CITY OF LAREDO

                                          SPECIAL CITY COUNCIL MEETING

                                                              M2002-SC-010

                                                  CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS

                                                      1110 HOUSTON STREET

                                                       LAREDO, TEXAS 78040

                                                              AUGUST 8, 2002

                                                                    5:30 P.M.

 

I.          CALL TO ORDER

 

            With a quorum present, Mayor Pro Tempore Agredano called the meeting to order.

 

II.        ROLL CALL

 

            In attendance:

 

            Elizabeth G.  Flores,                                                                 Mayor

            Alfredo Agredano,                                                                    Mayor Pro Tempore, District I

            Hector 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

            Larry Dovalina,                                                                         City Manager

            Cynthia Collazo,                                                                       Assistant City Manager

            Jaime Flores,                                                                            City Attorney

 

            The Mayor arrived at 5:43 p.m.

 

III.       APPOINTMENTS TO COMMISSIONS, BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

 

            1.  Appointment by Council Member Gene Belmares of Joe Aranda to the Vehicles for Hire           Ad Hoc Committee.

 

                  Motion to approve the appointments.

 

                  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                  Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

                  For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

                  Mayor Flores was not present.

 

IV.       INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCES

           

2.  Designating as a one-way Eastbound that one block section of Denmark Lane and as a

one-way Westbound that one block section of Yukon Lane, between Backwoods Drive on the East and Greenland Drive on the West, and as one-way Southbound that one block section of Backwoods Drive, between Denmark Lane on the North and Yukon Lane on the South, providing for the installation of appropriate signs to indicate one-way traffic and providing for publication and effective date.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

3.  Designating as a one-way Southbound the 2100 and 2200 blocks of Texas Avenue,

between Clark Blvd.  On the North and Musser Street on the South, one way Westbound the 2400 and 2500 block of Musser Street, between Martin Avenue on the West and Texas Avenue on the East, and one-way northbound the 2100 and 2200 block of Martin Avenue, between Clark Blvd. on the North and Musser Street on the South, to be effective the hours of 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday during school days providing for the installation of appropriate signs to indicate one-way traffic during the specified hours and providing for publication and effective date.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

      

V.        FINAL READINGS

 

Motion to waive the final readings of Ordinance # 2002-O-175, #2002-O-176, # 2002-O-177, #2002-O-178, # 2002-O-179 and #2002-O-180.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Belmares

            For:     7                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

            Mayor Flores was not present.

 

4.  2002-O-175  Authorizing the issuance of City of Laredo, Texas, International Toll

Bridge System Revenue Bonds, Series 2002, in the principal amount of $12,890,000.00 for the renovation and improvements of Bridge No. 1 with pedestrian way improvements and construction of a duty free export building attached to an administration building, and other improvements in connection therewith, approving an official statement, authorizing the execution of a purchase contract, and other matters related thereto and authorizing amendment to the City’s budget to appropriate such proceeds for purposes authorized herein.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2002-O-175 with the amendments of changing $12,890,000.00 to 12,105,000.00.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

               2002-O-176  Authorizing the issuance of City of Laredo, Texas, Combination Tax and

 Revenue Certificates of Obligation, Series 2002, in the principal amount of $9,965,000.00 for paying all or a portion of the City’s contractual obligations for the purpose of acquisition of downtown property to be used for future municipal offices; acquisition of the Slaughter Farm land to be used for municipal park space, including sports fields, nature trails and other park recreational uses; acquisition of land Northeast of Laredo, to be used for a municipal solid waste landfill; acquisition of land for the fire and law enforcement training center; acquisition of downtown property, including improvements for surface municipal parking lot, and of the payment of legal, fiscal, architectural and engineering fees in connection with such projects and authorizing amendment to the City’s budget to appropriate such proceeds for purposes authorized herein; and approving an official statement and authorizing the execution of a purchase contract; and ordaining other matters related to the subject.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2002-O-176 with the amendments of changing $9,965,000.00 to 9,925,000.00.

 

                                    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

             2002-O-177  Approving an amendment to Ordinance 91-O-032 authorizing the issuance of

                                   City of Laredo, Texas, Subordinate Sewer System Revenue Bonds, Series

           1991 and other matters related thereto.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2002-O-177.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

            For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

             2002-O-178  Authorizing the issuance of City of Laredo, Texas, Public Property Finance

                                  Contractual Obligations, Series 2002, in the principal amount of

          $2,285,000.00, for the purchase of vehicle equipment, trucks, fire department

          equipment, trailers, EMS equipment, sweepers, mowers, street equipment,

          computers and ordaining other matters relating to the subject and authorizing

          amendment to the City’s budget to appropriate such proceeds for purposes

          authorized herein; and approving an official statement and authorizing the

          execution of a purchase contract; and ordaining other matters related to the

          subject.

 

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2002-O-178 with the amendment of changing $2,285,000.00 to 2,265,000.00.

 

          Moved:  Cm.  Galo

          Second:  Cm.  Amaya

          For:     7                                     Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

           2002-O-179  Authorizing the issuance of City of Laredo, Texas, Sewer System Revenue

        Refunding Bonds, Series 2002A, approving an official statement, authorizing

        the execution of a purchase contract and the execution of an escrow agreement,

        and making provisions for the security thereof, and authorizing amendment to

        the City’s budget to appropriate such proceeds for purposes authorized herein,  

        and ordaining other matters related to the subject.

 

        Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2002-O-179.

 

       Moved:  Cm.  Galo

       Second:  Cm.  Amaya

       For:     7                                        Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

        2002-O-180  Authorizing the issuance of City of Laredo, Texas, Sewer System Revenue Refunding Bonds, Taxable Series 2002B, approving an official statement, authorizing the execution of a purchase contract and the execution of an escrow agreement, and making provisions for the security thereof, and authorizing amendment to the City’s budget to appropriate such proceeds for purposes authorized herein, and ordaining other matters related to the subject.

