City updated on reopening of landfill

By Dan Baeza

Van Horn City Council members met Tuesday evening, February 27, with all members present for their regular scheduled meeting. Members approved of minutes from the February 13 regular meeting. The council reviewed and approved of financial reports. For the month of January, the city had a balance at $3,343,070.46 with the ending February balance at $3,506,012.12. Jodi Corrales, Financial Officer, informed the council “As you can see all the departments had a good month… everything looks good for all the departments. We’ve been trying to keep all of our expenses down but we’re coming towards the end of the fiscal year so we’re going to start cutting back even more for only stuff that’s necessary.”

Alderman Lyndon McDonald went on to state “I guess this is one of the first times I’ve seen it without negatives sitting somewhere. We’ve gained over the years and don’t forget we had a lot of unexpected expenses, one especially was getting those (water) wells back, so considering many of those items weren’t budgeted we were able to still pay for them”

On the subject of money, the council received updates on the opening of the landfill and possible expenditures.

City Administrator Fran Malafronte noted, “Right we’re going to have expenses coming up as far as equipment for maintaining the landfill but most of it will be bought going to do I believe a 10-year finance on the compactor that’s the most expensive piece of equipment. We’ll still be saving money because the cost of the equipment is less than we will pay the Sierra Blanca landfill not to mention the wear and tear on the truck.” Technical review of the landfill application has been completed, the landfill should be open a week between April or May, pending permit approval. In order to extend the life of the site, the landfill will be designated for residential waste only.

McDonald went on to explain “We can take any type of household debris… we can even take some sheetrock, let’s say you’re doing a minor repair in your kitchen and you tore down some sheetrock that you put in the dump so we can take that- we’re basically not taking as anything toxic, bricks, or asbestos.” The landfill will not be accepting tires for disposal. Renovation and construction debris from contractors will still be hauled off to other landfills that accept commercial waste.

In regards to other items on the agenda, members took the following actions:

*Approved payment of current bills total in the amount of $135,790.95

*Established new Rates utilizing the 2018 IRS Standard Mileage Rates, GSA and State of Texas Per Diem Rates.

*Council approved Gas Survey Compliance Incentive, the city will purchase 200 of the carbon monoxide detectors which will be provided to gas customers upon completion of a survey.

*Approved contract from El Paso Electric for Three Phase Electric Service at the Courthouse Well for the amount of $11,000.

*Discussed $200,000 grant from Texas A&M Forest Service for the new fire truck.

*Approved application for Grant Assistance from Texas A& M Forest Service for Insurance Reimbursement.

*Approved contract with PC Net Services, Inc. For Computer Tech services.

*Approved finance contract with Ally Financial for the purchase of two new 2018 2500HD Chevrolet Silverado Trucks, $63,958.59/48 payments of $1,467.19  to be financed.

The Van Horn City Council meets every 2nd and 4th Tuesday of every month at 7:00 p.m.