CITY OF LAREDO

CITY COUNCIL MEETING

M2006-R-03

CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS

1110 HOUSTON STREET

LAREDO, TEXAS 78040

February 6, 2006

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 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,                                                                         Council Member, District IV

            Johnny Rendon                                                                         Council Member, District V

            Gene Belmares,                                                                        Council Member, District VI

            Jose A.  Valdez, Jr.,                                                                 Mayor Pro Tem, District VII

            Juan Ramirez,                                                                           Council Member, District VIII

            Gustavo Guevara, Jr.,                                                               City Secretary

            Larry Dovalina,                                                                         City Manager

            Cynthia Collazo,                                                                       Deputy City Manager

            Horacio De Leon,                                                                     Assistant City Manager

            Rafael Garcia,                                                                           Assistant City Manager

            Jaime Flores,                                                                            City Attorney

 

IV.       MINUTES

 

            Approval of the minutes of November 7, 2005.

 

            Motion to approve.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Agredano

            Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

            For:     7                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

            Cm.  Galo was not present.

 

 

V.        COMMUNICATIONS AND RECOGNITIONS

 

            Announcements

 

            None.

 

            Invitations

 

            None.

 

            Recognitions

 

a.  Recognizing Mayor Pro Tempore, Jose A. Valdez, Jr., Council Member District VII, for

     his dedicated service to the people of Laredo.

 

Mayor Flores and City Council presented Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez with a glass gavel for his service as Mayor Pro Tempore and they recognized him for his dedicated service to the people of Laredo.

 

Mayor Pro Tempore read the following:

 

“First and foremost I would like to thank the citizens of District VII for believing in me and giving me an opportunity to serve as their representative and advocate for nearly six years.  I would like to thank all the city employees, directors, and administration for helping me implement my vision of what I felt District VII should be like.  It has been an honor working with you and during my time here I feel that I have gained some knowledge and wisdom and I would like to leave you with some free advice that may save your life:  Never fly Idle Caibe. It has also been a privilege working along side each and everyone on the Council.  Although we do not agree on every issue I do respect the fact that we are different and that makes this Council very unique.  I would like to take with me a lot of good qualities and memories from each and every one of you.

 

Cm.  Agredano:  a loving husband and a father.

Cm.  Garcia: a loving son and a great friend.

Cm.  Galo:  an individual who loves his family and the first person to introduce him to

                    crawdads.

Cm.  Amaya and Ramirez – two that work very hard for their districts and care for the people in them. 

Cm.  Rendon – a hard working and devoted family man.

Cm.  Belmares – a very detailed and well organized person who loves his family.

Mayor Flores – a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother. He said that he will always cherish the time that she called him when his family experience a  tragedy. 

 

b.  Recognition of the City of Laredo Employees who earned a degree in Fall 2005 from

     Laredo Community College or Texas A&M International University.

 

Livia De Hoyos, Laredo Police Department, obtained an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science from Laredo Community College.

 

Fanny Garcia (Police Department), obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Texas A & M International University.

 

Jesus Reynoso, Police Department, obtained an Associate’s Degree in Arts from Laredo Community College.

 

c.  Recognition of City employees who were deployed to Iraq over one (1) year ago and

have returned home: Carlos Agredano, Jose R. Garza Aguirre, Ernest Chavez, Jose A. Cueva, Jose A. Hernandez, Manuel Lara, Jorge E. Martinez, Heriberto Ramos, Carlos Hernandez, Jr., Estevan Garcia, and Alfonso A. Peña.

 

Mayor Flores and City Council presented a plaque that was read to the following individuals:

 

Carlos Agredano, Jose R.  Garza Aguirre, Ernest Chavez, Jose A.  Cueva, Jose A. Hernandez, Manuel Lara, Jorge E.  Martinez, Heriberto Ramos, Carlos Hernandez, Jr., Estevan Garcia, and Alfonso A.  Pena.

 

d.  Recognition of Juan Rodriguez, of the Parks and Recreation Department, on his

     selection as January 2006 Employee of the Month.

 

Mayor, City Council, and the City Manager presented Juan Rodriguez with the recognition.

 

Mike Pescador, Parks & Recreation Director, stated that the Parks & Recreation is very proud in the naming of Juan Rodriguez for Employee of the Month.  He has been with the department since February 2002. He is in charge of maintenance in the downtown plaza and Mercado.  In the month of January he assisted in the different events such as the WBCA, Sister Cities Festivals, and Jamboozie set up and placement of banners.  Aside from all of that he set up for the 250th  Anniversary, Keep Laredo Beautiful events, and the Diez y Seis de Septembre.  He also assists in the Capital Improvement Projects that are around town by planting trees, irrigation systems, and landscaping.  Those projects include the Andrew Trautmann Park, the Dryden Park, Benavides Fields, set up for the Mayor’s Cup, the St. Agustine Plaza.  He also set up for the Miss Texas Pageant and Veteran’s Field improvements.  He works long hours including week-ends.  He is very reliable and truly leads by example.  He is very dedicated to his work. 

 

            Communiqués

 

a.  Mayor Elizabeth G. Flores reports on the City of Laredo Traffic Department.

 

The red, yellow or green of the light or the direction of the sign affects every person in Laredo, and only one department has the awesome responsibility of making the traffic flow smoothly on the streets of Laredo.  The Traffic Department, with director Roberto Murillo at the helm, is working hard to make sure citizens get to where they need to go.

 

Traffic control devices, such as signs and traffic lights, do more than just point people in the right direction.  Their most important function is that they help prevent accidents by safely controlling the flow of traffic.  The Traffic Department’s role is to property maintain them. 

 

The Traffic Department oversees the installation, maintenance, and operation of all traffic signals, signs, and pavement markings, as well as concerns dealing with street illumination on all streets within the city’s ever-growing jurisdiction.

 

The Traffic Department is comprised of seven divisions that include:  Administration; Engineering; Marking; Parking; Permits; Signals; Signs, with a total of 55 full time employees.

 

Administration Division:  provides management and administrative support for the department.  An important milestone this division was responsible for was establishing the utility Coordination Committee in 1999.  In 2005, this commission helped implement the City ordinance that now requires all construction projects impacting the City’s right-of-way to follow the Utility Coordination process prior to securing a construction permit.  This process properly identifies utilities and establishes utility relocation schedules has significantly improved the coordination of all projects and minimized projects delays. 

 

Engineering Division:  identifies and addresses traffic safety related issued by analyzing situations, recommending solutions, and designing plans for implementation, pertaining to:

 

Signal timing optimization

Pavement markings

Traffic signs

Speed humps

Subdivision development

Traffic control plans

School zones

One-way street designations

 

Some of the major accomplishments include:

 

·        Integrated 150 our of 230 traffic signals into the computerized closed loop signal system located at the existing City’s Traffic Management Center

·        Installed 17 network traffic surveillance cameras at different strategic locations throughout the city.

·        Initiated a pilot project and implemented the Speed Hump installation Policy by City ordinance in November 2000.  To date, with the assistance of Public Works Department a total of 81 speed humps have been installed at 26 different locations.

·        Initiated a pilot project and processed a city ordinance in 2004 establishing a Citywide Residential Permit Parking Program which is currently in effect.

