CITY OF LAREDO

CITY COUNCIL MEETING

M2005-R-04

CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS

1110 HOUSTON STREET

LAREDO, TEXAS 78040

February 22, 2005

5:30 P.M.

 

 

  I.        CALL TO ORDER

 

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

 II.       PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

            Mayor Flores led in the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

III.       ROLL CALL

 

            In attendance:

 

            Elizabeth G.  Flores,                                                                 Mayor

            Alfredo Agredano,                                                                    Council Member, District I

            Hector Garcia,                                                                          Council Member, District II

            John C.  Galo,                                                                          Council Member, District III

            Johnny Amaya,                                                                         Mayor Pro Tem, District IV

            Johnny Rendon                                                                         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,                                                                       Deputy City Manager

            Jaime Flores,                                                                            City Attorney

 

IV.       MINUTES

 

            Approval of the minutes of December 20, 2004 and January 10, 2005.

 

            Motion to approve.

 

            Moved:  Cm. Ramirez

            Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

            For:    7                                                Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

            Cm. Agredano was not present. 

 

 

 

 

V.        COMMUNICATIONS AND RECOGNITIONS

           

Announcements

 

John Castro, on behalf of Students in Democratic Action, stated that he has come before the City Council to address an inquiry for a possible investigation conducted by the City Council as defined by the City Charter.  He stated that there is a sergeant within the Laredo Police Department, Luis Tinajero, Sr. who had been suspended for 30 days from the police department without pay.  He explained that the reason he was suspended was based upon a violation of his off-duty employment with Texas A & M International University.  He was told that this was a violation of the Civil Service Commission regulations.  He reported that he has been employed by Laredo Community College as well as Texas A & M International University since 1997.  However, shortly after he approached City Council about an alleged scandal within the police department involving police records and certain chiropractors, he was suspended from the department. 

 

John Castro stated that he wanted to make this information known to make the public aware of what is going on because he feels that Sgt. Tinajero’s  relations with certain top officials within the police department were harmed by this.  Certain top officials within the department found out about his complaints and his trying to enforce justice within the department and this is why he was suspended and is now being targeted for termination.  According to John Castro, Sgt. Tinajero has attempted to contact every single Council Member of which he only received a response from two of them.  John Castro further stated  that his organization supports Sgt. Tinajero.  He also mentioned that Sgt. Tinajero is no longer employed with Texas A & M International University and this decision upset a lot of people at Texas A & M International University.  John Castro commented that this action has greatly damaged the credibility of the Laredo Police Department and our city government.  He added that this is making even certain professors from the university speak out in their classrooms against certain officials within the police department.  John Castro stated that he feels it is incumbent upon the City Council to take action on this issue. 

 

On the second issue that Mr. Castro had been scheduled to present, he mentioned that it involved the campaign for a civil service system.  He mentioned that the City is failing in educating the public on important ideas or issues.  He submitted a copy to the City Secretary of the Laredo Civil Service System City Charter Amendment and requested that copies be made and distributed to the City Council.   He mentioned that consideration by City Council of a civil service system is about efficiency within the local government.  He mentioned that he has set up a website Laredo-liberty.org for information on the civil service campaign.  He explained that a civil service system, also known as a merit system, is a recruitment method that hires and promotes employees based on their education, training and competency to perform specific jobs.  Once this charter amendment is passed by City Council or approved by the voters at a special city election, City employees would be protected from unjustified removal but could still be fired for inadequate performance. 

 

He explained that the first civil service system was established in New York in 1883.  In the past, machine bosses relied on patronage to keep themselves in power.  Today, the obvious antidote for this is the civil service system.  It is inconceivable, from his point of view, that partisanship should have anything to do with the delivery of public services.  He pointed out that government hiring and promotion should be based on education, skills, training and relevant work experience.  The machine politicians, however, believe that partisanship and political loyalties have a great deal to do with the delivery of services.  Machine politicians claim that someone with no formal education but many years of work experience can perform their job better than a college educated person with a degree but limited work experience.  He added that under the civil service system, preference would be given to a college educated person.  While on the day-to-day basis, it may seem as though the more experienced but less educated person can perform better, the college educated person is much more reliable when critical situations emerge that require that person to deal with highly technical issues.  An experienced worker only has an understanding of the basic foundations and functions of their job with only a few specifics while a college educated person is educated and trained to deal with any and all possible situations that may emerge in times of administrative, economic, and national crises.  He concluded that he will wait for the next City Council meeting to make a formal presentation on this campaign.  He stated that he would request that the City Council place this item on the next agenda for discussion and possible action to allow him, or a representative of the Laredo Civil Service campaign, the opportunity to make a more elaborate presentation.     

 

Cm. Garcia thanked his friends and extended family for their prayers and condolences following the loss of his mother.   He also congratulated the twelve officers who were sworn in recently to the Laredo Police Department. 

 

Cm. Galo extended his condolences to the Garcia Family and Cm. Garcia for the loss of his mother.  The WBCA festivities went very well this past weekend.  He mentioned that there was a great article covering the Society of Martha Washington events in the New York Times.  He added that the fireworks display was outstanding and he mentioned that this event gets better every year. 

 

Mayor Pro Tem Amaya extended his sympathies to Cm. Garcia and his family.  He also mentioned that he attended several of the WBCA events this past weekend and gave praises to the WBCA organizers for the great work done.  He extended his appreciation to Rogelio Rivera, John Orfila, and staff for the great job that Public Works continues to do on their projects especially the Springfield widening project. 

 

Cm. Rendon stated that the City of Laredo had a great week.  He mentioned that he attended several of the WBCA events and other festivities which were very well attended.

 

Cm. Belmares congratulated Tom Gates of the WBCA organization and all the auxiliary organizations for the phenomenal work done to put all the events together.  He mentioned that they always do a great job and this year the festivities were even better.  He also thanked the Laredo Police Department, the Laredo Fire Department, and the Public Works Department for the hard work they do to make sure the events run smoothly.   

 

Cm. J. Valdez, Jr. congratulated all the city departments and WBCA event organizers for the hard work they do to put these festivities together. 

 

Cm. Ramirez thanked everyone involved in putting together this big celebration and applauded everyone’s hard work in making it a great success.  He commended Roberto Murillo, Traffic Director, who was checking the traffic flow along Jefferson Street for the parade route.  He also extended birthday greetings to his sister, Margie Ibarra, Webb County Clerk. 

 

Cm. Agredano mentioned the different festivities held around the city that he had attended during the WBCA celebration.  He expressed his appreciation to Roy Garcia, Community Development Code Enforcement Officer, for his assistance with graffiti problems in District I.  He stated that he enlisted Mr. Garcia’s help who responded quickly and had the entire wall repainted within one to two days.  He mentioned that the citizens need to take care of and take pride in their districts and avoid this type of vandalism.

 

Mayor Flores congratulated Tom Gates and all the volunteers of the WBCA organization for the hard work done in the preparations for all of the events.  She mentioned that in spite of the bad weather, the city had two wonderful parades and the participants had a good time.  She stated that the fireworks display was spectacular and the air show was unbelievable.  She also thanked Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson for her attendance and hopes that she continues to support Laredo in her capacity in Congress.  She also thanked Texas A & M International University and Officer Salinas who invited her to attend a farewell event for the members of Bravo Company who are going to be deployed to Afghanistan. 

 

            Invitations

 

Cm. Garcia extended an invitation for everyone to attend the Border Olympics events that begin this weekend.  He mentioned that there will be over 170 teams and over 2,000 athletes coming in from different parts of the state. 

 

            Recognitions

 

a.  Recognition of Blanca Gonzalez, of the Health Department, on her selection as January

     2005 Employee of the Month.

 

Santos Navarrette, Assistant Health Director, stated that Ms. Gonzalez has been in public service for nine years and has been assigned to the Health Department for two years.  He mentioned that she provides over 40,000 immunizations in the community throughout the year.  She is in charge of an extended evening program which allows the Health Department to see people from the community after 7:00 p.m.  For the past two years, she has partnered with the school districts to provide immunizations to the school children before the school year starts.  Ms. Gonzalez is also the lead investigator for the vaccine preventable diseases within the community.   Mr. Navarrette added that Ms. Gonzalez was also instrumental in developing the core values for the department that were adopted following the Strategic Planning Meeting.  He stated that Ms. Gonzalez epitomizes the professionalism and integrity that every employee should strive for as a public servant with the City of Laredo. 

 

Mayor Flores and the City Council presented Ms. Gonzalez with a Certificate of Recognition for her selection as Employee of the Month. 

 

b.  Presentation by City of Laredo Parks and Recreation Department recognizing the

     winners of the Mayor’s Cup Tournament held on January 21-22, 2005.

 

Miguel Pescador, Parks and Recreation Department, stated that over 200 employees participated at the two-day event.  He reported that they were able to raise over $1,800.00 for the American Red Cross Tsunami Victims’ Relief Fund.  He presented the winning teams of the three divisions:

 

Division C              2nd Place          Blue Devils (Health Department)

                              1st Place           Dare Devils (Administrative Services/Risk

                                                      Management)

 

Division B               2nd Place          Traffic Department

                              1st Place           Bridge System

 

Division A              2nd Place          United Water

                              1st Place           Fire Department

 

c.  Presentation of the Club Charter by Harry S. Truman, District Governor of Toastmasters

     International, District 55, to the City of Laredo Toastmasters Club.

 

Mr. Truman stated that this is an international organization with over 10,000 clubs in 99 countries.  He mentioned that the objective of Toastmasters is to develop people who have effective skills in public speaking, listening, and organization for running meetings.  He was invited to come down to Laredo to conduct a demonstration meeting on Toastmasters.   He mentioned that with the benefit and support of Jerry Elizondo,

the City has a wonderful training leadership course that has been ongoing since October.   He also added that the City has some wonderful mentors and sponsors in Clema Owen and Joe Moreno.  He went on to present the Toastmasters Club Charter for the City of Laredo Club to Joe Moreno, Toastmasters Club President. 

 

d.  Recognition of the Farias Elementary 2nd Grade Basketball Team for winning the City

     Championship in their age group.

 

Mayor Flores and City Council presented a Seven Flags Certificate of Recognition to the following:

 

Coach Sonia  Ruano                                   Esteban Diaz de Leon

Assistant Coach Reynaldo Diaz                   John Corpus

Assistant Coach Samuel Diaz                      Jessica Marin

Humberto Sanchez                         Randy Martinez

Hector Mendez                                          Jose Luis Palomo

Anthony  Morales                                       Kevin Salazar

Reynaldo Diaz, IV                          Cristina Diaz

 

e.  Recognition of Donato Ramos Jr., Phillip Wright, Roberto Arredondo and Mauro

Sandoval Jr. for their dedication and time spent as volunteers in Midnight Basketball, a joint venture and one of many programs offered by the City of Laredo Parks and Recreation Department.

 

Mayor Flores stated that these individuals accepted to volunteer their time from 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. on Friday nights at the Tarver Recreation Center.  Midnight Basketball  is sponsored by the local Weed & Seed Steering Committee, which includes the U. S. Border Patrol, the Laredo Police Department, Parks and Recreation Department, Laredo Crimestoppers, the Laredo Housing Authority, the Diocese of Laredo, S.C.A.N., the National Guard, and the United States Attorneys Office.  She explained that this program was developed to promote law enforcement visibility and to reduce juvenile crime.  The goal of the program is to keep youth away from gangs and trouble by providing them with an enjoyable alternative:  basketball.  She added that this program offers the youth the opportunity to learn teamwork, encourage sportsmanship, build friendships, and provide worthy role models.  The Parks and Recreation Advisory Board recognized the positive impact that this program has had on the youth of Laredo and recommended that City Council recognize these individuals for their community involvement. 

           

            Communiqués

 

a.  Mayor Elizabeth G. Flores reports on the City of Laredo Community Development

     Department.

