City Council members met a bit earlier than usual to celebrate Municipal Court Judge M. Rand Cates and his 10 years of dedicated service. Judge Cates was presented with a framed certificate of appreciation and a personalized engraved gavel.
“I would like to express my appreciation to the council for appointing me to a sixth term as Mount Enterprise Municipal Court Judge. I pledge to continue performing my judicial duties in a fair and impartial manner and will preserve, protect, and defend the law and the legal system constitutionally created in our State and Nation,” said Cates.
During visitor and citizen presentations Mt. Enterprise resident Randy Creel came before the council to request assistance from the city to clean a drainage ditch separating Creel’s commercial property from that held by the next-door Methodist Church which is overgrown with weeds and small trees.
“I pay city taxes there also and I’m just asking to see if we can get that cleaned up. I can’t afford to do it all myself and the church sure can’t,” said Creel. “I did get a bid from Highway 84 to where the old alleyway goes, basically my property line, and it was like $1,500 to do that.”
Mayor Jones and the council motioned and agreed to add the request to the next meeting’s agenda to allow time to gather information to determine the best candidate to perform the task.
Mt. Enterprise Volunteer Fire Department Chief Deniese Case took a moment to commend the citizens of Mt. Enterprise and the surrounding communities for their quick response to Saturday’s tornado and everyone’s willingness to help their neighbors in that shared time of need.
“People have been so wonderful and it’s amazing,” said Case. “Anybody who has seen the back of the station can see it’s full of water and supplies. We’ve got a whole load of tarps back there so if there’s anything y’all see that you need, get it. If you don’t see it, tell me, I might can get it.”
Later in the meeting, Mayor Jones agreed with Case’s sentiment. “It was amazing the everybody came together,” said Jones. “I had 3 trees down in my yard and I never touched a chainsaw. I got to spend my time helping clear other people’s yards.”
After a quick motion and second to approve the Consent Agenda, which consisted of approvals of minutes to a Regular Meeting held in February and various other Monthly Reports.
Next on the agenda was the approved renewal of Judge Cates’s standing orders and term. Mayor Jones performed the swearing-in ceremonies of both Judge Cates and his Associate Judge, Overton’s Carolyn Walters, and witnessed the signing of their Oaths of Office and Anti-Bribery Oaths.
The council unanimously approved to award the 2021 Mt. Enterprise Senior Scholarship to MEISD’s Jaden Rogers. As the only student to apply for the scholarship she has been granted the entire $500 scholarship, which is typically split between a female and male applicant.
The council discussed and approved the contract for Mt. Enterprise’s new trash vendor, Lilly Sanitation.
“We’re ready to roll. Ready to get to work, we actually have a garbage truck sitting outside so in case we needed to do something this evening we could do it,” said Lilly Sanitation owner
“If y’all need an extra dumpster, free of charge on Lilly Sanitation at the spot you’re collecting brush we have no problem. Just say what you need and we’re there.”
The council quickly approved to have the City Hall parking lot restriped. Years of parking have worn away all previous markings, leaving visitors guessing at the legality of their parking spot.
Quick approvals were given for the Court Administrator’s attendance at the Municipal Budget Cycle Seminar and for the City Secretary to choose and attend various virtual TMCCP Seminars. They also approved the increase of the City Secretary’s credit card limit from $1,000 to $2,000.
Councilmembers agreed unanimously to approve the purchase of ticket writing hardware for City Marshal Jon Randolph and a generator for use at the City Hall.
The council voted unanimously to adopt Resolution 2021-03-30R which denied SWEPCO’s proposed rate increase and directing SWEPCO to reimburse the City’s rate case expenses.
Without much discussion, the council voted to approve the Public Utility Commission 2021 Consumer Price Index Adjustment to Municipal Telecommunications Right-of-way Access Line Rates. According to the Public Utility Commission of Texas website as of March 1, 2000, all telecommunications franchise fees in Texas are required to be based on a fee-per-access line method. The PUC, in October 1999, established three categories of access lines - residential, non-residential, and point-to-point. Each city was required to submit its 1998 base amount and allocation of the base amount to the PUC by December 1, 1999. All CTPs were required to submit a city-by-city, December 31, 1998 access line count to the PUC by January 24, 2000. The PUC then calculated maximum access line rates for the three categories of access lines, for each city. The rate for each category, when multiplied by the number of lines in that category in a city, should equal that city’s base amount.
Next on the agenda was the approval of Ordinance# 2021-03-03A which will repeal the outdated juvenile curfew ordinance adopted years ago but never enforced.
The council also approved the adoption of the Municipal Court Media Policy and determined that future Budget workshops would be set for May, June, and July.
The meeting was adjourned only to convene directly into a moment’s long Emergency meeting where the council voted to approve the 30-day extension of Ordinance# 2021-03-30E or the Declaration of Disaster which was signed Monday following Saturday’s devastating tornado.