 

The Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Master Plan for the City of Laredo was completed in January 2005 with the main objective of identifying ITS components, technology, and project concepts that have the potential to improve traveler safety, decrease traffic congestion, and generally manage the growth that the city if experiencing within its transportation infrastructure system.  It also lays out the framework for the integration of ITS components between the City of Laredo and the Texas Department of Transportation.  The City of Laredo received federal earmark ITS funding in the amount of $1.75 million that will be utilized for Phase I and Phase II deployment identified in the master plan.  Phase I and Phase II will include upgrading traffic signal cabinet and controllers in downtown, including installing communication components to incorporate into the City’s Traffic Management Center, with a projected completion date of December 2007.

 

Markings division:  provides the visual information on the roadway surface needed by drivers to steer the vehicle in a variety of situations, which reduces accident potential and risk of liability to the city.  A total of 1.5 million linear feet of pavement markings and 1,000 crosswalks and railroad crossings were maintained during FY 2004-05.  

Parking Division:  is responsible for managing parking within the central business district by way of 925 parking metered spaces, proper designation of loading and no parking zones, issuing  and processing parking citations, and establishing off-street parking areas.  A total of 57,000 parking citations were issued and 286 vehicles “booted” during last fiscal year.  This division also maintains and operates five surface parking lots in downtown that provide a total of 500 off-street parking spaces.

 

Permits Division:  is responsible for issuing oversize load permits for vehicles driving on city streets and for issuing and regulating the oversize escort company permits and associated licenses.  It also regulates taxicab operations in the City of Laredo, including issuing taxicab permits and licenses.

 

Signal division:  is responsible for maintaining and operating 230 traffic signals, 120 school flashing warning beacons, and 60 advanced warning flashing beacons throughout the city.  This division managed the installations of 15 new traffic signals within the last five years.  Over 2,000 incandescent bulbs have been replaced at many signalized intersections with an LED type bulb that consumes about 75% less energy and is longer lasting, therefore reducing maintenance costs. 

 

Signs division:  maintains the citywide traffic control sign system that safely guides motorists and pedestrians that use our roadways. They also provide assistance in closing streets for emergencies and special events.  Last fiscal year 6,500 emergency sign maintenance repairs and 6,500 preventive sign maintenance work orders were processed.

 

The truly dedicated and hardworking employees at the Traffic Department clearly understand their job responsibilities and take great pride in the work they accomplish everyday.  With the rapid growth of the city, the Traffic Department continues to work diligently in accomplishing all operation and maintenance needs in the most efficient manner possible.  The Traffic Department is committed to providing for the safe operation and maintenance of the transportations system that controls, guides, and directs the general public through the City’s street network, all while giving the best customer service at all times.  Nest time you are driving around town, look at the smooth flow of traffic around you and remember how important it is to obey the red, yellow, or green of the traffic lights, and the dedicated department ensuring your safe passage along city streets.

 

Cm.  Ramirez commended the Fire and Police Departments for doing an excellent job handling a tragic traffic accident on I. H. 35 with such professionalism.

 

Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez thanked all the citizens in District VII for voting.

 

Cm.  Belmares wished his son, Joshua, a Happy 14th Birthday.

 

Cm.  Rendon  said that he worked as a firefighter and he too worked side by side with police officers on numerous occasions so he knows first hand that they always do an outstanding job. He read the following letter:

 

“To Mayor and City Council,

 

I am an active member of this community but most importantly I am a parent with a child with a disability.  My son was diagnosed with autism five years ago.  Our family bond has become closer and our lives have changed tremendously.  My spouse and I have become active members in any program that can help us with our son’s autism.  The reason for this letter is to notify you of the lack of recreational areas specializing in the needs of our special children.  Our children need a specialized in-door recreational center.  A play area equipped with pads and equipments that can help the sensory issues and can stimulate the child.  Most importantly as a mother I would like a safe place for my child.  A place where he will not be judged for not being normal.  A place where I can also feel at ease and not have people stare and having to explain the disability or explain that he is disabled and not spoiled.  The City of Laredo Parks & Recreation program have no activities or programs specialized for our children.  As a parent I want my son to be able to go to a place and enjoy himself.  My family and the families of children with special needs will be grateful to you and I thank for you for taking the time to read this letter.  I felt that my concern for my child’s needs and the other children who suffer from autism needed to be heard. -   Nora Cavazos”

 

Cm.  Amaya said that he was elected the same time that Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez was and he mentioned that he has enjoyed serving on the Council with him.  He wished him well on all of his future endeavors. 

 

Cm.  Galo congratulated everyone that voted in the past election.  He also congratulated the Boy’s Club for organizing a very successful fund raiser.  He too mentioned that he has enjoyed serving on the Council with Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez and he wished him well in the future.  Finally, he congratulated all of the Catholic School for celebrating Catholic School week. 

 

Cm.  Garcia thanked Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez for his leadership within the Council.  He also congratulated the Nixon Girls Basketball team for being crowned District Champions noting that they are 32-2.  He also congratulated everyone for supporting the Border Olympics.  He congratulated the new Council Member Juan Chavez.  He advised that this week was High School Counselor’s Week and encouraged everyone to thank them for working extremely hard for our children.  He asked everyone to drive safely around the carnival at the arena.  Finally, he asked for a moment of silence for his mother who passed away one year ago. 

 

Cm.  Agredano wished Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez the best of luck in the future.  He also advised his district that Cielito Lindo Fire Station is almost complete so they will be holding the ribbon cutting this week.    

 

VI.       APPOINTMENTS TO COMMISSIONS, BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

 

a.  Appointment by Council Member Hector J. Garcia of Carmen Escamilla to the Library

    Advisory Committee.

 

    Motion to approve.

 

    Moved:  Cm.  Garcia

    Second:  Cm.  Amaya

    For:     7                                           Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

           

b.  Appointment by Mayor Elizabeth G. Flores of Hector Garcia, Council Member District

    II, to the Engineering Contract Review Committee.

 

    Motion to approve.

 

    Moved:  Cm.  Garcia

    Second:  Cm.  Amaya

    For:    7                                            Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

                   

VII.     PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

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

City of Laredo by authorizing a Conditional Use Permit for a daycare on Lot 6, Block 1645, Eastern Division, located at 2716 Corpus Christi Street.  The Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval of the conditional use permit.     

 

                 Motion to open the public hearing.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Garcia          

                 Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

                 For:      7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Garcia

                 Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                 For:      7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 Ordinance Introduction:  Cm.  Garcia

 

 

 

2.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year

2005 – 2006 Capital Improvement Fund Annual Budget by drawing down $400,000.00 from the opening balance and amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year 2005 – 2006 Bridge System Construction Fund Annual Budget by appropriating said funds as Computer Operating System Upgrade expenditures and authorizing the City Manager to implement said budget amendments.

 

     Motion to open the public hearing.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Garcia          

                 Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                 For:      7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 There was no public input.

 

                 Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

                 Second:  Cm.  Rendon

                 For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

3.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending the City of Laredo Special Police

Programs Fund Fiscal Year 2005 – 2006 Annual Budget in the amount of $42,428.00 to fund the Bulletproof Vest Partnership (BVP) program.  The U.S. Department of Justice BVP program will fund $42,428.00 and the City of Laredo will designate $42,428.00 in matching funds for a total program budget of $84,856.00.  Funding will be used to replace bulletproof vests that exceed the recommended life expectancy.  Funding is available in the City of Laredo Special Police Programs Transfer-In.