 

Mayor Flores reported that one of the top priorities when they travel to Washington, D.C., will be to work to restore the CDBG funding for the City of Laredo.  She reported that the CDBG budgeted funds totaled $4,407,000.00; HOME budgeted funds totaled $1,454,026.00; ESG budgeted funds totaled $150,000.00; and LMHC budgeted funds totaled 41,332,230.00.  Mayor Flores mentioned that the HOME program provided down payment assistance to 133 households for a total of $713,537.32.   She explained that if these funds were to be cut, the City would not be able to assist 133 families next year.  The average home purchase price that these families had to pay is $94,000.00.  The City also provided tenant-based rental assistance for 100 elderly citizens for a total of $324,00.00.  She reported that the City of Laredo has also assisted the Azteca Economic Development Corporation with $218,104.00 in CHDO funds which they use to build affordable homes.  The Housing Rehabilitation Program rehabilitated 33 owner-occupied homes utilizing $388,312.00 in funding.  She mentioned that the CDBG funds subsidize projects such as the community centers and local parks within our community.   The Community Action Agency, Bethany House, local homeless shelters, and Sacred Heart Children’s Home also benefit from ESG funding assistance.  She explained that Community Development also handles code enforcement issues which include clean-up campaigns and graffiti removal throughout the city.  The Laredo Municipal Housing Corporation manages a total of 306 two-, three-, and four-bedroom rental units.  She stated that the Community Development Department is a very significant department because the federal dollars that the City gets back are the tax dollars that the Community Development department utilizes throughout the year.  She added that the City will do everything in its power to fight for and bring back those funds to the City of Laredo.  She congratulated Erasmo Villarreal, Community Development Director, and his staff for the fine job that they do for the citizens of Laredo. 

 

VI.       APPOINTMENTS TO COMMISSIONS, BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

 

a.  Appointment by Cm Jose Valdez of Javier De Anda to the Library Advisory Committee.

 

Motion to approve the appointment by Cm. Jose Valdez of Javier De Anda to the Library Advisory Committee.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

b.  Appointment by Cm Jose Valdez of Norberto Romero III to the Citizens Environmental

     Advisory Committee.

 

Motion to approve the appointment by Cm.  Jose Valdez of Norberto Romero III to the Citizens Environmental Advisory Committee.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Ramirez

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

        

VII.     PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

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

City of Laredo by rezoning all of Block 488, Western Division, located at the 1100 block of San Ignacio Ave., from M-1 (Light Manufacturing District) to R-3 (Mixed Residential 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. Belmares

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that the City Manager’s Office has a very strong concern that they are taking M-1 zones along railroad tracks.  He mentioned that this property line is about 15 feet from the Union Pacific main track.  He stated that if there is support to re-zone, he suggests that it be done in such a way to provide for multi-family housing and not for single-family housing or mobile home housing which would be more dangerous.  He would suggest to mitigate it in such a way as to allow for R-2 zoning because then one could build a compound with its back to the railroad tracks  without allowing children to get into the tracks and getting struck by a train. 

 

Cm. Belmares mentioned that the City will be facing similar situations in the future like they do now at the airport.  He expressed his concern that federal agencies that the City  petitions in Washington, D.C. will look down at Laredo and question these decisions and will not fund the City any further. 

 

Keith Selman, City Planner, stated that as per the conditional use permit ordinance, the City is not allowed to go to a more restrictive activity in a less restrictive zone, therefore, the conditional use permit recommendation is not an option.

 

Motion to close the public hearing, postpone and sent it back to Planning & Zoning for recommendations from staff. 

 

Moved:  Cm. Ramirez

Second:  Cm. Belmares

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

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

City of Laredo by authorizing a Conditional Use Permit for three detached condominiums on Lot 8, Block 1, Los Pinos Subdivision, located at 3451 Pine Street; providing for publication and effective date. The Planning and Zoning Commission has recommended denial of the proposed Conditional Use Permit.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm. Belmares

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Mr. Ron Whitehawk, representing the applicant, stated that the lots in question are peculiar in shape.  He mentioned that with the peculiar shape of the lots and the current zoning designation, it will only allow for a one single-family home on the property.  The applicant is requesting a conditional use permit to allow for the construction of three single-family homes in a condominium regime.  The applicant would also accommodate for a 24-foot wide driveway along the property and would also place a wall around the property to separate this property from the residential property adjoining to the west.  He mentioned that the property is now owned by Prada Construction, LLC and requests that if the City Council approves the conditional use permit, that it be issued to Prada Construction, LLC with the existing provision that they could transfer ownership to those individuals who would be purchasing the property. 

 

Cm. Agredano stated that he would like for Ron Whitehawk and the developers to get together with Keith Selman and go over the new site plan that has been submitted.

 

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

 

Moved:  Cm. Agredano 

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

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

City of Laredo by rezoning Lot 6 and the eastern ½ of Lot 8, Block 178, Western Division, located at 1015 San Dario Avenue and 609 Washington Street, from B-1 (Limited Commercial District) to B-4 (Highway Commercial 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. Garcia

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Mr. Ron Whitehawk, spoke on behalf of the property owner.  He mentioned that this property is on the access road off of San Dario Avenue.  He stated that over the last five years, the office building there has been used as a nationalization for vehicles.  There is also a large parking area behind said building.  The applicant recognizes that the City Council would prefer not to have this type of nationalization business in the downtown area.  Therefore, he is requesting that the applicant be allowed to amend the application from a B-4 designation to a B-3 designation which would not allow for such a business to operate at that location. 

 

Cm. Ramirez requested that Keith Selman, City Planner, explain what the possible uses might be in a B-3 designation. 

 

Keith Selman, City Planner, stated that a B-3 would allow for a car wash business or a used car lot business. 

 

Motion to close the public hearing, override Planning and Zoning Commission and introduce as a B-3.

 

Moved:  Cm. Ramirez

Second:  Cm. Galo

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  Cm. Ramirez

 

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

City of Laredo by rezoning 0.50 acres, as further described by metes and bounds in attached Exhibit “A”, located west of Hwy 83 and south of Riverhill Loop, from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential 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. Rendon

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 Tem Amaya

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction: Cm. Galo

 

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

City of Laredo by rezoning 9.85 acres, as further described by metes and bounds in attached  Exhibit “A”, located south of Ranchway Drive, from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential District) with a Special Use Permit 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. Belmares

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem 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, Jr.

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 Lot 1, Block 9, Santa Rita IX Subdivision, located at Soria Drive and Hwy 83, from R-2 (Multi-Family Residential 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:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

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 Tem Amaya

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction: Cm. Galo

 

7.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the FY 2004 – 2005 Airport Budget

by increasing revenues and expenditures in the amount of $29,688.00 and amending the Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) positions by one (1) additional Air Traffic controller effective April 1, 2005, subject to the Federal Aviation Administration agreeing to reimburse the City of Laredo for the cost of this position and authorizing the City Manager to submit an amended proposal to the Federal Aviation Administration for purposes of reimbursement to the City of Laredo for the cost of operating the Air Traffic Control Tower at the Laredo International Airport, and authorizing the City Manager to implement said budget amendment; providing for an effective date.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem 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. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction: City Council

 

8.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance authorizing the City Manager to accept

$14,250.00 in contributions and amending the City of Laredo FY 2004 – 2005 CVB Annual Budget by appropriating revenues of $14,250.00 in the form of corporate contributions from Wells Fargo Bank in the amount of $10,000.00 for 250th Anniversary Celebration; from La Posada Hotel in the amount of $3,500.00 for the production of a promotional CD Rom; as well as contributions from Sam’s Club Foundation in the amount of $500.00 and Rosen & Cowen Logistics Customs Services, LTD. in the amount of $250.00 for the Laredo International Sister Cities Festival, and appropriating expenditures in the amount of $10,000.00 for the 250th Anniversary Division; and $4,250.00 for CVB Marketing Division expense.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

There was no public input.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm. Agredano

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

9.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending Chapter 14 (Garbage trash &

refuse) of the Code of Ordinances, specifically to require a Solid Waste Franchise Agreement or Self Hauler Permit from all persons, except a duly authorized agent or employee of the City, to collect, convey, or transport solid waste generated by another person on the streets, alleys, or public thoroughfares of the City, other than on Federal or State Highways, or to dispose of any such solid waste at a disposal facility operated by the city.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:     8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Pedro Gonzalez, III, stated that he is opposed to this ordinance requirement for a self-hauler permit.  He mentioned that he has been in the business of demolishing buildings and hauling solid waste for more than 30 years.  He stated that City Council has the power to extend franchises of public utilities, however, his business is not a public utility.  He stated that he just learned of this proposed ordinance and he has not had an opportunity to provide any input.  He stated that the City is asking that they pay 4 % in addition to the $30.00 in landfill fees. 

 

Mayor Flores stated that perhaps it would be a good idea that city staff meet with the haulers and address their concerns. 

 

Oscar Medina, Solid Waste Director, stated that the idea of the self-hauler permit was to address the issue of that contractor who is building a warehouse, is required to connect a water meter and gets charged a garbage fee.  These contractors are complaining that they should not be billed the $8.50 monthly fee since they are already hauling their own garbage to the landfill.  He explained that the City is looking to address this issue by having the contractor pay the franchise fee because they are circumventing the franchise fee by not hiring a franchise hauler. 

 

Motion to close the public hearing and postpone.

 

Moved:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

Second:  Cm. Ramirez

For:    8                                           Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

10.   Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending Chapter 14 (Garbage, trash &

refuse) of the Code of Ordinances, specifically to refine and add definitions, to refine section titles, to revise franchise requirements, to revise landfill fees to clarify the fee for residents, change the current fee to residents for landfill disposal of yard waste from $2.00 / ton to no charge and the commercial fee for the same from $30.00 / ton to $15.00 / ton; to change the current tire disposal fee for residents from $2.00 for up to four (4) passenger car tires on weekdays and no charge on Saturdays to no charge at all times for up to four passenger car tires, and to add the acceptance of soil suitable for use as daily or intermediate landfill cover at no charge.

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Pedro Gonzalez, III, stated that it is great that the City is decreasing the rates, but he suggested that the fees should be lowered to $15.00/ton for construction waste and demolition waste.

 

Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

Moved:  Cm. Belmares

Second:  Cm. Galo

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

11.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo’s FY 2004-

2005 full time equivalent positions by reclassifying three (3) firefighter positions to three (3) fire driver positions for the Fire Suppression Division, EMS Division and the Fire Prevention Division.  Funding for these positions is available in the Fire Department Operating Budget in the amount of $15,402.00. 

 

Motion to open the public hearing.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem 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. Agredano

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

VIII.       INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCES

 

12.  Authorizing the City Manager to enter into license agreements with ten (10) local     

       little league associations for the use of ten (10) City playing fields for baseball  

       programs, the term of each being up to three (3) years; no fee will be charged by the

       City to the associations in view of the public benefit in permitting the associations to

       use the city’s facilities for baseball and softball programs to benefit  the youth of

       Laredo.

 

 Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

13.  Setting the maximum speed limits on that portion of Killam Boulevard between IH- 

       35 frontage and Sara Road, within the city limits of Laredo, Webb County, Texas, as  

       45 MPH (miles per hour), as defined in the control section map provided by the City

       of Laredo, Traffic Safety Department.

 

 Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

14.  Designating certain streets west of Santa Maria Avenue and east of Santa Isabel

   Avenue as one-way between Zaragoza Street on the south and Victoria Street on the

   north, providing for the installation of appropriate signs to indicate one-way traffic in

   the designated direction and providing for effective date.

 

 Cm. Ramirez stated that he would like to leave the direction of the traffic flow on the 1900 and 2000 block of Grant Street the way it is now.

 

 Roberto Murillo, Traffic Director, stated that those two blocks have been excluded    

 from the one-way traffic conversion.

 

   Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

15.  Establishing occupancy rules after City purchases a home under its Airport Noise

          Compatibility Program,   

 Namely:

(1)  An occupancy term of up to 30-days rent-free for an owner who sells his or her

      home and is in the process of purchasing a replacement home; and

(2)  An additional occupancy term of up to 90-days rent-free for an owner who sells

his or her home and provides evidence that he or she is constructing a new   

home and is waiting to move into it; and

(3)  After expiration of (1) or (2), whichever may apply, the former owner holding

       over will be a tenant at will and will be responsible for a monthly rent

       equivalent to 1/12 of 8.5% of the appraised value of the home; and providing

       for an effective date. 

