CITY OF LAREDO

                                             CITY COUNCIL MEETING

                                                         M2002-R-017

                                           CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS

                                                1110 HOUSTON STREET

                                                 LAREDO, TEXAS 78040

                                                    SEPTEMBER 3, 2002

                                                               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 Elizabeth G. Flores led in the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

III.       ROLL CALL

 

            In attendance:

 

            Elizabeth G.  Flores,                                                     Mayor

            Alfredo Agredano,                                                        Mayor Pro Tempore, District I

            Hector J. Garcia,                                                          Council Member, District II

            John C.  Galo,                                                              Council Member, District III

            Johnny Amaya,                                                             Council Member, District IV

            Eliseo Valdez, Jr.,                                                         Council Member, District V

            Gene Belmares,                                                            Council Member, District VI

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

            Juan Ramirez,                                                               Council Member, District VIII

            Gustavo Guevara, Jr.,                                                   City Secretary

            Larry Dovalina,                                                             City Manager

            Cynthia Collazo,                                                           Assistant City Manager

            Valeria  Acevedo,                                                         Assistant City Attorney

 

IV.       MINUTES

 

            None.

 

V.        COMMUNICATIONS AND RECOGNITIONS

 

Announcements

 

            None.

 

Invitations

 

None.

 

Recognitions

 

a.  Recognition of City of Laredo employees for raising the most funds in the 500+ employees category for the 2002 Walk America March of Dimes Campaign.

 

      Dan Migura, Director of Administrative Services, presented the Mayor and Council with a plaque which was received from the 2002 Walk America March of Dimes Campaign for raising the most funds in the 500+ employees’ category.

 

Communiqués

 

Cm.  Garcia thanked the City of Laredo Parks and Recreation Department for assisting with the Back to School Jamaica which served over 200 children. 

 

Cm.  Galo assured the public that the City of Laredo has always been repairing water lines throughout the City.  He noted that the rash of breaks are not due to negligence but are common maintenance issues.  

 

Cm.  Amaya thanked Joe Guerra, Public Works Director, and his staff for the great job the department has done in his district.  

 

Cm.  Belmares publicly acknowledged and thanked Rogelio Rivera, City of Laredo Engineering staff, Martinez Construction, and Brothers.  Paving for their work and completion of the widening project on McPherson.

 

Cm.  Ramirez thanked staff for installing the sidewalks in the San Francisco Javier neighborhood.  He also congratulated the Parks and Recreation Department  for their participation with the Tecolotes. 

 

VI.       APPOINTMENTS TO COMMISSIONS, BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

 

a.   Appointment by Council Member Johnny Amaya of Jose R. Ortiz to the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee.

 

      Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano not present.

 

VII.     PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

1.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending Section 24.63.2, Permitted   

      Land Uses of the Laredo Land Development Code to designate Children’s Amusement Services (Outdoors) as an allowable land use in a  B-3 (Community Business District), B-4 (Highway Commercial District), M-1 (Light Manufacturing District), M-2 (Heavy Manufacturing District), and MXD (Mixed Use Development District); and Appendix A, Definitions; and providing for publication and effective date.  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of this ordinance amendment.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      There was no public input.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce, exclude M2.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  E.  Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Galo

For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano was not present.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

2.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lot 1, Block 1825, Eastern Division, located at 2201 Lyon Street, from R-1 (Single Family Residential District) to B-3 (Community Business District); providing for publication and effective date.  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed zone change.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo 

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Margarito Benavides asked to postpone this item.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and postpone for the next meeting.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Amaya

Second:  Cm.  E.  Valdez

For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

3.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lots 9 and 10, Block 118, Western Division, located at 617 and 619 Victoria Street, from B-1 (Limited Commercial District) to B-3 (Community Business District); providing for publication and effective date.  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:      7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Guillermo Castillo, petitioner, spoke in favor of the zone change.  

 

Ramiro Martinez spoke in favor of the zone change. 

 

Ramon Ramirez spoke against the zone change.  In addition, he submitted 12 signatures from of the surrounding property owners that were in opposition to the zone change.  

 

Mayor Pro Tempore arrived at this time, 6:10 p.m.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and deny the zone change.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Ramirez

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

4.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of

     the City of Laredo by rezoning Lot 1 and the west ½ of Lot 2, Block 1141, Eastern

     Division, located at 2001 Clark Blvd., from R-1 (Single Family Residential District) to

     R-O (Residential-Office District); providing for publication and effective date.  The

     Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed zone change.

 

     Motion to open the public hearing.

 

     Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                 Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

     For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ron Whitehawk, representing the applicant, asked Council to consider a issuing a Conditional Use Permit which would allow the applicant to have an office for his business.   

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce as a Conditional Use Permit.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Amaya

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Amaya

 

5.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning 21.62 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit “A,” located south of Bob Bullock Loop, west of Sandia Drive and north of San Isidro Parkway, from AG (Agricultural District) to B-3 (Community Business District); providing for publication and effective date.  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Henry Mejia with Scherffey Engineering spoke in favor of the zone change. 

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:    8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Belmares

 

6.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning 1.83 acres, as further described by metes and bounds on attached Exhibit “A,” located south of Emerald Hills Subdivision, Phase I and southeast of Dorel Drive, from R-1MH (Single Family Manufactured Housing District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date.  The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended approval of the proposed zone change.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Richard Haynes, Developer, spoke in favor of the zone change.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Garcia

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Garcia

 

7.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance authorizing the City Manager to enter into and execute an Interlocal Government Agreement between the City of Laredo and Laredo Independent School District (LISD) for the participation of the City of Laredo Police Department School Resource Officer Program and to accept reimbursement in the amount of $367,000.00 from LISD and to amend the City of Laredo’s FY 2001-2002 annual budget in the amount of $367,000.00.  The Laredo Police Department will provide eight (8) officers that will be assigned to various middle and high schools, and LISD will reimburse the City of Laredo up to three hundred sixty seven thousand dollars ($367,000.00) for the FY 2002-2003 school year. 

