Future Growth In Buffalo

Members of the Buffalo City Council met Monday, May 22nd, for their regular monthly meeting. All members were present. Buffalo Mayor Royce Dawkins presided.

Council members held a workshop prior to the meeting to discuss results from a special committee to exam alternative plans for the growth of the city of Buffalo. The committee?s recommendation to the board was to use the Texas Target Communities services offered by Texas A&M University.

Council members heard from Martin Housler, Chairman of the committee and member of the city council, on the plan the committee heard presented by Dr. Cooper, Executive Director of the Texas Target Communities. The plan involves a team of graduate students from A&M who will spend time in Buffalo and Leon County, hold public meetings with citizens, and hear from a variety of community representatives to determine the needs and possibilities to develop a growth plan for Buffalo with consideration of the entire county.

After the council meeting was started, a motion was made to accept the committee?s recommendation to use the A&M Texas Target Communities Program. All council members voted to approve the motion. The cost of the program will be $40,100 with payment of 25% made at the beginning. The plan will take two semesters to complete.

Ken Jones, President of the Buffalo EDC, congratulated the council on their decision. ?I commend you for your vision and taking the responsibility of seeing Buffalo grow successfully.?

Dr. Russell Jonas, who is a member of the committee that recommended the A&M program also spoke. ?Buffalo is going to grow. Having a plan is the way for the citizens to control that growth. There are things about Buffalo people don?t want to see changed, and this is the best way to preserve what we like here and still accommodate the growth that is due to come.?

The council discussed the amount of money to spend on the new City Office/Civic Center. This item was tabled until more information can be determined on what will be included in this expense before setting a cap on spending for the project. The current expectation is to see ground breaking this August for the new structure.

Money for the new building will come from the hotel/motel tax fund. Housler stated again that the goal, while using hotel/motel tax funds, was to still have available money for the various organizations that have benefited from financial support from the tha fund. ?We still want to contribute to the youth organizations and many other activities which hold events that bring tourism into our area,? said Housler.

The council approved a request from TXDOT to lower the speed zone on Interstate 45 on the southbound lanes during the construction of the exit and feeder ramps. The speed limit, which is currently set at 75, will be lowered to 65 for the southbound lanes between the north and south city limit signs when construction begins and until it is completed.

Buffalo Police Chief Lance Pavelka delivered the report from his department. There were 75 calls for service from the police last month including 2 assaults causing bodily harm, 1 public intoxication, 1 theft, 1 identity theft, 2 counterfeits or fraud, 1 retaliation, and 1 burglary of a vehicle. Pavelka said the amount of accidents on Interstate 45 were slower, but there are still too many accidents in town.

Approval was give for the negotiated settlement between ACSC and Atmos Energy Corp regarding the 2017 Rate Review Mechanism Filings.

The post event analysis from the Buffalo Lions Club Gun Show was approved.

The council approved the reappointment of Dianne Ryder and Mike Glick and the new appointment of Susan Wilder to the BEDC.

Newly seated Councilman Jerry Salazar, and returning Council Member Dianne Ryder, and Mayor Dawkins all recited the oath of office from City Secretary Debbie Waters. The Mayor appointed Dorothy Farmer as Mayor Pro Tem.