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

IX.      FINAL READING OF ORDINANCES 

 

            Motion to waive the final readings of ordinances # 2005-O-038, and # 2005-O-039.

 

            Moved:  Cm. Galo

            Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

            For:    8                                                Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

16.  2005-O-038  Amending the FY 2004-2005 Annual Operating Budget in the Laredo

Fire Department Prevention and Arson Fund Budget by accepting a donation of $750.00 from Wal-Mart Stores and appropriating said funds for the purpose of purchasing Fire Safety Educational and Promotional Materials for the Fire Prevention Division.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2005-O-038.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:      8                              Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

                  2005-O-039  Amending the City of Laredo FY 2004-2005 Annual Budget by increasing

revenues and expenditures in the amount of $6,251.00 in additional funds, totaling $338,841.00 from the South Texas Development Council for the HIV/AIDS Ryan White Title II Services Program of the City of Laredo Health Department for the period of April 1, 2004 through March 31, 2005.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2005-O-039.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

   X.     RESOLUTIONS

 

17.  2005-R-013  Authorizing the transfer of excess funds from the City of Laredo – Public

Property Finance Contractual Obligations (PPFCO) Series 2000, Series 2000A, Series 2002A and Series 2003 in the total amount of $391,000.00, for the purchase of needed equipment for the Public Works Division, Traffic Safety Department, Parks and Recreation Department, Planning/Building Department and the Management Information System (MIS) Division.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2005-R-013.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:     8                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

18.  2005-R-014  Accepting the donation of one (1) utility easement from Laura Celia

Decker, Elsa Delia Decker, Rebecca Ann Decker, and Michael Phillip Decker for the extension of utility service lines to the Ranchitos IV, Los Minerales Subdivision. This being a 1,937 square foot tract of land out of tract 53-C in the Ranchitos IV, Los Minerales Subdivision, and being situated in Porcion 10, Abstract 280, Webb County, Texas, and described by metes and bounds and survey attached as Exhibits A and B.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2005-R-014.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:    8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

19.  2005-R-015  Authorizing the City Manager to submit two (2) applications to the United

States Foreign-Trade Zones Board on behalf of the Embarcadero Industrial Park requesting: 1) a temporary boundary modification and, 2) permanent Foreign Trade Zone designation in accordance with the Policies and Procedures approved by Ordinance No. 2000-O-183 dated July 24, 2000. The temporary boundary modification consists of temporarily transferring the designation of ten (10) acres from City of Laredo Site No. 1 located at the Laredo International Airport to the new site designated as Site No. 7 and located within the Embarcadero Industrial Park.

Motion to approve Resolution # 2005-R-015.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:    8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

20.  2005-R-017  Declaring the public necessity to acquire the “Surface Only” of one (1)

parcel of land for the Riverfront Development Project. Said parcel being the north 41.67 feet of Lot 1, Block 50, Western Division, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas; as delineated on attached copy of City Plat; and authorizing staff to negotiate with the owner for the acquisition of said parcel by purchase at a market value to be established by a State Certified Real Estate Appraiser, and further authorizing the City Attorney to initiate condemnation proceedings to acquire said parcel if staff is unable to acquire due to inability to agree to a purchase price, conflict of ownership, owner refusal to sell, and/or inability to locate the listed owner(s).

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2005-R-017.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:    8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

21.  2005-R-019  Authorizing the City Manager to submit a grant application to the Texas

Parks and Wildlife Department for the consideration of the Community Outdoor Outreach Grant Reimbursement Program for an amount not to exceed $30,000.00 for funding of summer outdoor recreational and educational programming for local school age children who participate in the Parks and Recreation Summer Program and to certify that the City of Laredo is eligible to receive program assistance and that funding for this program is available through the Department of Parks and Recreation and further authorizing the City Manager to execute any and all documents pertaining to and resulting from this submission.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2005-R-019.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:    8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

22.  2005-R-020  Confirming the Mayor’s appointment to fill the City’s two vacancies on

    the City of LaredoWebb County Joint Airport Zoning Board.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2005-R-020.  Mayor Flores announced the appointees as David Ender and Oliver Garza. 

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:    8                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

XI.       MOTIONS

 

23.  Consideration to amend contract number FY04-122, awarded to the low bidder,

Envirosolve, L.L.C., Tulsa, OK, on September 27, 2004 by increasing the contract amount by $44,000.00. This increase is required because approximately 30,000 pounds were collected at the Collection Center where normally 10,000 pounds are collected.  One Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Collection Event was held in December, and another event is scheduled for April 2005.  The total contract amount will be $78,858.00. Funding is available in the Environmental Services Department Budget.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:   8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

24.  Consideration for approval of Change Order No. 1, an increase of $1,426.50 for the

balance of quantities actually constructed in place, acceptance of the CDBG Sidewalks City-Wide Project No. 27 (32 Blocks) and approval of final payment in the amount of $15,701.15 to Triple A Concrete, Inc., Laredo, Texas.  Final contract amount is $144,173.00.  Funding is available in the Community Development Fund CD Projects/Sidewalks 26th Action Year/2000 Grant and CD Projects/Sidewalks District V- 29th Action Year/2003 Grant and Retainage Payable.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

25.  Consideration for approval of the list of streets for the 2004-2005 Street Resurfacing

Project to be constructed in-house by the Engineering/Public Works Department.  Funding is available in the General Fund - Street Materials.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:   8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

26.  Consideration to award annual contract FY05-041 to the low bidder, Star Operations,

Laredo, Texas in the base annual amount of $28,825.00 for the maintenance of the illumination system along Interstate Highway 35, Loop 20, Milo Interchange, and FM (Farm to Market) 1472 for a term of one (1) year.  The contract vendor will be required to maintain, repair, and/or replace the various appurtenances related to the existing roadway assemblies.  Funding is available in the Traffic Safety Department Budget.

 

Motion to approve.

