Something good for BC after Ike
After a long wait, Bridge City residents will soon see most of their streets repaired that were damaged from Hurricane Ike.
The Bridge City City Council met Tuesday night for a quarterly workshop to receive an update and to discuss grant projects from the Texas General Land Office. City Manager Jerry Jones said the round one of funding listed more projects than the city requested and all were not completed.
“We had projects that were set aside and we had projects we had to do,” Jones said.
Some of those “had to do” projects included installing generators, starting street work and identifying leaks in the sewer system. Jones reported there is $1 million left over to repair the majority of streets in the city using hot mix and chip seal. Chip sealing will begin when the weather warms up. All streets should be completed in a year-and-a-half time.
Another $1 million is to be used for sewer plant repairs after it experienced salt water intrusion. The city is waiting to receive the go ahead for bids.
City workers have begun working on manhole tops and will then start pipe bursting.
Round 2, Phase 1 funding was restricted to low to moderate income areas. The city had to certify sections of the town met the criteria through a head count. Jones added the city couldn’t had gone outside the criteria to receive the funding.
Round 2, Phase 2 also required a certain percentage of low to moderate income areas, but the city was allowed to move to other portions of the city too.
All and all, the city of Bridge City has spent nearly $17 million for disaster funding.
Hotel/Motel Occupancy Tax money will also be used to repave the parking lot at the Little League ballparks and the Bridge City Community Center. The work should be done before the season begins in March.
Jones added no resident’s service will be interrupted while the work is going on.
The council then discussed the Country Lane area project, that lies outside the city limits off of FM 1442, located in the city of Bridge City’s extraterritorial jurisdiction.
Jones reported all water and sewer lines are there and the city is in the process of tying the lines in. He also said there may be additional funding for the project.
Lastly, the council discussed the possibility of future annexations.
One property the city is eyeing is a peninsula southwest of the Veterans’ Memorial and Rainbow Bridges.
By law, the city can only annex one mile at a time.
Mayor Kirk Roccaforte rhetorically asked the council why they would want to annex.
“It would make your tax rate drop somewhat and it would be all absorbed in the city’s taxes. If you annex the piece, and there’s no water and sewer there, you’ll lose money,” he said.