City council to sell COs for library, utility projects
Polk County Enterprise, May 2007
LIVINGSTON – While keeping its options open as to specific projects, the Livingston City County Tuesday night launched the process to sell $1.5 million in certificates of obligation to address library, water, sewer and electric service issues.
The certificates are tentatively scheduled to be sold next month.
To keep options open, the legal language stating the city’s intent to issue the COs will allow funds to be used for “library acquisition, renovation and construction” as well as the utility work. Library options being studied include possible acquisition of the First Baptist Church’s Wadsworth Building. The council last month authorized City Manager Marilyn Sutton to explore the purchase, but no further action has been taken.
Relating to the CO issue, the council also accepted the current fee schedule for financial advisory services with Coastal Securities, ltd. Jim Gilley, bond counsel with Coastal Securities, is handling the certificate of obligation issue and was also authorized last month to work on refinancing of the city’s remaining debt on a 1997 issue to take advantage of lower interest rates.
In other business, the council authorized the Livingston Police Department to apply for a Tobacco Compliance Grant. The grants, being offered through the State Comptroller’s Office, range from $1,000 to $40,000 and can be used for inspections, retailer education and compliance relating to tobacco sale laws.
Also authorized was an agreement with Ray and Associates for consulting services for the police department. The consultants will be reviewing the department’s command needs and staffing.
Members of the department were present at the meeting as a proclamation designating May 13-19 as National Police Week was approved by the council.
The council also gave its approval to implementation of a CodeRED emergency notification system. Sutton explained at last month’s meeting that the system will allow city officials to launch telephone calls to all city residents within approximately three minutes, or target citizens in a select area, in the event of an emergency. The Texas Municipal League entered into an agreement under which cities can utilize the CodeRED system for a fee of $5,000 per month.
The council also approved the expenditure of up to $5,000 for materials to help the Polk County Youth Rodeo Association make repairs to the arena at Barney Wiggins Memorial Park. Action on the request for help was tabled at the council’s February meeting to allow time to determine the extent of the roof damage. A contractor employed by the PCYRA determined the roof could be repaired.
Also gaining council approval was a request from Habitat for Humanity of Polk County to use the city warehouse at Matthews Park for temporary storage of donated building materials and an agreement with First National Bank for online services.
Councilman Ray Hill was reappointed to serve as the city’s representative on the Deep East Texas Council of Governments Board of Directors for a one-year term to begin July 1.
Also approved was a request for a $1,000 contribution to the Southeast Texas Recovery Coalition. The coalition was formed following Hurricane Rita to work with the federal government on behalf of the Texas delegation and DETCOG asked its member entities to contribute $1,000 to assist in covering outstanding obligations.
A preliminary plat for a portion of the Anthony Properties tract on U.S. 190 West was also approved. A little less than eight acres of the 42-acre tract, the highway frontage area between Long King Creek and First State Bank, is being developed as Livingston Corners.
The city manager reminded council members of the ongoing sale of Main Street Cookbooks as well as several upcoming events. Main Street Live!, a musical and entertainment event featuring the Livingston Community Swing Band and Walter Plant, will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, May 19, in the Livingston High School auditorium. The Texas Historical Commission design team is scheduled to assess downtown properties during a visit today (Thursday) in conjunction with the Main Street project. Sutton also reminded the council of the Polk County Peace Officers Association fishing tournament slated for this Saturday at Pedigo Park.
Also the council convened in closed session to discuss possible acquisition of property, no action was taken following return to open session.