Council chose a company.

 

Cm.  Galo pointed out that Fernando Roman has been mistaken on many points.  He stated that he instructed staff to give a workshop so the employees would understand the process and so they would have a positive attitude about the conversion.  He stressed that educating the employees is a priority for the Council.  

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, said there is a misunderstanding that staff can invest everything that staff needs to buy and every time we need to invest something, we go and issue a bond.  He said that one of the proposals that Council has  states that the investments in capital will bring the automation, and that will bring the improvements be made by the City.  He said that the Council would invest in the city weather they like it or not.  He said that Council will pay through an annual fee weather the privatization companies invest money or we invest the money.  Finally, he said that raising the capital has never been a problem.

 

Cm.  Galo told Fernando Roman that just because he does not understand privatization  means that it is wrong. 

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, stated the fact that the City has a fire training facility; that the City constructs training courses for the Police Department; and that the City  brings people in to be trained, represents that people can be trained.  He said that his argument from the very beginning is that the City should have a base line.  He noted that one company has a zero termination fee at the end of five years.  The other one has a $3.7 million-termination fee, and that Council needs to understand that the proposal has changed since September 24th. 

 

Cm.  Galo stated that Fernando Roman asked for the termination fee and it can be negotiated.  

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, asked Cm.  Galo to review the contract. 

 

Cm.  Galo said the companies are putting money into the system now.  If they were not paying  any more money there would be no reason to have a termination fee.  He added that is yet to be negotiated.  He stated that none of these figures or numbers are set in stone.

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, said that there is going to be institutional development that occurs so that staff at different levels understand the issues.  He stated that the contract is going to be a very complicated instrument.

 

Cm.  Galo stated this was the reason the City has hired Competitive Government Strategies. 

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, said that Council needs to count on the privilege of that advice throughout the process, instead of waiting until the end.  He said that our baseline was understood as 12.8 and as we refined.  The original baseline was 11.6. 

 

Mayor Flores asked Cm.  Galo to keep the discussion on a professional basis.  She added that Fernando Roman has always been very cooperative with the Council and has led Council through some difficult decisions.

 

Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez stressed the importance of a workshop.  He continued to say that the decision is one of the toughest issues brought to Council. 

 

Fernando Roman, Utilities Director, stressed the matter of the workshop is timing.  He noted that he has a list of issues submitted by his staff to present to the companies.  He noted that it was not to terrorize the employees by telling them fabrications.  He told his staff that they will be protected. 

 

           37.  Presentation  by Mr. Skip Stitt and Mr. Mike Brink,  Competitive 

      Government Strategies regarding the evaluation proposals received to provide  

      utility services.

 

       Cm.  Guerra asked that the item be placed on the next agenda as an action item.

 

Skip Stitt, a representative from Competitive Government Strategies, gave the following presentation:  

 

I.   Introduction

 

On December 15, 2000, the City of Laredo received Proposals for a scope of services involving the operation and maintenance of the City’s Utilities system.  This memorandum summarizes the evaluation, to date, of those Proposals and the supplementary information submitted by the two responsive contractors, OMI-Thames Water (“OMI”) and United Water Services (“UW”).

 

The information provided by the contractors indicates that the City is in the fortunate situation of being able to choose between two highly qualified contractors to operate and maintain the Utilities. Both contractors offer substantial cost savings to the City, enhanced employee opportunities, improved asset preservation, and strong environmental protections.

 

 

                   II. Process Overview

 

On August 8, 2000, the City of Laredo released a Request for Proposals with a scope of services involving the Utilities Department’s water treatment, water distribution, wastewater treatment, wastewater collection, and customer billing operations.  On December 15, 2000, two responsive Proposals were received.

 

In addition to the release of the RFP and the receipt of Proposals, other key steps in the competitive procurement process included:

 

Ø      Contractor site inspections of the City’s facilities (September 5, 2000 through October 20, 2000);

Ø      Technical and financial analysis of the Proposals (beginning December 16, 2000);

Ø      Post-Proposal written clarification process (April 24, 2001; May 21, 2001; and September 7, 2001);

Ø      Contractor oral presentations to  City Councilors and City management (June 11, 2001);

Ø      City visits to selected contractor sites (August 28-30, 2001 and September 24-25, 2001);

Ø      Additional verification of selected contractor references (September 24, 2001).

