Gainesville Daily Register

December 5, 2013

Council approves $2.5 million financing for park

Staff Report
Gainesville Daily Register

Callisburg — Staff report

Following approval by Gainesville City Council, the city’s economic development corporation is now authorized to borrow as much as necessary — up to $2.5 million — in further development of Gainesville Industrial Park, now underway on 142 acres in the northern portion of the city.

Tuesday’s regular meeting included approval of a resolution allowing Gainesville Economic Development Corporation (GEDC) Executive Director Kent Sharp to oversee the transaction. The funding will allow improvements to the industrial park — such as roadways, water, sewer, waste water and other necessary components, as well as professional fees and associated engineering services for the first phase of the construction.

During the meeting, Sharp told officials the initial approval was $1.5 million but engineering design work has revealed the need for additional sewer work, a lift station and other ancillary expenses. And despite a $2.5 million ceiling, Sharp said the GEDC will only borrow the amount needed.

Other meeting highlights:

• City Manager Barry Sullivan read and presented a certificate of achievement to the City of Gainesville for Excellence in Financial Reporting (CAFR) for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2012. The certificate was awarded by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA).  The award is issued to governmental units whose financial reports achieve the highest standards in government accounting and financial reporting. City finance director Dan Parker received the award on behalf of the city and also credited Mary Jarvis, retired city controller, for her efforts in the achievement.  This is the city’s 22nd year to achieve this award.

• Council authorized a ground lease agreement (14,463 square feet.) with GCBS XX LLC at the Gainesville Municipal Airport.  The company has agreed to purchase a private hangar from Tomlinson Avionics, which is located on the city property. The resolution approves the ground lease with the city for a primary term of 30 years with two five-year extension options and lease rate adjustments (per “Consumer Price Index”) every five years. GCBS will use the hangar and land to store and work on their private aircraft. The airport board and city staff recommended approval of the long-term lease.

• Authorized release of two liens against the property located at 725 Beattie Street in order for the property to be sold at the next sheriff’s sale. The liens were filed in 2008, for demolition of a substandard structure, and for mowing and cleanup.  With interest and fees, the liens total over $4,400. The property is valued at $1,900. Sullivan recommended releasing the lien to facilitate its sale and get the property back on the tax roll.

• Council voted unanimously to disapprove a proposed ordinance designating no parking of vehicles in the 1100 block of East Main Street between South Morris and South Grand Avenue. During the “citizen comments” portion of the meeting agenda, Lisa Erlandson said the need for denied parking in the area is premature and requested that city officials wait until after her daughter’s building (Bosco’s) is constructed and operational and then determine the need for the “no parking” law. (Groundwork for the new Bosco’s facility has begun but is not completed.) Mayor Jim Goldsworthy expressed his appreciation for Erlandson’s comments and suggested council could bring the ordinance back if it is later determined to be necessary.

• Council granted permission for a group of area residents to place a monument in the Georgia Davis Bass Park in recognition of “The Great Hanging” which took place in Gainesville in October 1862. Goldsworthy said the wording for the inscriptions was agreed on back in 1999, for this project, which was not completed. The approved resolution stipulates the city is not required to maintain the monument and can have it removed from the location if it becomes dilapidated or a danger to the public. Members of the Great Hanging Monument Committee making the request included Nancy Brannon, Steve Gordon, Colleen Clark Carri, L. D. Clark, Bob Davis, Richard McCaslin, Ona B. Reed and Dick Sparkman.

• Council approved action of the GEDC in approving a gift agreement with the Gainesville ISD (GISD) for purchase and construction of two billboards for advertising and promoting the City of Gainesville and the GISD. The agreement allows for the GEDC and the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce to advertise on two faces of the billboards and the GISD on two faces. The billboards will be installed on GISD property located adjacent to Interstate 35, and can only be used to advertise school, city or zoo information.

• Council approved a resolution by the City of Gainesville requesting federal action for a federal judicial court nominee for the Sherman division of the Eastern District of Texas. The judicial position has been vacant for seven years since the retirement of the last permanent resident judge in November 2006. The resolution requests cooperative action by the president, senators, and congressional representatives to fill the vacant position.