Jacksonville: City to consider aiding residents with water bill increases springing from recent winter weather issues

by Staff reports

JACKSONVILLE – Local city leaders will consider a policy that provides relief to property owners who may be facing higher water bills thanks to problems experienced during a recent winter weather event.

Jacksonville council members will meet in regular session at City Council at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Jacksonville City Hall, 315 S. Ragsdale St.

According to notes from an agenda packet, “the policy will allow residents to receive assistance for the February and March utility billing cycle that included February 15-22, 2021.

“The assistance is one of the following options: Resident provided proof of repair by a properly licensed plumber and their water bill will be reduced for the cost of the repair to the average bill or 50% reduction in water cost over the three month average of November 2020, December 2020 and January 2021,” the notes stated. “In addition, the city will set individuals up on a 12-month payment plan for any remaining balance with a financial needs application.”

The council also will address the following agenda items during its meeting:

– After a presentation from Patillo, Brown and Hill regarding the city’s 2019-20 audit, the council will take action regarding accepting findings

– Conduct a second reading of Resolution 03-2021-01 in support of economic development incentives; in separate vote, consider a resolution in support of economic develop incentives

– Consider consent agenda, which that includes minutes from a Feb. 9 regular meeting and a March 4 agenda workshop; an order canceling elections for council districts 1 and 3, which are uncontested races; a joint-election agreement with JISD; appointment of election workers for the May 1 municipal election; street closures for Tomato Fest

– Consider a moratorium on issuing/renewing itinerant vendor permits

– Consider possible permits for radio equipment for fire and police departments, and for emergency management

– Consider approval of emergency repairs to Water Well #5; according to an agenda packet the well recently was disabled due to pump or motor failure.

– Consider request from Cherokee County Historical Commission to apply for a historical marker to be placed at Hazel Tilton Park recognizing the 1800s railroad from Jacksonville to Lufkin.

An executive session item calls for consultation with the city attorney, real property and annual review of City Manager Greg Smith. Action, if any, will be taken when the council resumes into open sessions, as per Texas Government Code.