News And People

Volume 14, Issue 14 - Friday, April 15, 2016
TWDB releases list of SWIFT priority projects worth $2.3B
 Board selects 28 water projects from 40 submissions 

In the first 15 years of the 21st century, the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) authorized funding for about $2.5 billion for projects in the State Water Plan. In 2015 alone, the TWDB committed to $3.8 billion of State Water Plan projects, according to Jeff Walker (pictured), the deputy executive administrator for water supply and infrastructure.

The difference? The State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT).

The SWIFT program was created by the legislature in 2013 and approved by voters that same year. In 2015, local governments and water districts submitted 48 abridged applications seeking $5.5 billion in funding. TWDB staff recommended 39 of those projects, representing about $4.1 billion, be moved onto the next phase of the application process. Ultimately, $3.8 billion in project funding was approved.

At this week's TWDB board meeting, Walker presented to the board members staff recommendations for this year's prioritization list. Forty short applications were submitted between Dec. 5, 2015, and Feb. 5, requesting $2.34 billion. The prioritization list includes 28 projects representing $1.317 billion.

The entities that made the prioritization list now have until May 11 to submit full applications for SWIFT funding, after which TWDB staffers will review them before selecting the projects that are deemed eligible for funding by July. Bonds will be sold in October, and the funding dispersed in December. "At which point, we'll take a deep breath and get ready for the 2017 round of funding," Walker said.

Of the dozen projects that didn't make the list, the TWDB's presentation stated that several entities withdrew their applications for one reason or another and six were deemed ineligible because the projects do not make use of "recommended water management strategies in the regional and state water plans," as mandated by the SWIFT program.

Kimberly Leggett, a spokeswoman for the water board, explained that the TWDB tried to make the SWIFT program similar to other TWDB funding programs "to minimize additional new paperwork or requirements and to keep the process similar to what entities were already familiar with." Still, there were a few applications that didn't meet the parameters of the SWIFT regulations.

Strategic Partnerships salutes Texas' Lone Stars
Tim O'Krongley, Deputy Aviation Director, City of San Antonio

Career highlights and education: I have been very fortunate in my aviation/airport career. I have had amazing supervisors, co-workers and especially employees who have helped me be successful in my various positions. I started my airport career as an unpaid intern and was then hired in the business development section at San Antonio Airport System. From there, I was hired to be part of the team that built Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, during its transition from an Air Force base. From Austin, I was once again given a great opportunity to return to San Antonio, to help with the revitalization of the former Kelly Air Force Base and focus on the introduction of civil aircraft to the Joint-Use Field. In 1998, I was hired as the Stinson Airport Manager, the second oldest airport in the country. In 2007, I was selected as the assistant aviation director of operations at San Antonio Airport System and, in January 2016, was appointed the deputy aviation director. I have a bachelor's degree in aeronautical studies and a Master of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. I am a commercial, instrument-rated pilot and have two professional accreditations in airport management.

What I like best about my job is: The San Antonio Airport System is a leader in the airport industry regarding safety and security, and I am proud to be part of that team. Plus, I am around airplanes all day long!!

The best advice I've received for my current job is: Create an organization that says, "Yes, if ...," rather than "No, because ...."

Advice you would give a new hire in your office: Enjoy what you do and create opportunities to lead the industry.

If I ever decided to leave work early, I could probably be found: Enjoying the outdoors at our family ranch with my wife and two sons.

People would be surprised to know that: I am a licensed realtor.

One thing I wish more people knew about my department: While the process of air travel has changed over the years, our priority remains to provide all customers, tenants and passengers with the best customer experience possible.

Kilgore considering water-use relationship with Longview
Kilgore City Manager Josh Selleck (pictured) recently asked city officials to consider hiring an engineering firm to look again at using water from Longview to supplement Kilgore's water supply for the next 20 to 50 years. The city has approached the neighboring town in the past about buying water from Longview, but those talks resulted in no agreement.

The city has reached capacity in its water plant and wells, which deliver about 6.7 million gallons of water each day. State regulations, however, require Kilgore to deliver a maximum of 8.79 million gallons in 2016, growing to as much as 10.73 million gallons by 2046. Selleck said he has met with Longview City Manager David Willard to discuss buying water and building a pipeline to deliver it. The additional 4 million gallons per day of treated water could cost between $7 million and $24 million.