 

     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.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Garcia

                 Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                 For:      7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

4.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending Chapter 32, “Vehicles for Hire”,

Article II;  Taxicabs, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Laredo: specifically Sections 32-18 Definitions; Section 32-20 Transfer Operating Authority; Section 32-22 Initial Application for Annual Permit; Section  32-29 Suspension and Revocation of Annual Permit; Section 32-31 Number of Taxicab Permits Operating; Section 32-33 Substitute or Replace Taxicabs; Section 32-35 Application; Section 32-37 Term and Renewal; Section 32-39 To Be Displayed; Section 32-42 Driver Lists To Be Maintained; Section 32-43.1 Suspension and Revocation of a Taxicab License; Section 32-48 Insurance Required; and Section 32-74 Vehicle Requirements and Inspections, providing severability and for an effective date and publication.

 

     Motion to open the public hearing.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                 Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                 For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

After a lengthy conversation, Larry Dovalina, City Manager, asked Council to approve the public hearing ordinance amending Chapter 32 and staff will bring the item back to Council at the next meeting with further amendments. 

 

                 Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                 Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

                 For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

5.  Public hearing and introductory ordinance amending Division 3 (RATES AND

CHARGES) of Chapter 31 (UTILITIES) of the City of Laredo Code of Ordinances, specifically deleting phase 1 of section 31-138, which provides for fees and service charges, thereby making phase 2 the applicable rates; Adding a service fee of $10.00 per account to administer paperwork for each new account; Increasing the reconnection fees from $10.00 to $35.00  during normal business days and hours (8 A.M. TO 5 P.M., Monday through Friday) on a 24 hour turnaround timeframe, and from $15.00 to $55.00 for after business hours or same day service; And charging a reconnect fee of $75.00 for weekends and holidays; Charging an Non Sufficient Funds (NSF) fee of $25.00 and a late fee of 5% to the balance owed on the account the day after the bill due date of each month; Providing for publication and an effective date.

 

     Motion to open the public hearing.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Belmares      

                 Second:  Cm.  Valdez

                 For:      7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 There was no public input.

 

                 Motion to close the public hearing and introduce.

 

                 Moved:  Cm.  Galo

                 Second:  Cm.  Belmares

                 For:     5                                          Against:  3                                            Abstain:  0

             

                Cm.  Galo                                        Cm.  Garcia

                Cm.  Amaya                         Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

                Cm.  Rendon                                    Cm.  Ramirez

                Cm.  Belmares

 

                The mayor voted in favor.

 

                 Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

VIII.    INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCES

 

6.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute an Airport Fixed Base Operator (FBO) License

agreement between the City of Laredo, as Licensor, and Elite Aviation, Inc., as Licensee at the Laredo International Airport.  Lease term is for fifteen (15) years and five (5) months commencing on February 1, 2006, and ending on June 30, 2020, and may be extended for two (2) terms of five (5) years each ending on June 30, 2025 and June 30, 2030.  The FBO leased space requirements are being satisfied by leasing from both the City of Laredo and by subleasing from another commercial operator; providing for an effective date.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

7.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a lease with Elite Aviation, Inc., for an

approximate 2,500 square foot tract of land located in Block No. 1 at the Laredo International Airport Fuel Farm for the purpose of installing above ground fuel storage tanks.  Lease term is for fourteen (14) years and six (6) months commencing on February 1, 2006, and ending on July 31, 2020, and may be extended for two (2) terms of five (5) years each ending on July 31, 2025 and July 31, 2030.  Monthly rent shall be $250.00 and will be adjusted annually according to changes in the Consumer Price Index and further adjusted by appraised Fair Market Value on the 10th and 20th anniversaries; providing for an effective date.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

8.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a lease with Elite Aviation, Inc., for

approximately 117 square feet constituting Air Operations Area Office No. 2 located at 5210 Bob Bullock Loop at the Laredo International Airport Passenger Terminal.  Lease term is for three (3) years and five (5) months commencing on February 1, 2006 and ending on June 30, 2009.  However, it is agreed by the parties that the lease may be terminated by either party on not less than thirty (30) days’ written notice from the party terminating to the other. Monthly rent shall be $315.00, and effective July 1, 2006, monthly rent shall be $468.00, and will be adjusted annually according to changes in the Consumer Price Index; providing for an effective date.

 

Ordinance Introduction:  City Council

 

 

 

IX.       FINAL READING OF ORDINANCES 

 

Motion to waive final reading of Ordinance # 2005-O-341, # 2006-O-016, # 2006-O-017, # 2006-O-018, # 2006-O-019, # 2006-O-020, # 2006-O-021, # 2006-O-022, # 2006-O-023, # 2006-O-024, # 2006-O-025, # 2006-O-026, # 2006-O-028, # 2006-O-029, # 2006-O-030, # 2006-O-031, # 2006-O-032, and # 2006-O-033.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

            For:     7                                               Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

9.  2005-O-341  Authorizing the City Manager to execute an amendment to the lease

agreement between the City of Laredo, as Lessor, and Jett Racing and Sales, Inc., as Lessee, approved on January 2, 2001, by Ordinance No. 2001-O-007 for approximately 18,000 square feet constituting Building No. 104 located at 4805 Maher Avenue at the Laredo International Airport.  Section 1.08 “Use and Use Conflict” is being amended for the purpose of allowing Lessee to sublease a portion of the leased premises.  Further, the lease be amended to reflect Lessee’s agreement to pay whatever final judgment occurs in the pending contested tax law suit when it becomes final.  All other terms and conditions remain unchanged and in effect; providing for an effective date.  (AS AMENDED)

 

Motion to waive the final reading for Ordinance # 2005-O-341.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Garcia

For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

  Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2005-O-341.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

  Second:  Cm.  Amaya

  For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

                2006-O-016  Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning

 Lots 2 and 3, Block 1, Tesoro Plaza Subdivision, located at 5112 Tesoro   

 Plaza, from B-3 (Community Business District) to B-4 (Highway

 Commercial District).   

 

              Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-016.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

  Second:  Cm.  Amaya

  For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

      

                2006-O-017  Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning 4.2

  acres, as further described by metes and bounds in attached Exhibit “A”,

  located south of Loma del Sur Boulevard and east of Business 83, from AG

  (Agricultural District) to B-1 (Limited Commercial District). 

 

              Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-017.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

  Second:  Cm.  Amaya

  For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

                2006-O-018  Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning 7.4

  acres, as further described by metes and bounds in attached Exhibit “A”,

  located south of Loma del Sur Boulevard and east of Business 83, from AG

  (Agricultural District) to B-3 (Community Business District).   

 

              Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-018.

 

  Moved:  Cm.  Galo

  Second:  Cm.  Amaya

              For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

                2006-O-019  Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by authorizing

a Conditional Use Permit for a kiosk/food stand on Lot 12, Block 446,   

Eastern Division, located at 202 W. San Carlos Street

 

  Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-019.

 

              Moved:  Cm.  Galo

              Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

                2006-O-020  Amending the Zoning Ordinance Map of the City of Laredo by rezoning

 Lot 10 and the East ½ of Lot 11, Block 1078, Eastern Division, located at

 1904 Green Street, from R-1 (Single-Family Residential District) to R-2

 (Multi-Family Residential District).

 

  Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-020.