 

      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.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

           

8.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo FY 2001-2002 Veterans Field Fund Annual Budget by amending and appropriating revenues and expenditures in the amount of $35,000.00 from the West Martin Ticket Sales and amending and appropriating the expenditures for the Tecolotes de Los Dos Laredos contract by $35,000.00.  The transfer is to fulfill contractual obligations regarding payment for services rendered during playoff games.

 

      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.  Ramirez

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

9.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending Chapter 19 Motor Vehicle and Traffic, Article VIII: Stopping, Standing or Parking of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Laredo; specifically amending Section 19-364(2) which establishes no parking anytime/tow away zones in the area of the Riverfront Parking Lot adjacent to Bridge I; 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.  Belmares

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

 10.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance accepting a grant by the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s US-Mexico Border Program in the amount of $25,000.00 with the City designating $1,316.00 in matching funds for a total of $26,316.00 and amending the City of Laredo’s FY 2001-2002 Annual Budget for the NPDES Fund by appropriating said grant revenue to the appropriate expenditure accounts.  The grant monies will be used to implement two Computer Electronic Collection Events.  Matching funds are available in the NPDES Fund.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      There was no public input.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Belamares

Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

11.    Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo Code of Ordinances as follows:  Chapter 2, Article II, Division 6 (Pay Administration), Section 2-87.7 (12)(a) except as otherwise stated in any collective bargaining agreement and providing for an effective of September 29, 2002.

        

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Jose Angel Gonzalez, a City employee, approached Council with a plea for better wages. 

 

      Jesus Cano, a City employee, asked Council for a pay increase.

 

      Mark Pitt, representing the Laredo City Employees Association, stated that the Association does not support the proposed budget.  He said they are disappointed to see that the proposed budget makes no effort to address the substandard wages that many of the employees on the bottom of the pay scale receive.  He went on to say they have been attempting to engage with City management, to no avail.  He urged Council to take appropriate action to instruct the management of the City to meet with the employees and their representatives and engage in dialogue prior to bringing back the project so some of the issues being addressed by the Association can be resolved.   

 

      Sergio Zapata, a City employee, asked Council to consider better wages for the Sanitation Department employees. 

 

      Gus Oath, Minister of the Arkansas Church of Christ, asked Council to listen to the employees of the City of Laredo. 

 

      Roland Rivera, City employee, also made a plea to Council for better wages.  

    

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Belmares

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

12.   Public hearing for the adoption of a tax rate of $0.630534 per $100.00 value.  This is to provide revenue for General Fund for Maintenance and Operation and for the payment on Debt Service.  This rate includes $0.484758 per $100 value for Maintenance and Operation and $0.145776 for the Interest and Sinking Fund of the Debt Service and will produce a tax levy of $35,010,831.00.

 

                  Motion to open the public hearing.

 

                  Moved:  Cm. Galo

      Second:  Cm. Belmares

      For:    8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Cm. Galo commented that the tax burden has been growing exponentially being that all the taxing entities are raising their taxes this year.  He stated that he could not support this extra $.02 tax increase at this time.

 

      Cm. Belmares requested that this item be postponed at this time.

 

Mayor Flores stated that this item could not be postponed because the City has a deadline.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, reported that any consideration to change from the $.04 tax increase to a $.02 tax increase is fairly simple.  They discussed previously that City Council would agree to fund the fire station at Cielito Lindo subdivision and they agreed to fund the 24 firefighter positions for the next fiscal year.  If City Council were to decide not to do that, then that would cut that program out.

 

Cm. Agredano stated that this tax increase is strictly for public safety as was discussed previously.  He mentioned that South Laredo is growing by leaps and bounds and there is a concern for public safety in District I and District III.

 

Cm. E. Valdez, Jr. is concerned with the waffling that City Council is taking on this tax issue.   He stated that City Council already had the budget workshops and everyone knows the impact of not adopting this $.02 tax increase.  We need to consider these people in the audience and see what City Council can do for them. 

 

Cm. Belmares stated that this is not an issue about waffling.  It is about looking at what the City has to spend and being able to spend it appropriately.   He is asking that City Council take time to review some of these items thoroughly and make some prudent decisions.  He wants to make sure that City Council makes the right commitments. 

 

Cm. Ramirez stated that he is opposed to the tax increase because he has received several calls from some of the residents.  He is not satisfied the city staff has tried to cut the fat and report that this is the best that the City has done.

 

Cm. J. Valdez, Jr. suggested that City Council postpone this issue to find out whether some recommendations could be made for an alternate funding source such as monies from the Community Development funds for building projects. 

 

Mayor Flores stated that she was disappointed in the City Council because they had their three books and plenty of time to make suggestions.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that the City does not have the time to ponder the situation.  He added that Phyllis Colon, Tax Assessor-Collector, would provide the timeline that the City has to follow.

 

Mayor Flores requested for the City Manager to be prepared to inform City Council as to what projects could be cut in order to amend the budget.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that there are two different taxes:  one is for    Maintenance and Operations and the other one is for Debt Service. The one that City Council is increasing is not the one for Debt Service which funds the projects – it is the one for Maintenance and Operations. 

 

Phyllis Colon, Tax Assessor/Collector, reported that the laws are very strict on the steps that must be followed by the City in order to adopt the annual budget.  She mentioned that the City must abide by a time line to publish a notice in the newspaper advertising this public hearing to increase the tax rate.  She explained that this advertisement has been published in the newspaper and if City Council does not adopt the budget tonight, then she is required to run a new advertisement and then run a subsequent advertisement before the City can introduce the ordinance.  She stated that she has already requested that City Council hold a special council meeting in order to meet the deadline so that everything will be in place and adopted before October 1, 2002.  She stated that should City Council go with the figure of a $0.62 tax hike tonight, City Council would not be able to adopt the budget because City Council would have to hold a public hearing to present said budget. 

 

Cm. Galo stated that he was not present at the final workshop when the Council discussion focused on the increase from $.02 cents to $.04 cents on the proposed budget.   He agrees that there is a need for a tax rate increase.  He added that this was not something that was proposed this year, it was something that was added to provide improved services to the public. 

 

Mayor Pro Tem Agredano stated that no one enjoys raising taxes but sometimes it is unavoidable in order to keep up with the City’s obligation to the community. 

