The council went into executive session for more than an hour to interview and select a police officer. The town has been without a peace officer since Jan. 1, when Robert Bolcik took office as sheriff. With a full council present, only one opposition vote was cast.
All discussions of whether to turn law enforcement over to the county were laid to rest during the meeting that stretched into more than two hours.
Councilman Jimmy Blaschke voted no on the selection, explaining he was voting against “the position, not the man selected.”
John Pope of Juaquin, a small community near Nacogdoches, will take office on May 1.
The council stopped short of adopting a proposal from Allied Waste to convert to new company-provided, 93-gallon trash cans. The council wanted to review the new contract before signing off on it.
Under the new system, fully-automated trash pickup would require only one driver and the specially-designed receptacles will be loaded with a “one-armed bandit,” said Brian Cornelious, a representative from Allied Waste.
Cornelious said the current rear-load pickup system is becoming obsolete and eventually will be replaced by the new automated trucks.
Customers would be assessed a $1 increase in their garbage bills to over the $25,000 cost of 630 garbage carts. Customers that have more refuse than can fit into one cart will be provided a second cart. The fee for the second receptacle is discounted 20 percent and customers will pay 80 percent more per receptacle.
Bulky items will continue to be picked up on a monthly, scheduled basis. The representative asked that the town enter into a new three-year contract when the system is put into place.
Council member Jeanette Chandler also asked for clarification on why there are fewer tournaments being played at the the Dodson Little League Field. She also asked about gate and concession income.
“Why aren’t there any tournaments there as in the past,” Chandler asked. “There’s been some discussion that it’s because of the pitcher’s mound.”
Two council members, Debra Bolcik and Larry Jochetz, are active volunteers for LL, and both agreed that was a misconception.
“It has nothing to do with the pitchers mound,” Bolcik said.
“I can change the pitcher’s mound in 15 minutes,” Jochetz said. “That’s not the problem.”
Jochetz said tournaments traditionally are held in set places. Mayor George Hernandez said that Woodsboro is many times listed as the alternative field.
“That’s because our field is always ready,” Jochetz said.
The other controversy concerned who gets the money generated from games.
“Little League gets all the gate fees and all the money from the concession,” Bolcik said. “Little League makes a lot of money during high school games. We profit from it.”
Bolcik said the school pays the electric bill and hires a teacher to take gate fees.
Oren Westermann’s request for sewer service outside the city limits was approved. Tap-in fees charged by the city include a $125 deposit and $195 fee to tap in.
“Do I have to pay the owners,” Westermann asked, explaining that he was being asked for $700.
“I wouldn’t pay them a dime, but that’s me,” the mayor said.
Hernandez said they had searched records back to 1972 and could find no record of any agreement with the landowners about the ownership of the line.
“I don’t know if there was a gentleman’s agreement or what,” Hernandez said. “But there’s no such thing as a private line.”
City attorney Donald Kubicek reiterated the mayor’s claim.
“The line is part of the town’s sewer system,” Kubicek said.
Westermann said numerous holes had been dug but they still have not found the line.
In other matters, the council approved a request from Daryl Wilson to hold National Prayer Day on May 7 at 7 p.m. on the Square.
The council also will advertise to sell one-third an acre of property for a minimum bid of $2,000 to cover the cost of having the property surveyed. Signs will go up on Guadalupe and Celia streets advertising the sale.
The council also agreed to pay $18,576 as its share for animal control. Woodsboro will pay 20.58 percent of the cost; Refugio, 25.49 percent; Bayside, 4.57 percent; and Austwell, 2.29 percent, according to figures provided by Jimmy Blaschke.
The council also heard a presentation from Lenny Anzaldua of the community development foundation concerning a summer youth work program. Under the program, youths will be hired through a temp agency and paid by WorkForce Solutions to obtain work experience and provide services to businesses, individuals and local government.