Granite Shoals City Council

Fri
11
Aug

Granite Shoals Council fighting financial fire

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

Caught doing something good: Granite Shoals City Council Member Anita Hisey, right, was spotted picking up litter on Phillips Ranch Road recently by former Mayor Dennis Maier, left. Calling himself a "self-appointed committee of one," surprised her at the Tuesday night, Aug. 8, council meeting with an impromptu "Trash Picker-Upper" award, a long-handled grabber to help with any future impulse to clean up what "inconsiderate litterers" leave behind.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

The Granite Shoals City Council has faced a challenging year of unknowns surrounding costs of road repair, but another issue fanning the flames of financial woes has been rising fire department costs.

At their meeting Tuesday, Aug. 8, it was clear council members and staff consider a new stream of financial support from surrounding communities the only remedy.

Granite Shoals Fire Rescue provides fire protection for the adjacent City of Highland Haven and the large, outlying rural communities of Burnet County Emergency Service District #3 (ESD3), each looking at the end of a contract for services that ends Sept. 30.

“My view is, they need to pay their fair share,” said City Manager Ken Nickel, looking specifically at ESD3. “They collect 7.5 cents per $100,000 valuation from their property owners. They have a fund balance of $400,000.

Wed
31
May

Granite Shoals Airport name for Bob Sylvester

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

The Granite Shoals City Council on Tuesday, May 23, resolved to name the city airport after its longtime manager, the late Robert T. “Bob” Sylvester.

Now to be known as Granite Shoals Bob Sylvester Airpark, the municipal field, bounded by Forest Hills, Mystic, Green Forest and Sherwood Forest drives, is to be formally changed to a Federal Aeronautics Administration (FAA) public designation.

“That will allow pilots to land without city manager permission,” said City Manager Ken Nickel. “Pilots will be able to turn on the lights for night landings, as well as using it in the daytime.”

Fri
14
Oct

Davant named to Granite Shoals City Council, Nations to Rinehart Award

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

Granite Shoals City Secretary Elaine Simpson, right, administers the oath of office to Jim Davant, selected to fulfill the unexpired term of Eric Tanner in Place 3 on the Council. That seat was incorrectly identified as Place 6 in the Oct. 14 edition of The Highlander.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

James D. “Jim” Davant has succeeded Eric Tanner on Place 3 of the Granite Shoals City Council and former council member Merilyn Nations has been chosen for the 2017 John Rinehart Memorial Award for Outstanding Community Service.

Davant was one of four candidates who interviewed in open session of the Council on Oct. 10, to the pleasure of the council, before their choice was made by ballot.

“If we hadn't settled on a procedure, I might recommend we throw a dart at a list,” said Mayor Pro Tem Tom Dillard, referring to the interviews with Davant, Will Skinner, Arturo Rubio and Terry G. Scott.

Mon
29
Aug

Granite Shoals continues budget debate, observes prayer for first responders

GLYNIS CRAWFORD SMITH/THE HIGHLANDER

Drawn together by the Granite Shoals Faith Alliance, prayerful Highland Lakes residents close ranks around first responders to bless their work and their families on Saturday, Aug. 20. The morning service was the second annual such event and, planned again for open air it, it was moved inside the Granite Shoals fire hall. But, pastors noted the service was even more meaningful this year, in light of the dangers that have haunted police, fire and emergency service workers. See more photos on The-Highlander Facebook page: http://bit.ly/2bM6GRo

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

The Granite Shoals City Council last week voted final approval for the ordinance that place a bond issue on the November ballot and reached an accord on budget concessions that will likely result in a tax rate lower than the maximum considered.

On Monday night, Aug. 22, the bond election ordinance specified Nov. 8 ballot language allowing voters to choose “for” or “against” the issuance of $3 million in tax bonds for improvements to Phillips Ranch Road, Prairie Creek Road And Valley View Lane.

The bonds amount would represent about 45 percent of the proposed improvement costs. The city is seeking U.S. Department of Agriculture grant support for the balance of the project. It was not only the prospect of grant support for more than half the cost that convinced the council that the time was right for the project.

Fri
12
Aug

Granite Shoals considers small tax rate increase

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

The Granite Shoals City Council on Tuesday night, Aug. 9, heard a review of a staff proposed budget and agreed to publish a tax rate they would not exceed: $0.5572 per $100 valuation.

That rate represents a sliver of an increase over the 2015 rate of $0.5207, just about three and a half cents per $100 valuation. But it falls below the rollback rate but above the effective rate, bringing in this year's ad valorem tax revenue to $2.4 million.

The hard decisions on a staff proposed budget of $6.76 million will be on the table at a budget workshop Monday, Aug. 15.

Development slowed in Granite Shoals last year over the previous six percent hike in property valuation. The 2.9 percent increase in valuation would add only $56,000 to revenue if the full 55.72 cents per $100 were instituted.

Fri
29
Jul

Granite Shoals bides time on bond issue

GLYNIS CRAWFORD SMITH/THE HIGHLANDER
Ready for hard work, early arrivals Wednesday, July 27, prepare to spread out around Granite Shoals to give back to the Highland Lakes community. They are part of an effort organized by youth ministers of the First Baptist Churches of Granite Shoals, Kingsland and Marble Falls, Hill Country Fellowship, Church of the Epicenter in Burnet and Lake Shores Church in Marble Falls and others. In two days, about 75 youth took on parks projects and home repair and clean up for eight residents in need.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

The Granite Shoals City Council chose a conservative path Tuesday, July 26, delaying a citizen vote on a bond issue that could restore major thoroughfares.

The meeting wore on to midnight as the council weighed the possibility of putting a bond issue for around $2.8 million on the November ballot. In the end, Mayor Carl Brugger's vote decided to delay the ballot option to citizens until May.

The bond issue would buy the city another $3.4 million in grant matching funds if the proposed street project were to cost as much as $6.2 million.

Fri
22
Apr

Granite Shoals strong with civic leaders

CONTRIBUTED
Granite Shoals City Council members are, from left, Tom Dillard, Mark Morren, Anita Hisey, Eric Tanner, Mayor Pro Tem Shirley King, Mayor Carl Brugger and Todd Holland.

The elected officials of Granite Shoals include a council of six led by Mayor Carl Brugger and they follow a long line of unpaid citizens that have guided the city through its 50-year history.
They are Mayor Pro Tem Shirley King, Eric Tanner, Tom Dillard, Mark Morren and Anita Hisey.
Five of the citizens who have held the title of Mayor of Granite Shoals live in the city today.
They are the current mayor, Carl Brugger, elected in 2015; Dennis Maier, elected in 2011 and 2013; Frank Reilly, elected in  2005, 2007 and 2009 and Pat Crochet, elected in 1999 and appointed in 2004. Crochet did not finish that last term and  King served as mayor in the interim.
First to last, they came to serve the city first through volunteer service on committees, commissions or advisory groups.

Wed
09
Mar

Granite Shoals pursues grant funds for $5 million streets project

The Granite Shoals City Council on Tuesday night, March 8, resolved to pursue grant support for a $5 million street improvement project.

The council authorized City Manager Ken Nickel to proceed with an application to the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a grant to repair Phillips Ranch Road and Prairie Creek Road to a standard equal to Ranch to Market Road 1431.

The city is preparing to celebrate for its 50th Anniversary Bash, April  23-24, as citizens travel streets that pre-date its incorporation. Surveys identified those streets as a high prioriity and the council was already involved in public forums and traffic and engineering studies when it was learned a grant might be available.

Unable to pass by the opportunity for a grant that pay 55 percent of a project, a grant application will be submitted, even as the council strategize ways to pay for the project, even at less than half price.

Thu
25
Feb

Grant hopes fired at Granite Shoals Council meeting

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander
Granite Shoals City Secretary Elaine Simpson (left) addresses candidates and officials Tuesday, Feb. 23, at the drawing for ballot order for the May city council election.

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Granite Shoals City Council continued grantsmanship efforts Tuesdeay, Feb. 25, in a meeting that touched on Quarry Park, street improvements and the airport.

All city council candidates for the May election, except Mayor Pro Tem Shirley King (unopposed for Place 2) and the final filer Michael Lee Steenbergen for Place 6 were on hand for the ballot order drawing before the meeting began. They are incumbent Tom Dillard and Arturo Rubio, who drew first and second place on the ballot for Place 4, and Will Skinner and incumbent Mark Morren, who drew first and third places on the ballot for Place 6.

For the full story, see the Friday, Feb. 26, edition of The Highlander.

Wed
10
Feb

Streets to airport to deer, Granite Shoals City Council deliberates

Photo by Glynis Crawford Smith
The 'good ol' bucks club' should be safe this fall when a new pilot program to thin urban deer should begin. The Granite Shoals City Council on Tuesday, Feb. 9, instructed city staff to prepare the ordinance to institute a program of bow hunting does developed by the city Wildlife Committee.

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

An ambitious plan for streets, an old debate over the airport and a pilot program to thin urban deer all were tackled by the Granite Shoals City Council Tuesday, Feb. 9.

See the story in the Friday, Feb. 12, edition of The Highlander.

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