 

Mark Pitt, Laredo City Employees Association, addressed City Council and stated that the employees’ request for improvements in starting pay was rejected.  He stated that he would like to have dialogue established with the City before a final decision is made.  He proposed that City Council address the issue of wages currently earned by some of the lower paid employees.  He stated that perhaps a 2.8 % across-the-board pay increase is not necessary.   Should City Council agree to have further discussion, then the possibility of delaying the tax increase would allow for some dialogue and then they would be in favor of City Council rejecting this tax increase today.   The City employees that currently earn $7.00 an hour cannot live on a $7.00 hourly wage.   In addition, the City does not necessarily need to provide a pay increase to the highest paid employees in the City. 

 

Hector Alvarado, self-employed businessman, stated that he is opposed to all tax increases.   He urged that City Council come up with creative and practical solutions for all the citizens. 

 

Carlos Alvarado, sanitation worker, spoke on the need for additional resources – both in equipment and labor.  He added that he is asking that City Council listen to their grievances. 

 

Cm. Garcia inquired whether there was any way of going back and revisiting the issue of the additional $.02 tax increase to have some of those funds go into a minimum wage increase. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that city staff could bring back a plan that reflects wage increments at different levels.   What would occur is that the City would no longer consider it a public safety tax but rather a general tax increase.   He added that City Council could come back and amend the budget at any particular time.

 

Cm. Belmares mentioned that without the tax increase, the City could barely begin to address some of the issues that the employees have.

     

Cm. E. Valdez, Jr. stated that he wants City Council to work with the operational portion of the tax increase and that the City seriously consider improving these employees’ wages so that they are able to take a good paycheck home. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager,  stated that in looking at what city staff did the last time they used the grading system, they eliminated the bottom two pay grades in order to move those employees up.  He wants everyone to understand what takes place within that process in order to protect the integrity of the grading system.  He explained that when you bump the bottom employees, you bump everyone.  He proposed bringing back to City Council a couple of proposals and provide some scenarios for their review and at the same time attempt to identify funding sources to amend the budget.  As far as adopting the budget is concerned, he mentioned that they are running out of time and City Council needs to move forward.

 

      Cm. E. Valdez, Jr. stated that he would like City Council to look at those scenarios. 

 

Cm. Ramirez  stated that when City Council had voted to increase the bridge crossing fare from $1.50 to $2.00 it was his understanding that those monies were for ambulances and hiring additional personnel within the fire and police departments.  He inquired as to what happened with that increase from the crossing fares.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, replied that the current class that is going through training now at the police academy is the one City Council authorized during that increase.  The projected increase is obviously not going to be there because of the downturn to our economy.   He mentioned that they had to initiate that class at a later period of time when there were sufficient monies in the budget to pay for it.

 

Miguel Martinez asked that the City Council consider the cost of living expenses for these city employees that are asking for a wage increase.

 

Mark Pitt inquired whether once City Council adopts this budget would they still be able to look at this other issue of raising the minimum wage for employees.

 

Mayor Flores replied that City Council could look at the budget and make amendments to the budget at a later date.

 

Cm. J. Valdez, Jr. mentioned that some City employees currently earn above minimum wage.  He wants to make sure he understands what it is the group is asking for.

 

Mark Pitt stated that it depends on what the City’s minimum wage would be raised to.  He is suggesting that the City engage in some dialogue with the group when reviewing the bottom pay.

 

      Cm. Galo stated that he is concerned that the budget is no longer specified for anything.

 

Cm. Garcia inquired whether an adjustment could be made to the bottom pay scale and make an adjustment only to that portion of the pay scale.

 

Larry Dovalina replied that that is not possible because then there would be grades in different classifications that would be earning the same pay as other classifications that have higher skill levels.  He added that City staff has conducted salary surveys of other governmental entities in the city and City employees are still among the highest paid employees across the board including wages and benefits.

 

Cm. Belmares stated that this body is asking that the revenues from this tax increase be put in for public safety and only this body can request that that budget be amended to take it out of that appropriation.

 

      Larry Dovalina, City Manager, replied that that is correct.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     6                                         Against:  2                                            Abstain:  0

                                                      Cm.  Galo

                                                      Cm.  Ramirez

         Fifteen minute recess was taken.

 

13.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance to adopt the Annual Budget for Fiscal Year

       2002-2003; appropriating the estimated revenues, expenditures and balances reported

       therein for the year beginning October 1, 2002 and ending September 30, 2003, consistent

       with the financial plan described in said annual budget; and authorizing the City Manager

       to implement said annual budget.

        

    Motion to open the public hearing.

 

 

    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      There was no public input.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce and incorporate the following three items.

 

      1.  Add a new Full Time Equivalent Position for the Noise Abatement Lease Program

      Fund by adding a Building Maintenance Mechanic and appropriate additional funds from the proposed ending fund balance in the amount of $27,499.00 including benefits.

 

      2.  Increase expenditure appropriations in the Laredo Municipal Housing Fund in the

      amount of $3,519.00 for the reclassification of a Building Maintenance Worker to a Building Maintenance Mechanic, funding is available in the proposed ending fund balance.

 

3.  Add four Full Time Equivalent Positions for three Grounds Keepers and one Crew Leader and increase revenue and expenditure appropriation for General Fund in the amount of $91,493 to cover said cost.  This appropriation will be reflected under the Parks and recreation Department. 

 

 

      Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  Belmares

For:     6                                         Against:  1                                            Abstain:  0

                                                      Cm.  Ramirez

 

Cm.  J.  Valdez was not present.

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council (except Cm.  Ramirez)

 

14.   Public hearing and adoption of Resolution 2002-R-075 adopting the 2003-2007 Capital Improvement Program for the City of Laredo.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Motion to move the Water Park from 2005 to 2004 in the Capital Improvement Plan.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Ramirez

      Second:  Cm.  J.  Valdez

      For:     2                                         Against:  6                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and include the following amendments:

 

      Project Amendments as per Larry Dovalina, City Manager:

 

      1.  Civic Center Expansion and Renovation

      2.  Springfield @ Saunders – moved from 07 to 05

      3.  Alexander Sports Complex – decreased current year availability from $1,100,000 to

           $785,000 and added $415,000 unfunded in 04.

      4.  Northwest Recreation Center/Pool – Moved grant funding from 04 to 03.

      5.  04,05 and 06 – added $50,000 in each year to provide single upgrades as requested.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Belmares

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Motion to approve Resolution #2002-R-075.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

      Second:  Cm.  Belmares

      For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

       

15.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance authorizing the City Manager to accept funds and amend the City of Laredo FY 2001-2002 annual budget in the amount of $20,000.00 from the Texas Department of Health-Office of Border of Health for the Border Health Conference of the City of Laredo Health Department for the period beginning July 1, 2002, through September 30, 2002.  These funds were awarded specifically for the “Los Dos Laredos” Bi-National Health Conference that will be held on September 18-19, 2002.

 

      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:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  E.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

16.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year 2001-2002 Bridge Fund annual budget by appropriating revenues and expenditures in the amount of $340,000.00 and authorizing the City Manager to implement said budget amendment.  Funds are available from the collection of overweight penalty fees for Fiscal Year 2001-2002.

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      There was no public input.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

      Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  Galo

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

17.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year 2001-2002 Airport Fund annual budget to recognize additional revenues from a grant received from the Federal Aviation Administration being grant project no. 3-48-0136-34-02 in the amount of $6,332,000.00 for the purpose of acquiring land for noise mitigation, constructing a portion of the east side air cargo apron, complete construction of parallel Taxiway J, acquire finger printing equipment and install CCTV monitoring cameras and related security equipment at the Laredo International Airport.  The City’s ten (10%) percent local match for this project in the amount of $703,556.00 is available in the Airport Land Reimbursement Account. 

 

      Motion to open the public hearing.

     

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      There was no public input.

 

      Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

      Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  E.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

18.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo FY 01-02 Airport Construction Fund Budget by appropriating revenues & expenditures of $170,035.00 and transferring an additional amount of $563,130.00 from the Airport Construction Fund to the Airport Operations Budget.  The transfer consists of $400,000.00 from additional interest earnings and $163,130.00 from Land Sale Proceeds.

 

      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:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  E.  Valdez

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

19.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo FY 2001-2002 Airport Budget to recognize additional revenues and expenditures resulting from a Law Enforcement Personnel Agreement with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), in the amount of $250,098.00.  The purpose of the agreement is to reimburse the City of Laredo, for its costs in providing a uniformed sworn and certified law enforcement officer at the passenger security screening checkpoint at the Laredo International Airport until such time as the TSA assumes responsibility for such functions; providing for an effective date.

        

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

      Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  Garcia

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 Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

      Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

VIII.    GENERAL COUNCIL DISCUSSIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

 

20.  A. Request by Council Member Johnny Amaya

 

 1.  Status report on Inner City Park.

 

Horacio De Leon, Parks and Recreation Director, reported the Inner City Park project is in the design stage and it is 70% complete.  He said that staff will be unveiling the final project on September 27th.  The estimated cost for the Inner City Park is 2.6 million dollars. 

 

 2.  Status report on Buena Vista traffic study.

 

Roberto Murillo, Traffic Director, reported that the City Engineering Department is still working on the field work and design for two intersections in the Buena Vista Subdivision.  The designs should be ready in three weeks. 

 

 3.  Discussion and possible action on Allende Street traffic study, including cost estimates.

 

      Roberto Murillo, Traffic Director, advised that staff has not received a written request for a traffic study on Allende Street.  He noted that staff has delivered the packet to the interested person but they have not returned the form.  He informed Council that he did install signs to lower the speed.  

 

       B.  Request by Council Member Juan Ramirez

                                   

 1.  Discussion with possible action regarding the animal control investigation report.

 

Dr.  Hector Gonzalez, Health Director, reported that they had to reorganize their animal control unit.  He added that staff has implemented a Quality Control Monitoring Policy that we has been revised and implemented to monitor and insure quality service.

 

He included the following report:

 

The following is the Animal Control program quality assurance policy created to improve customer service, safety, professionalism, quality care and accountability.

 

Field monitoring

 

Animal control supervisor or designee will ride with staff at random in order to monitor that safety procedures, proper documentation, and overall procedures are being followed by ACO’s.  The supervisor will also conduct random field inspections to assure services are being conducted in the most efficient manner.

 

Staff training

 

New employees will not be allowed to perform field work until they have been properly trained in office procedures, field procedures, uniformed, equipped and properly immunized against rabies before they are assigned to perform field work on their own.

 

Staff is issued a Basic Animal Control (TDH) training manual, Animal Control operating procedures manual to study and follow.  They will also immediately be referred to the next available ACO affiliated course sponsored by TDH.

 

New Animal Control employees will be given a safety orientation and a record will be placed in the employee’s file.  Follow up updat4es and evaluations to assure appropriate safety compliance will also be conducted. 

 

Animal Control employees will be given periodic training throughout the year on safe handling of dogs/cats, Snakes, Bats, Skunks, Bees, Large Animals (livestock), Administrative procedures, health and safety, Driving, Trailers, Rabies, Animal Control and City Ordinances.

 

Vehicle maintenance & Staff equipment

 

ACO’s will fill-out a daily vehicle operational checklist to assure proper vehicle safety and maintain personal and safety equipment, report all damages and request repair services for vehicles.  This list must be turned in to the clerk daily, together with the daily activity report.  The supervisor will review all records at least on  weekly basis to monitor quality services, productivity and compliance.

 

Citizen complaints & Office procedures

 

When a request for service is received, the office clerk fills a computerized work-order.  Staff will sign a daily log sheet to account for all work orders issued to the officers.  Staff will be issued work orders or assignments.  After an assignment has been completed, the property filled and completed work-order is returned to the office to enter the disposition of the assignment into the work order computer file.

 

Staff will perform all assignments on a timely and safe manner following the Animal Control Officer Standard Operating Procedures Manuel.

