By Valerie Reddell
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, Autism Awareness Month and Fair Housing Month thanks to three proclamations approved by Woodville City Council on Monday under the leadership of Mayor Pro Tem Joyce Wilson.
The city also accepted a donation from Youth Leadership of Southeast Texas that will provide puncture resistant safety gloves for police officers and other first responders.
Rachel Iglesias addressed the council on the group's behalf, reporting that the group raised the funds by putting on a ragball tournament.
Fellow adult coordinator Steve Sturrock said the gloves would be delivered as soon as he and Police Chief Scott Yosko determined what size gloves were needed to fit the city's current roster of officers.
The council also voted to adopt a small increase recommended by the Public Utilities Commission in the Municipal Telecommunications Right-of-Way access line rate.
City Manager Mandi Risinger explained that increase amounts to a few cents per month and prevents the city from having to adopt larger increases.
The council postponed appointing a board member to serve on the board of directors of the Deep East Texas Council of Governments. Councilman Lee Mann currently serves in the role and asked for additional time to consider whether to continue.
Risinger added that the city has until July to make that appointment.
Risinger also reported on that state of the Pine Street Water Well project.
At the March meeting, Risinger reported that the well had problems with its starter. Crews replaced that piece of equipment and now they are having difficulties with one of the pumps. As soon as the well is operational, it will be used for several days, then water samples will be submitted to TCEQ for testing. If those samples pass, the well will be put online.
Those unexpected equipment problems have also delayed the final paperwork to close out the grant, Risinger said.
Once repairs and testing are complete, she can process the final pay request and release retainage.
FEMA is still processing the city's request for reimbursement for expenses related to Hurricane Harvey.
Ending on a positive note, Risinger said the gas system earned a 100 percent performance evaluation from the Texas Municipal League.
A notification letter commended Woodville for earning a score of 95 or better in performance ratings for the last 10 years.
The wastewater treatment plant also underwent a recent inspection. A few issues were identified and have been resolved, Risinger said. They are currently awaiting a confirmation that TCEQ is satisfied with the city's response.