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Bridgeport City Council extends electricity contract in hopes of rate reduction

By Erika Pedroza | Published Saturday, January 25, 2014

On multiple occasions, Bridgeport Mayor Keith McComis has voiced his opposition to long-term contracts – except when it translates to a reduction in costs.

Following a closed session Tuesday, the council unanimously approved extending the wholesale power contract with AEP through 2018.

“In return we hope to see a reduction in cost,” McComis said. “As soon as we get the paperwork signed, we could start seeing a reduction anywhere from 7 to 10 percent this first year. Over the three remaining years in the contract, it could be anywhere from a 2 to 5 percent decrease, depending on the cost of gas prices and other factors like that.

“We did get what I thought was fair.”

STREET CLOSURES

During its meeting, the council approved temporarily closing 10th Street north of Halsell Street 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14, for the Wellness For Life Mobile Screening event.

The event is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The additional time allows for setup and breakdown.

Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital will park a mobile health screening unit that will provide mammograms, well-woman exams and take-home colon screenings. There will also be a walk-through colon exhibit.

Screenings are for all citizens, with or without insurance. Financial assistance is available for those without it.

To check for eligibility or to make an appointment, call 855-318-7696.

At the request of councilman Jimmy Meyers, officials discussed bypassing the council in approving street closures for city-related events, instead granting the authority to the city’s special events committee, which includes the director of parks and recreation, the Main Street/community relations manager, the GIS analyst, the director of transportation/airport services, and the chief of police.

“It just seemed like there was something every week, and it didn’t seem like it was a big deal, so why bring it?” Meyers said.

However the majority of the council said they appreciated knowing what was going on on Main Street and liked the ordinance as it was.

“It doesn’t take that much time,” Councilman A.Z. Smith said. “I’ve got plenty of time.”

No action was taken and the procedure remained unchanged.

IN OTHER NEWS

The council also:

  • appointed Councilman Smith to assist the economic development corp. board of directors in the hiring of an executive director.
  • approved disbursing $7,500 in Hotel Occupancy Tax dollars to the Butterfield Stage Days Rodeo committee, for advertising and marketing of the rodeo, to be held in May. Rodeo organizers at the meeting reported that last year’s event drew 1,600 spectators and 600 entries from 32 states, and was named among the top 10 small rodeos in the country by the PRCA.
  • increased the fees for the recording of plats by $30 for a single-page plat and $50 for a two-page plat, after the county clerk’s office raised its prices.
  • added microchipping pets to its list of services. Through Home Again, the city will offer the service for $19.99 per pet for Bridgeport residents and $24.99 per pet for non-residents. “If it makes (the animal control officer’s) job easier, and it helps somebody get back to their pet, I’m all for it,” said Mayor McComis.
  • re-enrolled as a Texas Main Street City at a cost of $535, which includes trainings for Main Street Manager Amber Fogelman.
  • OK’d the Jan. 7 meeting minutes; and
  • reviewed the Jan. 9-22 payment report in the amount of $813,527.88.

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