 

Animal Investigations and Intervention Calls

 

When called to pick-up animal, a “numbered surrender” form is filled out properly and completely; a pick copy is given to the owner/keeper for his records.  The animal is then taken to the Animal shelter office and a yellow copy of the surrender form is given to the shelter employee at the front desk; shelter staff will unload impounded animals.  The original surrender form is kept by the Animal Control Officer (ACO) and attached to the daily report at the end of his workday to be reviewed by the supervisor.  The work order is filled out and turned in to the office clerk so she can document the service provided and close the case.

 

Personnel Action

 

All investigations are also recorded and distributed to appropriate ACO’s by geographic area, specialty and/or the next available to quickly intervene.

 

All City and CLHD policies on employee rights and personnel action will be followed.  Any misconduct, training skills building or disciplinary action as result will be appropriately managed through appropriate program and/or personnel action. 

 

 2.  Discussion with possible action regarding employee use and purchase of City vehicles.

 

      Larry Dovalina, City Manager, informed Council that the City has a total of 68 vehicles that are taken home by City staff.  He noted that the majority of those employees are on call 24 hours a day. 

 

      Juan Ramirez expressed his concerns about City employees utilizing City equipment for personal use.  He also asked the City Manager why some of the vehicles were luxury vehicles.   

 

      Larry Dovalina, City Manager, encouraged the Council Member to report the number of the vehicle and he would investigate why the employee is at a particular site.  He also explained why the Fire Department purchased a luxury vehicle and noted that he is revisiting the issue of purchasing vehicles with the Purchasing Department. 

   

 3.  Discussion with possible action regarding the Convention and Visitors Bureau parking lot.

 

      Nick Reyna, Director of Convention and Visitors Bureau, noted that the Bureau is in the marketing and destination promotion business but they are also in charge of the parking lot because of their proximity to the parking. He added that the parking lot has 42 spaces and only three individuals were in compliance with their contract.  He expressed their desire to turn the parking lot from a loss center to a profit center. 

  

 4.   Discussion with possible action on establishing an ordinance to regulate activity     (location and parking) associated with the exportation of used vehicles.

 

Keith Selman, Planning and Zoning Director, informed Council that the Zoning  Division teamed up with Code Enforcement, under the police force and has done a couple of sweeps in the area.  He noted most of the area in question is a B-1 and they have addressed it from the zoning stand point in terms of compliance. 

 

     Chief Dovalina reported that staff is working hard to enforce the ordinance.  They have dispersed over 50 vehicles, 44 citations, 26 vehicles have been impounded, and five subjects have been arrested.   

          

 IX.      INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCES

 

21.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a lease with Comision Mexico-Americano  

       Para la Erradicacion Del Gusano Barrenador (USDA) for approximately 19,765 square

       feet constituting Building No. 1308 located at 4305 Maher Avenue at the Laredo

       International Airport.  Lease term is for five (5) years commencing on June 1, 2002 and

       ending on May 31, 2007.  Monthly rent shall be $6,901.00 and will be adjusted

       annually according to changes in the Consumer Price Index; providing for an effective

       date.

 

       Ordinance Introduction:  City Council 

 

22.  Authorizing the City Manager to enter into a lease agreement between Laredo Metro,  

       Inc., and the City of Laredo Department of Community Development for the lease of

       6,628 sq. ft. of building space at the Laredo Transit Center located at 1301 Farragut,

       second and third floors (East) for a monthly sum of $4,088.15.  The monthly base rate

       will be amended annually according to consumer price index.

 

       Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

X.        FINAL READING OF ORDINANCES 

 

            Motion to waive final reading of Ordinances # 2002-O-211; # 2002-O-212; # 2002-O-213;

            # 2002-O-214; # 2002-O-215; #2002-O-216; #2002-O-217; # 2002-O-218; # 2002-O-219;

            # 2002-O-220; # 2002-O-221; # 2002-O-222; # 2002-O-223; #2002-O-224; and

            # 2002-O-225.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

            For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0  

 

23.   2002-O-211        Amending the Land Development Code to provide for permitted use in M1 and M-2 Zones for sexually oriented businesses subject to the conditions specified in sections 24.65.15 and 24.65.16; to amend the Section 24.63.2 in order to delete references on pages IV-14, IV-15, and IV-28 to any kind of sexually oriented businesses; to amend Section 24.62.5 by deleting reference to sexually oriented businesses; to delete Section 24.93.1(b) which mentioned sexually oriented businesses; to delete Section 24.93.7 pertaining to special subsections 34.93.71 to 24.93.28 inclusive , dealing with licensing and regulation of sexually oriented businesses; providing for publication; and providing for effective date.

 

                                    Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor  Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-212    Adding Chapter 18A to the Code of Ordinances to provide for the regulation and licensing of sexually oriented businesses; to provide for definitions; to provide for classification of said businesses; to provide for an annual licensing fee; to provide for Police Chief as the enforcement authority in granting, refusing, suspending or revoking licenses; to provide for appeal to the City Manager from adverse decision of the enforcement officer; to provide penalties for violation; providing for publication and effective date.

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

                         

2002-O-213    Authorizing the City Manager to amend the 2001-2002 annual budget in the amount of $92,866.00 for the Laredo Multi Agency Narcotics Task Force.  Funding is available from the opening balance of the Narcotics Task Force Fund (224) and will be used to pay overtime and benefits for the period of September 3, 2002 through May 31, 2003.

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-214    Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lot 4, Block 179, Eastern Division, located at 3518 and 3520 McDonnell Avenue from R-3 (Mixed Residential District) to R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District); providing for publication and effective date. 

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O- 215   Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning the R-3 (Mixed Residential District) designated portion of Lot 6, Kahn Subdivision, located at 9505 Mines Road, from R-3 (Mixed Residential District) to B-3 (Community Business District); providing for publication and effective date. 

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-216    Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by amending Ordinance 95-O-014 and authorizing the issuance of a Special Use Permit to R.C. Kahn Enterprises, Ltd. to revise the site plan of the existing manufactured housing park on Lot 6, Kahn Subdivision, located at 9505 Mines Road; providing for publication and effective date. 

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-217    Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lot 1, Block 1, San Isidro Monarch Subdivision, Unit 1, located at 2445 Monarch Drive, from B-3 (Community Business District) to R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District); providing for publication and effective date. 

