|San Jacinto News Times - Local News
Copyright 2012 - Polk County Publishing Company
Council approves $700,000 grant for city street upgrades
SHEPHERD – Meeting in the new Shepherd Community Center for the first time, Shepherd City Council members voted Monday night to approve Hurricane Ike Round II Funds. The funds, obtained through an application submitted to the Fair Housing Authority, are in the amount of $700,000 and will be used to rehabilitate city streets and make culvert improvements on Church Street, according to Shepherd Mayor Glenn Dillon. The $700,000 is fully funded by the General Land Office of Texas, Dillon said. “The work should be completed by this time next year,” he said. Following a lengthy discussion about the waiver of rental fees for the Shepherd community Center, council members voted to grant a waiver for the Girl Scouts to use the center on a weekly basis for meetings, but voted against granting a rental fee waiver for the San Jacinto County 4-H organization’s Gold Star Banquet to be held in the center. A vote was passed to charge the 4-H a one-half day rental fee. Rental fees are $200 for one-half day and $400 for a full day. “The reason is that there is a larger chance for something to get damaged in the building if it is used for a full day,” Dillon said. When the fee is waived, the city is charged with paying for utilities, insurance and cleaning, according to the Mayor. He recommended that in the future organizations requesting fee waivers attend the city council meeting and make the request in person. Council members agreed that anytime a waiver is granted to a non-profit organization there should be a benefit received back to the city where the public’s interest is served. Saying the city can’t afford to keep up the train caboose in the Centennial City Park behind Preston Auto, Mayor Dillon suggested giving the caboose to Doug Milford who will move it across the street to his private property. “Milford gave the land where the city park is located to the city and was never recognized by the city for his donation,” Dillon said. He suggested installing a plaque on the land acknowledging Milford’s donation and also suggested putting up an awning that families can use for picnics on the property. A motion was approved to start research into giving the caboose to Milford and to recognize the land gift to the city from Milford. A request from the Shepherd Chamber of Commerce for additional funding for fireworks for the July 4th celebration was denied. According to Dillon, the chamber was requesting a total of $15,000 from the city for a fireworks display. The city had already agreed to donate $5,000 for fireworks. The request died for lack of a motion. Another request that died for lack of a motion was one from Waid Williams to move a portable building to Hwy. 150 and Hill Avenue to be used as a snow-cone and ice cream stand. In other business, city council members agreed to up the 35 miles per hour speed limit on the Hwy. 59 feeder roads in the city limits, following discussion with Texas Department of Transportation about what the speed limit should be.