Levelland City Council met in a regular meeting Monday night. A full report of that meeting is below.
The council discussed disinfection water system improvements. TCEQ has issued a letter to the city that the current practice for treating water the city receives from Canadian River Municipal Water authority is no no longer acceptable. It was noted that this method has been acceptable for years. The city has until August to make a correction or come up with a plan. Representatives with Parkhill, Smith and Cooper were on hand to make recommendations. The drinking water is disinfected to protect public health, reduce pathogens and maintain residual in the distribution system. The options for disinfection include Free Chlorine Disinfection and a Chloramine Disinfection. Both of those methods are acceptable by TCEQ standards. The three options presented to the council including asking for an exception from TCEQ to allow blending water which would require additional mixing equipment as well as increased record keeping. The estimated annual operation cost would be $2,600 plus an estimated Capital investment of $267,000. The second option is to install a new Liquid Ammonium Sulfate Injection system at an estimated Capitol cost of $217,450 plus an estimated Annual Operation cost of $3000. The third option would be to install new chlorination equipment at an estimated Capital Cost of $39,950, however, the annual operating cost would be $40,000 per year. Based on the costs, engineers made the recommendation to install the new Liquid Ammonium Sulfate Injection system. It was noted that with this option, their would not be any additional Chlorine required to be on site. The design phase for the project would be pretty quick and could probably be installed in 6-12 months. It was also noted that TCEQ must approve any plan. The Capital portion of the cost will be budgeted for in the next business year. The council approved the recommendation as presented.
The council also took action to approve the continuation of the sale of some of Levelland’s CRMWA water to the City of Smyer. This agreement does not affect the supply for Levelland. The council reconfirmed the sale to the City of Smyer at the city’s cost. They have not used any of the water in the past. The amount they would use is less than 1% of the City of Levelland’s daily usage. The council approved city administration to enter into an agreement to continue to sell water to the City of Smyer.
The council also approved the quarterly investment reports for the previous 2 quarters.
Council approved the reappointment of Richard Ellis as the city’s representative on the Canadian River Municipal Water Authority board. He has been on the board since 2006.
Council approved the reappointment of Tushar Bhakta to an additional three year term on the Levelland Economic Development Corporation.
Council also took action to approve a resolution denying the surcharge related to a rate case by Xcel Energy a Southwestern Public Service company.
The council also approved the sale of several surplus vehicles on an online auction site. The vehicles include 1991 Ford ambulance which was a former Emergency Communications vehicle, 2000 Chevrolet Pickup from Police Department and a 2007 Ford Expedition from the police department as well as some patrol vehicles.
The council approved an Ordinance on second reading amending the Planning and Zoning commission by eliminating the prohibition from holding another public office or position in the city.
Following the regular meeting the council held their first budget work session for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. During the work session the council discussed the fire department. Chief Bill Durham said there is a need to purchase two fire trucks in the next fiscal year at a cost of just over $750,000. He did note that the purchase will make the department more efficient and will likely replace three trucks. It was noted that the new trucks would be used mainly to fight structure fires. The agreement between Hockley County and the City of Levelland was also discussed. Currently the county pays the City $120,000 per run for the first 200 runs and then $500 per run up to a max of $140,000. Chief Durham noted that approximately 40% of the fire runs are outside the city limits. Councilman Jim Myatt made the observation that the department has a 1.3 million dollar budget so the county should be paying approximately $500,000 if 40% of the runs are outside the city limits. He and Councilman Billy Youngblood requested that city staff evaluate the current contract with the county and try to make it more equitable. The council also discussed the police department. Chief Albert Garcia said that the only Capital expenditure being looked at for the Police department is replacing the three detective vehicles. He would like to go to a larger vehicle to allow room for equipment and a lock box in each vehicle for detectives to store weapons.
The council recessed their meeting and will re-convene at 7pm Tuesday at Levelland City Hall.