Granite Shoals ponders water rate increases

Granite Shoals Mayor Carl J. Brugger presents Granite Shoals Police Officer John Ortis with a special recognition at the June 26 meeting. Ortis recently was selected by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement to receive a Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Public Service.





By Richard Zowie

The Highlander

Water rates may increase soon in Granite Shoals in order to take care of the city's water infrastructure, and it's looking like few options are available.

Also at its June 26 city council meeting, Granite Shoals council members agreed to a bid for the first phase of a road project at Arterial Road


Water rates

The council revewied preliminary numbers regarding two water rate studies and concluded a need to increase water rates.

Currently, both studies indicated a need to increase rates to support needed infrastructure improvements system-wide. No specific plan has been accepted yet. Council will further discuss this as part of the upcoming budget season meetings.

Local resident Shirley King asked the council not to increase the rates.

“Water rates don't need to be raised to cover the expense of this,” she said. “Cut spending instead.”

Council member Todd Holland told the public at the meeting that something had to be done, even if it's not fiscally popular.

“Granite Shoals has been here for more than 50 years, and there are things that need to be done that are past due,” Holland said. “Eveyrbody screams about whatever, but I'm sorry. It takes money. Capital projects and day-to-day operations take money. We can kick that can down the road and hope for Santa Claus to drop off a grant, but meanwhile things are still falling apart.”


Road project

Phase I of Granite Shoals' Arterial Road infrastructure project will soon get under way, now that the city council awarded a bid on June 26.

The city's current engineer under contract, Greg Haley of KC Engineering, told the council members that Pro Dirt was the low bidder at $738,869.64.

The city received five bids for the project ranged from $738,000 to $1.1 million.

The budgeted range was $850,000.

“The bids received were very much in line with what was exected,” Haley said.

After much discussion, where it was revealed that Pro Dirt had previously done work in Burnet County, it was revealed that the county had offered to send some employees to Granite Shoals to provide additional oversight capabilities during construction.

The council then approved Pro Dirt's bid.


Granite Shoals Briefs

...Granite Shoals will be looking for a new police oficer, as Sgt. Paul Chrane submitted his resignation to go into business with his family. His last day on the job will be in July.

“Granite Shoals Police Chief Gary Boshears will promote from within to fill the sergeant position and will hire a police patrol officer.”

...Council members discussed a long-standing issue of holiday pay for firefighters. Central to the issue is the question of how many hours are in a “Customary Shift?”

Confusion stems from the fact that some departments work eight-hour shifts, some 12- hour shifts and the firefighters work 48 hours on duty, and 96 off duty.

Firefighters request holiday pay in shift increments.

The council agreed to also pay the firefighters retroactively to the beginning of the current budget year for holiday pay as the council determines.

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