Here are my notes on the City Council Meeting, the last for Genevieve Bassham and Mark Scott, two council members who did great jobs for the City of Marfa.
I also want to thank my Houston buddy Chuck Ward for gifting me a better IPad that does not randomly erase portions of my notes while I am taking them. Thank you, Chuck!
Notes on Marfa City Council Regular Meeting Tuesday, May 8th, 2018, 6 PM, Marfa City Hall
Council members present: Mark Scott, Genevieve Bassham, Brit Webb, Manny Baeza, Irma Salgado, Mayor Ann Marie Nafziger
Meeting convened at 6:00 pm.
Citizen comments- Saarin Keck- sewer and water issues based on last meeting report. Wants more info on potential fines, etc
Who is responsible for increase, fines?
Daniel a Hernandez introduces himself as new RGCOG local rep, based in Casper Room at City Hall.
Invites visits, questions.
Gretel Enck- letter of thanks to City for Blackwell school block party and mural. Hoping for continued partnerships with City.
Honoring history of Marfa is the focus.
Also says that council member Webb’s old dealership Webb Bros is represented on their website.
Saarin- thanks the RGCOG and City of Marfa for opening office here.
Teresa Todd congratulates council election winners.
Thanks outgoing councilors Scott and Bassham. Bassham thanks everyone.
Minutes approval. Item 4- unanimous
Item 5- Mayors report- attended criminal justice advisory committee meeting in El Paso on May 1.
Reminds everyone about the TXDOT public forum on HWY 67 next Wed the 16th. Public needs to attend and give input.
Tuesday May 22 is swearing in day for new councilors.
Gives Gary Mitschke a chance to give fire update.
Gary says that basic stats are 19,043 acres. Approx 70% contained. Cost approx four million dollars. Type 1 incident management team is there.
Lightning ignited the fire last Monday.
Helicopter base was relocated to the Marfa airport. Six copters at airport currently.
Country very rough, nearly impassable. Helicopter tankers are key. Probably one more week to go.
Personnel levels will be maintained based on continued risk of sparks spreading fire.
Ann Marie invited people to stay after meeting for refreshments for outgoing council members.
Admin report: Ann Marie presents for city admin:
City received a grant for tire disposal for $5000. Will be part of a clean up Marfa initiative.
City will do an inventory of all dumpsters and locations.
Most people in favor of recycling but most don’t want to pay for it.
Centrally located recycling drop off presents staffing, cleanliness issues.
Looking at getting more cardboard recycling dumpsters.
Over 100 people offered to volunteer.
First order of business is tire recycling effort.
Opportunity to recycle tires.
Illegal dumping areas around town. Clean up Marfa initiative.
June 16 and 30 proposed dates for volunteer cleanup for these two issues.
Should there be a fee for commercial tire recycling during this event?council can decide. Next agenda. Dates instead will be June 23rd and July 7th.
Item 7: council members comments: none
Canvassing city elections results: item 8
Mayor reads election results.
Including sales tax reauthorization for road repairs.
Item 9: redesignate city administrator position as City Manager.
Title change lines up title with proper name except for that City Manager would be authorized to supervise purchases up to $50,000 instead of $3,000 in current ordinance.
Item 10: action to approve ordinance restricting child sex offenders from child safety zones, as equipped by state law.
Up to 1000 feet of child safety zones. Teresa Todd tried to make this ordinance up as close to statute as possible, since this could be subject to litigation. Child safety zones are premises where children regularly gather including schools, day cares, library, parks, etc.
Statute allows up to 1000 feet.
Will require a map of areas and also she would like to see signage. There also must be an exemption procedure. Police chief and atty got together and came up with this:
Current occupants are grandfathered without an exemption. Exemptions only apply to certain situations.
Unrestricted. All access type. Will be reviewed by the chief of police and city atty and only granted if it is shown that the subject is no longer a threat to children.
Limited exemption could allow an offset for work only specified hours and days from one child safety zone.
Certain situations would be controlled by other statutes and Regis, like parent who is registered bringing child to school. School has processes and rags that would be followed.
Manny moves to approve. Unanimous.
Item 11: repaint or refurbish Casper motors sign on side of City Hall. Irma Salgado would like a touch up, since it’s next to the new nice mural.
Manny would like to blend in the background with the blue from the base of the mural.
Mayor says that within the budget she would like to know where it could come from. Manny recommends HOT fund historic preservation funds since that was the reason they kept the sign in the first place.
Mayor would like to verify that HOT funds can be used and the go from there.
Saarin says that she agrees with a touch up to match new mural.
Mayor asks if there is any opposition from audience. None.
Gretel Enck says she thinks if it’s considered historic we may need to consult County historic commission to see if there needs to be certain materials used.
Irma make motion to approve, Brit Webb seconds,unanimous.
Item 12- announcements- none except party coming up after meeting.
Item 13- adjourn at 6:45 PM