Three SEED Board members reinstated, Sales tax up, upcoming City Elections

By: 
JOSEPH GRANT
Lead Staff Reporter

The Board of Directors of the Sweetwater Enterprise for Economic Development, Inc., of Sweetwater, Texas, met in regular session on Monday, October 16, at 10:30 AM, at the SEED offices (Chamber Board Room-1st Floor) located at 810 E. Broadway.
Three Board positions were approved and stayed the same due to popular decision. These were Secretary/Treasurer, Vice President and Chairman. Kirby Andrews has been renominated Secretary/Treasurer, as was Dr. Jerod Peek to the Vice President position and Billy Whisenant to the office of President.
The Board welcomed Gil Cherry to the table, literally. Sales tax receipts were up and deemed heading in a good, healthy direction with ninety-two per cent of the year already complete. Unemployment in the area stayed flat and neither decreased or increased, while in three surrounding counties it decreased and in three others, increased.
Board members Jerod Peek and Kirby Andrews approved the minutes of the September 2017 meeting.
The financial statements from August were reviewed and approved by the Board as were accounts payable. The accounts payable portion was approved towards the end of the meeting before the Board entered into Executive Session.
The City Manager, David Vela gave the City Report. He spoke of how during the first half of the Fiscal Year ’17, there were challenges for both SEED and the City. These were studied and managed by undertaking a mid-year adjustment. Purchases were delayed, travel was eliminated and the city did not get any seal coating on the roads last year. While the seal coat is not in the budget for 2018, if numbers continue to head in the positive direction , this could be put back on the budget as early as April or May of 2018.
In response, the City has hired a person to do an analysis of the street conditions around town. The study is currently being done to ascertain if partial depth or full depth maintenance needs to be conducted.
All in all, the City is doing well and headed on the right path.
The Marketing Director, Larissa Place, was not present. Ken Becker spoke on her behalf and told everyone how well she is doing in her position. Place attended the Ambassador program, the Future of Sweetwater tours, the wind energy tours with Texas A&M and law students the Friday previous and will be judging the TSTC robotics program.
The City Manager then gave City Election early voting dates at City Hall. These will be October 23 to October 27 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., October 30 to November 1 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., November 2 and November 3 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Voters cane also vote at Pct #1 Broadway Baptist Church, Pct #2 Trinity Baptist Church, Pct #3 Lamar Street Baptist Church, Pct #4 Evangelical Methodist Church and Pct #9 Avondale Baptist Church.
Voting is still open for “Tank of the Year” and encourages all citizens to vote for our new water tank. Voting is open now and closes on 10/20. http://tankoftheyear.tnemec.com/ Voting is not limited and can be done as many times as one wishes.
UP Railroad has replaced 220,000 cross ties between Sweetwater and Odessa. There are 3200 cross ties in a mile.
EMA and TSTC will have media event. TSTC has announced a media advisory for a “local” Sweetwater company making a scholarship donation to TSTC.  This “local” company is based in Buenos Aries Argentina with a manufacturing site in Sweetwater.  They opened their Sweetwater facilities in June of 2010.  The scholarship donation is the second $75,000.00 totaling $150,000.00 so far and is for Veterans.  The owner of EMA, Mr. Eduardo Montich, is coming in from Argentina for this event.  In addition, Mr. Michael Reeser, Chancellor of TSTC Statewide Systems is scheduled to be in attendance.
The Board then entered into Executive Session under Sections 551.087, 551.072, and 551.074 of the Texas Government Code, to discuss economic development/real property negotiations/personnel matters. No action will be taken in the Executive Session as it is not permitted by law.
The Board then adjourned.
The SEED meeting is available to all persons regardless of disability. If you require special assistance, please contact the SEED Offices located at 810 East Broadway, or call 235-0555, at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

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