Longview has the capacity to treat 20 million gallons per day above the water sold to its own customers. Selleck said he may approach other area cities such as Henderson about sharing a water line to save on infrastructure costs. A spokesman for Longview acknowledged the city has water available to sell if the infrastructure to transport the water is built.
McLennan County planning countywide water grid
McLennan County officials recently drew a larger-than-expected audience for a meeting to discuss a proposal to create a countywide water grid. The move would permit water suppliers to work together during droughts to slow down the depletion of ground water and address issues with arsenic contamination.

The McLennan County Water Resources Group, which was organized by the county judge, received a $75,000 grant from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to perform a study, and several local governments provided matching contributions. The aquifer in the county is expected to drop up to 450 feet by 2040, according to a consultant assisting with the study. Lake Waco could be a source to replace the widespread use of groundwater supplies.

In 2003, the city of Waco expanded Lake Waco with a goal of becoming a regional water supplier, and the 7-foot increase now has resulted in almost 6.5 billion gallons more per year available for use, roughly equal to the amount of groundwater available in the county. Many communities in the county, such as Hewitt, still depend on ground water, but officials in those cities acknowledge the need to switch to using surface water.

SFA regents approve new STEM facility with domed planetarium
Regents for Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA) recently agreed to begin construction on a new science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) facility that will feature a 50-foot dome with a planetarium.

The design calls for spaces in which classrooms and laboratories focus on hands-on learning, noted Kimberly Childs, dean of the College of Sciences and Mathematics. Construction is expected to begin in November and be ready for students in August 2018, officials said.
Amarillo reviewing $98 million ugrade to parks, athletic facilities
Trustees for Amarillo Independent School District recently began considering a $98 million proposal that would have the district partner with the city to upgrade parks and athletic facilities.

A citizens group led by a former school superintendent has proposed the upgrades to recreational facilities throughout the city after voters in 2013 rejected a proposal to issue $37 million in bonds to pay for improvements to parks accessibility. The new plans call for asking voters to approve $73 million in bonds, the school district to contribute $8 million and for another $17 million to come from grants and private donors.

The citizens group intends to present the plan, which also calls for a new aquatics center, to the Amarillo City Council this spring.

Brownsville mayor begins planning for airport upgrades
Brownsville city officials have begun plans to build a new terminal for the Brownsville-South Padre Island International Airport. The new passenger terminal is scheduled to be constructed adjacent to the existing airport.

City staff members have already performed the studies and environmental assessment. Mayor Tony Martinez (pictured) said the airport needs to grow as more businesses relocate to the area, increasing air traffic. The mayor's goal is to begin the project this year.
TEA commissioner announces new senior leadership team
The Texas Education Agency (TEA) and Commissioner Mike Morath announced this week several appointments to the agency's team of executives.

Martin Winchester is the new deputy commissioner of educator support and is responsible for overseeing the Educator Leadership and Quality Division. He has spent more than 20 years as a teacher and administrator at schools in the Rio Grande Valley.

Penny Schwinn is now deputy commissioner of academics, overseeing the TEA Assessment and Accountability Division, as well as Standards and Programs. She has taught in Baltimore and Los Angeles and served as assistant secretary for the Delaware Department of Education. New Deputy Commissioner of Governance A.J. Crabill served eight years on the board of the Kansas City, Mo., Public Schools. He will oversee the TEA Accreditation and School Improvement Division, as well as the Office of Complaints, Investigations and Enforcement.

Kara Belew's appointment as the agency's chief financial officer was announced in February. As Deputy Commissioner of Operations, Megan Aghazadian is responsible for the agency's strategic planning process and oversees the TEA divisions of Communications, Governmental Relations and Human Resources. She has worked in public education in Washington, D.C., and New York City.
Nabers to speak on P3s at conference
Mary Scott Nabers, president and CEO of Strategic Partnerships, Inc. and co-founder of the Gemini Global Group, will be featured among a group of economic innovation experts to address the "Westchester: County of Tomorrow" conference in West Harrison, N.Y., Friday, April 29.

The conference will assemble many national experts in public-private partnerships (P3s), transit-oriented development and innovative eco-systems. The speakers and those attending the conference will share their expertise and experiences through presentations, panel discussions and networking opportunities.

"Most government entities are facing difficult decisions on how to spend their declining revenues to meet the needs of their growing constituencies," said Nabers, "This conference allows government officials to explore some new and innovative options available to them. Public-private partnerships are becoming a bigger part of that equation."