 

                   III.              Initial Proposal Analysis

 

§         The Proposals received were evaluated against the criteria listed in the RFP, including:

 

§         The contractor’s experience in providing the scope services detailed in RFP in systems similar to the Utilities;

§         The contractor’s financial strength;

§         The contractor’s understanding of the Utilities as demonstrated in the narrative portion of the contractor’s Proposal;

§         The proposed treatment of existing Utilities employees; and

§         The fees and cost associated with the Proposal.

 

Based on the preliminary evaluation of the Proposals and input from City staff members, Competitive Government Strategies, LLC (“CGS”) prepared and distributed three rounds of questions requesting that the contractors clarify various portions of their Proposals.

 

During the oral presentation, the OMI and UW teams discussed with City Councilors and staff a range of issues relevant to the Utilities including technical approaches required capital improvements, human resources planning, transition timelines, and energy savings.  While there was some variation among the contractors in terms of approach to the project, each appeared to be generally qualified to perform the scope of services required by the City, subject to completing the site visits and clarifying pricing information.

 

City Councilors and staff subsequently conducted site visits during the periods of August 28-30, 2001.  The August trips included the UW sites in Milwaukee, WI, and Jersey City, NJ, and the OMI sites of the North Hudson Sewer Authority, NJ, and Elizabeth town, NJ (Thames Water).  In addition, the City team made a trip to the OMI site in Farmington, NM, in late September.

 

                  IV.  Financial Analysis 

 

     City Baseline Costs

 

An estimate of the City’s baseline costs to provide the services included in the contractor Proposals is included as Appendix A.  This original project baseline costs were developed by Mr.  Fernando Roman with the assistance of CGS and were included in the RFP.

 

This baseline cost model takes into account that the City would still continue to control and to fund capital projects, as it does currently, in addition to the Annual Fee that would be paid to any contractor operating and maintaining the Utilities.  Therefore, the estimate of the funding for those capital improvement projects was excluded from the City’s baseline costs included as Appendix A.

 

     Contractor Cost and Estimated Savings

 

     The RFP requested that each contractor provide a fixed Annual Fee with their  

Proposal that would cover all the services included in the scope of services of the RFP.  A detailed presentation of the Annual Fee presented by each contractor, as adjusted in response to the written clarifications, is included in Appendix B.

 

In addition to the cost of operating and providing routine maintenance for all Utilities system assets, the Annual Fee includes the cost of contractor insurance and bonding costs as well as the cost to repair system assets that fail within their useful life.

 

The RFP requested that contractors provide an Annual Fee under two different assumptions concerning contract length:  a five year service agreement with the right for the City to renew for another five year term and a ten year service agreement.  Using the City’s estimate of its baseline costs included as Appendix A., and the Annual Fee information provided by the contractors in Appendix B, CGS has calculated the estimated cumulative savings to the City under three different scenarios.

 

More details on the estimated savings is included in Attachment C.

 

 

Estimated Operation and Maintenance Savings

 

 

OMI

UW

Cumulative Savings

Net Present Value of Savings

Cumulative Savings

Net Present Value of Savings

Scenario # 1:  Non-renewal at 5 years

$15,214,145

$13,173,857

$17,758,820

$15,640,861

Scenario # 2:  Renewal at 5 years

$30,428,290

$23,495,919

$41,917,640

$32,367,690

Scenario #3:  10 year contract

$30,428,290

23,495,919

$41,917,640

$32,367,690

 

Compared to the City’s baseline operation and maintenance costs for providing the Utilities Services, the total estimated savings to the City of entering into a service agreement with the contractor offering the lower Annual Fee would could be almost $42 million ($32 million Net Present Value) over ten years.

 

This estimate does not include any potential savings from enhanced revenue collections or capital improvement efficiencies, significant other ideas for both of which are included in the contractor Proposals.  Nor does it contemplate any shared savings arrangements that the City might enter into with the contractor.

 

             V.  Qualitative Analysis

 

CGS’s detailed assessment of the contractor Proposals is included as Appendix D to this memorandum.  A summary of major considerations is outlined below.

 

 

OMI-Thames Water

United Water

Experience

§         Approximately 165 projects across the US.

