NEWS HEADLINES

City applies for sidewalk, airport project grants

By Erika Pedroza | Published Saturday, September 21, 2013

The city of Bridgeport is planning several major projects in the upcoming fiscal year – and hoping for some assistance through state grants.

Tuesday, the council authorized an application for funding through the Texas Department of Agriculture Main Street Program to improve sidewalks downtown.

The program aims to eliminate slum and blight condition in cities designated Main Street Cities by the Texas Historical Commission. In non-entitlement cities with population under 50,000, the funds can be used for public infrastructure improvements or the acquisition of land.

As a prerequisite, the city adopted a resolution declaring the area north and south of Halsell Street, east of 13th Street and west of Texas 114 a “blighted” area.

According to staff, the deteriorating conditions of the sidewalks and lack of accessibility ramps on Halsell Street can be considered detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare of the community.

If the grant is awarded, the city would be required to contribute up to $15,000.

The council also approved an agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation Aviation Division for a grant through the Routine Airport Maintenance Program (RAMP).

The money can be used for more than just maintenance work. Examples include the construction of airport entrance roads, pavement of airport public parking lots, installation of security fencing and replacing the rotating beacon.

This year, the council budgeted $8,300 for such projects.

IN OTHER NEWS

The council also:

  • approved a $3,400 change order to the agreement with H2 Construction for a perimeter fence around Northwest OHV Park. The increase will pay for payment and performance bonds that are required for any local government contact over $100,000. The council awarded the $113,325 bid in July.
  • swore in newly appointed A.Z. Smith to place 1. He replaces Scott Cheves, who resigned after his family completed the construction of a home outside city limits.
  • approved a contract with the county to allow Bridgeport Public Library to serve as a county library. The county will pay $45,577.36 for the library to serve patrons who live outside city limits.
  • extended for one year a contract with DFW Communications for the annual maintenance and repair work to the city’s public safety radio equipment (dispatch console, back-room radio equipment, repeater and radio system at the water tower). Cost is $9,540.89.
  • renewed an agreement with Blackboard Connect for mass notification system services. The annual cost is $7,492.96 for the system, which notifies subscribed residents of severe weather, power outages, crime outbreaks, street blockages, past-due library books, etc.
  • authorized Shelly Neckar, interim director of financial services, as a representative for the Texas Local Government Investment Pool (TexPool).
  • approved an agreement with the city of Decatur to share the cost of a billboard advertising the two cities. The city’s share is $1,950 for the year.
  • approved a $1,500 hotel occupancy tax dollar disbursement for Phil Hamilton to perform at the fire department’s fundraiser cookoff and all-night ride at Northwest OHV Park Saturday, Oct, 19.
  • reviewed the Sept. 5-18 payment report in the amount of $677,239.38.
  • approved the minutes from its regular meeting Sept. 3.

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