TONIGHT: Council to look at new park cost, new tax rate, and new volunteer boards

September 11, 2017

The West University Place City Council will meet tonight for the first time since Hurricane Harvey.  Saving the about 115 West U homes that were damaged by the rising flood waters, most homes in West University Place were spared during the monstrous natural disaster that devastated most of the Houston area.

Tonight’s meeting begins at 6:30 pm in the Municipal Building Council at 3800 University Blvd.

What is too much for a new park?

The city council will consider approving a conceptual plan for the donated land that will comprise the new Jennie Elizabeth Hughes Park.

The preliminary expenditures in the conceptual place have a price tag of about $700K, including $150K for walls, and $100K for a front porch shade structure, and a total of up to about $100K for design services to project designer White Oak Studios.  

Scrutiny about the possible excessiveness of these expenditures will likely be a focal point of tonight’s city council discussions.

Adopt new West U  property tax valuation  

The Chief Appraiser of the Harris County Appraisal District (HCAD) says West University Place is now worth $6,401,572,983. For you new residents, yes that is $6.4 billion.

That is a 3.51% increase over the 2016 certified values.

Maximum tax rate approval

The first step of the annual budget process is to adopt the largest tax – but the rate that is actually adopted will likely be lower.

The rate the city council is being asked to adopt tonight is 31.98 cents per $100 valuation. The council can’t adopt a final rate until they adopt a budget. That will happen in October.

New city boards and commission appointments

The city council has spent the last few months interviewing potential appointees to the volunteer boards and commissions that serve as the policy-making backbone for West University Place. All of these people are residents of West U and all appointments expire on August 31, 2019.

Zoning and Planning Commission

Richard Wilson, Chair

John Cutrer, Mac Jenson, Michael McEnany, Pete Johnston, Mimi Tsai, Brian Brantley

Zoning Board of Adjustment

Sandy Hellums-Gomez, Chair

Steven Segal, Bruce Beneke, Edward Nikonowicz, Janet Parisi

Alternates are Donald Yurewicz, David Kuykendall, Sergio Amelio, Sylvette Bobb,

Building and Standards Commission

Steve Brown, Chair

Anna Monsour, Les Albin, Eddie Matthews, Kris Westbrook

Alternates are David Bonner, John Combi, Jim Craig, Greg Kusinski

Parks and Recreation Board

Peter Billipp, Chair

Mark Prescott – representative from Friends of West University Parks Board, Jeffrey Chen, Stephen Damiani, Maryann Lio Grahmann, Tracy Larson, Scooter Lerner, Spyros Maragos, Mary McCullough, Nina Pilson

Recycling and Solid Waste Reduction Board

Orval Lee Marlow II,  Chair

Shreya Sheth Yvonne Jacobs Mary Barnwell, Lawrence Selna, Ruth Becker, Jerome Brown, Daniel Incavo, Pamela Castro, Jennifer Sickler, Jason Ball

George Boehme

George Boehme is the publisher of and West University Essentials magazine.

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