Water department supervisor fired
by Kenda Nelson
Sep 28, 2012 | 2449 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
H.C. Neel
FFA officer
H.C. Neel FFA officer
REFUGIO — The city water superintendent submitted a rough draft of operations instructions for the water plant but the plan wasn’t good enough Tuesday night for the council. Bruce Dupray was terminated by unanimous vote.

Councilman Lenny Anzaldua, who voted against terminating Dupray two weeks ago expressed regret Tuesday night.

“I apologize for extending this for two weeks,” he said.

Dupray opted not to go into executive session behind closed doors.

“You gave me 30 days (to come up with the plan), Dupray said. “This is a rough draft.”

Councilman Joey Heard presented a list of reasons he had asked for the termination two weeks ago.

Dupray allegedly cost the city $20,000 on equipment in the sewer plant though his job was in the water plant; allegedly he was responsible for a resident being without water for seven weeks although the part was readily available, allegedly caused the town to lose two million gallons of water while Dupray went out of state, allegedly mismanaged employees by not adhering to safety regulations, and allegedly broke water lines while fixing other broken lines.

Dupray denied he knew about the water leak.

Mayor Ray Jaso said that a contract worker who has all the needed certifications for water and sewer will come on board Wednesday morning. He said the transition will be seamless.

The council also voted to allow residents of Refugio to dump lumber and limbs free of charge as long as they present a water bill to prove they are reside in the town.

Heard said County Commissioner Ann Lopez had requested that a fee be charged on certain days of the week; however, Anzaldua reminded the council why they adopted the free policy.

“Having a free dump allows residents to bring their limbs to the dump instead of putting them on the street for the city crew to pick up,” Anzaldua said. “If it’s a company, they will have to pay, but if you’re tearing down your old rotten shed, you can haul your own and you don’t have to pay.”

Jaso blamed the large piles of limbs and brush at the dump grounds on the long two-year drought and the county-wide burn ban.

Council member Karen Watts said she was walking her dogs down the road on Sunday near the dump and saw people unloading limbs inside the locked gate.

The person was identified and turned out to be a county worker with a key.

“We got it all straightened out,” Shreckengost said.

In FFA matters, H.C. Neel, vice president of the local chapter and secretary to the Gateway Chapter, received $2,125 from hotel/motel tax money for a livestock judging show.

Last year, 64 families and 74 children were drawn to the two-day show. Neel and his mother, Amy Neel, said they expect the show to be as big or bigger than last year’s.

In personnel matters, Rodolfo Solis of the parks department completed his probationary period and will receive a raise.

“He’s doing a wonderful job,” said Kevin Shreckengost, parks supervisor.
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