 

              Moved:  Cm.  Galo

              Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

2006-O-021  Amending the City of Laredo FY2005-2006 Airport Fund (Operating)

Budget by drawing down $2,000,000.00 from the restricted fund balance and amend the corresponding expenditure line item for the purpose of acquiring a tract of land abutting the airport; and authorizing the City Manager to implement said budget amendment; providing for an effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-021.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

               2006-O-022  Amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year 2005 – 2006 Capital Grants Fund

 Annual Budget to recognize revenues from an Economic Development

 Initiative Grant, provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban

 Development (HUD), in the amount of $198,400.00 for the renovation of

 the historic Plaza Theater’s marquee and blade sign and appropriating said

 grant revenues to the appropriate expenditure accounts and authorizing the

 City Manager to implement said budget amendment.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-022.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                    For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

  

               2006-O-023  Amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year 2005 – 2006 full-time Equivalent

Positions by creating one (1) full-time Community Service Aide position with benefits in lieu of one (1) contract Community Service Aide in the HIV/AIDS Prevention Program funded 70% through the HIV Prevention Activities Program Grant (226-6072) beginning January 1, 2006 through December 31, 2006 and 30% through the STCADA Grant (226-6403) beginning July 1, 2005 through June 30, 2006.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-023.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

               2006-O-024  Amending the City of Laredo Fiscal Year 2005 – 2006 Annual Budget by

appropriating revenues and expenditures in the additional amount of $35,000.00 for a total amount of $210,000.00 from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) to continue the operation of the two (2) continuous air monitoring station (CAMS) by the City of Laredo Health Department, by extending the grant period which ends February 28, 2006, an additional six (6) months. The term period would be beginning September 1, 2003, through August 31, 2006; and authorizing the City Manager to execute the contract.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-024.

 

             Moved:  Cm.  Galo

             Second:  Cm.  Amaya

 For:     7                                  Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

 

               2006-O-025  Authorizing the City Manager to amend the Transit System’s Fiscal Year

2005 – 2006 Capital Grants Budget by appropriating $636,671.00 as the local match for the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Section 5309 Grant #TX-03-0274-00 for the new transit facility.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-025.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

   

               2006-O-026  Establishing a 15% penalty on current year delinquent property tax accounts,

 as of April 1st of each year for Personal Property and July 1st of each year for Real Property, to defray costs of collection pursuant to Sections 33.11 and 33.07 of the Texas Property Tax Code; providing for publication and effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-026.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                    For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

   

               2006-O-028  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a lease with the Washington’s

Birthday Celebration Association, Inc., (W.B.C.A.) for approximately fifteen (15.0) acres of concrete ramp located in the southwest cargo ramp of the Air Operations Area to include City owned vacant non-aeronautical use land located at the Laredo International Airport for event parking use. Lease term is for two (2) days commencing on February 11, 2006 and ending on February 12, 2006. City Council finds and declares that a valid public purpose would be served in setting the daily rental fee at $1.00; providing for an effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-028.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

2006-O-029  Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to

effectively convey two (2) city owned blocks, namely, Blocks 1782, E.D. and 1713, eastern division, in the City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas, to the Metro Affordable Housing Corporation in support of the Cardinal Point Project, which will be a forty (40) unit town home development; and providing for effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-029.

 

            Moved:  Cm.  Galo

            Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                    For:     7                                   Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

 

 

2006-O-030  Amending the City of Laredo Code of Ordinances Chapter 2 –

“Administration”, Article II – “Departments, Officers and Employees”, Division 5 – “Appeals and Grievances”, Section 2-87.2- “Appeal Procedures”, Subparagraph (G); providing for an effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-030.

 

             Moved:  Cm.  Galo

             Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                     For:     7                                  Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

              2006-O-031  Closing as a public easement that section of Galveston Street between

McDonnell and Monterrey Avenues situated in the Eastern Division, City of Laredo, County of Webb, Texas; and providing for an effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-031.

 

             Moved:  Cm.  Galo

             Second:  Cm.  Amaya

                                     For:     7                                  Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

               2006-O-032  Authorizing the City Manager to execute all necessary documents to

effectively convey a twelve-foot-wide Easement and Right-of-Way to AEP Texas Central Company for the installation of a single phase transformer at Santa Rita Park for concession building.  Said twelve-foot-wide Easement and Right-of-Way containing 36.00 square feet, and being out of Lot No. 1, of the Santa Rita Subdivision Park Plat, recorded in Volume 20, Page 99, of the Map Records of Webb County, Texas, being described on attached Exhibit A; and providing for an effective date.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-032.

 

             Moved:  Cm.  Galo

              Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                 Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

              2006-O-033  Authorizing the City Manager to execute a lease agreement with Laredo

Equities, LLC for the use of Veteran’s Field.  The lease term is for one year with an additional one year renewal option at a rental rate of, the greater of, $100,000.00 per year or $1.00 per ticket sold per year.  Laredo Equities will also provide additional funds for maintenance, utilities and repairs as outlined in the lease agreement terms.

 

Motion to adopt Ordinance # 2006-O-023.

 

             Moved:  Cm.  Galo

             Second:  Cm.  Amaya

 For:     7                                  Against:  0                                Abstain:  0      

 

           

X.        RESOLUTIONS

 

10.  2006-R-004  Accepting the donation of one (1) utility easement from James A.

Tamayo, D. D., Bishop of the Diocese of Laredo, for the extension of utility services lines to the San Carlos Subdivision, Phase II.  This being a strip of land 15.00 feet in width, containing 2,656.69 square feet or 0.061 of an acre, more or less, over and across Lot 2, Block 1, San Carlos Subdivision, Phase II, recorded in Volume 4, page 34, plat records, Webb County, Texas; and described by metes and bounds and survey attached as Exhibits A and B.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-004.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

11.  2006-R-005  Accepting the donation of one (1) parcel of land as a Utility Easement

from 4V Holdings, Ltd., for the North American Development Bank Water Distribution Project / Laredo – Webb County Colonia Improvement Project,  said parcel containing 0.083 acres, more or less, out of a 36.15 acre tract conveyed to 4V Holdings Ltd., a Texas Limited Partnership, as described in deed recorded in Volume 1884, Page 251, Webb County Official Public Records; and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits A and B.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-005.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

12.  2006-R-006  Declaring the public necessity to acquire the “Surface Only” of five (5)

parcels of land for the Bartlett Avenue/Saunders Street Intersection Improvement Project, these being:

 

(1) an 833-sq. ft. parcel of land out of Lot 1, Block 1254, Eastern Division, City of  Laredo, Webb County, Texas, and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits A and B;

(2) an 833-sq. ft. parcel of land out of Lot 8, Block 1254, Eastern Division, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas, and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits C and D;

(3) a 780-sq. ft. parcel of land out of Lot 1, Block 1126, Buena Vista Subdivision, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas, and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits E and F;

(4) a 280-sq. ft. parcel of land out of Lot 1B, Block 1126, Buena Vista Subdivision, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas, and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits G and H; and

(5) a 183-sq. ft. parcel of land out of Lot 18, Block 1126, Buena Vista Subdivision, City of Laredo, Webb County, Texas, and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits I and J;

and authorizing staff to negotiate for the acquisition of said parcels by purchase at market values to be established by a State Certified Real Estate Appraiser, and further authorizing the City Attorney to initiate condemnation proceedings to acquire said parcels if staff is unable to acquire through negotiations 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 # 2006-R-006.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

13. 2006-R-007  Accepting the donation of two (2) utility easements from Isidoro Ramirez

and Maria De Jesus Ramirez, for the extension of water service lines to the Tanquecitos II Subdivision.  These being:

(1) a 15-foot utility easement, being the North 15 feet of Tract A-2, Tanquecitos II,  situated in Porcion 32, Abstract 296, Webb County, Texas; and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits A and B; and

(2) a 15-foot utility easement, being the North 15 feet of Tract A-3,   Tanquecitos II, situated in Porcion 32, Abstract 296, Webb County, Texas; and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits C and D.