 

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

27.  Awarding a contract, not to exceed $100,000.00 to Kinnectic Laboratories, Inc., Santa

Cruz, California; and authorizing the City Manager to execute said professional services contract.  Contract will provide for consulting services for the upgrade of the City’s environmental monitoring system and the addition of rain gauges.  The scope of services will include, but not be limited to the following elements:

1.  Installation of five (5) additional rainfall gauges.

2.  Software upgrade

3.  Radio communication upgrade of existing stations.

     This upgrade will allow citizens and emergency management personnel to view  

      real-time storm data on the Internet.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

28.  Consideration to authorize a contract with IBM, in the total amount of $89,083.16,

through the State of Texas – Department of Information Resources (DIR) Cooperative Purchase Contract, for an upgrade to the current IBM iSeries 820 Computer System. This is the City’s main computer system that hosts the financial, tax, utility billing, payroll, time and attendance, land management, fixed asset, cash receipts, parking and accounts receivables software applications. Funding for this upgrade will be available from the City of Laredo Texas Public Property Finance Contractual Obligation (PPFCO) Series 2003 proceeds.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

29.  Consideration to award contract FY05-045 to the low bidder, South Texas Waste

Systems, Laredo, Texas, in the estimated amount of $25,000.00 for providing portable restrooms for city parks, city sponsored events and construction job-sites. All services will be secured on an as needed basis. Contract pricing has been secured for daily, weekend, and monthly service. The bid pricing is the same as last year. Funding for this contract is available in the Parks and Recreation Department, Parking Meter Budget and Capital Improvement Project / Contractual Obligation Construction Budgets.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:   8                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

30.  Refund of property tax in the amount of $10,914.36 to the following taxpayers and  companies:

 

 1.  A refund in the amount of $748.60 payable to Corrigan Dispatch Co. due to a double   payment. Account # 800-03000-870.

 2.  A refund in the amount of $606.18 payable to Juan Javier Pena and Adela Pena due  to a double payment. Account # 941-00004-030.

 3.  A refund in the amount of $6,749.84 payable to Trautmann Bros. Investment Co. due to a double payment. Account # 900-90241-077.

 4.  A refund in the amount of $1,111.52 payable to Chase Manhattan Mortgage Corporation due to an overpayment. Account # 988-10001-050.

 5.  A refund in the amount of $867.40 payable to Hurd Urban Development LLC due to an overpayment. Account # 900-90191-057.

 6.  A refund in the amount of $830.82 payable to J.C. Investment Co. due to an overpayment. Account # 936-20002-210.

 

  Motion to approve.

 

  Moved:  Cm. Galo

  Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

  For:   8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

 

 31.  Approving monthly adjustments to the tax roll. The amount to be adjusted for the     

        month of January 2005 represents a decrease of $142,882.61. These adjustments are

        determined by Webb County Appraisal District and by court orders.

 

  Motion to approve.

 

  Moved:  Cm. Galo

  Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

  For:    8                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

 32.   Consideration to award contract number FY05-038 to the low bidder, JJJ International Safety Equipment, Laredo, Texas, in the estimated amount of $150,274.75, for the purchase of thirty-eight (38) different completed traffic and street name signs. This is an annual supply contract that allows for the purchase of replacement signs for a one (1) year period. These signs are purchased throughout the year to replace damaged or faded signs. The bid pricing will be firm for one year. The contract pricing is approximately 15% higher than the previous amount. The purchase of signs is budgeted in the Traffic Safety budget. This contract is subject to appropriations in the FY 2005 – 2006 Budget.

 

   Motion to approve.

 

   Moved:  Cm. Galo

   Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

   For:    8                                       Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

 33.   Authorizing the City Manager to execute a settlement agreement with Investigator Christi L. Hinojosa in the amount of $85,700.00. Funding is available in the Police Department Budget.

 

   Motion to approve.

 

   Moved:  Cm. Galo

   Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

   For:    8                                       Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

 

  XII.   STAFF REPORTS

 

34.

 

 A.  Presentation of a proposed Plan of Finance by Noe Hinojosa of Estrada – Hinojosa &    

       Company, Financial Consultants to sell sales tax revenue refunding bonds for parking

       improvements at the Laredo Entertainment Center, with possible action.

 

 Noe Hinojosa, of Estrada – Hinojosa  & Company, made the presentation before City  

 Council.  He reported that this is an opportunity that had been discussed with city staff  

 some weeks ago.  He stated that we are facing a market environment that is favorable  

 right now in terms of lowered interest rates.  He explained that in the case of the City of

 Laredo’s total debt, the rates are already quite low.  What he wanted to propose for City

 Council’s consideration would be the refinancing of the sports arena sales tax bonds. 

 He stated that the average interest rate on the bonds today is about 5.33 % which could

 be refinanced at about 4.19 % in today’s market environment.  He explained that the

 City could get a real benefit by contributing $6 million from its cash reserves to Series

 2005 to size down the bond issue and shorten the length of the debt by two years.  He

 stated that the City could apply the greatest significant savings possible and use that  

 cash to pay off some existing debt which would give the City the capacity to acquire

 more property and make improvements.  By contributing the $6 million of today’s

 money, the City would be paying some of the existing debt off and the annual

 payments would be reduced.  He mentioned that this difference in savings will grow

 and will be earning approximately 2 ¼  % to 2 ½ % which would allow the City to pay

 off these bonds by the year 2012.  He confirmed that he would be bringing to City

 Council the proposal a week before to explain what they will be executing in early

 March. 

 

XIII.   GENERAL COUNCIL DISCUSSIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

 

35.

 

 A.   Request by Council Member Alfredo Agredano

 

 1.  Discussion with possible action regarding the resurfacing of Century City Boulevard, North Century Drive, East Century Drive, West Century Drive, and South Century Drive.

 

      Rogelio Rivera, City Engineer, reported that he submitted a report to City Council explaining that the resurfacing covers the original Century City entrance as well as the loop around the entrance.  He mentioned that the materials cost for this project is approximately $24,000.00 and for the loop section, the cost is $31,000.00 if they do the overlays in-house.  He stated that if this project is to move forward, the funding needs to be identified and they would need clearance from all the utilities.  He mentioned that he would submit this item to the Utilities Committee in order to start the process. 

 

      Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that the crew would need to inspect the area and see the number of cuts needed.  He added that if they are going in there and completely re-surfacing the streets, then they would want the utilities to be cleared. 

