City of Nederland Logo
City of Nederland R. A. "Dick" Nugent, Mayor
Billy Neal, Mayor Pro Tem
Talmadge Austin, Councilmember
Craig J. Belaire, Councilmember
Vacant, Councilmember
Christopher Duque, City Manager

P.O. Box 967 * Nederland, Texas 77627 * 409.723.1503 * Fax 409.723.1550
 

Meeting Minutes from Monday, November 22, 2004

REGULAR MEETING OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE

CITY OF NEDERLAND

6:00 p.m. November 22, 2004
  1. MEETING

    The meeting was called to order at 6:00 p.m. by Mayor R. A. Nugent at the Nederland City Office Building, 1400 Boston Avenue, Nederland, Texas. See attached for quorum.

  2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES

    A motion was made by Councilmember Radcliff and seconded by Councilmember Rogers to approve the minutes of the November 8, 2004 meeting as written. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

  3. PUBLIC HEARING

    The regular meeting was recessed and a Public Hearing was called to order at 6:01 p.m. by Mayor Nugent for the purpose of receiving questions and/or comments regarding Ordinance No. 388, Juvenile Curfew Ordinance; and proposed Juvenile Curfew Ordinance No. 2004-15.

    Andre Wimer, City Manager, reminded Council that in accordance with State statutes it is necessary to review curfew ordinances every three (3) years by conducting a Public Hearing. He added that this year the Public Hearing will allow for comments on the existing ordinance and on a proposed new curfew ordinance. The proposed ordinance continues the night curfew for minors while establishing a daytime curfew during official school days. Justice of the Peace Brad Burnett has recommended that the Mid County cities adopt such a curfew. Richard Hughes, City Attorney, drafted the proposed ordinance to include the daytime hours for children between the ages of 6 and 16. The Cities of Beaumont and Port Arthur have had daytime curfews for a couple of years and it appears to work for them.

    Chief Darrell Bush reported on curfew violations for the three year period beginning November 2001 until November 2004. There were 88 curfew violation cases in Nederland Municipal Court. This is an average of 29.33 cases per year, or 2.44 per month. Chief Bush indicated that he is hopeful that the proposed ordinance, if approved, would result in voluntary compliance from students and parents.

    Dawn Hardy, 25th Street, addressed the Council to express her concern with a daytime curfew. She home schools her children and feels the new curfew is a violation of the Fourth and Fifth Amendments of the Constitution. Ms. Hardy believes it would be a waste of police officers time to enforce the curfew. She also stated that this could cause children to fear police officers.

    Charlotte Robbins, Groves resident, asked to address Council to also voice her concerns with a daytime curfew. Although she is not a resident of Nederland she anticipates Port Neches and Groves adopting similar ordinances. Mrs. Robbins also home schools her children and feels a daytime curfew is not the answer to potential problems with children who are not in school. She added that children should not have to produce documentation to police officers to show a valid reason for not being in school.

    Judge Brad Burnett informed Council that he has received a Resolution of support from both Nederland Independent School District and Port Neches-Groves Independent School District for a daytime curfew for minors. He indicated that the Cities of Port Neches and Groves will also be adopting the same regulations. Judge Burnett stated that there is a problem with unsupervised children in the area and feels this will improve our communities and hopefully make parents more aware of the problems.

    Ruby Calvert, Avenue F, addressed Council to support the daytime curfew ordinance. She stated as a former resident of Port Arthur she saw a decrease in the number of children roaming the streets during school hours once they adopted the daytime curfew hours.

    Chief Bush stated that the Cities of Beaumont and Port Arthur have established daytime curfew hours several years ago. He is hopeful that by adopting the same curfew hours juvenile crime rates will decrease.

    Mrs. Robbins added that she feels the truancy rules should be more strictly enforced without the need for an ordinance. She asked that the requirement for documentation be removed from the proposed ordinance.

    Richard Hughes, City Attorney, stated that truancy laws are governed by State statutes and cannot be governed by municipalities. The intent of the ordinance is to insure that students who are not in school, or not compelled to be in school, should not be at public locations.

    Mayor Nugent stated that he understands the concern of the home school parents but is in agreement that this ordinance needs to be adopted. He added that this ordinance is not intended to punish children or parents to be used as an added tool for police officers to keep the community a safe environment. Mayor Nugent also believes that this will hopefully encourage parents to be aware and involved.

    There being no further questions and/or comments the Public Hearing was adjourned and the regular meeting was reconvened at 6:30 p.m. by Mayor Nugent.

  4. ORDINANCES

    A motion was made by Councilmember Neal and seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Sawyer to repeal Ordinance No. 388, Juvenile Curfew Ordinance. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

    A motion was made by Mayor Pro Tem Sawyer and seconded by Councilmember Radcliff to approve Juvenile Curfew Ordinance No. 2004-15. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

    Councilmember Rogers stated that he served on the Nederland Independent School District Board for quite some time and truancy is a very large problem in the community, but the ordinance is not intended to address truancy. He believes that all children should be in school, whether it be public, private, or home school. Education is the most important thing we can provide our children and this will serve as an added tool to help them have a better future.

  5. REQUEST

    Andre Wimer, City Manager, stated that Ronnie Sanders, Hodgson Road, is requesting a partial reimbursement of costs associated with the construction of a sewer line to his new development on Hodgson Road. The initial cost estimate Mr. Sanders received was significantly lower but was increased due to the City's construction of the storm sewer on his street. The City's sewer main is on the opposite side of the street from his property, which necessitated his sewer line going beneath the storm sewer; this depth was approximately five (5) feet lower than if the storm sewer had not been in place. Mr. Wimer added that our ordinance requires that developers install, at their own cost, the sewer lines necessary to connect to the City's system.

    Richard Hughes, City Attorney, stated that the current ordinance does not allow for any type of shared costs between developers and the City and indicated there are no avenues for reimbursement.

    A motion was made by Councilmember Neal and seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Sawyer to deny the request from Ronnie Sanders for partial reimbursement of costs associated with the construction of a sewer line. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

  6. CONTRACTS/AGREEMENTS

    A motion was made by Councilmember Radcliff and seconded by Councilmember Neal to approve renewal of an agreement with Wells Fargo for banking services. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

  7. EXECUTIVE SESSION

    A motion was made by Mayor Pro Tem Sawyer and seconded by Councilmember Rogers to postpone the Executive Session. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

  8. OFFICIALS' COMMENTS

    Andre Wimer, City Manager, reported that effective today the Inspection Department has officially moved to the D. Bob Henson Office Building on Atlanta. They will share the building with the Director of Public Works and the Nederland Economic Development Corporation.

    Mr. Wimer reminded Council that three (3) intersection projects had previously been submitted to the SETRPC; these projects involve the installation of new traffic signals at 14th Street and Boston Avenue; 14th Street and Nederland Avenue; and, 21st Street and Nederland Avenue. One hundred percent (100%) funding for all project costs, including engineering and inspection, would be protected by TxDOT. Initially, the City did not receive funding for the upcoming year, however, it now appears that funding will be available due to the deferral of another project. In order to be funded, plans and specifications would have to be submitted to TxDOT by March 7, 2005. Staff will determine whether such a deadline can be met and provide additional information to the Council as it becomes available.

  9. ADJOURN

    There being no further business, a motion was made by Mayor Nugent and seconded by Councilmember Radcliff to adjourn the meeting at 6:57 p.m. MOTION CARRIED.
    Ayes: Mayor Nugent, Councilmembers Sawyer, Neal, Radcliff, and Rogers.
    Noes: None.

END Meeting Minutes from Monday, November 22, 2004


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