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O- 218   Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by authorizing the issuance of a Special Use Permit to Vaquillas Windsor, Ltd. for town homes on Lot 1, Block 1, San Isidro Monarch Subdivision, Unit 1, located at 2445 Monarch Drive; providing for publication and effective date. 

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-219    Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning all of Block 687, Western Division, located at the 2300 block of Bruni Street, from M-1 (Light Manufacturing District) to R-3 (Mixed Residential District); providing for publication and effective date. 

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                        Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-220    Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning Lots 1 and 2, Block 1215, Eastern Division, located at 2101 Chihuahua Street, from R-O (Residential-Office District) to B-1 (Limited Commercial District); providing for publication and effective date.  (As amended)

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-221    Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by authorizing the issuance of a Conditional Use Permit to Jese Trevino for the overnight storage of commercial vehicles related to an air-conditioning business on the north 50 feet of the north ½ of Lot 12, Block 307, Eastern Division, located at 2407 Cedar Street; providing for publication and effective date.  (As amended)

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-222    Authorizing the City Manager to amend the contract with the Texas Department of Health by extending the grant period for the Mi Futuro (My Future) Abstinence Education Program of the City of Laredo Health Department from September 1, 2001, through August 31, 2002, to September 1, 2001, through September 30, 2002.  No additional funds are involved.

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-223    Amending the City of Laredo 2001-2002 budget by increasing revenues and expenditures in the amount of $17,430.00 from the Texas Department of Health for the Tuberculosis Community Health Worker-Promotora Project of the City of Laredo Health Department for the period beginning June 1, 2002 through December 31, 2002.

                                   

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-224    Amending the City of Laredo’s FY 2001-2002 annual budget in the amount of $509,614.00 to fund the Laredo Auto Theft Task Force.  The Governor’s Automobile Theft Prevention Authority will be designating $399,292.00, the City will be designating $78,858.00 in matching funds, and Webb County will be designating $31,464.00 for a total of $509,614.00 for a one year funding period program beginning September 1, 2002 through August 31, 2003.

 

                        Motion to adopt.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2002-O-225    Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to effectively convey fee simple title to the “Surface Only” at its combined adjusted market value of $4,848.00, for certain properties described as follows to their respective abutting property owners and providing for an effective date.

 

Parcel A - consisting of a 900.32 sq. ft. parcel of land, more or less, to Jesus Villanueva Blanco, Petra Vega de Villanueva, Jesus Villanueva Vega and Francisco Villanueva Vega at its total adjusted market value of $2,094.00; said parcel being out that former section of Malinche Avenue between Pecan and San Salvador Streets; being described on attached Exhibit “A”;

 

Parcel B – consisting of a 1,140.27 sq. ft. parcel of land, more or less, to Cesar Santos at its local adjusted market value of $2,754.00; said parcel being out of that former section of Malinche Avenue between Pecan and San Salvador Streets; being described on attached Exhibit “B”; said parcels being situated in the Eastern Division, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas.

 

Motion to adopt with amending the word local to total.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm. Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

XI.       RESOLUTIONS

 

24.  2002-R-073          Adopting a new health benefits rate structure by increasing all medical contribution amounts by twenty percent (20%) for the City of Laredo and for all persons covered under the City of Laredo’s medical plan, unless otherwise provided in a collective bargaining agreement and providing for an effective date of October 1, 2002.

 

                                    Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

25.  2002-R-074          Authorizing the City Manager to submit a grant application to the Federal Aviation Administration Airport Improvement Program and to accept a grant in the amount of $6,332,000.00 for the purpose of acquiring land for noise mitigation, constructing a portion of the east side air cargo apron, completing construction of parallel Taxiway J, acquiring finger printing equipment, and installing CCTV monitoring cameras and related security equipment at the Laredo International Airport.  The City’s ten (10%) percent local match for this project in the amount of $703,556.00 is available in the Airport Land Reimbursement Account.

 

                                    Moved to the supplemental agenda.

 

26.  2002-R-076          Authorization to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding in support of and commitment to the goals of the Los Dos Laredos Clean Cities Program Plan.  This Plan will be subsequently submitted to the United States Department of Energy for approval and designation as a clean city.

 

                                    Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

XII.     MOTIONS

 

27.   Consideration to set a date of September 16, 2002, to introduce an Ordinance for the adoption of the tax rate of 2002. 

 

         Mayor Flores read the tax rate into the record announcing the tax rate of $.0630534  which meets the budget requirements for the operation of the City and for the debt service. 

 

         Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

Second:  Cm.  Belmares

For:     8                                      Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

28.   Consideration to award a construction contract to the lowest bidder, Bruton Gomez & Company, Corpus Christi, Texas, for the Bridge II Re-Roofing Project in the base amount of $137,000.00.  Funding is available in the Bridge System Toll Plaza Improvements.

 

         Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                      Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

29.   Consideration for approval of change order no. 2 a decrease of $24,929.00 for the balance of quantities actually constructed in place, acceptance of the CDBG Sidewalks Project No. 20 (43 Blocks), and approval of final payment in the amount of $22,218.75 to Pete Gallegos Paving, Inc., Laredo, Texas.  Final contract amount is $205,312.50.  Funding is available in the Community Development 27th Action Year/2001 Grant School Sidewalks.

        

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     8                                      Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

30.  Consideration to award a construction contract to the lowest bidder, Brothers Paving, 

        Inc., Laredo, Texas, for the San Francisco Xavier Road Street Improvements in the bid

        amount of $618,791.44.  Funding is available in the Capital Improvements Project-

        Street Improvements-Rivers Road/San Francisco Xavier Project and Community

        Development – 25th Action Year San Francisco/Xavier Road Improvements.

 

        Motion to approve.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

        Second:  Cm.  Amaya

        For:     8                                       Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

31.  Consideration to award a contract to Arcadis, Laredo, Texas, for $406,419.00 to design  

       the Colonias Mines Road Wastewater Collection System and Wastewater Treatment

       Plant. This project is funded by the North American Development Bank.  Funds are

       available in the Colonias Fund Project Engineer Fees.

 

       Motion to approve.