§         Peer sites include:  Farmington, NM; Elizabeth town, NJ; and the North Hudson Sewer Authority, NJ.

§         Excellent environmental record.  14 permit excursions in 1999-2000 out of 165 projects.

§         Kirby Chaney is proposed project manager, with more than 18 years of water/wastewater treatment O & M experience and Texas Class A water and wastewater operation certifications.

§         I pending lawsuit involving ) O & M operation. 

§         Positive labor relationships at union and non-union sites.  Across all sites, only one labor grievance has not been resolved in the initial phase.

 

§         5 projects with more than 100 employees transitioned across the U. S.

§         Peer sites include:  Milwaukee, WI and Jersey City,  NJ.

§         Excellent environmental record, 2 minor Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, or OSHA violations across all projects over last two years.

§         Pete Maldonado is proposed project manager with extensive municipal and financial management experience in South Texas.

§         1 pending lawsuit involving O & M operations. 

§         Positive labor relationships at union and non-union sites.  National recognition for partnership with AFSCME union.

Financial Strength

§         Acceptable balance sheet and income statement. 

§         Both OMI and Thames Water would guarantee performance, with a combined net worth of $3 billion and assets of $8.6 billion.

§         Acceptable balance sheet and income statement.

§         Performance would be guaranteed by United Water parent companies with a combined book equity of approximately $2.5 billion.

Understanding and Approach

§         Assume responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the Utilities as detailed in the RFP and subsequent clarifications.

§         Significant emphasis on integration, cross training, management system implementation, optimization and capital improvement planning to achieve savings.

§         Committed to maintaining “equal or better” standards across all performance measures.  No reduction in service or performance will be permitted.

§         Well-developed quality benchmarking and monitoring programs included.

§         Contractor assumes responsibility for all permit excursions and exceedences within the operating parameters of the plants and systems.

§         Extensive predictive and preventive maintenance program to be implemented utilizing a whole lifecycle approach to maintenance. Will implement, at their cost, the MP2 computerized maintenance management system.

§         22 person minor capital group to handle City-directed construction projects of less than $15,000.  Expected funding level of $1.6 m annually from the City in addition to the Annual Fee to cover these minor capital projects at the rates included in the Proposal.

§         Maintain local customer service operation with human answering around the clock.

§         No change proposed to existing billing system.

§         Substantial focus on unaccounted for water and other revenue enhancement opportunities as part of the base scope of services for billing and collections.

§         Design and administration of meter replacement program (meters funded by the City) included in the base cope of services.

§         Assume responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the Utilities as detailed in the RFP and subsequent clarifications.

§         Significant emphasis on management and process optimization, including the implementation of capital improvements that will enable certain major process changes.

§         Committed to maintaining “equal or better” standards across all performance measures.  No reduction in service or performance will be permitted.

§         Well-developed quality benchmarking and monitoring programs included.

§         Contractor assumes responsibility for all permit excursions and exceedences within the operating parameters of the plants and systems.

§         Institute a comprehensive maintenance program involving predictive, preventive, routine and corrective elements.  Will implement, at their cost, the MP2 computerized maintenance management system.

§         To use transitioned staff to handle City-directed minor capital construction projects of less than $15,000.  Expected funding  level of $850,000 annually from the City in addition to the Annual Fee to cover these minor capital projects at the rates included in the Proposal.

§         Maintain local customer service operation with human answering around the clock.

§         No change proposed to existing billing system.

§         Collection effort would be calibrated to achieve historic service levels as part of contractor’s base scope.

 

Employee Issues

§         All current Utilities employees to be offered positions with the contractor.  No lay-offs or involuntary transfers over the life of the service agreement.

§         Current salary levels honored with commitment of no reductions for transitioned employees.

§         Equal or better package of wages, benefits, and pensions.

§         401k plan only for transitioned employees. 

§         Commitment to “make whole” any employee losing unvested funds due to fewer than 10 years of service with TMRP by investing an equal amount into employee’s 401k.

§         Retirement scenarios utilizing realistic assumptions for 40+ year old transitioned employees with varying levels of prior service indicate equal or better retirement outcomes as a result of transitioning to the contractor.

§         Annual pay increases based on merit.

