Contracts and grants dominate City agenda

By Gilda Morales

The Van Horn City Council met in regular session on their new meeting day last Monday. The 26-item agenda was heavy on routing contract renewals with many items tabled for further review. The Public Hearing regarding the submission of an application to the Texas Department of Agriculture for a Texas Community Development Block Grant (TxCDBG) drew no audience or comments, and passed unanimously. The next item on the agenda for a resolution to apply for assistance under the TxCDBG Planning/Capacity Building Fund also passed unanimously.

In routine business, Council voted to renew contracts with ZAP’S I.T. and Communications (David Rivera), at the same amount as his previous contract, and to approve an engagement letter with Knapp & Company, PC, to provide auditing services. Council also approved a 3-year agreement with Kinetic Business (Windstream) for new internet phones and internet services.

Zach Schaefer, Culberson County Agent, came before council on behalf of the local 4H to request water and delivery to the rodeo arena for planned ropings, play days and other 4H events to help control the dust. Council approved unanimously.

A request from Edward Torres for approval for a proposal from EPG Planning Consultants for separate men’s bathroom, emergency shower and kitchenette at their shop was approved. The construction will use $12,000 from the current budget with the balance to be budgeted for the next fiscal year.

In other business, Council:

Approved a quote for new voting machines for the May 7, 2022 Joint General election in the amount of $25,000, with the cost to be divided between the 4 government entities.

Approved a letter of support for UTEP’s Build Back Better Regional Challenge which seeks to build a training center in collaboration with Sul Ross, UTEP and CCAISD, tentatively at the county Industrial Park.

Approved a request from Jaime Hudson to approve the engineer’s bid specs for water tank maintenance and rehabilitation and to advertise for project bids.

Approved the State of Texas per diem rates for mileage, overnight lodging and meals.

Approved request from Phillip Cornett, John Cowan & Associates, Inc., to replat the Family Dollar Property on west Broadway for commercial development.

Tabled a request from Jeff McCoy to forgive an abnormally high water bill at 1107 Houston pending more research.

Tabled action on potential action by the Town of Van Horn on the proposed Rule 11 agreement between TOVH and Hudspeth County Water Improvement District No. 1 in connection with the pending lawsuit identified by Cause No. 2020-DCV3703.