 

Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-007.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

14.  2006-R-008  Accepting the donation of two (2) utility easements from Rafael

Hernandez, for the extension of water service lines to the Tanquecitos II Subdivision.  These being:

(1) a 15-foot utility easement, being the North 15 feet of Tract A-4, Tanquecitos II,  situated in Porcion 32, Abstract 296, Webb County, Texas; and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits A and B; and

(2) a 15-foot utility easement, being the North 15 feet of Tract A-5, Tanquecitos II, situated in Porcion 32, Abstract 296, Webb County, Texas; and described by Metes and Bounds and Survey attached as Exhibits C and D.

 

    Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-008.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

15.  2006-R-009  Accepting the donation of two (2) utility easements from Memorial

Gardens of Laredo, Inc., for the extension of utility services lines to the Laredo Ranchettes Subdivision.  These being:

 

 

(1) A 15-foot utility easement containing 6,126 square feet of land, more or less, situated in Porcion 32, Abstract 296, Webb County, Texas, being out of Tract 13, Laredo Ranchettes, amending plat recorded in Volume 2, Page 233, Webb County Plat Records; and described by metes and bounds and survey attached as Exhibits A and B; and

(2) A 15-foot utility easement containing 6,126 square feet of land, more or less, situated in Porcion 32, Abstract 296, Webb County, Texas, being out of Tract 14, Laredo Ranchettes, amending plat recorded in Volume 2, Page 233, Webb County Plat Records; and described by metes and bounds and survey attached as Exhibits C and D. 

 

    Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-009.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

16.  2006-R-010  Authorizing the City Manager to enter into and execute an Interlocal

Government Agreement pursuant to the Vernon’s Texas Government Code, Chapter 791, between the City of Laredo and the County of Webb, in which Webb County’s law enforcement agency, namely the Webb County Sheriff’s Department and the city’s law enforcement agency, namely the Laredo Police Department, require the formation of a mutual aid law enforcement task force to assist each other in the areas of the traffic control, crowd control and general law enforcement both within and beyond the city limits during the various Washington’s Birthday Celebration festivities scheduled for January 26, 2006 to February 19, 2006.

 

     Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-010.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

17.  2006-R-011  Appointing Moses Goldberg, Diana Murillo, and Rick Norton to the

Laredo Convention & Visitors Bureau (LCVB) Advisory Committee effective this date.

 

    Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-011.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

18.  2006-R-012  Opposing the construction of reinforced fencing,  from 15 miles northwest

of the land port of Laredo to Brownsville, Texas, on the Gulf Coast, along the Rio Grande River between the United States and Mexico; and avoid “walling off our economy” [as stated by President Bush]; and directing that a copy of this Resolution be sent to the U.S. Senators representing Texas, to the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Member of the Homeland Security Committee of the Senate, to the Chairperson and Ranking Member of the Homeland Security Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and to the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

 

     Motion to approve Resolution # 2006-R-012.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0 

 

19.  2006-R-014  Approving and adopting the Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and

Restrictions including Architectural Guidelines, for all future development of real properties located at the Laredo International Airport and listed in said Declaration, in the form and content shown on Exhibit A attached to this Resolution; and directing the City Manager to execute the same and have it recorded in official property records of Webb, County, Texas. 

 

     Motion to table.

 

                            Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

                            Second:  Cm.  Galo

                            For:     7                               Against:  0                                Abstain:  0

 

XI.       MOTIONS

 

20.  Consideration for approval to award a professional services contract to Puig

Engineering in the amount of $162,500.00 for an environmental assessment and feasibility study of the West Laredo Corridor Phase II – Las Cruces / Flecha Lane Realignment. Funding is available in the West Laredo / CPL Road - Phase II Account.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

21.  Consideration for approval to rescind the selection of consultant Raba-Kistner

Consultants, Inc., San Antonio, Texas, for the City of Laredo Landfill Type IV Cells Project owing to the current Assessment of Alternatives for Future Landfill Capacity projects by SCS Engineers and the impact the results of this project may have on future solid waste management needs. 

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

22.  Consideration for approval of change order no. 1 a decrease of $50,000.00 due to a

recommended reduction in foundation work per consultant to the construction contract with LEH Contractors, Inc., San Antonio, Texas, for the Los Obispos Unit-5, Remediation Project, Phase III.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

23.  Consideration for approval of additional credit contract time for Three Police         

Substations Project constructed by St. Michaels Homes, Inc., Laredo, Texas.  Final contract amount is $386,195.23.  Since the project was completed 83 working days over the contract time, an amount of $33,200.00 for liquidated damages was assessed (83 days x $400 per day).  Funding is available in the Police Trust Fund. 

 

Charlie San Miguel, Contractor, thanked the City Council and City staff for assisting him and his employees throughout the project.  He explained that they have experienced some delays and asked to be granted another sixty working days. 

 

Cynthia Collazo, Deputy City Manager, advised that the City of Laredo has worked with Mr.  San Miguel.  City staff has reviewed some of the numbers.  The total contracted time was 100 working days and that was extended to 162 working days.   She noted that staff recommendations changing the rate from $33,200 to $26,800. 

 

Motion to approve with amending the motion allow him sixty additional working days with a seven days penalty.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Garcia

Second:  Cm.  Belmares

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

24.  Authorizing the City Manager to negotiate a contract with the sole qualified bidder

Khaledi Bridge of the Americas Ltd. for approximately 32,542 square feet of unfinished retail space located at the corner of Convent and Water streets.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

25.  Authorizing the City Manager to contribute $50,000.00 from the 250th Anniversary

Celebration budget to the Villa Antigua Museum in exchange for a permanent display on the history of Laredo at that museum.

 

This item was replaced by # 1 on the supplemental agenda.

 

26.  Authorizing the City Manager to execute an agreement with the Laredo Chamber of

Commerce to administer funds for the operation of the Monterrey office, known as the Laredo Trade & Travel Center, thru March 31, 2006.  The administrative fees to be charged by the Laredo Chamber of Commerce shall not exceed $400.00 per month.  Total fund administration for service thru March 31, 2006 shall not exceed $35,000.00.  Funding is available in the Convention & Visitors Bureau Fiscal Year 2005 -2006 budget.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

27.  Authorizing the City Manager to sign an inter-local agreement with International

Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC) to collect quarterly Water Quality samples from Manadas Creek for the Clean River Program (CRP) for the period of February 1, 2006 through August 31, 2007.  IBWC is under contract with Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and is responsible for collecting the water quality data from seventy two (72) monitoring stations along the Rio Grande River.  Under the agreement, the Environmental Services Department will collect quarterly water quality samples and send to the IBWC contract lab, so there will be no cost for sample analysis except for the manpower to collect the samples.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

28.  Motion to extend and award a Professional Service Contract to Garza, Martinez, & Co.,

Certified Public Accountants for a period of two (2) years in the amounts not to exceed $72,000.00 for each fiscal year in order to provide audit services for fiscal year ending September 30, 2006 and for fiscal year ending September 30, 2007.  Audit fees will be allocated to the professional services line item among the different funds to be audited. This contract is subject to future budget appropriations.

