2018-06-13 / Front Page

City borrowing millions to finance long-needed extensive street repairs

BY ALLEN ESSEX
Reporter

Raymondville officials signed papers late Tuesday to borrow $2.4 million to repair the city’s crumbling streets.

Since the city’s assessed property values have come in higher than expected, more funding will be available to finance the extensive program of street repairs and replacement, City Manager Eleazar “Yogi” Garcia said.

During meetings over the past few months, officials have reviewed photos of streets with numerous potholes and cracks, many showing temporary repairs by city crews. Priorities have been set to schedule work on the worst streets first.

Some concrete streets will be replaced only at intersections and cracks in the concrete will be sealed. Others will be entirely repaved or overlaid with asphalt, depending on the condition.

After the city advertises for bids and engineers review bids submitted, there will be a closer estimate on how many of the streets on the list made by com- missioners will actually be fixed, officials said.

Financial consultant Donald Gonzales explained details of the 20-year loan the city is seeking and said market conditions are better than expected but quick action is needed to take advantage of interest rates.

A total of $1,038,413 in interest will be paid on the $2.4 certificate of obligation issue that will be repaid over 20 years, City Manager Eleazar “Yogi” Garcia said. The interest rate to be charged city taxpayers is 3.39 percent.

Certificates of obligation are often used to finance Texas public projects because approval of voters is not needed and the cost of a bond issue and campaign to seek voter approval is avoided.

Also approved was submission of a Fair Housing Marketing Plant and a waiting list policy for Texas Home Investment Partnerships HRA Program application with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs to build three to five homes for low-income persons with disabilities or whose homes were damaged in natural disasters.

Approval was also given to spend $6,200 for a July 4 program at Veterans Park. About $5,000 of the A kickball tournament will be held at the park on June 30 and fireworks celebration will be held there July 1, Garcia said. IN OTHER BUSINESS:

Commissioners approved $1 an hour raises for water treatment plant operator Jesus A. Gonzales and sewage treatment operator Jose M. Gonzales. Both have just received their certifications as utility equipment operators.

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