City Council

The city council approved new electric rates and bought a machine for the street department in a brief meeting Monday night.
Southwestern Public Service had asked for a 17.6 percent increase in its base revenue, or $81.5 million more a year.
But a coalition of cities called the Alliance of Xcel Municipalities negotiated for nine months and a 8.01 percent increase was approved, said City Manager Rick Osburn.
The increase for most users, including residential customers and schools, will be 9.25 percent.
On a motion made by Billy Youngblood, the council unanimously passed an ordinance approving the new rates.
The council also accepted the higher of two bids for a wheeled loader for the street department.
Osburn said he was asking the council to take action on buying a wheeled loader for the street department because it was a ‘time sensitive item.’
Yellowhouse Machinery Co. of Lubbock offered a net bid, including a trade-in allowance, of $139,141.
John Deere had a net bid of $134,500.
Osburn said Yellowhouse’s Caterpillar is a heavier machine and has more horsepower and a larger bucket than the John Deere.
Osburn said he had visited with public works supervisor Joe Cavazos about the two machines.
‘We recommend Caterpillar,’ he said, adding that the higher priced loader is still within the budgeted amount of $145,000.
He said both companies had indicated that higher prices are likely this fall.
Mayor Waymon Jackson said he favored buying the Caterpillar.
The council approved the purcahse, 4-0, after a motion was made by Councilman Manuel Mendez Jr.
Levelland has two wheeled loaders. But one is over 20 years old and the reverse has gone out.
Osburn received permission from the council to list an old fire department pumper for sale on line.
He said he was not comfortable with taking the action until after he received council approval.
The machine, which is not usable, has been at the fire department’s training field for about five years.
Osburn said he believes that the city could get more money by going online as opposed to trying to sell it an auction this weekend. Transporting the pumper to the auction site would also cost money, he added.
Mendez asked where the funds go when the city sells such a vehicle.
Osburn said the money would go into the General Fund because that is where fire department operations are funded.
He said anyone can bid online for the pumper.
The mayor suggested that the city advertise the machine online and not take it to the public auction.
Osburn asked what should be done with a small backhoe that was originally purchased for the water department.
The backhoe was found to be too light to use for digging up water mains, but it is used extensively by the parks department.
Mendez recommended that the city keep the machine.
‘If you auction it, I’m left with a shovel,’ John Cobb, director of parks and grounds, said to laughter.
The council agreed to keep the backhoe.

Leave a Comment