The conference will feature private investors, technology experts and design firm representatives who have assisted with economic development programs in cities such as Philadelphia, Raleigh and New York City.
Lewisville preparing facilities assessment for school bond vote
Lewisville Independent School District trustees recently began developing cost estimates as part of an assessment of current facilities. Board members also are developing standards for how new facilities are to be built, in an effort to help trustees determine whether to schedule a bond election for May 2017.

The cost estimates for projects that could be included on a bond ballot should be completed by June, said Mike Ball (pictured), the assistant superintendent of finance.
Greenville council requests further work on fire station plan
At the urging of the acting fire chief and several firefighters, Greenville City Council members agreed to table a proposed design plan for a new 3,840-square-foot fire station.

The fire chief said the proposed plan for the fire station was insufficient to the department's needs. The firefighters had reviewed an earlier design, which resulted in the addition of about 220 square feet of space, which fit an equipment storage area, a decontamination area and an exercise room.

City officials asked the architects to meet with the chief and another firefighter to improve the design and resubmit it to council members in two weeks.
Longview close to beginning work to relocate Hinsley Park
With a target of breaking ground within three months, Longview city officials recently began working with architects to finalize the design plan for a new Hinsley Park to replace the existing park.

Voters last fall approved a proposal to allow the city to sell the current site of the park to be developed. In return, the developer agreed to build a new park at another location. City staff members are meeting with engineers and architects to finalize design specifications for the park, which will include facilities for softball and disc golf.

The agreement requires that construction on the new park must begin before the developer can begin work on the former Hinsley Park site.
Temple officials to seek support for new botanic garden project
Temple city officials recently scheduled the first of several public workshops to provide more information to residents about a new botanical garden being planned in the southern part of the city.

A family in 2011 donated 30 acres of land to be used as a park, explained Kevin Beavers (pictured), director of parks and recreation. The property features a ranch house, log cabin, several storage areas, river access and large pecan trees. A nonprofit organization formed in 2012, Temple Botanic Garden Inc., has promoted the project and raised funds for it. Last year, the city won a $150,000 grant to develop a botanical garden master plan.

The finalized Bend O' the River Botanic Garden master plan is expected to be presented for approval to council members in August following a series of public meetings, including one July 12 in which the draft master plan will be presented.

Prosper nabs TPWD grant to expand, improve Frontier Park
Prosper officials recently learned that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has approved a $500,000 grant to complete planning for the expansion of the city's Frontier Park.

Town Council members approved a preliminary plan for the park that includes three new lighted fields for baseball or softball, two artificial-turf, multi-purpose sports fields, a covered pavilion and a new ornamental bridge. The project will also include improvements to the hike and bike trail, as well as additional parking. The estimated cost for the park upgrades is $9.5 million.

The final design drawings are expected to be completed this fall. Once council approves funding for construction, the improvements to the park should take about a year to complete.
Clarendon agrees to begin $3.9M water distribution system project
Clarendon aldermen recently agreed to move forward on a $3.9 million project to upgrade the city's water distribution system.

Survey and design work on the system upgrade should be completed in six months, with bidding beginning in seven or eight months, said City Administrator David Dockery (pictured). Construction is expected to begin after that and take from 18 months to three years for completion.

The project involves replacing cast iron distribution pipes, upgrading a water tower and installing auto read water meters. City officials are using a grant and loan from the Rural Development Program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture to fund the water system improvements.
Victoria eyeing approval of $28.5 million in capital projects in 2017
Victoria city officials recently began considering a proposal to spend about $26.5 million on capital improvement projects in 2017, including $7.2 million in repairs to two roads that were not planned for, a project that currently has no available funding.

City council most likely would need to raise the tax rate to fund that last project, because the city is at its capacity for debt, according to Lynn Short, the public works director.

Other large projects included in the 2017 master plan are $4.1 million in street repairs in the Vista Del Sol subdivision; a $7.5 million project to build a two-lane road with sidewalks, curbs and gutters; and a $2.2 million project to upgrade the regional wastewater plant.

Mineral Wells mayor proposes use of heliport as a drone hub
Mineral Wells city commissioners recently began reviewing a proposal by Mayor Mike Allen (pictured) urging city and county officials to permit the use of the Dempsey Heliport for unmanned aerial systems (UAS). The heliport was once a training field for the U.S. Army but is now abandoned.

