Council selects city manager search firm
By LYNETTE SOWELL
The Copperas Cove city council emerged from an executive session during its Tuesday night meeting to approve Strategic Government Resources, or SGR, as the firm to conduct a search for candidates for a new city manager.
SGR was selected from among six firms which submitted RFQs, or request for qualifications, to the city. The agreement will cost the city $26,500, with SGR advertising for, recruiting and vetting candidates from which the council can select a city manager.
Also after Tuesday night’s the executive session, the council approved the submission of an economic development incentive offer to a business prospect dubbed by the EDC as “#ED-2018-2 Project Glow.” The term of the offer and the name of the company have not been released.
Interim City Manager Ryan Haverlah gave the council an update on will give a report to the council regarding the utility accounts audit, utility double billings, the Business 190 phase 1 project status, as well as the multi-modal joint truck/rail feasibility study.
Where the accounts audit is concerned, Haverlah said the city has requested copies of the sampling that the auditor received from FATHOM, and that staff is also providing information to the auditor on each of those sampling accounts.
“That work is anticipated to be completed by the end of November, and a report will be prepared and provided to city council and made transparent to our customers, and anybody interested in viewing the results of that audit,” Haverlah said. “Once the results are complete and we can look at those, we can make better, informed decisions on how to proceed and what to proceed with.”
He also explained the most recent double billings where several utility accounts are concerned, and said that for the month of October, there were six residential customers who received double billings, and seven residential customers received double billings in November.
Haverlah said the reasons vary, with some occurring because there were swapped meters identified. He gave the example of two units in a duplex, where in many cases throughout the city, the lines for those meters are crossed.
In some cases where double billing has occurred, a customer moved into a property immediately after another customer moved out. The timing in which the new customer moved in, that property actually looked like it was vacant.
Haverlah called it a timing issue when work orders are received from FATHOM, and it was something they were working on to make sure the city utility staff first get the order for the disconnect, and then the move-in or connect order for the new customer.
As far as the Business 190 median project is concerned, Haverlah gave the council an updated timeline. Right now, the project is being redesigned to include the changes recently approved by the Killeen Temple Metropolitan Planning Organization.
Haverlah said BSP Engineering will be finishing the schematic design, or 30 percent phase, in December which will then be submitted to TxDOT.
“Then on Feb. 12, 2019, TxDOT will hold a public hearing at the Civic Center. That will be a TxDOT-run meeting with a presentation of the project and comments received. In June 2019, we are anticipating completion of 60 percent of the project, and then between March and May 2020, we are anticipating bid letting of the project.”
A request for discounted Civic Center rental fees for Refuge Corporation/Christian House Of Prayer Ministries in Copperas Cove was postponed by the city council until the second meeting in January. The group rented the civic center for two days this week to distribute Thanksgiving dinner baskets to several hundred families.
The council unanimously approved appointing Bobby Lewis, the city planner, to represent the city on the Killeen Temple Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Technical Advisory Committee. Interim city manager Ryan Haverlah is an alternate, along with councilman Dan Yancey.
The council concurred to not go forward with directing the police department to create an engine brake ordinance, after a presentation by Chief of Police Eddie Wilson.