 

 2.  Status report on the Cielito Lindo Fire Station / Police Sub-Station.

 

Rogelio Rivera, City Engineer, reported that there is a brief report prepared by Sepulveda and Associates Architects submitted to City Council.  He mentioned that the project has been progressing at a good pace, except for the delays due to the rain which has halted all site work.  They are finally getting back unto the site and doing the plumbing and the rebars are being placed on the beams.  He mentioned that the project should be completed some time in November or December if the weather does not hold them up. 

 

B.   Request by Council Member Gene Belmares

 

1.   Motion to install speed humps at Laurel and Weatherwood utilizing District 6 Discretionary Funds appropriated in the Capital Improvement Fund.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Belmares

Second:  Cm. Galo

For:    8                                    Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

2.   Discussion with possible action on appropriating $20,000.00 of District 6 Discretionary Funds appropriated in the Capital Improvement Fund for the installation of lighting at the Community Babe Ruth Baseball Field.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Belmares

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:    8                                    Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

C.  Request by Council Member Juan Ramirez

 

1.   Discussion with possible action regarding the new Civic Center / Convention Center.

 

Cm. Ramirez stated that this is the time to begin looking for a site for a new convention center. 

 

Motion to accept the site plan from El Portal Southwest which is ranked #2 in the survey by Killis-Almond Architects.

 

Moved:  Cm. Ramirez

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    8                                                Against:  0                                    Abstain: 0

 

2.   Discussion with possible action regarding the securing of Discretionary Funds in the current fiscal year for the members of the City Council.

 

      Mayor Flores stated that they are going to start working on the 2006-2007 budget in March and it does not look promising.  She explained that the Discretionary Fund is not a given, rather it is a fund that is tied in to one-time expenditures.  The reason that this came about is that every year Council Members would come back in the middle of the budget year requesting to get funding for an additional project.  She approached the City Manager at the time and asked for a way to obtain funding throughout the year for projects that had not been foreseen. 

 

      Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that the way the Discretionary Funds came about was through the C.I.F. fund which was supported through Bridge System revenues.  At that time, the bridge funds were growing at 8 % or 9 % a year which allowed for a larger budget, but these revenues went down shortly after the 9-11 event.  He mentioned that the bridge funds had been a constant revenue source and then after 9-11, those revenues went down to 2 % to 3 %.  As a result, the City went from allotting City Council $250,000.00 per year to giving them $50,000.00 last year.  He added that staff understands that there are always opportunities and staff is always looking for the opportunities for the City Council to provide better service to the community.  He stated that if the City Council wants to consider some new opportunities they can make those decisions if that is what the City Council decides. 

 

3.   Discussion with possible action regarding First Transit’s operation and maintenance of El Metro Transit System. 

 

Cm. Ramirez stated that he has not taken this item to the Transit Committee because they have not submitted a report to Council over issues that are of concern to the people.  He mentioned that when he proposed a bus route along San Ignacio Street for the colonia residents, he never received a report on that proposal.  He added that he has been getting reports from constituents regarding poor service.  He mentioned that the City is spending over $300,000.00 for First Transit to operate El Metro Transit System and the City could have saved that money because the service is no better than what it was before. 

 

Cm. Agredano reported that he, together with Cm. Rendon, have met with General Manager Ron Moore and R. J. Garza of First Transit over some of these concerns.  He mentioned that they formed a Safety Committee composed of bus drivers and maintenance workers and they are addressing some of the issues.  He explained that the committee is slowly but surely resolving some of the concerns.  One of the main issues that they discussed was removing some of the older buses that should not be out there. 

 

Cm. Ramirez stated that there was a safety concern over the smell of gas at the mechanics shop.  A call was placed to Entex in order to check for possible gas leaks and they were not permitted to go into the shop because they were not authorized to go check out this concern. 

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that Mayor Flores and the City Council have been proactive in taking steps to earmark money for relocation of this facility.  He added that the City hired a consultant, has had a Master Plan developed, and they are almost finished with their recommendations for the site selection.  

 

Ron Moore, General Manager for El Metro, stated that the consultants have been here for the last two months and they will have a draft report ready with their recommendations in March.  As soon as they submit the draft report, he will take it before the Transit Advisory Committee for their review. 

 

4.   Status report regarding traffic improvements around San Agustin Plaza, specifically Grant Street between Convent and Flores. 

 

Cm. Ramirez reported that he met with Tony Arce, of AEP, and Mr. Contreras, of SBC, over the weekend who told him that they would remove the poles by March 5th.  He stated that once that is done, Public Works will then proceed with the improvements to the corner of Grant Street and Flores Avenue. 

 

XIV.    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.

 

36.    Request for Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 551.072 in order to deliberate the possible purchase of a parcel of land in the northeast area of the City because deliberation in an open meeting would have a detrimental effect on the position of the City Council in negotiations with third persons; and return to open session for possible action.

 

Motion to go into Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 551.072 in order to deliberate the possible purchase of a parcel of land in the northeast area of the City because deliberation in an open meeting would have a detrimental effect on the position of the City Council in negotiations with third persons; and return to open session for possible action.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:   8                                                    Against:  0                                  Abstain:  0 

 

 

 

 

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

 

         Motion to authorize the City Manager to sign a contract for the purchase of 39.726 acres in North-East Laredo from Laura Jacaman, et al. for the consideration of not more than $3,930,000.00 including buyer’s closing costs and agreement that within 24 months after the closing date on the purchase, the City will construct a cul-de-sac at Polaris Drive where it abuts the northern boundary of the 39.726 acre tract at an estimated cost of $25,000.00. 

 

         Moved:  Cm. Belmares

         Second:  Cm. Agredano

         For:    8                                       Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

37.    Request for Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 551.071(1)(A) to consult with the City Attorney regarding pending litigation in the case styled Webb County v. City of Laredo, et.al., Cause No. 403 943, in the 261st District Court of Travis County, Texas; and return to open session for possible action.

 

Motion to go into Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 551.071(1)(A) to consult with the City Attorney regarding pending litigation in the case styled Webb County v. City of Laredo, et.al., Cause No. 403 943, in the 261st District Court of Travis County, Texas; and return to open session for possible action.

