2017-09-13 / Front Page

City tackles long agenda


City of Raymondville commissioners tackled a long agenda Tuesday evening including a public hearing on a $9.589 million budget and condemnation of certain properties.

In the condemnation of properties, commissioners approved proceeding with condemnation and demolition of two properties, 434 W. Sonora and 705 W. Lochrie, and providing 180 additional days for owners to bring three other properties up to code.

Those properties given additional time include 592 W. Sonora, 895 E. Norman and 514 E. Charles.

There were no comments during the public hearing on the proposed budget that includes a 3% pay raise and no increase in taxes.

The general fund amounts to $3.9 million, the water and sewer fund totals $3.585 million and special revenue funds (including EDC) totalling $2.081 million

One late addion City Manager Eleazar (Yogi) Garcia Jr. noted was $5,000 for shelter expense account in the event of a shelter being needed as was the case last year during a cold spell.

In other business, the commissioners heard a report from Municipal Judge Felicita Gutierrez covering new legislation approved by the state that includes paying $12.50 an hour instead of $10 for those who are sentenced to community service. That amount goes toward fines.

She also noted she plans to offer amnesty from Oct. 1-31 with details to be announced in next week’s Chronicle.

She noted her grand total collected in August amounted to $36,557.07.

The Commissioner also approved resignations of Water Treatment Plant operator Rigoberto Reyes, Meter Reader Robert Galvan and street department employee Marcos Contreras Jr, all of whom are accepting other jobs.

Approval was given to advertise/ hire/transfer for new water department employees.

Mayor Gilbert Gonzales was appointed to succeed Chris Tamez on the Amigos Del Valle Board as she no longer can attend the morning meetings with Garcia as the alternate. Gonzales was also named to be the city candidate for re-appointment to the appraisal board.

The commission approved beginning the process for tax abatement for the Cavazos Properties at 1200 W. Hidalgo for use as apartments for the elderly.

The tax assessor-collector report revealed that about 89% of city taxes have been collected thru August. The city budget is based on 85% collections.

Approved was the retirement of K-9 Diego who has served the city for 5-6 years. He is in ill health and will be adopted. Diego was obtained through a $10,000 department of justice grant.

A new K-9 should be obtained soon with the appointed handler now set to attend training, Police Chief Uvaldo Zamora noted.

Also approved was tele- medicine services at a cost of $4 a month per employee through the city’s group health provider, Entrust.

Bids were opened and read for water department chemicals as well as closed bids for city surplus equipment. Bids will be considered at the commission meeting later this month.

Garcia also discussed plans to work on city streets.

Actions by the EDC were discussed and approved (see related story).

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