By Gary Emmert, Correspondent
The Planning and Zoning Commission (P&ZC) took center stage on the meeting held on Jan. 22 in the Wright Room of the Harris Community Center. Amongst the items on the discussion were zoning changes for the vacant field on 6th Avenue and Birdwell Street as well as the final consideration to approve the plat that will one day be a new Tractor Supply Addition.
Before the P&ZC’s presentation, the City Council first considered routine items including minutes from the January 8 meeting and an authorization to purchase a sewer camera for the Water and Sewer Department.
Director of Planning, Cheryl Maxwell, began the P&ZC presentation with item Z-19-01, a zoning change from Multi Family to Retail District on 4.442 acres located at the southeast corner of E. 6th Avenue and Birdwell Street. This area was previously the Belton ISD football/track and field site. “I am so excited to see that fence come down, which will make 6th (Avenue) look so much friendlier,” said Mayor Marion Grayson. All property owners within 200 feet were notified of the proposed zoning change, with one response coming back in favor. Property owner Jerry Mays said of the proposal, “A retail site would be great for developing the area. The traffic through there is fantastic.” The motion was carried unanimously.
After approving an item that recommended zoning changes for two tracts, the City Council considered a final plat of Belton Tractor Supply Addition. Comprised of 4.495 acres, the location of the new company would be located on the north side of US 190/I-14, just west of Connell Street. “We’re excited about Tractor Supply,” said Mayor Grayson. The motion was carried unanimously.
The final item from P&ZC to be considered was an ordinance abandoning a portion of an emergency vehicle access and public utility easement located within the Forrest Hill, Phase IV, Subdivision. The easement was no longer necessary, according to Planner Kelly Atkinson. The motion was carried unanimously.
After approving the FY2018 Annual Report for Belton’s Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone, City Manager Sam Listi asked that a public hearing be held and the council considers the designation of Tax Abatement Reinvestment Zone #13, the South Loop Industrial Park. This area, consisting of 37.07 acres, is located south of E. Loop 121 and east of S. IH-35, along Grove Road and the west side of Capitol Way. “We would still have the authority to say yes or no…typically favoring industrial job creation,” said Listi. The motion was carried unanimously.
Consideration for approval of ordinance on first reading and request to set a public hearing for February 12 was carried unanimously. This would grant one-year extensions to commercial solid waste collection franchises; Waste Management, Inc., Waste Connections, Eagle Disposal, and Temple Iron & Metal.
Authorization for the City Manager to execute an extension to the “Operation, Maintenance, and Management Agreement” between Temple, Belton, and Brazos River Authority (BRA) for operation and maintenance of the Temple-Belton Wastewater Treatment Plant and Belton Main Lift Station as well as the operation of the Cities’ Industrial Pretreatment Programs was approved unanimously. Both contracts are set to expire in September and staffs from both cities extremely pleased with the performance of the BRA, according to City Engineer and Director of Public Works Angellia Points. “What’s really neat about the BRA is they are a non-profit agency of the State of Texas. So they have a vested interest to make sure that water is treated appropriately, that goes into the Brazos River basin,” said Points. Temple has already approved their part of the contract.
Finally, considerations authorizing the City Manager to execute an Interlocal Agreement for a Central Texas Fire and Arson Task Force as well as an ordinance prescribing the classifications for police officer positions were approved unanimously.