Allen's proposal is to use the property for testing or maintenance projects for the drone industry, as a way to attract more business to the area. The heliport, the municipal airport and other areas in Palo Pinto County would be ideal for researching, manufacturing and testing unmanned aircraft, Allen said.

A drone rodeo was held earlier this month at a nearby ranch, and it attracted 60 pilots, some from out of state. Commissioners took no action on the proposal.
Marble Falls council approves update to parks, recreation plan
Marble Falls City Council members recently agreed to update the parks, recreation and open space plan after discussions arose regarding the development of a conference center and hotel that could greatly impact city parks.

The Marble Falls Economic Development Corporation pledged to fund a portion of the comprehensive parks plan, which will focus on Lakeside Park, Falls Creek Park and Johnson Park. The plan was last updated in 2012.

City officials also are concerned about the deteriorating condition of the swimming pool at Lakeside Park. The pool was built in the 1970s and has many maintenance problems. The new plan is due to be completed in December, and council members expect to vote on it in January 2017.
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Mansfield, TxDOT approve pact for $4.1 million highway project
The Mansfield City Council recently approved an agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to provide $4.1 million to pay for improvements to entrances and exits along US 287.

TxDOT officials plan to award a contract in September and begin construction in November, according to Steve Freeman, Mansfield director of public works. The improved entrance and exit ramps are needed to reduce traffic congestion caused by many red lights, he said.
Pottsboro, TxDOT to begin construction of FM 120 project
Pottsboro City Manager Kevin Farley recently told city council his staff is making final preparations to seek bids for a project to reconfigure a median to allow an additional turn lane on FM 120.

A preliminary agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) permits the city to select the contractor and oversee the project, which is needed to allow more access to businesses along FM 120. TxDOT also will provide some oversight on the project, but less than usual, Farley said.

Before the agreement is finalized, city officials must ensure the bid documents reflect the level of insurance coverage and testing required to meet TxDOT requirements.
Calendar of Events

LBJ School offers Construction Purchasing Certificate Program
April 27-28, 2016
Buyers, contract administrators and project managers interested in earning a construction purchasing certificate can do so through The University of Texas at Austin's LBJ School of Public Affairs. The program aids in understanding and using new terms, remaining compliant with unfamiliar laws, developing control plans and schedules and staying on budget. The LBJ School's Construction Purchasing Certificate Program consists of four core courses and one elective to be completed over a period of two years. The goal of this certificate program is to provide participants with the skills and knowledge to ensure that their organization's construction projects are well managed and secure the intended results and value. The courses are complementary in nature, and each course repeats annually. The next available course is Developing a Construction Purchasing Manual and will be held April 27-28. Registration is open.

TxPPA's Summer Momentum Conference to be held in Kerrville
June 8-10, 2016
The Texas Public Purchasing Association (TxPPA) will host its Summer Momentum Conference in Kerrville this June. Seminars and speakers from throughout the state will offer valuable information and lessons for public-sector procurement professionals. In addition, the TxPPA's annual vendor showcase will take place Thursday, June 9. It is a one-day-only opportunity to meet with public-sector buyers and managers, and an opportunity for vendors to showcase their products and services, make new contacts and develop new leads. The conference will be held at the YO Ranch Hotel and Conference Center in Kerrville. An agenda is available online and registration is open.

AACOG to play host to Aging in Texas Conference in mid-July
July 12-15, 2016
The Alamo Area Council of Governments (AACOG) will host the Aging in Texas Conference (AiTC), an annual gathering of individuals who work within the aging community. Designed for professionals from a range of settings, the AiTC supports professionals in the field of aging with the most current research, training and innovative tools and resources.  With educational programming covering a variety of areas, this conference will be beneficial to everyone involved with caring for the state's senior citizens, from administrators to service providers. It will take place beginning July 12 at the Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk hotel in San Antonio. A schedule is available and registration is open.

Revitalizing public infrastructure results in new opportunities 

By Mary Scott Nabers, CEO of Strategic Partnerships, Inc.

Fifteen years ago, New York City leaders looked at an abandoned, aging elevated rail line that stretched about 20 city blocks along Manhattan's western edge and wondered if something could be done with it. Today, the city can point to a unique public park that attracts 6 million visitors each year. It also generates an abundance of tax revenue. The old rail line, now called The High Line, is so attractive it has drawn $2 billion in new economic development to the area. Condos, restaurants, office buildings and retail surround the old rail line and the once blighted area has become a vibrant and growing place to live and work and visit.