 

 Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Amaya

       For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

32.  Consideration to award a contract to Crane Engineering, Corp., Laredo, Texas, for 

       $169,446.60 to design the 16” water line extension along Hwy 359 from the existing

       South Laredo Elevated Storage Tank to the Colonia Los Tanquecitos.  This project is  

       funded by the North American Development Bank.  Funds are available in the Colonias

       Fund Project Engineer Fees. 

 

       Motion to approve.

 

 Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Amaya

          For:     8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

 33.   Consideration to award a three year contract (FY02-141) to the low bidder, Reliant Energy Entex, Laredo, Texas, for providing natural gas for the CNG fueling facility being constructed at the City’s fueling facility located at 5710 Daugherty.  Funding is available in the Fleet Maintenance Fund.

 

         Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

For:     8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

34.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a Letter of Agreement between the City of

       Laredo and South West Texas State University’s William P. Hobby Center for Public

       Service to offer the Nationally Accredited Certified Public Manager (CPM) Program on

       site at the City of Laredo Training Facilities.

 

       Motion to approve.

 

    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

       For:     8                                           Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

35.  Consideration to authorize the City Manager to sell surplus traffic and street light  

        equipment to our Sister City Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon.

 

       Ricardo Trevino thanked the Mayor and Council and gave the following letter:

 

       Elizabeth “Betty” Flores

       Alcaldesa de la Cd. Laredo Tx.

       Presente –

       Sirva la presente para enviarle un cordial saludo, esperando se encuentre bien. 

    En nombre mio y de los habitantes de esta ciudad, me es grato agradecerle su valiosa 

    intervencion para que logremos la adquisicion de material de alumbrado y semaforizacion

    que utilizaremos en darle un major servicio a nuestra comunidad.

       Le agradecere hacer extensivo este reconocimiento al Ayuntamiento bajo su digno cargo

       asi como tambien a sus colaboradoes de Laredo, Tx Ciudad hermana de Guadalupe,

       N. L.

 

       Espero tener en breve la oportunidad de saludarla personalmente, mientras tanto me es

       grato reiterarme de usted fraternalmente.

 

       Sufragio Efectivo, no reeleccion CD. Guadalupe, N. L. a 3 de Agosto De 2002 C. 

       Preseidente Municipal

 

       Ing. Pedro Garza Trevino

 

The Sister City of Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon several month ago inquired about any available surplus equipment for street-lights or traffic signals.  An inventory of surplus equipment was prepared and provided to them for their consideration.  The following surplus equipment was identified and proposed salvage costs are included:

 

       30 each – 35’ Street Light Poles                   $20 each                      $600.00

       18 each – Traffic Signal mast Arms   $20 each                      $360.00

       18 each  - Traffic Signal Poles (19’)                                      $360.00

 

       Motion to approve.

 

                Moved:  Cm.  Galo

    Second:  Amaya

       For:     8                                           Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

36.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute an agreement between the City of Laredo and       

       the law firm of Karger Key Barnes and Springer, P.C., for ongoing legal services and

       ratify expenditures for the legal matters pertaining to the David Leal v. City of Laredo,

       Texas, Cause No. 2001CVQ001208D2, in the District Court 111th Judicial District of 

       Webb County, Texas, and the Jorge A. Almazan vs. the City of Laredo, Texas; the

       Laredo Chief of Police, Agustin Dovalina; Daniel Migura, Edward Sherwood, Joaquin 

       Romero, Jr., Individually and as members of the Fire Fighter’s and Police Officers Civil

       Service Commission of Laredo, Cause No. 2001CVQ000869D1, in the District Court 49th   Judicial District Webb County Texas.

 

 

       Murray E.  Malakoff read the following letter to the Mayor and City Council:

 

“I preface this correspondence by apprising you that I represent several litigants and potential litigates with claims against the City of Laredo.  It is not my intention to discuss the merits of my clients’ claims.  (I believe that I am ethnically precluded from doing so).  Upon conclusion of these cases.  I will be free to do so, with the assent of my clients/former clients.

 

I write and speak not as an advocate for litigants, with claims against the City but rather, one of your constituents with a matter of public concern that requires the attention or this municipality’s governing body.

 

When I read, in the latest edition of Laredos newspaper that the City expended $100,000.00 (One Hundred Thousand) plus on attorney’s fees in the defense of Lt.  Leal’s appeal (exclusive the arbitrators and court reporters’ fees).  I was truly astounded.  I have received reliable information that this amount does not cover the attorney’s fees generated by the City’s attorneys during the last six sessions before the hearing examiner.

 

Please understand that prior to becoming a prior practitioner of law, I worked in this City’s legal department as well as the legal department of the City of Houston where I was one of one hundred plus attorneys.  I also served as an assistant county attorney with the Harris County Attorney’s office and as a private practitioner represented several municipalities.  In sum, I have seen how local governmental entities legal departments operate both from within and as outside counsel. 

 

With this excessive expenditure of taxpayer monies on not one but two attorneys who maintain offices on the other side of the state, (with a attendant travel expenses) it is time for this City to closely examine the manner in which is procures its legal services both from within and without.

 

The point of departure for such an examination is the City Attorney’s office and the manner in which it operates.  The essential questions which must be answered is whether the City should here more attorneys and do all of its legal work in house or, whether it should continue to dole its legal work to outside law firms (excluding those firms which are retained by the TML Intergovernmental Risk Pool to represent the City in tort and police misconduct cases.)

 

Cost is but one of the considerations that should be looked at.  Another consideration should be impartiality in the process by which the City selects its in house or outside counsel.

 

Given the City’s exponential growth and the myriad of legal problems which correspond to this growth the time has come for the City’s governing body to examine the issue.

 

It is my suggestions that council appoint a blue ribbon committee consisting of outside counsel with extensive experience in municipal legal departments and risk managers to both examine the present operation of the City’s legal department (and the manner in which outside counsel are selected by it) as well as whether it is more economically feasible for the City to hire a large legal staff, each which a subspecialty in a particular area of municipal law and keep their cases in house.  Any member such committee should serve voluntarily to preclude any claim of partiality.