§         One-time, retraining stipend of $500,000 available to City if City drops the “all current employees to be hired by the contractor” requirement.

§         Substantial safety and training programs.

§         Very positive labor relations record.

 

§         All current Utilities employees to be offered positions with the contractor.  No lay-offs or involuntary transfers over the life of the service agreement.

§         Current salary levels honored with commitment of no reductions for transitioned employees.

§         Equal or better package of wagers, benefits, and pensions.

§         401k and defined benefit pension plan for transitioned employees.

§         Retirement scenarios utilizing realistic assumptions for 40+ year old transitioned employees with varying levels of prior service indicate equal or better retirement outcomes as a result of transitioning to the contractor.

§         Annual pay increases based on cost of living and merit.

§         Employees may remain in current City health plan.

§         Contractor will reimburse the City for up to 6 months salary for employees who voluntarily choose not to be transitioned as part of Career Transition Program.  Standard part of UW Proposal.

§         Substantial safety and training programs.

§         Very positive labor relations record.

 

Other Issues

§         Commitment to partner with local business and schools on environmental programs.  Internship program.

§         Adopt-a-school program and internship program.

§         Stated goal of 70% or more purchases to be made from local suppliers.

Cost/Fees

§         See prior section for estimated annual savings.

§         Base fee escalated only based on system growth and inflation.

§         Proposed City-provided minor capital projects funding level of $1.6 million in the first year of the contract.

§         18% mark-up on minor capital fund materials and services.

§         Willing to contractually guarantee $236,000 in new revenues to the City.

§         All savings from power de-regulation direct pass-through back to the City.

§         Additional savings/revenue opportunities (out of base  scope) include major capital program funding/management, long-term agreement.

§         See prior section for estimated annual savings.

§         Base fee escalated only based on system growth and inflation

§         Proposed City-provided minor capital projects funding level of $850,000 in the first year of the contract.

§         10% mark-up on minor capital fund materials and services.

§         All savings from power de-regulation direct pass-through back to the City.

§         Additional savings/revenue opportunities (out of base scope) include meter replacement/collections efficiency improvements, major capital program funding/management, marketing of water rights.  Contractor estimates other savings/revenue opportunities at $2 million. 

 

In addition to the information provided by the contractors through their Proposals and clarification, the site tours provided the City team with an opportunity to view, first-hand, other complex operations for which the contractors are responsible.  The information provided by those public officials responsible for overseeing both the contractors was almost uniformly positive for both. 

 

In sum, both contractors have a demonstrated record of providing high quality operation and maintenance services at sites across the country, including those of similar or greater complexity to Laredo.  Based on a review of the Proposal narratives, contractor presentations, site visits, and reference verification, it appears that both OMI and UW are well-positioned to be the experienced partner that the City of Laredo desires to contract with for the Utilities Services.

 

          VI.  General Benefits of Contracting

 

In addition to the specific benefits of contracting with either firm as outlined above, partnering with a contractor through an operation and maintenance service agreement can bring a range of additional benefits to the City.  These benefits can include:

 

The City will gain access to innovative technologies. Although the Utilities are well run, either one of the contractors would bring a broad range of new and emerging technologies.

 

The City will gain access to additional engineering and technical talent.  This additional expertise will become increasingly important as the water and wastewater industries become more complex and highly regulated.

 

The City will receive financial guarantees securing the operational performance to specific contract requirements.

 

In an era of rapid system growth, the City will improve its ability to forecast accurately the Utilities Department annual budget in future years given the fixed Annual Fee nature of the service agreement and the adjustment of that Annual Fee based only on the pre-specified indices included in the service agreement.

 

The City will likely be able to capture savings and/or efficiencies in its capital improvements program by leveraging contractor expertise on project and operational alternatives.

 

The City will reduce its exposure for fines associated with many environmental non-compliance issues.  Going forward, a contractor would be responsible for fines that result from their operation of the facilities.

 

The City will not be required to replace any of the vehicles necessary to fulfill the operations contract over its term. All responsibility for new vehicle purchases would be borne by the contractor.

 

In addition to a package of equal or better wages, benefits, and pensions, the employees transitioned to the contractor would receive expanded training and career development opportunities. 

 

Employees will benefit from outstanding safety programs and injury/illness rates well below national averages.

