By Lindsay Starr Platt, Correspondent
Tuesday night Belton City Council had award recognitions for both the Lena Armstrong Library and Belton Fire Department.
Employees of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers presented Belton Fire Department the “Castle Award for Excellence” for their continued support and rescue training for Lakes Belton and Stillhouse Hollow.
“This award is only given out at division level. We can’t think of a more deserving organization and group of individuals. Belton Texas does it right,” said Bradley Ellis, interim lake manager, park ranger, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Lena Armstrong Public Library was presented a plaque for 2015 Achievement of Library Excellence Award. The Texas Municipal Library Directors Association presented this award to only 41 libraries out of 556 in the state of Texas in 2015
Mayor Grayson recommended Frank Minosky be appointed to the Central Texas Council of Governments Executive Committee. Motion carried on this recommendation and was approved unanimously.
Following the annual performance review Mayor Grayson recommended a 3.5% increase for the city manager’s salary, as reflected in the employment agreement. Motion was carried on approval of the amendment to the employment agreement.
Also passed was a resolution ordering the General Election to be held on May 7.
The motion carried for an apartment development for low and moderate-income families to be located on the corner of Sparta Road and Commerce Drive. Homestead Development will develop the 80-unit Commerce Street Apartments and requested a $5,000 building permit fee waiver. The $5,000 building permit fee waiver would be a reduction in the estimated $10,000 fee, but all other permit fees will be collected. An estimated $65,980 in annual property taxes would be generated from the $10 million development, which would be taxed at full value.
Chief Ellis of the Belton Police Department presented their Annual Report including Annual Racial Profiling Report.
2015 Annual Report included: Racial Profiling Report, Calls for Service, Criminal Incidents, Arrests, Use of Force, Criminal Investigations, Traffic Contacts, Motor Vehicle Accidents, 2015 Highlights, Awards & Recognitions, Training, Animal Control, Code Enforcement and Annual Report 2015 Internal Complaints / Investigations.
Chief Ellis said the busiest calls this year were 10:00 a.m., Wednesday and October. And Belton Police Department had an overall average response time of 3.82 minutes on “Priority 1” calls.
Chief Ellis said you still have a better chance of getting a warning than a citation in Belton. And …. Lock your cars. Ellis said the community is welcome to join them at the next “Coffee with a Cop” at Grand Avenue Theater and the open house for the memorial project.
The motion was passed for the city manager to submit an application for grant funds for Phase III of the Central Texas Regional Law Enforcement Training Facility. The grant will be applied for through the Office of the Governor, Criminal Justice Division Facility for approximately $70,000.
Ellis said this facility in Belton, will be unlike any others in the region. The facility is planned to have a pistol range with an arena roof and space for tactile training.
Also passed was, Belton Police Department’s RUOK? Senior Adult Outreach Program to continue to get funding for a volunteer coordinator position.
See enclosed staff report from Assistant City Manager/Police Chief Gene Ellis. Recommend authorizing the City Manager to execute the agreement as presented.
Last on the agenda the motion carried to authorize the city manager to accept the contract with Halff Associates to design and bid the South Belton Sewer System Project in the amount of $500,000.
Angellia Points, director, Internal Services, engineer, City of Belton discussed the council workshop was held to discuss the options to serve South Belton with sewer service. Points said, City of Belton sewer lines currently reach just south of Grove Road while water service is available along the Interstate 35 corridor to the Lampasas River.
This project will serve South Belton as far south as the Lampasas River. The South Belton Sewer System will be made up of a series of at least two lift stations and approximately 18,000 linear feet of gravity fed sewer lines and 8,000 linear feet of force mains.
The cost to construct the South Belton Sewer System is estimated to be $5-$6 million.