 

Motion to approve.

 

 

 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

29.  Consideration to authorize the purchase of seventy (70) sets of structural fire fighting

protective uniforms from Dooley Tackaberry, Deer Park, Houston, through the Houston Galveston Area Council of Governments (HGAC) cooperative contract pricing in the total amount of $121,798.50. The set includes the fire coat, trousers, knee boots, gloves, hoods, suspenders, and helmets.  Funding is available in the 2005 Contractual Obligation Bond proceeds, General Fund – Fire Department.

 

Motion to approve with an amendment.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Belmares

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

30.  Authorizing the City Manager to grant a public fireworks display permit to be held on

February 19, 2006 at 8:00 p.m. at L.I.F.E. Downs on Highway 59 during the Washington’s Birthday Celebration sponsored by HEB Food Stores. The technician for the display will be Melrose Pyrotechnics, Incorporated.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

31.  Consideration to authorize the purchase of one (1) replacement fire pumper truck from

Siddons Fire Apparatus, Inc., Houston, Texas, in the total amount of $278,872.00, through the Texas Local Government Purchasing Cooperative (Buy Board).  Funding is available in the 2005 Contractual Obligation Fund.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

32.  Authorizing the City Manager to amend the contract with South Texas Food Bank for

Fiscal 2005 – 2006 increasing the amount from $16,875.00 to $18,875.00, and authorizing the City Manager to implement the contract.  Funding is available in the General Fund / Aid to Other Agencies.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

33.  Authorizing the City Manager to amend the contract with Border Area Nutrition

Council for Fiscal Year 2005 – 2006 increasing the amount from $18,125.00 to $28,125.00, and authorizing the City Manager to implement the contract.  Funding is available in the General Fund.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

34.  Consideration to authorize the City Manager to execute a contract with

PoliceReports.US, LLC, Mooresville, NC to provide an online police report

distribution system.  This system will allow police reports to be secured via the internet.  The fee for service will be obtained through the fees collected during the distribution process and paid by the purchasers of reports.  For traffic reports, PoliceReports.US will retain $2.00 for each report distributed through their system.  The Police Department would receive $4.00 for each police report secured from the online system.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

35.  Authorizing the City Manager to acquire through negotiations, that property that

comprises a part of the Southern Hotel, legally described as, the south 49.6  feet of the east 25.6 feet of the west 35.5 feet of Lot 2, Block 73, Western Division, City of Laredo, in an amount not to exceed $85,000.00, plus incidental expenses. Funding is available in the 2002 Certificate of Obligation Fund.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

XII.     STAFF REPORTS

 

36.  A.  Presentation by Texas Department of Transportation on current and proposed

 projects.

 

Clay Smith gave the following report:

 

I will first update you on our current construction projects that are going on throughout Laredo.  We are currently having about 60 active projects district wide.

 

I H 35 widening:  $44.0 million

US 59 widening:  $22.8 million

I H 35 DC # 7:  $12.0 million

FM 1472 RM:  $4.7 million

FM 1472 RRGS:  $31.0 million

 

Selected projects under construction include the widening of IH 35 currently at a construction cost of $44.0 million.  Currently there are two lanes in each direction with two way frontage roads.  The proposed construction will provide for an expansion from 2 to 3 lanes in each direction and the reconstruction of the frontage roads which will become one way frontage roads.  Overpasses will also be constructed at Tres Equis and Carrier Drives.  In addition to these, the grading will be redone to enhance drainage and the structures will be widened. 

 

Designed as a 25 month-long project, expected for completion in the spring of 2007, the US 59 project is tentatively scheduled for completion this spring.  This project includes the widening and reconstruction of U S 59 to 6 lanes which will result in widening of the road as well as in the addition of a left turn lane.  Construction for this project began in the spring of 2003and is scheduled for completion in the summer of 2008.

 

I H 35 DC # 7 is a 17 month long project that will connect northbound IH-35 to westbound Loop 20.  Construction is scheduled for completion this spring.

 

The FM 1472 raised median project will be constructed just north of the proposed overpass.  The project will begin about 600 feet north of Manadas Creek and will extend north to Interamerica Blvd.  The project will consist of a dedicated left turn lane for northbound and southbound traffic which will separate the left turn lanes with a raised median while allowing intersection openings at major intersections.  This project began late last year and is scheduled for completion in November 2006.  It has an estimated construction cost of $4.7 million.

 

According to TxDOT reports, the number of trains crossing FM 1472 averages 12 per day with vehicle delays lasting up to 20 minutes per crossing.  After reviewing alternatives to decrease the number of vehicular delays in the area, TxDOT designed an overpass to be constructed over the UP railroad line.  The proposed project consists of separating FM 1472 from the rail line and connecting it to IH – 35 and Santa Maria through the overpass.  This project is scheduled construction this March and is scheduled for completion in November 2008.   Construction of the project is estimated to the cost of $31 million.

 

Trans-Texas Corridor

 

The Trans-Texas Corridor is a proposed multi-use, statewide network of transportation routes in Texas that will incorporate existing and new highways, railways and utility right of ways. 

 

As envisioned, each route will include:

 

Separate lanes for passenger vehicles and large trucks

Freight railways

High Speed commuter railways

Infrastructure for utilities including water lines, oil & gas pipelines, transmission lines for electricity, broadband and other telecommunications services

 

Why does Texas need the TTC?

 

Rapid Growth/Traffic Congestion

Safety

Economic Growth

 

Trans Texas Corridor 35

 

The proposed TTC-35 parallels I-35 and extends from north of Dallas/Fort Worth to Mexico and possibly the Gulf Coast.

 

Environmental study:

 

Since spring of 2004, TxDOT has held more than 100 public meetings to receive public input on possible locations for the TTC 35.

 

In the next couple of months, a final series of public hearings to review the findings of the first study phase will be held.  If a preferred corridor is selected, additional environmental studies will be need to narrow the final alignment.

 

Construction:

 

No construction contracts have been awarded.  In March of last year, TxDOT and Cintra-Zachry signed a comprehensive development agreement for the TTC-35.  This agreement authorizes a $3.5 million planning effort only.

 

Trans Texas Corridor I-69

 

TTC I-69 is a planned 1,600 mile national highway connecting to Mexico, the United States and Canada.

 

General Location:

 

The Proposed TTC-I-69 extends from Texarkana/Shreveport to Mexico (possibly the Rio Grande Valley or Laredo). The initial study areas is about 650 miles long.

 

Environmental Study:

 

The environmental study began in early 2004 and continued through 2005.  A final series of public hearings to review and comment on the results of the initial study is tentatively scheduled for this summer.  If a preferred corridor is selected, additional environmental studies will be needed to narrow the final alignment.

 

The Mobility Challenge

 

TxDOT is currently facing a significant mobility challenge.  Recent studies report that in order to achieve acceptable mobility statewide by the year 2030, $188 billion will be needed for construction of projects.  However,, if TxDOT relies on traditional funding sources, only $102 billion available.  This leaves us with a significant gap of $86 million.

 

Why Texas has problem

 

1.  Over the past 20 years, federal leadership has distributed transportation funds without consideration of population shifts among states.

 

2.  In 1987, state leadership began to transfer transportation funds to other areas of the state budget.

 

3.  If the Legislature took funds from other parts of the state budget, it would only provide $43 billion over the next 25 years

 

4.  Texans cannot afford a gasoline tax gas increase

 

The Federal government has transferred more than $5 billion in federal gas taxes paid by Texans to other states’ transportation needs.  That’s money that won’t ever come back to Texas.

