MIDLOTHIAN – The Midlothian City Council held a public hearing and approved an ordinance for a service and assessment plan for MidTowne during its meeting last week.

Residents of MidTowne had signed a petition and presented grievances with the developer about a lack of mowing and debris piled in common areas. The residents also asked for representation on the MidTowne Public Improvement District board.

“There has to be 50 homes in MidTowne before the homeowners can have representation on the board,” city manager Don Hastings said.

MidTowne residents asked for an exception, which would require a rewrite of a city ordinance; however, the council was not willing to make a change. Council member Hank Miller asked the development representative, Rick Keeler, if the board could allow at least one person from the subdivision to MIDLOTHIAN – The Midlothian City Council held a public hearing and approved an ordinance for a service and assessment plan for MidTowne during its meeting last week.

Residents of MidTowne had signed a petition and presented grievances with the developer about a lack of mowing and debris piled in common areas. The residents also asked for representation on the MidTowne Public Improvement District board.

“There has to be 50 homes in MidTowne before the homeowners can have representation on the board,” city manager Don Hastings said.

MidTowne residents asked for an exception, which would require a rewrite of a city ordinance; however, the council was not willing to make a change. Council member Hank Miller asked the development representative, Rick Keeler, if the board could allow at least one person from the subdivision to communicate the homeowner’s voice. Keeler couldn’t commit to the option, but said it was a possibility.

Hastings spoke about the budget before the council voted to approve three budget items on the regular agenda.

“This is the fifth budget year in a row that has been challenging,” Hastings said. “One of our goals for the budget is to maintain core services at a satisfactory level. We believe we’ve achieved all of our goals, while avoiding increased burden to taxpayers in the form of fees or raising the tax rate.”

Hastings noted core services such as the Midlothian Conference Center, information technology program, water and sewage maintaining a reasonable level of indebtedness and two bond rating upgrades, which mean residents pay less in interest when the city builds water services or parks.

“Other cities are struggling to maintain a 90-day reserve, while Midlothian has a 190-day reserve,” Mayor Boyce Whatley said, saying other cities are jealous of Midlothian’s high reserve fund balance.

In other actions, the council:

• approved Water Treatment Plant No. 2 with Garney Companies Inc. to purchase a membrane system from Siemens Water Technologies Corporation not to exceed $2,337,120.

• agreed to postpone the proposal for Kimmel Park improvements on Jim Berman’s request. The proposal will be presented Sept. 27.

• approved an amendment to the retail water service area agreement with Mountain Peak Special Utility District for the transfer of certain certificate of convenience and necessity areas. Maps provided by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality illustrated discrepancies between co-service areas between Mountain Peak and Midlothian, so both parties agreed to dismiss the maps.

• awarded a rental agreement to Documentation Business Technology Intergration for the rental of 15 multi-purpose copier/scanner/fax and printers for $4,869 monthly. The agreement is a five-year contract, allowing the city to upgrade or downgrade the printers and multi-purpose units as needed on a monthly basis.

• approved to write off aged accounts receivable for EMS ambulance billings older than nine months in accordance with established policy. The billings are already written off by Intermedix, the billing company, after nine months.

• Took no action on a closed, executive session item concerning real estate.

Contact Aaron at 469-517-1456 or a.schwaderer@wninews.com.