 

Laredo is by no means the small City it once was.  It has or will soon become a large city; one, which merits and larger legal staff with the talent and resources necessary to ably represent this municipality in a cost effective manner.  Many of the present attorneys (excluding the City attorney who obviously let the firm representing it in Leal, milk the public teat until dry) are very able practitioners of municipal law.

 

I am hopeful that you will respond to this correspondence and meet with me to discuss my ideas.

 

With the greatest respect for your selfless service to this City, I remain.

 

Very truly yours,

Murray E.  “Butch” Malakoff”

               

Richard J.  Gonzalez, a private attorney, expressed his frustration with the Council for allowing the City Manager to hire attorneys from out of town.  

 

Valeria Acevedo, Assistant City Attorney, informed Council that the Chief of Police has the authority to hire and fire all individuals at the Police Department.  She noted that two individual disagreed with the Chief and filed suit against the City.  She mentioned that the law firm which represents the City has been representing police matters for nine years.  The initial cost of the firm was thought to be $60,000; however, both cases have lasted longer than expected.  Numerous documents have been filed and testimony of individuals has been very lengthy. 

 

Cm Galo asked staff why they waited until the amount was $195,000 before they sought approval.  He questioned the procedure that staff follows when an estimated amount is exceeded. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, explained that the law firm was engaged on a retainer to represent the city on these particular cases and the initial estimate was $60,000.  He said that Council was told what action was going to proceed in order to finalize the termination during Executive Session.  There was a series of actions that prolonged the estimates.  He went on to say that the firm needs to follow the process until the cases conclude.   He mentioned that several different times staff came to Council in Executive Session and discussed what actions were being taken.  Finally, he stated that in this particular instance, it has been a protracted legal battle which Council agreed.

 

Cm.  Galo and Cm.  Ramirez said that staff should have notified Council once the fee exceeded $60,000. 

 

Cm.  Belmares asked the City Manager to explain when staff should approach Council about exceeding fees from legal firms.  

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, said that reports were given to Council in Executive Session.

 

         Motion to approve.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

  Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

  For:     5                                       Against:  3                                            Abstain:  0

                                                      Cm.  Belmares

                                                      Cm.  J.  Valdez

                                                      Cm.  Ramirez

 

37.  Consideration to rescind contract number FY01-126 awarded to Trako Cleaning Systems, 

          Inc., San Antonio, Texas, in the amount of $54,591.00 for the purchase of a high-pressure 

          washer and wash water recycling system for the Solid Waste Facility and authorize that

          new bids be solicited.  It was determined that the proposed wash water recycling system

          could not handle the heavy solids and bio materials generated from washing the refuse

          equipment.

 

          Motion to approve.

 

     Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                 Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano

                 For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

XIII.    EXECUTIVE SESSION

 

The City Council hereby reserves the right to go into executive session at any time during this public meeting, if such is requested by the City Attorney or other legal counsel for the City, pursuant to his or her duty under Section 551.071(2) of the Government Code, to consult privately with his or her client on an item on the agenda, or on a matter arising out of such item.

 

XIV.    RECESS AND CONVENE AS THE LAREDO MASS TRANSIT BOARD

 

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

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

            For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

                       

38.  Consideration to approve a change order reducing the number of CNG buses being purchased from Neoplan USA, Corp., from ten (10) to eight (8).  The contract total for the eight (8) CNG buses will be $2,577,088.00 instead of $3,221,360.00.  Two of the ten vehicles were going to be purchased using Vehicle Capital Replacement Grant (VCR0108(22)522) in the amount of $724,192.00.  The Texas Department of Transportation did not permit the use of this grant to purchase these two buses.

 

         Motion to approve.

 

         Moved:  Cm.  Galo

         Second:  Cm.  Amaya

         For:     8                                      Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

 

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

 

         Moved:  Cm.  Galo

         Second:  Cm.  Amaya

         For:     8                                      Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

 

XIV.   ADJOURNMENT

 

 CITY OF LAREDO
CITY COUNCIL MEETING
M-2002-S-08
CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS
1110 HOUSTON STREET
LAREDO, TEXAS 78040
SEPTEMBER 3, 2002
5:30 p.m.
 
SUPPLEMENTAL AGENDA
 
I.    RESOLUTIONS
 
      1.  2002-R-074   Authorizing the City Manager to submit a grant application to the Federal
                                  Aviation Administration Airport Improvement Program and to accept a grant 
                                  in the amount of $7,432,000.00 (This amount includes an additional     
                                 $1,100,000.00 that FAA may offer the City of Laredo during FY 02) for the purpose of acquiring land for noise mitigation, constructing a portion of the east side air cargo apron, complete construction of parallel Taxiway J, acquire finger printing equipment and install CCTV monitoring cameras and related security equipment at the Laredo International Airport. The City's ten (10%) percent local match for this project in the amount of $703,556.00 is available in  the Airport Land Reimbursement Account.   In the event FAA approves an additional $1,100,000.00, an additional $122,222.00 local match will be required bringing the total local match to $825,778.00.  (As amended)
 
                                 Motion to approve.
 
                                 Moved:  Cm.  Galo
                                 Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano
                                 For:     8                              Against:  0                                             Abstain:  0  
 
  II.    MOTIONS
 
       2.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a Landlord Estoppel Certificate regarding
            the lease between the City of Laredo and Jeffrey H. Tamkin and Wife, Joan Tamkin 
            dated May 31, 1979, certifying to HEB Grocery Company, L. P., the terms of that 
            lease and any outstanding issues arising under that lease.
 
            Motion to approve.
 
            Moved:  Cm.  Galo
            Second:  Cm.  Amaya
            For:     8                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0  
 
III.   ADJOURNMENT
 
         Motion to adjourn.                                                                                      Time:  10:00  p.m.
 
         Moved:  Cm.  Galo
         Second:  Cm.  Amaya
         For:     8                                                  Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0        
 
         I, Gustavo Guevara, Jr., City Secretary, do hereby certify that the above minutes contained in pages 01 to 32 are true, complete and correct proceedings of the City Council meeting held on September 3, 2002.
 
 
         
                                                                             _____________________________________
                                                                                                   Gustavo Guevara, Jr.
                                                                                                         City Secretary