Cities throughout Texas are also trying to find new uses for unused and/or underutilized public assets. Many have launched similar projects to convert non-revenue-producing or deteriorating public infrastructure into parks and recreational areas that provide citizen benefits as well as economic stimulus.

In Dallas, Klyde Warren Park is located atop a capped portion of the Woodall Rodgers Freeway. The park was developed on 5 acres of property located along the edge of the Arts District. It now connects Downtown Dallas and Uptown and it attracts more than 1 million people to the area annually. Once a non-revenue-producing property, it is now truly an asset to the city.

HHS announces new leadership for DFPS
Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Chris Traylor this week named a retired Texas Ranger as the new commissioner of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS). Henry "Hank" Whitman (pictured) will begin his new job May 1.

As well, Kristene Blackstone was named assistant commissioner for Child Protective Services (CPS).

Whitman and Blackstone have been asked "to overhaul the operations of CPS." The announcement of their appointments said that, "They will rebuild structures that are failing and improve the systems that are working."

Whitman spent 22 years with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), including 10 years as a Texas Ranger. He has a bachelor's degree from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University) and a master's degree from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.

Blackstone currently is deputy director for field operations for the Office of the Attorney General's Child Support Division. She also worked for CPS for 17 years. She has a bachelor's degree the University of North Texas and a master's degree from The University of Texas at Austin.

Ray Laughter joins SPI Consulting Team
Ray Laughter has joined the team of consultants at Strategic Partnerships, Inc. (SPI). He brings decades of experience working with government officials and business leaders, on both sides of the equation.

Laughter (pictured) has been a successful businessman working in the private sector and spent years as vice chancellor for external affairs for the Lone Star College System, one of the largest community colleges in the country. While serving at Lone Star, he established numerous programs relating to economic development.

He holds both a bachelor's degree and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Houston.

Amarillo to apply for $14M TIGER grant
In a 3-2 vote, Amarillo City Council members recently agreed to apply again for a $14 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant to expand sidewalks and add landscaping and a bike lane to two downtown streets. The city was unsuccessful last year in its first attempt at an application for the U.S. Department of Transportation grant.

If the application is approved, the city must provide at least 20 percent of the funding for the project, officials said.
LeFleur Transportation

Robin Satterwhite to lead South Plains College
Robin Satterwhite recently won selection as the president of South Plains College (SPC).

Now serving as vice president of academic affairs at the school, Satterwhite (pictured) will replace Kelvin Sharp, who will retire as president June 30 after 17 years in the job. Satterwhite, who graduated from SPC, joined the college in 2003. He previously was a dean and professor at the School of Allied Health Sciences at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and served as a hospital administrator in Lockney and Mexia.

Satterwhite has a bachelor's degree, a master's degree and a doctorate from Texas Tech University.

Moore to serve as new city manager in Munday
Jimmy Don Moore recently won selection as the new city manager in Munday. He will replace the former city manager, Rick Ake, when he begins his new duties at the end of the month.

Moore has said he plans to obtain the necessary licenses to assume the job of director of public works if the current director, Winston Stephens, decides to leave that post, as he also holds another position in Haskell.

Plainview to seek new bids for street projects
The Plainview City Council recently rejected the four bids submitted for a project to improve three city streets. Three of the bids came in higher than expected, and council members were concerned that the bonding company of the company submitting the lowest bid did not meet all federal requirements.

Council members agreed to rebid the project with the hope of attracting new proposals, providing an opportunity for the companies that previously submitted bids to make changes and encouraging local companies to submit proposals.

Marlin city manager announces resignation
City Manager Kenneth Knight of Marlin recently notified city council members that he plans to resign once he finds a new position. Knight (pictured) began his duties as city manager in October 2015.

Council members declined to comment on any agreement reached with Knight in the closed session.
City may take over, renovate Midland Center
Midland City Council members recently agreed to advertise for bids for contractors to remove asbestos at Midland Center and the chamber of commerce building.

City officials have discussed purchasing the buildings but have not finalized any agreements. The city also has set aside $1.7 million to buy out the remaining lease from the Midland Chamber of Commerce, but have not finalized an agreement.

Mesquite selects Jones as assistant city manager
Mesquite city officials have selected Jeff Jones (pictured) as the new assistant city manager to oversee the police and fire departments, human resources, municipal airport and arts center.

