The City Commission heard an update from representatives involved with the Court Appointed Special Advocates this week regarding the renewal of the contract the city currently has with the organization.
The city allows for up to $2,400 in the budget to help defer the costs of children from the area who are involved in the protective services system and need an advocate to help them through the process.
Mayor Pro Tem Bob Taylor and other members of the commission thanked the group for its efforts and assured them that the issue would receive a favorable nod when it comes up as part of the next budget meeting in September.
The commission reviewed a budget report for the month of May with the refuse disposal as the only department seeing added expenditures In a previous meeting, City Manager Steve Howerton explained that the added disposal of structures that have been demolished after being condemned by the Building Standards Committee, accounts for the increase in this area.
Overall, with 66.67 percent of the budget year elapsed, 82 percent of the general fund revenues have been collected, while general fund expenditures totaled 66.7 percent of the annual budget.
Commission members received updates on projects the city is involved in including:
The repair and repainting of water storage tank 2 - the tank should be fully operational within the next week. The system has not been taxed while the tank has been offline because of the heavy rainfall the area has received over the past few months, which has also been the reason the tank project has been extended. Workers could not use their welding equipment in windy or rainy conditions. Ennis Regional Medical Centerís new facilities are moving toward completion with only the parking lot remaining as an outstanding item that may need a little more time to be completed. The facility is still expected to be turned over for use by July 14. The hospital administration and staff will have access to the building at that time and will hold an open house for the community to tour the new building on that date but the building will not officially open to the public for use until a few weeks later as staff makes the transition from the existing facility. The Ennis ISD expansion and construction project for the new high school and junior high is on track and several commission members reported they have toured the facility and are pleased with the progress. National Envelope Corporation will have their expansion complete by the end of August and will hold an open house in September. The company plans to add 297 more employees to the facility, which when completed will produce more envelopes per day than there are people in the state.
In other news, the commission voted to suspend the rate charged by Atmos Energy for 90 days after the company requested a rate increase from both residential and business customers. The city will use the time to join other cities in finding out what is a fair rate of increase and proposing the new figures to Atmos.
The commission also voted to take the steps necessary to acquire three parcels of land on Ensign Road after discussing the item in an executive session.
The commission also appointed Randy Bigham to the Arts Commission and Byron Walker to the Airport Commission.
The City Commission meets at 6 p.m. in workshop, with the regular meeting at 7 the first and third Monday of each month at City Hall, 115 W. Brown St.