PARKWAY UTILITY DISTRICT MINUTES OF BOARD MEETING
DECEMBER 19, 2017
The Board of Directors (the “Board” or “Directors”) of Parkway Utility District (the “District”) met in regular session, at 6:30 p.m., at 12843 Tidwell Road, Houston, Texas, on Tuesday, December 19, 2017, pursuant to notice of said meeting posted in accordance with Chapter 551 of the Texas Government Code; whereupon the roll was called of the members of the Board, to-wit:
Brenda McNeil – President
Alphonso P. Rettig, Jr. – Vice President
Jennifer Balderas – Secretary
Ron Everhart – Assistant Secretary
Gloria M. Woods – Director
All members of the Board were present. Also attending were: Diane Bailey of McLennan & Associates, L.P. (“Bookkeeper”); Delia Yanez of Assessments of the Southwest (“Tax Assessor-Collector”); Sean Humble of Sherrington-Humble LLC (“Engineer” or “S-H”); Rebecca Marcucci and Johnny Bellamy of Municipal District Services (“Operator” or “MDS”); Deputy Terry Ganey of the Harris County Constable’s Office, Precinct No. 3 (the “Constable”); Monique Hayes of Eco Waste and Recycling (“Eco”); Gary Syzek of Systems Project Management; Elliot M. Barner, attorney, and Diane F. Brewer, paralegal, of Radcliffe Bobbitt Adams Polley PLLC (“Attorney” or “RBAP”); and all persons listed on the attached Attendance Roster.
The President, after finding that the notice of the meeting was posted as required by law and determining that a quorum of the Board of Directors was present, called the meeting to order and declared it open for such business as may come before it.
The President first opened the meeting to public comment. As no public comments were offered, the President instructed the Board to proceed with the agenda.
Eco Waste & Recycling REPORT
Ms. Hayes then presented the Eco Monthly Report, a copy of which is attached hereto, and discussed garbage collection during the UPCOMING Christmas and New Year holidays. Ms. Hayes reported that trash will be collected on Tuesday, December 26, 2017 for those customers that normally have their trash collected on Mondays; trash will be normally collected for those with Thursday collection on Thursday, December 28, 2017. Trash and recycling will resume as normal on Monday, January 1, 2018 and Thursday, January 4, 2018. Ms. Hayes also reported that Christmas trees will be collected beginning January 4, 2018 for those customers that place them curbside.
Ms. Hayes then responded from questions to the Board concerning the Eco’s failure to fully collect trash in the Stonefield Terrace Subdivision (“Stonefield”) on the scheduled collection day of Monday, November 27, 2017. Ms. Hayes stated there was an apparent lack of communication between the Eco’s drivers and Eco’s office concerning the timing and completion of such collection. Ms. Hayes noted that all of Eco’s drivers now have computer tablets that monitor such collection which she expects will aid in more efficiently and thoroughly with such collection. Mr. Barner added that he had spoken with Natalie Barnaby regarding Eco’s collection failures in Stonefield after reading several emails he was copied on that had been sent from the Stonefield Terrace Community Association President (the “Stonefield CA President”) to Eco, including Ms. Hayes and Ms. Barnaby. Mr. Barner added that he contacted Ms. Barnaby the afternoon of Tuesday, November 28, 2017, after reading such emails and that Ms. Barnaby informed him that she had spoken with the Stonefield CA President about completing collection on the afternoon of November 28, 2017. Mr. Barner next stated that he spoke with both Ms. Barnaby and Ms. Hayes the following day, Wednesday, November 29, 2017, after he received additional emails from Stonefield CA President stating that collection has still not been completed in Stonefield. Mr. Barner last explained that Ms. Hayes and Ms. Barnaby both spoke with the Stonefield CA President on November 28, 2017, regarding the collection issues and that Eco completed collection in Stonefield that day.