 

Over the past 20 years, $10.5 billion has been transferred from transportation needs

To other areas of the state budget.  That’s money that will never be available again.

 

Congress would have to take funds away from other states and the Legislature would have to take away funds from other parts of the state budget.  That wouldn’t be enough to meet our metropolitan mobility needs, let alone statewide system maintenance and other critical expenses. 

 

The state gas tax only pays for 32% of our current state transportation budget.  In order to generate enough cash to expand our transportation system as needed over the next 25 years, the Legislature would have to raise the state tax gas by 175% and stop the trend of increasing transfers to other areas of the state budget. 

 

TxDOT has a plan

 

1.  Reduce congestion

2.  Eliminate unsafe conditions

3.  Expand economic opportunity

4.  Improve air quality

5.  Increase the value of transportation needs

 

TxDOT’s Strategy

 

New financial options

Empower leaders

Increase pressure to drive down costs

Demand consumer driven decisions

 

The TxDOT plan calls for faster completion of transportation projects with additional money to get the job done right.  This plan is focused on:

 

TxDOT’s Strategy:

 

New financial options:  The Governor and the Legislature have authorized new revenue tools, including Safety Bonds, the Texas Mobility Fund, toll equity an toll debt to build postponed projects.  TxDOT is using these new revenue tools to build projects sooner at a lower cost.  TxDOT is also inviting the private sector to participate in financing our transportation projects.  TxDOT is matching private sector capital with public sector capital for long term solutions.

 

Empower leaders:  TxDOT is separating planning and execution of ocal projects, regional projects and state projects.  TxDOT is reaching out to local and regional leaders to be our partners in this effort.

 

Increase pressure to drive down costs:  TxDOT  is emplementing processes to encourage more competition among companies that already do business with TxDOT.

 

Demand consumer drive decisions:  TxDOT is making its asset investment decisions based on short term, mid term and long term solutions.  TxDOT is considering transportation solutions other than roads and highways.  TxDOT is giving consumers a choice.

 

The TxDOT Plan is the Future of Transportation

 

TxDOT is Engaged

Locals are our Partners

Business Resources are Critical

Consumers Drive our Decisions

 

The TxDOT Plan – Texas Moving Forward

 

The entire TxDOT organization is committed to the success of this plan,  It is our present and our future and we are moving forward.

 

TxDOT is engaged:  The TxDOt plan required strong and consistent commitment and leadership from local and regional officials.  Our future depends on effective leadership and bold action.

 

Locals are our partners:  The private sector must step forward to bring their talents, ideas, and financial resources to the table.  We cannot solve this problem alone.  Public/private partnerships are essential.

 

Business resources are critical:  The public must remain engaged in shaping transportation opportunities by identifying needs and taking advantage of transportation options.

 

Consumers Drive our Decisions:  Consumer choices will determine our success.

 

Mobility Needs in Laredo Entertainment Center

 

Laredo is one of the fastest growing cities in the state and nation.  During the 1990’s Laredo was second only to Las Vegas, Nevada with regard to total percentage increase in traffic  volumes.  Because of this growth, the highway and transportation network within Laredo has not been able to keep pace with the growth in persons, vehicles and trade.

 

This phenomenal growth has resulted in the urgent need to expand some of the existing traffic systems and to plan for and construct new transportation routes through and around the city of Laredo.  Cuatro Vientos and the Laredo Outer Loop and two of these newly proposed transportation routes that are envisioned to help relieve the city of Laredo of the growing number of crashes and congestion that plague this are of prolific growth. 

 

Some funding is currently allocated to these much-needed projects

 

Through a review of existing plans and initiatives, as well as open group discussions involving numerous regional leaders and stakeholders, the following vision was developed:

 

1.  Loop 20 should be developed with overpasses and additional lanes and tied to

     Cuatro Vientos to function more like IH Loop 410 in San Antonio.

 

2.  Cuatro Vientos should be developed as soon as possible and extended south to

Rio Bravo.  Additionally, Cuatro Vientos should be tied into U. S. 83 along an intermediate route between Rio Bravo and Loop 20. 

 

3.  Loop 20 should be extended north to the Webb County interchange or similar

     logical area.

 

4.  the Outer Loop should be planned to be developed in multiple phases and

eventually look like Loop 1604 on the north side of San Antonio (i.e. also high mobility and limited access for “ultimate” design.)

 

From these related discussions, the following specific priorities were defined:

 

1.  Take Cuatro Vientos to construction within 12 months; extending Cuatro Viento south to Rio Bravo.

2.  Complete Loop 20 by providing overpasses at McPherson Rd./Del Mar

3.  International Blvd, Jacaman Rd., University Blvd., Spur 400, and US 59

intersections; adding a third lane between SH 359 and US 59; extending Loop 20 North to Webb Interchange.

4.  Environmentally clear the Outer Loop for ultimate design and develop a   

phased approach to construction, acquiring or reserving all the right of way needed now.

                             5.  Develop east-west tie-ins from Cuatro Vientos to US 83.

The phased development of the Laredo Outer Loop was further defined as:

 

1.  Immediately develop and acquire a right of way foot print for the ultimate   

     design.

2.  Re-consider the alignment to allow for the new high school and Dilworth

     development plans.

3.  Consider typing in the north end to IH 35 as well as connecting along the new

     high school.

4.  Develop Phase 1 as a 2 lane roadway, Phase 2 as a 4 lane divided roadway with a

wide median and Phase 3 as an expressway section constructed in the median of Phase 2.

                       

The Laredo and Corpus Christi District offices have engaged a consulting team, led by Turner Collie and Braden to investigate the feasibility of constructing and operating a Laredo-Corpus Christi area roadway for the exclusive use of trucks.  This truck only facility could expedite truck movements, particularly between the Laredo ports of entry and the Port of Corpus Christi’s planned container facility in San Patricio County, La Quinta Trade Gateway.  If feasible, this facility could be extended to other areas and used as a mode for other truck roadways. 

 

The roadway could offer benefits such as:

 

Increase speed limits

Higher weight limits

Expedited custom and other processes

Enhanced safety

Increase economic development

 

Project status:

 

1.  Environmental constraints mapping has been completed for the study area.

2.  A universe of alignment alternatives has been prepared connecting the international bridges in the Laredo area to the proposed La Quinta terminal and the Port of Corpus Christi.

3.  Evaluation of the universe of alternatives is underway.  The goal is to select a preferred corridor for more detailed study.

4.  Truckway facility operations strategies are being developed

5.  NAFTA freight movement forecasts have been prepared and are being factored into a truck travel forecast.

6.  Interview are continuing with local government representatives and freight handling companies

 

The final feasibility report is due in June.

 

District Consultant Budget for FY 06 - $15 million

 

These professional services contracts provide services for:

Professional Engineering contracts

Services for environmental clearance

Schematic development

Right of way determination

PS & E development

Other contracts include geotechnical and surveying

 

There are currently 26 active contracts in the district which include:

 

22 Engineering Contracts

1 Lab Contract

3 Surveying Contracts

 

TxDOT LRD is also in the process of awarding five engineering contracts, three surveying contracts and two utility engineering contracts.

 

Following the retirement of District Engineer Luis Ramirez, TxDOT Executive Director Michael Behrens decided to re-evaluate the job requirements for the position.