 

                             Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2002-O-180. 

 

                             Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                             Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                             For:      7                                         Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

            Cm.  Galo expressed his dissatisfaction with an article printed in the Laredo Morning Times which was written by Trisha Cortez.  He noted that the article was completely erroneous and was skewed in a malicious way.  He said when he confronted the writer about the article’s inaccuracies she said that her story had been adjusted by Laura Ridder after the fact.  He read the following statement: 

 

“City Council voted to refinance $4.2 million in sewer revenue bonds in order to remove a covenant in the bonds that were originally issued in 1991.  The covenant stated the City must operate the sewer system and in order to proceed with privatization that clause had to be deleted.  The City was able to reach a mutual agreement to simply delete the clause with the Texas Water Development Board which holds a large portion of the old bonds, thus saving the refinancing fee.  The rest of the bonds are held by numerous investors making it impractical to contact one by one.

 

 

When the Council voted to privatize it was estimated that refinancing was going to cost about $700,000.00  Through efforts by the City’s financial advisors, Estrada-Hinojosa & Company those fees were reduced to less than $300,000.00 over a five year period.   I told Times reporter Tricia Cortez that an Attorney General opinion stating that the refinancing would not be able to carry the tax free status thus would incur a higher rate than tax free bonds, but since interest rates were low the City expected it to be about the same and not higher as the article states.  In fact, the City was table to refinance at a much lower rate and will incur additional savings.  These one-time frees along with other transition costs had been considered and were more than offset by the $2,000,000.00 plus in guaranteed reduced expenditures.  The argument has been made that the cost savings are not guaranteed.  The revenue side is not guaranteed because it is controlled by the City.  The Council still sets and approves the rates and all income is paid to the City.  What is guaranteed is the expenditure side.  United Water has guaranteed it will operate the City Utility Department for a fixed price which is approximately $2,000,000.00 less than our current budget so even after the refinancing fees and any other transitional costs the operational budget will still be less than last year.  The ratepayers will not see an increase in their water bill and what is handed down is an actual reduction in cost the ratepayer and not an increase as the Laredo Morning Times article suggests.”  

 

Finally, he added that the Council has been very prudent and he applauded Council Members and staff for working on the project. 

 

                             Noe Hinojosa, Financial Advisor, spoke on the Certificates of Obligation, Series 2002; Public Property Finance Contractual Obligations, Series 2002; International Bridge System Revenue Bonds, Series 2002; Sewer System Revenue Refunding Taxable and Tax-Exempt Bonds, Series 2002.  He noted the amendments to the agenda. 

 

                             Bond Summary Statistics

 

                             Combination Tax & Rev C/O’s Series 2002

                             Par value                 $9,925,000.00

                             Average Coupon                4.431% 

 

                             PPF Contractual Obligations, Series 2002

                             Par Value                $2,265,000.00

                             Average Coupon                2.539%

 

                             Intl Bridge System Revenue Bonds, Series 2002

                             Par Value                $12,105,000.00

                             Average Coupon                  4.468%

 

SS System Rev Refunding Bonds, Series 2002A

Par Value                     $2,095,000.00

Interest Coupon                 3.223353%

 

SS System Rev Ref Bonds, Taxable Series 2002B

Par Value                     $2,620,000.00

Interest Coupon            4.072956%

 

A. G.  Edwards was picked as the senior underwriter for the interest rates. 

 

V.        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.

  

5.  Request for Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code 551.071 (1)(A) to

consult with City Attorney regarding contemplated litigation, City of Laredo, Texas v. Texas Transportation Commission; Commissioner of Transportation, John Johnson, in his official and individual capacity; Commission Member, David Laney, in his official and individual capacity; Commission Member, Robert L. Nichols, in his official and individual capacity; Texas Department of Transportation; and Charles Heald, Executive Director, in his official and individual capacity, and return to open session for possible action.

 

    Motion to go into executive session pursuant to Texas Government Code 551.071 (1)(A)

    to consult with City Attorney regarding contemplated litigation, City of Laredo, Texas v.

    Texas Transportation Commission; Commissioner of Transportation, John Johnson, in

    his official and individual capacity; Commission Member, David Laney, in his official

    and individual capacity; Commission Member, Robert L. Nichols, in his official and

    individual capacity; Texas Department of Transportation; and Charles Heald, Executive

    Director, in his official and individual capacity, and return to open session for possible

    action.

 

    Moved:  Cm.  Galo

    Second:  Cm.  Agredano

    For:     8                                           Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

    After Executive Session, the Mayor announced that no formal action was taken.

 

Motion to authorize the City Manager to proceed with litigation against United States General Services Administration; Administrator Stephen A.  Perry, in his official and individual capacities; United States Department of Transportation; Secretary Norman Y.  Mineta, in his official and individual capacities; Texas Transportation Commission; Commissioner of Transportation, John, W.  Johnson, in his official and individual capacities; Commission Member, Robert Nichols, in his official and individual capacities; Texas Department of Transportation, and Michael W.  Behrens, Executive Director, in his official and individual Capacities.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                           Against:  1                                            Abstain:  0

                                                        Cm.  Ramirez

   

VI.       ADJOURNMENT

 

      Motion to adjourn.                                                                                            Time:  7:30 p.m.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

            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 07 are true, complete and correct proceedings of the City Council meeting held on August 8, 2002.

 

                                                                                    _______________________________

                                                                                                Gustavo Guevara, Jr.

                                                                                                      City Secretary