In response to a question, Ms. Hayes stated that Eco’s contact information can be found on its website. Ms. Hayes assured the Board that Eco will respond to voice mail messages and emails regarding collection issues within 24 to 48 hours. Ms. Hayes added that Eco can be reached on Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. at 832-623-6564.
Next, Director McNeil asked Eco to remind the Board what procedures property owners and contractors should use in disposing of storm and/or construction debris. Ms. Hayes responded that property owners and contractors should now be responsible for removing storm and/or construction debris from the District. Mr. Syzek indicated that he would contact Harris County Precinct 1 to determine if Harris County (the “County”) can make another pass through the District to collect storm debris.
Director Balderas requested that Eco be more timely in providing information about trash and recycling collection during holidays. Ms. Hayes assured Director Balderas that Eco will provide such information in a more timely fashion so that the District can update its website and inform customers as in advance as possible.
Patrol Service Report
Deputy Ganey next presented and reviewed with the Board the Patrol Service Report for November 2017, a copy of which is attached hereto.
Deputy Ganey exited the meeting at this time.
The President then directed the Board to consider the approval of the minutes of the workshop meeting held on November 9, 2017 and the regular meeting held on November 21, 2017. Upon a motion by Director Rettig, seconded by Director Everhart, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the minutes of the workshop meeting held on November 9, 2017, and the regular meeting held on November 21, 2017, as presented.
Systems Project Management Report
Mr. Syzek next presented the Systems Project Management Report, a copy of which is attached hereto. Mr. Syzek first reported that Harris County Precinct 1 (“Precinct 1”) activated the traffic signals last week at the intersection of Deep Valley and Tidwell Road. Mr. Syzek also reported that preparation for installing traffic signals at the intersection is underway. Mr. Syzek also reported that Precinct 1 would like to coordinate scheduling a ribbon-cutting ceremony to bring awareness of such traffic signal after upon the signal installation at Van Hut Lane and Tidwell Road is completed. Mr. Syzek stated that he will update the Board at the next regular Board meeting on the scheduling of such ceremony.
Director McNeil discussed traffic safety and limited visibility at the intersections of the Beltway 8 Service Road and the entrances and exits to the Sunrise Pines Subdivision (“Sunrise Pines”). Discussion then ensued regarding ways that the District might encourage Precinct 1 to install a traffic signal at such intersections. The Board requested that RBAP prepare a petition to circulate amongst District residents requesting such installation.
Mr. Syzek then reminded the Board that the two (2) oak trees located behind the Administration Building were inhibiting construction at the Water Plant and that the Board had requested he obtain quotes for relocation of such trees since the construction contractor for the Water Plant Improvement Project (the “Water Plant Project”), Tidal Construction Inc. (“Tidal”), will not relocate such trees from the site. Mr. Syzek presented a proposal from LHD Tree Service (“LHD”), a copy of which is attached to his report, in the amount of $2,600 to relocate the trees. Upon a motion by Director Rettig, seconded by Director Balderas, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the proposal from LHD, subject to receipt of a Form 1295 Certificate of Interested Parties.
Director Rettig then asked Mr. Syzek about landscaping at the District Administration Building (the “Building”), including the installation of metal borders in three (3) beds and mowing six (6) times during the year at a total cost of $750.
Mr. Syzek next informed the Board that the site of the emergency interconnect between the District and Greenwood Utility District (“Greenwood”) (collectively referred to hereafter as the “Districts”) required mowing and that he was unsure of what district was responsible for such mowing. Mr. Barner stated that he will review the agreement for such interconnect to determine such responsibility.
Mr. Barner next reminded the Board and Mr. Syzek that his office had been waiting to review amendment to the Storm Water Solutions (“SWS”) contract, which was to include for herbicide treatment along the fences around the District’s walking trail, as needed and at a cost of $200 per treatment. Mr. Barner informed the Board and Mr. Syzek that he had received such amendment and the Board could now approve such amendment. Upon a motion by Director Balderas, seconded by Director Woods, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the amendment to the SWS contract, subject to receipt of a Form 1295 Certificate of Interested Parties.
Ms. Hayes exited the meeting at this time.
Tax Assessor-Collector’s Report
The Tax Assessor-Collector’s Report was presented by Ms. Yanez, a copy of which is attached hereto. Ms. Yanez first reported that 0.72% of the 2017 taxes have been collected as of November 30, 2017.
Ms. Yanez next reported that the Delinquent Tax Roll is attached to the Tax Assessor-Collector’s Report.
Upon a motion by Director Rettig, seconded by Director Everhart, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the Tax Assessor-Collector’s Report, as presented; and authorized payment of checks numbered 1916 through 1922 from the Tax Account.
ACCLAIM ENERGY ADVISORS REPORT
Mr. Barner then informed the Board that Mary Dubois of Acclaim Energy Advisors (“Acclaim”) emailed him to let the Board know she is unable to attend tonight’s meeting; she will present updated pricing information at the January Board meeting.
Mr. Humble next reviewed the Engineer’s Report, a copy of which is attached hereto. Mr. Humble first reported that S-H is incorporating responses it received to the design drawings for the Beltway 8 Waterline Extension Project which will be resubmitted for approval. Mr. Humble also reported that S-H received and reviewed a Geotechnical Investigation Report from A&R Engineering and Testing, Inc. (“A&R”), the geotechnical engineer. Mr. Humble went on to report that S-H received, reviewed and approved Texas Engineering and Mapping’s proposal in the amount of $750 to provide the required information to complete CenterPoint Energy’s consent to encroachment survey. Mr. Humble also reported that S-H received, reviewed and approved A&R’s Invoice No. 17S5807 in the amount of $2,400 and forwarded such invoice to the Bookkeeper.
Mr. Humble then reported that CES Utilities, Inc. (“CES”) is addressing punch list items for the ten-inch (10″) Force Main and twelve-inch (12″) Waterline Project along Deep Valley (the “Force Main and Waterline Project”). Mr. Humble also reported that S-H received, reviewed and approved Invoice Nos. 54373 and 54482 in the amounts of $1,257 and $1,292.50, respectively, and forwarded such invoices to the Bookkeeper. Mr. Humble also reported that S-H received, reviewed and approved Invoice No. 1085 from Project Surveillance, Inc. (“PSI”) in the amount of $2,206 and forwarded such invoice to the Bookkeeper. In response to a question, Mr. Humble reported that he requested the inspector to investigate a customer complaint concerning an event on Deep Valley Lane and upon investigation, it was found that CES had addressed the complaint. Mr. Humble noted that S-H will continue to monitor the situation.
Mr. Humble next reported that S-H and the Operator continue to work with Sunrise Holding Company, LLC’s (“Sunrise”) civil site engineer on proposed private improvements. Mr. Barner reported that he will present annexation documents at the January Board meeting.
Mr. Humble then reported that S-H reviewed and completed estimated replacement values for the District’s insurance renewal.
Mr. Humble next reported that on behalf of the District and at the request of Acclaim, S-H reported that the District would be adding and enlarging the booster pumps at the Water Plant.
Mr. Humble then reported that S-H participated in a conference call with the Operator and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”) on November 9, 2017, to discuss possible FEMA funding of repairs resulting from Harvey damages.
Mr. Humble next reported that S-H concurred with the Operator that the District should request 34,000,000 gallons from the Harris-Galveston Subsidence District (“HGSD”) for its groundwater permit.
Mr. Humble then reported that S-H received a request for annexation of three (3) parcels located on the east side of Beltway 8, south of Little York and north of the Hornberger tracts. Mr. Humble went on to report that S-H responded that the District plans to annex land in the vicinity and is prepared to provide utilities to the three (3) tracts at the rate of twelve (12) equivalent single-family connections per acre, subject to receipt of a $6,000 deposit for an annexation feasibility analysis.
