After losing his re-election bid by only three votes, Kenny Joslin will be re-joining the Jacksboro City Council. The opening became available when Councilwoman Faye Lewis resigned her seat.
In remarks at the start of the meeting, Lewis informed the council she might be back at some point, but in her absence she recommended Jeff Miller to fill her seat.
Miller addressed the Council, telling the members that he had lived in Jacksboro the majority of his life and would continue to do so, and that he would welcome the opportunity to serve his community by serving on the council.
Juan Salazar, Sr. addressed the council and conveyed his feelings that the citizens of Jacksboro should be allowed to vote on Lewis' replacement.
The council had three choices in filling the position: a special election, at a cost of approximately $2,500, could be held in November; the council could leave the seat open until the seat would be up for election in May, 2014; or the council could appoint a successor.
After discussion of the possible options, the Council voted unanimously to appoint Joslin to finish out the term.
City Manager Mike Smith informed the Council that an engineering study was in the process of being conducted to provide a recommendation for the Star Lane Lift Station. The study is being conducted by KSA engineering firm.
Discussion of the water wells was continued. Councilman Alton Morris made a motion to simply abolish the 1984 ordinance that requires citizens with water wells to be connected to city water. City Attorney David Spiller informed the Council that the wording of the agenda did not allow for a motion to take action, but they could authorize the staff to develop a policy for the issue.
The council authorized the City Manager to re-write an ordinance concerning the City sewer regulations and water regulations. The regulations have been the subject of much controversy as efforts have been undertaken by the city to enforce an ordinance that was adopted in 1984. The current ordinance requires residents in the city that have water wells on their property to be connected to the City water. However, the enforcement of this ordinance has raised significant concern among the citizens of Jacksboro.
After discussion about inspections and who would bear the cost of those inspections, it was determined that a new ordinance would be developed that would allow property owners to maintain their water wells without connecting to city water and that the ordinance would include provisions for conducting tests to ensure there is no cross contamination of water sources.
The issue of the cost of the inspections will have to be addressed in the policy.
The council also addressed the need for an "In House" Building Inspector. The city currently has a contract for building inspection services that costs around $30,000 per year. Councilman Juan Salazar, Jr. commented that he "saw some things this weekend, but nothing could be done because the inspector couldn't get here."
The current inspection contract provides for response to the city within 24 hours of being contacted. An in-house inspector would allow the City to have someone available at all times.
City Manager Mike Smith pointed out that if a new position is created, it would cost the City at least $20,000 extra each year.
The Council approved a motion to establish a new position of an in-house inspector Oct. 1 when the city's new fiscal year begins. Voting for the addition of an in-house inspector was Juan Salazar, Jr., Alton Morris, and John Lindsey; Joe Mitchell voted against the proposal.
The council also discussed the possibility of working to establish a "youth council". City Manager Mike Smith informed the Council that the Chamber of Commerce as well as Jack County Extension Agent John Villalba were interested in partnering with the Council to establish a youth council.
Juan Salazar, Jr. commented that kids he had talked to were interested in creating an organization that would allow the young people of the community to develop their leadership skills and have their voices heard.
After going into executive session to discuss some legal ramifications of the IESI landfill project, the Council returned to open session and adjourned without taking any action.