 

The City will benefit from the robust maintenance systems employed by the contractors, including preventive maintenance systems and computerized maintenance programs.

 

Overtime, the City will be able to reduce the costs of the overhead organizations engaged I support of the Utilities.  These activities potentially include legal services, information technology, accounts payable, purchasing and procurement and human resources costs.

 

Any portion of the annual corrective maintenance fund that is not spent during any one year is returned to the City.  This ensures that the contractor has no incentive to reduce corrective maintenance activities at the Utilities.

 

The City will benefit from contractor experience with energy management approaches around the country and energy de-regulation efforts in other states. 

 

The City will have the opportunity to sell or reallocate Utilities vehicles and equipment that are not needed by the contractor.

 

            VII.  Outstanding Issues

 

Next Steps

 

Upon selection of a contractor by the Laredo City Council, CGS  will work with the City and the contractor to begin the follow-on tasks immediately.  The first major task will involve negotiating the service agreement with the identified contractor.  CGS will work with the City’s team, including legal counsel, to develop a service agreement framework for discussion with the selected contractor.

 

Following negotiation of the service agreement, CGS will assist the City and the contractor with the transition process.  The contractors both have experience with similar, highly complex project transitions.  Each contractor has a well-developed transition methodology that should enable to take responsibility for the services without delay.  CGS will work with the City and the contractor to minimize the disruptions inherent in any transition of this scope.

 

Undating Employees

 

Throughout the next steps in the process, CGS will work with the City and the selected contractor to minimize disruptions for the current Utilities employees.  CGS recommends that immediately following any Council action designating a contractor for negotiations that regular meetings be established to keep employees apprised of the process and how it will affect them.

 

Issues related to pensions, vacations, sick time, and other benefits will be of particular interest to employees. CGS can assist the City and contractor in developing consistent policies and addressing these with employees in a way that reduces the likelihood that incorrect information is circulated.

 

Bond Issue

 

CGS is unaware of any final determination regarding the City’s water and sewer bond covenants and whether they require recall of outstanding water and sewer bonds as a result of an operation and maintenance agreement.  We have had no further communication fro either Mr.  Roman or the City’s bond counsel, Mr.  Tart, on this matter.  This determination needs to be made prior to finalizing of any service agreement.

 

Regulator Agency Approval

 

While there is precedent in Texas for similar Utilities operation and maintenance agreements, the City’s legal counsel will need to confirm that any negotiated agreement fully meets the requirements of all state and federal agencies.

 

Budget Impact

 

The City will continue to receive all revenue generated by Utilities operations.  Adjusting payments by the Utilities Department to other City agen ies to support administrative operations will be matter that City Council and staff will need to consider.

 

Likewise, any impact on landfill revenues resulting from the drier biosolids product from the City’s wastewater plants will require the City and contractor to work cooperatively to identify new revenue streams in order to cushion the financial impact on the landfill.

 

Fleet Service Utilization

 

Both contractors have indicated that they would be willing to use the City’s Fleet Services organization.  United Water indicates that use of the City’s Fleet Services would have no net impact on their Annual Fee subject to the negotiation of “fair and reasonable” rates with Fleet Services.  OMI-Thames indicates that use of the City’s Fleet Services organization would result in a net increase of approximately $77,000 in their Annual Feel.

 

Because of the latest direction received from the City that use of the City’s Fleet Services would be mandatory, this amount has been factored in to the OMI-Thames Annual Fee included in Appendix B.  Development of an agreement between the selected contractor and City ‘Fleet Services would be required with the final service agreement.

 

Contract Management

 

CGS can assist the City with finalizing its internal contract management team during contract negotiations.  This team will need to be constituted of current City employees who are well acquainted with the operation and maintenance of the Utilities.  It is important that the City leadership team act quickly to identify its contract management team and prevent their transition to a contractor.  Recurring contract management costs are likely to range from 2-4% of the annual contract value based on the size and the skill mix of the team that the City decides to put into place.

 

Banking Vacancies

 

By instructing the City Manager to begin to “bank” or “freeze” certain City job vacancies throughout City government and the Utilities upon designating a contractor with which to negotiate, the City Council can protect a number of open positions for current Utilities employees desiring to main with the City.  One contractor estimate that at a time that the RFP Was on the street, approximately 50 positions were open throughout the City that could be filled by Utilities personnel wishing to remain with the City.

