The Brownfield City Council met today in a regularly called meeting.
After the preliminary items of business, the Council began with Item #5 which was to appoint an officer to act as the local Rabies Control Authority. According to City Manager Eldon Jobe, this is not an annual appointment or act, this is a required law that has been in place since 1981 and is under chapter 826 of the Texas Health and Safety Code. It is also known as the “Rabies Control Act of 1981” Each municipality is required to have someone that can inspect rabid animals. Terry County has been using Veterinarian Dr. Jim Ridenhour and the city was suggested that they use him as well. The approval was unanimous.
Moving on to item #6, the City decided to abandon the easement located at Lot 1 of Section 103, Block T of the Great Lone Star subdivision. This property is located south of Bush’s chicken restaurant. The utilities that are needing to be abandoned are no longer in service, so an easement for the City of Brownfield is no longer needed. The council unanimously approved the abandoning of the easement.
In Item #8 of the meeting, this was to consider naming the future upgraded/renovated baseball/softball park in Coleman Park. There was not much discussion on this item and the council approved the name “Brownfield Sports Complex”. The name can change in the future if that is needed. The council also unanimously approved this item.
The next item of business was to discuss and consider changing the future Brownfield Sports Complex’s baseball/softball field surface design on three of the fields. Recreation Director Scott Jackson was asked to give his opinion on the idea of changing the surfaces. Jackson told the Council, “Softball is what brings in the money.”
Councilman Leon Pope asked Jackson, “what is the percentage of baseball to softball?” Jackson said that “Softball is about 85% for tournaments and if council wanted to put three fields in with the baseball component, we would have to go out to recruit teams to play.” After more discussion about the surface design, Councilwoman Mary Valdanado made the motion to, “change the design from three fields of grass to all fields with dirt.” The motion was seconded by Councilman Chuck Nave and was unanimously approved.
Going back to earlier in the meeting, Item #7 was to discuss and consider Brownfield Industrial Development Corp’s use of up to $500,000 of funds for the construction of a workforce training center. BIDCorp and Brownfield ISD have partnered to add this workforce center so that BISD can hold multiple Carrer and Technology Education classes so that when some students graduate from high school, they can be work ready and accessible for local jobs. The workforce center will also operate as an adult education place for night classes.
David Partlow the director of BIDCorp gave a presentation of the possible 10,000 square foot training center and the estimated cost and possible interest-free loan through Lyntegar Electric, since Lyntegar serves electricity by the Jack Cargill Industrial Park, and that is where the proposed workforce training center is going to be located. After Partlow’s presentation, Mayor Geronimo Gonzales asked if the council had any questions. Councilman Pope asked, “If BIDCorp defaults on this loan, who does it revert back to?” Partlow asked City Attorney Lina Reyes-Trevino to possibly find out that information. After discussing the topic if BIDCorp was to ever default on a loan, the answer was that the loan would ultimately fall back on the City of Brownfield. According to Parlow, as the success of the sales tax continues to be, he is very confident that a default on a loan would not happen.
Councilwoman Teresa Sparks asked Partlow, “So Y’all already sent out for bids, you sent out for bids prior to council approval?” Partlow let the council know that BIDCorp is on a fast track to getting the facility built before the next school year. Partlow said about the BIDCorp Board and himself, “We felt an urgency to get the building built by September (2019), and felt it was important to get the bids out to find out a cost.”
Partlow let the council know that the building would always be owned by BIDCorp, also the City of Brownfield, and BISD will have a long-term lease. If for any reason that BISD decides to build their own facility, then the new building would be able to be used for another company or business to come and set up quickly because the facilities would already be available.
Councilman Nave made the motion to approve Item #7 with, saying, “that we approve this as presented up to $500,000 with the stipulation that he (Partlow) gets in writing from the school district, South Plains College, and any of his partners that go along with him and have that in writing before anything is decided.” Councilwoman Valdanado seconded the motion and the Council voted 7-0 in favor with Councilwoman Besler abstaining from the vote since she is on the BIDCorp. Board.
The Council did go into closed executive session, however, there was no action taken. All Council members and Mayor were present.
You can listen here to the whole Brownfield City Council Meeting: