ENNIS – Accepting the staff recommendation of City Manager Steve Howerton, the members of the Ennis City Commission unanimously approved the city to join the Ellis Dallas Unified Cooperative Team, (EDUCT) for additional mutual aid disaster support.

Ennis joins other Ellis County cities of Red Oak, Waxahachie, Ferris, Glenn Heights, Midlothian and Ovilla as well as several southern Dallas County cities in the mutual aid agreement.

“Entering into the agreement does not waive current mutual aid agreements we have but it provides a higher level of coverage to our citizens,” Howerton said

  The agreement sets up a system where in the event of  a disaster or emergency, the member cities will provide equipment and manpower where the capacity of each  is beyond the  capacity of the individual city.

“This is especially important where there is a requirement for a specialized piece of equipment that may not be in the affected city,” Howerton said.

The agreement sets out responsibilities of the requesting and responding parties. Topics such as food, housing, communication, supervision and control are outlined in the agreement.

A level of mutual aid is established by the responding party. All member cities shall render assistance to the extent of available manpower and equipment.

None of the members cities will be required to provide mutual aid to the extent that sufficient resources are available in their own area of jurisdiction.

“This enhances the mutual aid agreements we currently have with the other Ellis County cities,” Howerton said.  

Howerton presented a report to the commission showing the capitol improvement growth in the city for the last 30 years.

“During the past 30 years, the city has made significant growth in the area of capitol improvements,” Howerton said.

Howeton’s study began with the fiscal years of 1980 – 1981, where the fixed assets of the city were $14,566,608.

“At the end of 2011-2012, the total assets of the city have grown to more than $123,836,150, net of accumulated depreciation,” Howerton said

In the same 30 year period, the city’s total completed capitol improvements totaled $91,959882.

Funding sources for these included general obligation and certificate of obligation bonds, revenue bonds and categorical or block grants-in-aids. These projects were also partially funded by $2,816.859 of general fund operating funds and $2,739, 246 in utility operating funds.

Ranking of the capitol projects places the primary focus on street improvements followed by sewer and other public facility improvements. Included in the public improvements were a new hospital, library improvements, and park improvements.

During the 2011-2012 fiscal year, the city spent $6,092,285 for capitol improvement programs. Streets lead with $4,567,637. Other recipients were parks with $934,154, water and wastewater improvements at $543,574 and improvements to the Lake Clark dam costing $47,000.

Future projects anticipated are continued street improvements, new city hall, police and fire department facilities, airport improvements and improvements to the library and parks.

As this was an information item, no action was required by the commission.

Other action items considered were:

• The first reading of a zoning request ordinance changing a property located in the 100 and 200 blocks of Sunridge Road from “T’ transitional to “R-1” single family residential.

• The second reading of a zoning request ordinance changing a property located at 260 Sunridge Road from “T’ transitional to “R-1” single family residential.

Both items passed by a unanimous vote.