Editor: Shannon Cottongame
March 6, 2023
The Hill County Commissioners Court met in a regular session Tuesday, March 28, and accepted its annual list of bids for products and services.
Commissioners are required by law to seek bids on any goods or services they plan to spend more than $50,000 on in a year’s time. Bids were requested in several categories, including fuel, asphalt and emulsions, corrugated steel pipes and culverts, road base materials, hauling and bridges.
For fuel services, all commissioners accepted bids from Fleet Corp. for fuel cards used for travel. For other fuel purposes, Precinct 1 Commissioner Jim Holcomb accepted a bid received from Scott Oil, and Precinct 4 Commissioner Martin Lake accepted a bid from Itasca Co-op. Precinct 2 Commissioner Larry Crumpton and Precinct 3 Commissioner Scotty Hawkins will go back out for fuel bids after only one bid was received past the deadline.
Commissioners accepted bids received from four companies for asphalt and emulsions and will utilize their products based on quantity, quality and availability. They included Cleveland Asphalt, Vulcan Construction, Ergon Asphalt and P2 Emulsions.
Two bids were received for corrugated steel pipes and culverts from Ferguson Waterworks and Wilson Culverts. They were accepted and will be used based on quantity, quality and availability.
Those bidding on road base materials were Victory Companies, Arnold Crushed Stone, Green Dream International, Rattler Rock and Conner Construction, and they were accepted based on quantity, quality and availability.
All commissioners except Crumpton accepted bids from Janek & Whitten Construction for hauling services. Crumpton said that his precinct handles most of its own hauling.
In other action, the court approved a lease agreement with Waco Housing Authority/Section 8 for two portions of the Franklin Street annex that the county recently sold. The two entities have an agreement that Hill County will lease office space in the building until the construction project at the Covington Street annex is completed. The lease will be $5,000 per month with all utilities included for a term of up to six months, which County Judge Justin Lewis said should be more than enough time.
An agreement with the City of Whitney giving the city authority to regulate subdivisions in its extra-territorial jurisdiction was approved by the court. The Whitney City Council recently approved the agreement, which will ensure that any subdivisions located just outside of the city limits comply with the city’s subdivision regulations.
An agreement with the City of Hillsboro for radio services was also approved. The county recently approved the form of a contract and user fees for entities utilizing the new 800 Mhz radio system. The fees will help the county maintain the new system.
The court was expected to hold public hearings on a speed limit and stop sign on HCR 2210 and the creation of reinvestment zones for solar projects proposed in the county by Gransolar-10, Ash Creek and Midpoint Solar. Those hearings were rescheduled for Tuesday, May 9, due to the county not meeting the required publication schedule prior to the meeting. Lewis said that the community needs to have time to have their opinions heard.
Hill County resident John Blaha was present to discuss the proposals and told the court that renewable energy projects can be stopped by declining tax limitations. “Renewable energy should pay their fair share of taxes while everyone else does too,” he said. He encouraged the court to hold off on any vote regarding renewable energy and see what action the Texas Legislature may take on the issue.
Commissioners will hold a special meeting at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 4, in the Hill County Courtroom of the courthouse. Items on the agenda include posting notice and setting a hearing date for accepting HCR 3446 East in to the county’s road maintenance system, setting a public hearing to impose a 35 mile-per-hour speed limit on HCR 2200 and retaining management consulting services for a payroll policy classification and compensation study.
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