Poteet Council looks at refinancing city bonds

Poteet City Administrator, Scott Moore, brought information about refinancing the city’s bonds for the council to consider. Steve Perry from Wells, Nelson and Associates discussed some of the options, all of which could save the city and taxpayers several thousands of dollars. To refinance, at today’s rate, there would be about $530,000 savings over the current bonds. Another option is to shorten the debt, making them due by 2043, and the savings will be approximately $726,000. If it is shortened to 2041, there is approximately $1 million in savings, although that won’t be fully realized until the last five years or so. It is not worth refinancing if the difference in rate is less than three percent. These options show a savings of at least eight percent. Council gave Moore directions to continue to look into the options and bring back a recommendation.

Every year, Police Departments have to file a Racial Profiling Report with the state. Police Chief Martin Chavez reported that of the 913 citations, 29.2% were Caucasian, .1% was African American and 70.6% were Hispanic. Based on the ethnic breakdown of the community, this proves there is no racial profiling. Denise Sanchez moved to accept the report; Greg Groesbeck seconded. Motion passed unanimously with Larry Cantu, Roy Ybarra and Gerald Herrera voting affirmative. Council member Sonny Estrada had left the meeting just prior to this item, having other business to attend.

Other city business conducted was the approval of the minutes for December 10, 2012 and February 4, 2013 regular meetings. Moore was added to the signatory list at Wells Fargo Bank. The interlocal agreement with Atascosa County to share a sewage disposal inspector was also approved.

Several items dealt with the Library. Richard Franklin had earlier spoken to thank Moore and attorney Peggy McCampbell for getting the agreement completed with CAM signed. Moore asked the council to vacate 20 feet of the alley north of the Library in order to clear the way for new fencing along that boundary. Because this is a public easement, the City Attorney advised that the council had to hold a public hearing before voting on the request. Hearing was opened at 6:34 p.m. and since there was no public discussion, for or against the measure, the hearing was closed at 6:36 p.m. The council voted unanimously to vacate the alleyway.

The Friends of the Library requested closure of Avenue H to Avenue I on Fifth Street for the “Spring Break” celebration to be held at the Library.

This was approved for March 15. Council also voted to repeal the Ordinance No. 403 and go back to Ordinance No. 312, which allowed the Library Board to work directly with the City Administrator.

A brief update was given on the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Trail Project grant. The length has to be mapped to determine what area the city owns and what is privately owned. The Department has okayed breaking the project down into two phases. Council directed Moore to work with Rakowitz Engineering to initiate drafting a proposal for the preliminary construction plan for Phase 1 of the TPWD Trail Project.

With no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 6:50 p.m.

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