Upon a motion by Director Balderas, seconded by Director Woods, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the Engineer’s Report, as presented.
Ms. Yanez exited the meeting at this time.
Bookkeeper’s Report and Investment Report
The Bookkeeper’s Report and Investment Report were presented to and reviewed with the Board by Ms. Bailey, copies of which are attached hereto. Ms. Bailey reported that the District has approximately 7.14 months’ operating reserve.
Next, Ms. Bailey discussed the cash analysis and reported that she held a recent telephone conference with Mr. Barner and Ms. Brewer about re-designating $582,633 in funds for the Force Main and Water Line Project that had previously been declared surplus funds by the TCEQ at the request of the District. Ms. Bailey stated that McLennan needed to correct its report to reflect such re-designation.
Ms. Bailey noted that draft number two (2) of the operating budget and budgets for the Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant (“RWWTP”) and Surface Water Transmission Facilities (“SWTF”) for fiscal year ending December 31, 2018, are attached to her report.
Mr. Barner then recommended that the Board approve the budgets, as presented, by adopting the Order Adopting Budget for RWWTP for the Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2018, the Order Adopting Budget for SWTF for the Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2018, and the Order Adopting Budget for Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2018, copies of which are attached hereto.
In response to a request from the Board, Ms. Bailey stated that she will request cleaner copies of the joint facilities budgets from Greenwood’s bookkeeper, as the imaging and font size make such budgets difficult to read.
Mrs. Rettig entered the meeting at this time.
Upon a motion by Director Rettig, seconded by Director Everhart, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the Bookkeeper’s Report, as presented, and acted on the following:
1) authorized payment of checks numbered 8827 through 8876 from the General Fund;
2) authorized payment of checks numbered 1698 through 1702 from the Capital Projects Fund;
3) approved the Order Adopting Budget for Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2018;
4) approved the Order Adopting Budget for RWWTP for the Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2018; and
5) approved the Order Adopting Budget for SWTF for the Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2018.
The Operator’s Report was presented by Mrs. Marcucci and Mr. Bellamy, a copy of which is attached hereto. Mrs. Marcucci first reported that there are 2,426 connections in the District. Mrs. Marcucci next reported that the District accounted for 72.9% of water billed to customers and noted the accountability was lower than normal because of flushing to repair the LAS line at the Water Plant.
Mrs. Marcucci next discussed repairs and preventative maintenance performed at the water plant, water distribution system, sanitary and storm sewer collection systems, and lift station.
Mr. Bellamy then reported that MDS continues to communicate with the City of Houston (the “City”) regarding credit from the City for the unused surface water that the District and Greenwood paid for during Hurricane Harvey (“Harvey”). Mr. Barner reminded the Board that such contract is termed a “take or pay” contract because the district must pay for the water regardless of whether it is used. Mr. Barner further reminded the Board that he also discussed a credit for the unused surface water and that the City had inquired as to whether the reason for nonuse was due to the City’s being unable to deliver such water or the districts’ inability to receive such water. Mr. Barner stated that he deferred to MDS on the answer to the City’s questions. Mr. Bellamy went on to report that MDS continues communications with HGSD to increase the District’s groundwater permit. Mr. Bellamy also reported that MDS filed claims with the District’s insurance provider and FEMA for damages to facilities during Harvey.
Mr. Bellamy then reported that the RWWTP is operating at 100 percent (100%) and the Water Plant is online. Mr. Bellamy also reported that minor repairs were recently made to the Motor Control Center at the RWWTP.
The Board next inquired as to why the fine screen at the RWWTP had needed replacement and how such replacement should be determined. Discussion ensued. Mr. Bellamy explained that debris from the sanitary sewer trunk lines that deliver wastewater into the RWWTP cause such screens to deteriorate and malfunction over time. Mr. Bellamy also explained that Greenwood had cleaned and removed debris from its sanitary sewer trunk line earlier in 2017 and that he understood Parkway was in the process of doing the same to its twenty-four inch (24″) sanitary trunk line (the “Trunk Line”). Mr. Humble added that bids for cleaning of such line will be presented to the Board at January regular Board meeting.
