A regular roundup of local-authority activities by Trishna Buch
A WOODLANDS company’s plans to build a liquid-natural-gas plant on a Galveston Bay dredge site near Texas City’s port were boosted on Wednesday when the city commission approved a lease agreement for the site.
The city commissioners authorized mayor Matt Doyle to enter into a lease agreement with NextDecade to develop the LNG plant on a property at Shoal Point.
The agreement will allow the engineering, design and permitting of the project to begin.
According to meeting documents, NextDecade has signed a three-year lease for the dredge site, with the first year set at a rate of $150,000 and subsequent years at similar but varied rates, along with an option for extension.
The company has planned the plant’s six-year construction to begin in 2020, creating more than 3,000 construction jobs. When the project’s first phase is complete, 150 skilled jobs will be needed for the facility’s operation and, on the completion of phase two, the plant’s estimated taxable value will be $6 billion.
“This is just the start”, Doyle said during Wednesday’s meeting.
“This is a two- to three-year process for the permitting and another two years for the construction. We are just getting started. It is a great asset for our city and it will really change what’s going on in our tax base
but we are a long way from being done.”
Rocky road to new asphalt life
A RECYCLING system that cleans up after destructive road works is on its way to Texas City.
The city commission approved a budget amendment during its Wednesday meeting to allow for the purchase of a six-ton vehicle containing a recycler and a hot box, which together recycle asphalt chunks and road-surface millings after pavements have been scarified.
The equipment will be bought through the Houston-Galveston area council at a cost of $44,950, which will be provided by the city’s capital-equipment replacement fund.
Save our water call to ARKK
TWO MID-COUNTY infrastructure projects that together will cost more than $350,000 – one to replace a waterline, the other for work on a sanitary sewer – were approved by a city commission this week.
During their meeting on Wednesday, Texas City commissioners approved the signing of an agreement with southwest Houston company ARKK Engineers for the 16th phase of a waterline replacement project and phase 18 of a sanitary sewer rehabilitation project at a total cost of $356,286.
ARKK will be in charge of the design and construction phases of the projects, at a cost of $156,561 for the waterline project and $199,725 for the sewer project.
Sugar coating for zoning request
THE OPERATOR of a coating business has been given the go-ahead to set up shop in Hitchcock after seeking a property-use change order.
City councilmembers approved Paul Rooney’s request for a zoning change at the corner of Oak Drive and FM 2004 during their council meeting on Monday.
Rooney wants to operate a coating business on a plot of land at the corner of the intersection but it is classified as neighborhood commercial.
Based on the nature of his business, it should be located in a general commercial district.
With councilmember Fard Abdullah absent, the remaining councilmembers approved the request unanimously.
Rohr deputy made interim city boss
AFTER DUMPING their city manager on the unemployment list last week, League City councilmembers began to steady the ship this week by promoting his deputy.
During a special meeting on Monday, they appointed John Baumgartner interim city manager after voting 5-3 to terminate Mark Rohr on December 13.
The vote came after a long disagreement between mayor Pat Hallisey and former city manager Rohr, who left his post moments after the vote was taken at the end of a long and bitter but civil debate.
Hallisey voiced his approval of Monday’s pick.
“League City has a bright future and we know that John Baumgartner is the right choice to see us through this period of transition and bridge the gaps”, he said.
“He is a member of this community, actively involved in issues important to the city and a true public servant”.
Baumgartner reciprocated the plaudits, saying: “I am humbled by the support that the city council and the community have shown to me throughout this transition”.
He told the councilmembers: “League City is my home and together we will continue working with the entire community to build upon our successes as we strive to provide world-class customer service”.
No logjams for trees collection
DISPOSING of Christmas trees should not needle north-county residents this year. League City has already placed dumpster containers for the job at four of its fire stations and there’s also a six-week-long curbside collection service on the way.
There are dumpsters for tree disposal at city fire stations two, three, four and five. Fire station two is located at 601 Second Street, station three at 3535 FM 518 East, station four at 175 Bay Area Boulevard and station five at 2898 Bay Creek Drive.
Starting on Thursday, December 29, trash-collection contractor Republic Waste Services will offer curbside collection for Christmas trees on the second collection day of each week until the first week of February.