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    7                                       Against:  0                                Abstain: 1

                                                                                                   Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

 

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

 

XV.     RECESS AS THE LAREDO CITY COUNCIL AND CONVENE AS THE LAREDO MASS TRANSIT BOARD.

 

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

 

            Moved:  Cm. Galo

            Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

            For:    8                                                Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

38.  2005-RT-001    Authorizing the City of Laredo to file an application with the Department of Transportation, Federal Transit Administration, United States of America, in the amount of $3,098,465.00 for Fiscal Year 2004-2005, and authorizing the City Manager to execute all related documents.

 

Motion to approve.

 

 

 

Moved:  Cm. Galo

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    8                               Against:  0                            Abstain: 0        

 

39.  Consideration to award contract no. FY05-06 to the lowest responsible bidder, National  

       Bus Sales in the amount of $2,233,255.92 for the purchase of seven (7) CNG 35’  

       Standard Floor Transit Buses.  Funding is available in the FTA grants, VCR Grant and

       Transit Sales Tax.

 

       Motion to approve.

 

       Moved:  Cm. Galo

       Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

       For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

40.  Consideration to award Contract No. FY05-046 to Staff Force Inc., Laredo, Texas, in     

       the estimated amount of $49,520.64 for providing up to four temporary employees.

       These employees will be assigned as cashiers to the Transit Center Parking Facility.

       Funding is available in the Transit System Fund.

 

       Motion to approve.

 

       Moved:  Cm. Galo

       Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

       For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

XVI.    ADJOURN AS THE LAREDO MASS TRANSIT BOARD AND RECONVENE AS THE LAREDO CITY COUNCIL.

 

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

 

            Moved:  Cm. Galo

            Second:  Cm. Agredano

            For:    8                                                Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

XVII.   ADJOURNMENT

 

 

SUPPLEMENTAL AGENDA

 

 

   I.   MOTION

 

1.         Authorizing the City Manager to execute a Mutual Dissolution Agreement with United Water Laredo effective March 31, 2005 and terminate the Operations and Maintenance Agreement dated May 8, 2002.

 

 

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Garcia

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    3                                         Against:  5                                            Abstain:  0   

Cm. Garcia                                   Cm. Agredano

Mayor Pro Tem Amaya                 Cm. Galo

Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.                          Cm. Rendon

                                                     Cm. Belmares

                                                     Cm. Ramirez

Motion fails.   

 

2.         Consideration to award contract FY05-025 to N.A.H. Inc., Houston, Texas, in the total amount of $140,152.00 for the installation of a maple sports surface at the gym floors at the Northeast Hillside and Cigarroa Recreation Centers. Staff is recommending N.A.H. Inc., as the vendor that provides the best value to the City based on the bid pricing and references of previous installations. Funding is available in the Parks and Recreation Department Budget and the Capital Improvement Projects Fund.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm. Garcia

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    8                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

 

  II.   GENERAL COUNCIL DISCUSSIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

 

3.              

A.    Request by Council Member Alfredo Agredano

 

1.      Discussion and approval of $20,000.00 in Discretionary Capital Improvement Program (CIP) funding for the renovation of the Cigarroa Recreation Center Gym floor. (Co-sponsored by Cm Johnny Rendon)

 

Motion to approve $20,000.00 in discretionary Capital Improvement Program funds for the renovation of the Cigarroa Recreation Center gym floor. 

 

Moved:  Cm. Agredano

Second:  Mayor Pro Tem Amaya

For:    8                                    Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

B.           Request by Council Member John C. Galo

 

1.      Discussion with possible action on the merits of creating an ordinance to allow the police to impound vehicles that do not have liability insurance. (Co-sponsored by Cm Johnny Rendon)

 

Cm. Galo stated that this item has been placed on the agenda to see the pros and cons on this issue.  He mentioned that he had a copy of an ordinance that is in place in the City of De Soto and this has already gone to the Court of Appeals process and passed.  He stated that if a motorist does not have proof of liability insurance during a routine traffic stop, the police department is towing the vehicle.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that there is a bill that has been introduced in the legislature that includes this same language.  Currently, if someone has an accident and the motorist does not have liability insurance, the police have the authority to impound the vehicle until the individual can prove financial responsibility. 

 

Assistant Chief Gilbert Navarro, mentioned that there is a provision under the Transportation Code which states that the County Judge or the county court official who has jurisdiction in the county can order the County Sheriff to impound a vehicle for lack of insurance.  He added that this impoundment takes place following two convictions or thereafter.  He stated that he would need a legal opinion as to whether this is translated from county court official or county sheriff to municipal court judge.  What the law states regarding the impoundment of any vehicle by the County Sheriff is that they require that the individual show proof of insurance for two years before the vehicle is released. 

 

2.      Discussion with possible action on the City Manager’s Leadership Class recommendations to create a “Clean Laredo”. (Co-sponsored by Cm Johnny Rendon)

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, stated that they have addressed this issue in the current budget.  He added that City Council has approved the working budget, as well as the development of the “Keep Laredo Beautiful” agenda. They have already chartered the organization and have provided a budget for it.  He mentioned that staff is currently recruiting for the Executive Director as well.  In addition, the staff from Environmental Engineering has drafted a littering ordinance that is currently being circulated to the building community.   

 

C.           Request by Council Member Johnny Rendon

 

1.      Discussion and approval of $20,152.00 in discretionary Capital Improvement Program (CIP) funding for the renovation of the Northeast Hillside Recreation Center Gym floor. (Co-sponsored by Cm Alfredo Agredano)

 

Motion to approve $20,152.00 in discretionary Capital Improvement Program funds for the renovation of the Northeast Hillside Recreation Center gym floor.

 

Moved:  Cm. Rendon

Second:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

For:    8                                    Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

 

 

 

III.   ADJOURNMENT

 

Motion to adjourn.                                                                                Time:  10:12 p.m.

 

Moved:  Cm. J. Valdez, Jr.

Second:  Cm. Agredano

For:    8                                                Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

 

 

I, Gustavo Guevara, Jr., City Secretary, do hereby certify that the above and foregoing is a true and correct copy of the minutes contained in pages 01 to 28 and they are true, complete, and correct proceedings of the City Council meeting held on February 22, 2005.

 

 

                                                                                    ______________________________

                                                                                    Gustavo Guevara, Jr.

                                                      City Secretary