Copperas Cove city council to discuss utility rate changes, hold rezoning hearings
By BRITTANY FHOLER
The Copperas Cove City Council will resume discussions on amending the city’s sign ordinance and regarding utility rates for water, sewer, solid waste and drainage during their workshop meeting on Tuesday at 5 p.m.
The public may participate in this meeting by calling (888) 475-4499 and use meeting ID 9866029818. The public may offer public comments telephonically as provided by the agenda and as permitted by the presiding officer during the meeting.
Written questions or comments may be submitted up to two hours before the meeting via email to Lisa Wilson, City Secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A recording of the telephonic meeting will be made and will be available to the public in accordance with the Texas Public Information Act upon written request.
The council will also be discussing the city’s sign regulations. Previously, the council repealed the sign ordinance from 2010, and directed the city staff to rewrite the sign ordinance and keep the sign regulations basic. A draft was provided to the Sign Regulations Workgroup Ad Hoc Committee for review, and staff and the committee worked on a rewrite.
This rewrite is described as “more user-friendly with photos, illustrations, definitions and easy to understand regulations that apply to the needs and desires of the City of Copperas Cove. In fact, the new sign ordinance rewrite has reduced the total word count of the current sign ordinance by nearly 45 percent (11,330 to 6,321 words),” according to the meeting agenda packet.
The rewrite includes new sign regulations according to type of sign, maximum sign area, when a permit is required, time limits, sign standards and photo illustrations.
The committee also reviewed the city’s fee schedule and compared it with surrounding cities, and recommends removal of the Sign Circuit fee and Sign Inspection Fees. The sign fees recommended for removal include the $50 fee for sign circuit and $25-$30 sign inspection fees based on square footage of face area.
During the council’s regular meeting, at 6 p.m., the city council will continue its public hearing, from May 19, on the city’s sign ordinance, and then either action on the regulations, or send the rewrite to the Planning and Zoning Commission for its recommendation and return to city council for final action.
The council will also hold a public hearing and take action on two requests by WB Development representing Lehmann Heritage Corporation, regarding 85.73 acres located along F.M. 116 between Lutheran Church Rd and Public Works Drive.
The property’s development plan is a mix of housing types consisting of single-family, duplex and townhomes, while the frontage along F.M. 116 is being planned for future retail commercial development by Lehmann Heritage Corporation. In addition, WB Development is planning a recreational trail system that can be linked to City Park.
The public hearings include both amending the city’s future land use plan along with the rezoning of the same property from AG-1 (Agriculture) and R-1 (Single Family Residential District) to PDD (Planned Development District), and from R-1 (Single Family Residential District) to B-4 (General Retail District).
The fourth public hearing is a request by Fieldstone Commercial, LLC, to rezone 1.414 acre tract located at 2053 F.M. 2657 from B-2 (Local Retail District) and B-4 (General Retail District) to B-4 (General Retail District). Fieldstone Commercial, LLC plans to build a 4,000-square-foot commercial building at the corner of F.M. 2657 and Lazy Lane.
The city council will also hear a presentation by Budget Director Ariana Beckman and discuss the city’s ad valorem tax rate for fiscal year 2020-2021.
On July 23, the city council will meet again and will hold a public hearing on the city’s proposed fiscal year 2020-2021 budget, first presented by City Manager Ryan Haverlah on June 2.
Also on Thursday, the council will take a record vote to propose a property tax rate. The proposed budget is based on a tax rate of 78.65 cents per $100 of property value.
The city council is required to take a record vote and set the required public hearing date for the proposed tax rate if it exceeds the no-new-revenue tax rate or the voter-approval tax rate, which ever one is lower, as dictated by the Texas Tax Code.
The council is expected to set the public hearing date for the proposed tax rate to be held on August 4. The city council will also set the date to adopt the tax rate to be the same day.