Mr. Bellamy then reported that last month, MDS completed cleaning of the center well and pulled, cleaned and removed debris from the lift pumps at the RWWTP.
Discussion next ensued about the District’s request to MDS that MDS provide more detailed updates on activity at the RWWTP. Mrs. Marcucci and Mr. Bellamy stated that they would ensure such activity would be reported, including all preventative maintenance MDS does pursuant to its contract for operating the RWWTP.
Mr. Bellamy presented customer requests for adjustments, copies of which are attached to the Operator’s Report, and reported that leaks occurred during Harvey.
Next, discussion ensued regarding Rate Order amendments to increase residential deposits, request an additional deposit for delinquent and terminated accounts and increase penalties. Mrs. Marcucci stated that she will be prepared to discuss the District’s Rate Order in more detail at the regular January Board meeting.
Mrs. Marcucci then reported concerning the Write-Off List dated October 24, 2017, identifying four (4) accounts totaling $388.34 for the Board’s approval. Ms. Marcucci next reported that the Delinquent Letter Accounts Listing Due December 19, 2017, is attached to the Operator’s Report. It was the consensus of the Board to defer terminations until January 2018.
In response to a question regarding customer billing procedures and possible options for reducing the timeline for termination of delinquent accounts, Mrs. Marcucci stated that she would investigate such procedures and discuss further with the Board at the regular January 2018 Board meeting.
Upon a motion by Director Balderas, seconded by Director Everhart, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board approved the Operator’s Report, as presented, and acted on the following:
1) authorized write-offs;
2) deferred terminations until January 2018;
3) approved issuing a credit for sewer, removing the penalty and offering a payment plan for a period of six (6) months to District customer, Carolyn Norris; and
4) deferred adjustments to the account of District customer, Lois Barlow, pending resolution of Ms. Barlow’s insurance claim.
Parkway/Greenwood Joint Facilities report
Mr. Humble presented the Joint Facilities Report, a copy of which is attached hereto.
Mr. Barner then updated the Board regarding the Harris County Flood Control District’s (“HCFD”) request that the RWWTP discharge pipe easement area be backfilled with dirt. Mr. Barner reminded that Board that the District had requested HCFD reconsider its request since he didn’t believe such backfill should be required in order to complete the District’s discharge pipe improvement project.
Mr. Barner next reported that the eminent domain hearing to acquire the SWTF site is scheduled for January 31, 2018, at 10:00 a.m.
Regarding the RWWTP, Mr. Humble reminded the Board that as previously reported, S-H is obtaining three (3) bids to televise and clean the Trunk Line.
Next, Mr. Barner discussed the meeting with the City and its design engineer on November 14, 2017, to discuss the increase in the take-or-pay amount. Mr. Barner added that he understood the Districts’ engineers were working on a response to certain questions from the City’s.
Concerning the County’s Tidwell Road Expansion Project, Mr. Humble reported that the sidewalks requested by the County are located within the District’s twenty-inch (20″) water line easement along the north side of Tidwell Road from the SWTF to John Ralston Road. Mr. Barner indicated that he will further research whether or not the District can have such easement area paved. Discussion ensued. It was the consensus of the Board to support construction of such paving for sidewalks in the area, but that the County should ensure such paving is property maintained. Mr. Barner recommended preparation of a maintenance agreement. Mr. Barner also recommended that the County contact the affected property owners since the District does not own the property and only has easement rights. Mr. Barner then reported that the County needs a portion of the RWWTP site for the Expansion Project. Mr. Barner went on to report that he received an offer letter and will review to determine the reasonableness of the County’s offer.
