By MARY RAINWATER
The Palestine City Council approved the purchase of two new patrol cars for the Palestine Police Department as well as an online accident report provider during its regular meeting Monday.
The patrol cars, two Ford Interceptor sedans, are being purchased from Philpott Ford of Nederland for a total cost of $67,198.62.
Because the dealership is on a state contract list, the city was not required to go out for bids on the purchase.
In a related action, the council approved a Memorandum of Agreement with PoliceReports.US to provide online distribution of police accident reports.
The site, www.policereports.us, provides online access to accident reports as well as photos and crime/incident reports, depending on what the city/department and site agree upon.
Several East Texas police departments already utilize the site, including Longview, Marshall, Huntsville and others. The Palestine Police Department will use the site for accident reports only.
Also on Monday, the council:
• HELD a work session to discuss energy audit results as well as 2013 beautification efforts and city alcohol permit fees.
• RECOGNIZED citizens John Valentine, John Sutherland, David Gomez-Leon and John Whitt for the assisting the police department during a call involving a school bus.
• RECOGNIZED of Certified Public Manager Graduates Chief Alan Wilcher, Lt. Jeff Powell, Jeffrey Lyons and Greg Laudadio.
• RECOGNIZED City Secretary Janelle Williams for attaining Level 3 Municipal Court Certification.
• RECOGNIZED Mike Norgaard for attaining Class C Surface Water License.
• HEARD reports on Frost Fest by Chamber Director Megan Hill; the Annual Racial Profiling Report; City Attorney Fees and Departmental Reports (finance, police, development services, utilities and public works).
• APPROVED the appointment of Jim Woods to the Civil Service Commission.
• APPROVED the appointment of Leslie “Lulu” Dyess and Breezy Lake-Wolf to the Main Street Advisory Board.
• APPROVED the consent agenda, which included minutes of the work session and regular meeting of Dec. 10, 2012; an Interlocal Agreement with Anderson County to provide equipment and personnel to remove the timber within the safety zones at Palestine Municipal Airport; and the award for bid for janitorial supplies (Bid # B2013-04).
• APPROVED of an expenditure of $20,771 to Layne-Texas to repair a Raw Water Service Pump #3 (300HP) at the Raw Water Pump Station.
• TABLED an ordinance approving amendments to Article X of the Code of Ordinances entitled “Signs” until a worksession can be held on the issue.
• APPROVED an ordinance amending Section 40-86 of the Code of Ordinances entitled Reagan Park Mixed Use District.
• HEARD an update on attendance, upcoming activities and future development at the Texas State Railroad.
• AUTHORIZED the Palestine Economic Development Corporation to pay earnest money on two tracts of property as a potential site for Project Pico, an economic development project.
Mary Rainwater may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org