Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

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October 15, 2013

Council OKs new meeting day

Corsicana — The Corsicana City Council voted Tuesday to change the days they meet, to accommodate Councilman Don Denbow’s out-of-town job as interim superintendent in Rockdale, Texas.

Denbow said the school district was trying to hire a new superintendent by April, and to drive down for council meetings in Corsicana would be a 250-mile trip. Currently, Denbow “attends” council meetings by computer conference calls, where he can see and hear the meetings, but isn’t physically present.

The new meeting days will be the second and fourth Mondays of each month. Currently, the council meets the first and third Tuesdays.

They couldn’t move the meetings to the first and third Mondays because the city attorney is on the Corsicana ISD Board of Trustees, which meets on the first and third Mondays.

Tom Wilson asked that the agendas be posted on Thursdays, to give residents the same amount of time to look at them as they have now. City Manager Connie Standridge said they would try to post the agendas on Thursdays, but reserved the right to amend them. Currently, the agendas are posted on Fridays. Legally, the city only has to post an agenda 72 hours in advance of a meeting.

The change will become effective on the second meeting of November, on Nov. 25. The meeting days in December will be Dec. 9 and 23.

The council also approved a gas rate increase for Atmos Energy.

Atmos asked for a rate increase in July, but the cities that the company services, which have taken legal opposition to the company in the past, negotiated a smaller rate increase. The company had asked for an increase of $22 million across all the cities, but they negotiated a $16 million increase, instead.

The rate increase will affect an average household about 74 cents a month, and an average commercial customer $2.16 per month, according to Standridge.

During the public forum portion of the meeting Babbette Samuels asked the council not to close the city pools. The new Corsicana Water and Adventure Park has proposed giving city residents a discount on season passes if the city will close the municipal pools at Jester and Bunert parks.

“I’m appalled that the developers of the water park asked us to close our public pools,” Samuels told the council Tuesday.

She told the council that the water park developers knew the city had pools, and she commended them on their choice of Corsicana, since there are many small towns around that don’t have city pools. However, she said many children and families walk or ride bikes to the park pools now.

“Our youngsters should not be walking or riding their bikes to a faraway pool,” Samuels said.

She recalled the opening of the Jester Park Pool in the 1950s and how much joy it gave her family. If the water park project doesn’t work out, and if the city has already closed its pools, then the city won’t have any pools, she said.

“Please think with your hearts and your children, not the dollar signs,” she pleaded.

She pointed out that her daughter lives in New Braunfels, the home of Schlitterbahn, an established water park, both that city and San Marcos still have municipal pools. They complement each other, she said.

Also during the public forum, Carolyn Nieto, the manager of La Pradera asked to be able to hire an off-duty police officer for the restaurant on weekends. She was asked to talk to the police chief.

   —————

Janet Jacobs may be reached via email at jjacobs@corsicanadailysun.com. Want to “soundoff” to this article? Email: Soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com

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