MIDLOTHIAN — A request by Midlothian City Engineer Mike Adams to fund the professional services for the development of a Municipal Stormwater Utility system was unanimously approved during the council's regular Tuesday session. There was also a long-term lease agreement for land owned by the civic center and an appointment to the Midlothian Parks and Recreation board made during the Feb. 14 meeting.

Adams requested to enter into an agreement with Teague, Nall and Perkins, who will develop a municipal stormwater utility system and set stormwater rates throughout the city. As approved by the council, the fees for the study are not to exceed $50,000 and funding for this study is available out of the utility fund budget, line item 205-638-239 under professional fees.

According to Adams, the Municipal Drainage Utility Systems Act of the Texas Local Government Code permits a local government to establish a municipal drainage utility system within its established service area. He noted that this code is to provide rules for the use, operation and financing of the system, along with protect the public health and safety in the municipality from loss of life and property caused by surface water overflows, surface water stagnation, and pollution arising from nonpoint source runoff.

“With continued growth and development within Midlothian, along with Federal and State requirements pertaining to stormwater quality that are anticipated to continue and expand in the future, the creation and adoption of a municipal drainage utility system will enable the City to properly plan for, maintain and improve the city’s stormwater drainage system,” Adams said.

The council previously studied the stormwater issues in January 2016 and, at that time, directed staff to budget and develop a municipal stormwater system ordinance along with the associated stormwater utility fees.

“As the city is now designated as a regulated small municipal separate sewer system and is required to comply with rules administered by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). In response, during May 2014, members of the council approved a resolution adopting the city’s stormwater management program," Adams said.

Following the completion of the study conducted by Teague, Nall and Perkins, the group will present any findings in the first draft of a feasibility study on April 10. After the presentation, the group will then meet with city officials the following week to review comments, with the final study results to be submitted by the first of May 2017.

IN OTHER BUSINESS

The council unanimously renewed an annual lease agreement between the City of Midlothian and the Midlothian Civic Center. The new lease agreement began Feb. 1 and will continue until January 31, 2020.

“The property has been utilized for practice fields by the various Midlothian Youth Associations for a number of years,” Billy King said. King added some of the groups including the youth football league, which has added improvements to the area.

According to King, the Midlothian Parks and Recreation Department maintains the leased area of approximately 4.96 acres of land. The City of Midlothian began leasing the undeveloped land from the Midlothian Civic Center on January 1, 1992, and the contract has been renewable every three years at an annual sum of $8,400.00.

The council also approved a contract for a grass-mowing-service contract with Charles Ford of Rightway Lawn and Tree Maintenance was unanimously approved during the regular Tuesday meeting. The contract is for specific medians, rights-of-way, and parks throughout the city. The annual contract amount is $150,309.

“Rightway currently provides services for only some of the city locations specified. The staff has determined that the city will benefit from having one contractor committed to meet all the areas of mowing for the City,” King said.

A vacancy on the Midlothian Parks Board was filled after the council approved the appointment of Brandee Fulfer. The vacancy was due to the recent resignation of former member Charlie Hubbard. The appointment is being made to fulfill the remainder of his two-year term, which ends December 2017.

Fulfer joins Patrick Farrell, Lisa Lemon, Dejay Miller, Caleb Bachelor, Pam Shelley, and Angela Stephens on the board. According to its purpose statement found on the City of Midlothian website, "The Park Board was established for the purpose of making recommendations to City Council concerning improvements and management in its respective area of interest."