 

In September 1, 2005, David Casteel began his role as Interim DE of the Laredo District.

 

On January 9, 2006, the position for a permanent District Engineer was opened and will remain so until February 7.

 

History indicates that the hiring process usually takes about 4 to 8 weeks for this position

 

A new District Engineer will be in place by this spring.

 

Like all other district within the Texas Department of Transportation, the Laredo District is focused on promoting and facilitating mobility throughout the state while ensuring that motorist is safe.  To ensure that the transportation needs of Texas’ motorist are met, the Laredo District employs a total of 270 employees throughout its eight county districts.  Of these, 144 are employed in the Laredo District Headquarters, Area and maintenance office and work diligently to provide safe and efficient roads. 

 

B.  Presentation of the Fiscal Year 2004 – 2005 Comprehensive Annual Financial

Report (CAFR) prepared by the City of Laredo’s Financial Services Department and audited by the Independent Audit Firm of Garza, Martinez, & Co.

 

Angie Cantu, representing Garza, Martinez & Company, advised that they have just completed the audit ending the fiscal year of September 30, 2005.  As part of this audit, they issued three reports:

 

First:  Fairness on the financial statements. 

Second:  Compliance with laws and regulations as they apply to federal monies.

Third:  Internal controls in place that the City has to properly prepare the financial statements and being in compliance with laws and regulations. 

 

She said that all three of these reports that were issued were and un-qualified opinion which means that it was a clean report. The City of Laredo is in compliance.  She added that the City of Laredo has met their goal of 15.5 % of their fund balance. 

 

C.  Presentation by the Utilities Department regarding the proposed rate restructuring

and rate escalation for Capital Improvements including the Secondary Water Source, as recommended by the Water Issues Committee.

 

XIII.    GENERAL COUNCIL DISCUSSIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

 

37.  A.  Request by Council Member Hector J. Garcia

 

1.  Discussion with possible action on designating $25,000.00 for various paving projects

and $25,000.00 for various sidewalk projects, for a total of $50,000.00 designated funds from CIP District II Discretionary Funds.

 

Motion to designate $25,000 for various paving projects and $25,000 for various sidewalk projects, for a total of $50,000 designated funds from CIP District II Discretionary Funds. 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Rendon

Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0 

 

2.  Discussion with possible action regarding the traffic plan on HWY 59 for the Jalapeño

     Festival.

 

Roberto Murillo, Traffic Director, said that staff has been meeting with the Jalapeno Festival organizers to discuss the traffic plan on HWY 59.  They are discussing several different options and expressing different concerns regarding the safety procedures and smooth vehicular traffic.  He added that they will meet tomorrow to express their concern for the subdivision home owners and their access to their subdivisions. 

 

3.  Discussion with possible action regarding the installation of a steel guard rail at the

     corner of Newport Avenue and O’Kane Street using CIP District II Discretionary Funds.

 

Motion to install a steel guard rail at the corner of Newport Avenue and O’Kane Street using the CIP Discretionary funds.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Rendon

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 B.  Request by Council Member Johnny Rendon

 

1.  Status report regarding the construction projects at the Laredo International Airport.

 

                 Jose Flores, Airport Director, gave a powerpoint presentation of the following projects:

 

                 Typical Pavement Cross Section – Compacted Sub-Grade

                 Taxiway Alpha Reconstruction

                 Runway 17R Reconstruction – Phase 1

                 General Aviation Apron Reconstruction – Phase I

                 Taxiway Delta Reconstruction – Phase 1

                 Laredo Specialty Hospital

                 Gateway Community Health Clinic

                 Airport Operations Viewing Area

                 To Listen to Air Traffic please tune to 89.5 on your FM Dial

                

                 C.  Request by Council Member Gene Belmares

 

1.  Discussion with possible action regarding the addition of $5,000.00 to the Utilities

Department Highland Water Storage Tank Painting Project for the United High School football players’ recognition.

 

Motion to appropriate $5,000 from the Discretionary Fund of Cm.  Belmares to the Utilities Department Highland Water Storage Tank Painting Project for the United High School football player’s recognition 

 

Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 D.  Request by Mayor Pro-Tempore Jose A. Valdez, Jr.

 

1.  Discussion with possible action to modify the Father McNaboe Park Master Plan to

     include a little league baseball field.

 

     Motion to table.

 

     Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

     Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

     For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

2.  Discussion with possible action regarding the purchase / construction of a mobile storage

     facility at the Father McNaboe Park.

 

Motion to use the Discretionary funds of District VII for the purchase/construction of a mobile storage facility at the Father McNaboe Park.

 

Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain: 0

 

3.  Discussion with possible action regarding the purchase of in-field bases for Northwest    

     Little League.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, advised that the funds cannot be taken from the discretionary funds. 

 

     Motion to locate the funds to purchase an in-field base for Northwest Little League.

 

     Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

     Second:  Cm.  Ramirez

     For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

                 E.  Request by Council Member Juan Ramirez

 

1.  Discussion with possible action regarding the lease with Webb County for water park

     land at Lake Casa Blanca.

 

Larry Dovalina, City Manager, said that the City of Laredo Legal Department is currently working with the County Attorney’s Office in preparing a document so they can be submitted to the Commissioner’s Court and to the City Council.

 

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.

 

38.  Request for Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 551.072 in

regards to deliberation of the purchase, exchange, lease, or value of real property in the Manadas Creek area, East of Interstate Highway 35 for purposes of regional drainage and retainage basin, because deliberation in an open meeting would have a detrimental effect in the position of the governmental body in negotiations with a third person; and return to open session for possible action.

 

Motion to go into Executive Session pursuant to Texas Government Code Section 551.072 in regards to deliberation of the purchase, exchange, lease, or value of real property in the Manadas Creek area, East of Interstate Highway 35 for purposes of regional drainage and retainage basin, because deliberation in an open meeting would have a detrimental effect in the position of the governmental body in negotiations with a third person; and return to open session for possible action.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

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

 

Motion to authorize the City Manager to continue negotiations for the purchase of an approximately 90.22 acre tract of land in north Laredo up to, but not more than $2,000,000.00

 

Moved:  Cm.  Belmares

Second:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

For:     7                                        Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

XV.      ADJOURNMENT

 

      SUPPLEMENTAL AGENDA

 

            I.  MOTIONS

 

1.  Authorizing the City Manager to contribute $50,000 from the 250th Anniversary

Celebration budget to the villa Antigua Museum in exchange for a permanent display on the history of Laredo at that museum.  The City of Laredo will contribute the $50,000 contingent on Villa Antigua Museum receiving a $50,000 matching grant. 

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:     7                                          Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0

 

2.  Consideration for approval to reject the bids for the SH 359 Tanquesitos I – Wastewater

Collection and Water Distribution Improvements Project, due to the irregularities in the bid tabulations and to authorize staff to revise the bid documents and re-bid the project.

 

Motion to approve.

 

Moved:  Cm.  Galo

Second:  Cm.  Amaya

For:      6                                         Against:  1                                            Abstain:  0

                                                       Cm.  Ramirez

 

            II.  EXECUTIVE SESSION

 

The City Council hereby reserves the right to go into executive session at any time during the 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.

 

            III.  ADJOURNMENT

 

                  Motion to adjourn.                                                              Time:  10:11 p.m.

 

                  Moved: Mayor Pro Tempore Valdez

                  Second:  Cm.  Belmares

                  For:     7                                         Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0