 

By banking these vacancies until transition occurs, the City can maintain opportunities for some Utilities employees wishing to remain with the City.

 

 

 

 

Minor Capital Improvements Process

 

Both contractors included processes for funding and executing the same type of construction (minor capital improvement) work currently conducted by the City’s operation and maintenance work forces.  Final, legal approval of the methods proposed will be required prior to finalizing any contract.

 

             VII.  City Council Action

 

Following this briefing, CGS recommends that the Laredo City Council identify a contractor with which to begin negotiations for an operation and maintenance service agreement encompassing the scope of services included in the RFP.

 

            IX.  Conclusion

 

It appears that either contractor will provide benefits to the Utilities and the ratepayers of the City of Laredo.  Be selecting a private partner to operate and maintain the Utilities, the City can secure outstanding operation and maintenance expertise, financial guarantees of performance, new opportunities for employees, and protection of the environment and Utilities assets.

 

We would be happy to discuss any aspect of this evaluation with you at your request.

 

*  Appendix A thru D are on file at the City Secretary’s Office

                                                                                                 

XIV.  EXECUTIVE SESSION

 

The City Council hereby reserves the right to go into executive session at any time during this public meeting, when it deems it necessary to consult privately with its attorney about any item upon this agenda, pursuant to the provisions of Section 551.071(2) of the Texas Government Code.

 

XV.      RECESS AND CONVENE AS THE LAREDO MASS TRANSIT BOARD

 

Motion to recess as City Council and convene as the Laredo Mass Transit Board.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Agredano

            For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

38.  2001-RT-004       Authorizing the City Manager to accept and execute the

Texas Department of Transportation, grant/contract No. 51222F1013, in the amount of $1,000,000 from the State Public Transportation Fund for the 2001-2002 biennium; and providing for grant/contract funds to be deposited in the City of Laredo Transit Fund Accounts.

 

Motion to approve #2001-RT-004.

 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

                       

Motion to adjourn as the Laredo Mass Transit Board and reconvene as City Council.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

CITY OF LAREDO

CITY COUNCIL MEETING

A-2001-S-25

SUPPLEMENTAL AGENDA

 

I.    PUBLIC HEARING

 

1.  Public hearing amending Chapter 31, Utilities, Section 31-38 Water Rates and

     Availability Subsection 6(b) of the Code of Ordinances to clarify that the Water

     Availability Fund opening balance of each budget year shall not be depleted more than

     twenty percent for the purpose of financing studies and pilot programs to augment and

     diversify the water supply, but shall have no limitation in the amount of funds dedicated

     to the purchase of water, groundwater, or water rights, including the financial, technical,

     legal, or any other procurement expenses associated with the purchase of said water,

     groundwater, or water rights; and providing for effective date.

 

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCE

     Amending Chapter 31, Utilities, Section 31-38 Water Rates and Availability

     Subsection 6(b) of the Code of Ordinances to clarify that the Water Availability Fund

     opening balance of each budget year shall not be depleted more than twenty percent for

     the purpose of financing studies and pilot programs to augment and diversify the water

     supply, but shall have no limitation in the amount of funds dedicated to the purchase of

     water, groundwater, or water rights, including the financial, technical, legal, or any other

     procurement expenses associated with the purchase of said water, groundwater, or water

     rights; and providing for effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Bruni

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

II.  MOTION

 

2.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a contract with Competitive Government

     Strategies in the amount of $90,000, in addition to the Consultant’s reasonable out-of

     pocket charges and travel expenses, for Phase III of the Utilities Department

     privatization to negotiate a service agreement.

 

     Motion to postpone.

 

     Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

     Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

     For:     8                                       Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

III.  ADJOURNMENT

           

            Motion to adjourn.                                                                                Time:  10:02 p.m.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Agredano

            For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0       

 

I, Gustavo Guevara, Jr., City Secretary, do hereby certify that the above minutes contained in pages 01 to 42 are true, complete, and correct proceedings of the  City Council meeting held on the October 1, 2001.        

 

 

______________________________

Gustavo Guevara, Jr.

City Secretary