Mr. Humble reported that after reviewing the District’s water usage for the last twelve (12) months as provided by the Operator, S-H is doubtful that HGSD would permit a significant increase in the District’s groundwater withdrawal permit for 2018, however, the Operator will request the maximum amount available. As such, Mr. Humble stated that S-H recommends the Board instruct the Operator to use the District’s ground water to pay back Greenwood the 3.295 million gallons owed to it, when appropriate, in 2018. Mr. Humble added that the payback period should take approximately one (1) week depending on the time of the year.
Mr. Barner reminded the Board that the first quarterly joint meeting with Greenwood is scheduled for January 23, 2018, at 6:30 p.m. Discussion then ensued on various issues that the Board would like to address concerning the Districts’ joint facilities, including: 1) coordination between the Districts’ engineers on design of the proposed RWWTP expansion project and the SWTF project; 2) coordination between the Districts’ engineers and MDS on determining and explaining future needed repairs to joint facilities; 3) clarification on the process for approval of such repairs as well as overall maintenance to joint facilities; and 4) clarification on obligations and responsibilities of both Districts for such facilities. Mr. Barner reminded the Board that he is in the process of preparing an Amended and Restated RWWTP Agreement that would reflect that the proposed expansion will be for the total build out of both Districts and that would also clarify the aforementioned issues. Mr. Barner further stated that he is preparing the letter requested by the Board in the December 6, 2017 special meeting that outlines the aforementioned issues. Mr. Barner added that the Board’s request that appointment of a committee of two (2) Directors from each District had already been relayed to Greenwood and that he understands Greenwood is amenable to such a committee. Mr. Barner last stated that his intent was to have the letter and the draft Amended and Restated RWWTP Agreement prepared for review to discuss at the regular January Board meeting so that both Boards could discuss in more detail at the January 23, 2018 quarterly meeting.
BUILDING SUPERINTENDENT’S REPORT
Director Rettig reported that the Building is completed. Mr. Rettig also reported that a computer is needed for the Building and a few items remain in storage.
DISTRICT WEBSITE REPORT
Director Balderas reported that she will contact Shannon Waugh to update the October 17, 2017 entry on the District’s website and the addition of the petition discussed during the System Project Manager’s report. Director Balderas will also ask Ms. Waugh to post the Christmas and New Year’s garbage collection schedule on the District’s website.
Mr. Barner first requested dates for the remaining consultant interviews. It was the consensus of the Board to schedule meetings on January 10, 2018, to interview the System Project Manager and Financial Advisor, and January 22, 2018, to interview the Attorney.
Next, Mr. Barner presented the 2018 Annual Agenda and noted that the Annual Agenda was for informational purposes and no official Board action was needed on this item.
Mr. Barner discussed Senate Bill 1812, which requires the District to file an annual eminent domain report with the State Comptroller. Upon a motion by Director Rettig, seconded by Director Woods, after full discussion and with all Directors present voting aye, the Board authorized Mr. Barner to file the annual eminent domain report on behalf of the District.
MAY 2018 DIRECTORS ELECTION
Mr. Barner reported that the first day on which on an application for a place on the ballot for the May 5, 2018 Directors Election (the “Election”) is Wednesday, January 17, 2018, and the application deadline is 5:00 p.m. on Friday, February 16, 2018.
Mr. Barner next discussed the rental of iVotronic equipment for the Election from Election Systems and Software (“ES&S”). Upon motion by Director Rettig, seconded by Director Balderas, after full discussion and the question being put to the Board, the Board voted unanimously to enter into an agreement with ES&S for the rental of electronic voting equipment, subject to receipt of Form 1295 Certificate of Interested Parties.
The Board discussed using the District Administration Building as the polling location for the Election.
THERE BEING NO FURTHER BUSINESS BEFORE THE BOARD, the meeting was adjourned.
PASSED AND APPROVED this the 24th day of January, 2018.
Secretary, Board of Directors