When Jones begins his new duties April 18, he will replace Jerry Dittman, who won promotion to deputy city manager. Jones previously was an assistant city manager in Hurst. He also has been a manager in Casper, and Douglas, Wyo., and worked for the budget division of the governor's office in Kansas.

Jones earned a master's degree from Texas Tech University and graduated from the Public Executive Institute at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin.

Chuck Dart to serve as director of Yoakum EDC
Chuck Dart recently won selection as the new director of the Yoakum Economic Development Corporation (EDC).

Dart (pictured) previously was director of economic development and the Main Street program in Ferris. He begins his new duties in Yoakum April 25.
LaPoynor ISD names Young as lone finalist for superintendent
Trustees for LaPoynor Independent School District recently named James Young (pictured) as the lone finalist for superintendent.

Once the required waiting period has expired, Young will replace Superintendent Sherry Douglas, who is leaving that post at the end of the current academic year. She has been superintendent since 2012.

Young previously served as a teacher, coach and principal at Quitman ISD. Currently, he is the district's assistant superintendent.

Amarillo taps Nelson as interim president of EDC
The board of the Amarillo Economic Development Corporation (EDC) recently selected Doug Nelson (pictured) to serve as interim president and chief executive officer.

Currently the vice president of financial services for the EDC, Nelson will replace Buzz David, who is retiring at the end of this month.

EDC board members will continue to search for a new CEO and expect to ask several firms to submit proposals to assist in the search. The board, however, may select the president internally, Nelson said.
Emergency preparation supplies sales tax holiday is in April
In 2015, the Texas Legislature created an Emergency Preparation Supplies Sales Tax Holiday to give Texans the chance to prepare themselves for the potential for severe weather. This year's tax-free weekend will take place April 23-25.

"The severe weather, fire and flooding we had last year provided a stark reminder that Texans should be prepared for any emergency," Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar said. "This tax holiday allows people to save money while ensuring they have the supplies they need if disaster strikes."

Items that qualify for the tax holiday include batteries, first aid kits and flashlights priced at less than $75; hurricane shutters and emergency ladders that cost less than $300; and portable generators under $3,000. A full list is available online.

South Padre Island city manager has resigned
City Manager Bill DiLibero of South Padre Island recently resigned from that post. Council members have not discussed a replacement for DiLibero.

Navasota ISD considers options for roof repairs
Trustees for Navasota Independent School District recently began considering three options ranging in cost from $6 million to $9 million to repair or upgrade the aging roof at Navasota High School.

The first option, estimated to cost $7 million to $9 million, calls for removing the existing roof and installing a new system. Ranging from $6 million to $8 million, the second option calls for recovering the roof with a modified bitumen roof system. 
The third would recover the existing roof with a thermoplastic system at an estimated cost of $7 million to $9 million.

Consultants should complete the design specifications by the end of April, and board members expect to issue a request for bids once the design plan receives final approval.

On Our Website 

Brownwood City Council to fund $3M in projects
Brownwood City Council members recently agreed to begin the process of issuing $3 million in certificates of obligation to fund several capital improvement projects.

City Manager Emily Crawford (pictured) had offered council members three options to fund upgrades to city streets, parks and facilities. Council members expect to vote on issuing a notice of intent April 26 and vote on final approval in July, Crawford said.
A Report on the Implementation Status of Prior State Auditor's Office Recommendation
Gov. Greg Abbott has announced the following appointments:
  • Julio Cerda, Mission, Presiding Officer of the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners;
  • Tom Freeman, Huntsville, Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners;
  • Ben Friedman, Dallas, Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners;
  • Robi Jalnos, San Antonio, Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners;
  • Peter Tarlow, College Station, Presiding Officer of the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission;
  • Lynne Aronoff, Houston, Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission;
  • Becky Keenan, Pearland, Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission;
  • Peter Berkowitz, Houston, Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission;
  • Alia Garcia Ureste, El Paso, Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission;
  • Lindsey Bradford, Edna, Texas Board of Professional Geoscientists;
  • Bereket Derie, Round Rock, Texas Board of Professional Geoscientists;
  • Steven Fleming, Midland, Texas Board of Professional Geoscientists.
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Texas Government Insider is a free weekly newsletter detailing important happenings throughout the state and summarizing current political issues relevant to individuals interested in government.   
Publisher: Mary Scott Nabers
Editor: Peter Partheymuller   
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