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THE WOODLANDS TOWNSHIP

Board of Directors Meeting

REGULAR BOARD MEETING

August 26, 2020

MINUTES

THE STATE OF TEXAS   §

COUNTIES OF HARRIS & MONTGOMERY   §


              The Board of Directors of The Woodlands Township met in regular session, open to the public, on Wednesday, August 26, 2020, posted to begin at 6:00 p.m. The meeting was held via video conference within the boundaries of The Woodlands Township, The Woodlands, Texas.
             
STANDARD ITEMS
             
1. Invocation / Pledge of Allegiance;

Chairman Gordy Bunch provided the invocation. He then led the Pledge to the United States flag and the Texas State flag.
             
2. Call meeting to order;

Chairman Gordy Bunch called the meeting to order at 6:02 p.m. and declared that notice of this meeting was posted 72 hours in advance inside the boundaries of The Woodlands Township at Town Hall located at 2801 Technology Forest Blvd., The Woodlands, Texas, and posted online at www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov, and is being held via video conference in accordance with the declaration made by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, which temporarily suspends certain requirements within the Texas Open Meetings Act to help reduce the potential transmission of the COVID-19 public health pandemic emergency. The roll was then called of the duly elected members with one member absent at the time roll was called.
Present: Chairman Gordy Bunch; Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser; Secretary Ann Snyder; Director Bob Milner; Director Jason J. Nelson; Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs
Absent: Treasurer John Anthony Brown
Staff Present: Don Norrell, Nick Wolda, Monique Sharp, John Powers, Karen Dempsey, Palmer Buck, Susan Welbes, Robin Cross, Todd Stephens
             
3. Receive, consider and act upon adoption of the meeting agenda;
  Motion by: Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser moved to adopt the meeting agenda.
  Second by: Director Bob Milner 
Passed: Chairman Gordy Bunch YES
Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser YES
Secretary Ann Snyder YES
Treasurer John Anthony Brown ABSENT
Director Bob Milner YES
Director Jason J. Nelson YES
Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs YES
 
             
4. Public comment;* 

The following individuals provided public comment:
  • Laura Norton - Cochran's Crossing; serves on MUD 47 Board expressed views regarding ground water pumpage and water rates;
  • Mark Unland - Cochran's Crossing; expressed views on potential pathways in drainage easement, Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District groundwater usage rules and proposed groundwater pumpage.
  • Nelda Blair - Former Chairwoman of the Township Board of Directors, shared a brief history of her time serving on the Township Board with President/General Manager Don Norrell and thanked him for his service to The Woodlands Community.
  • Nancy Becker - Represented the Village of Creekside Park, shared an update on the recent improvements in Creekside Village and desire for a more convenient paint recycling location.
  • Mark Meinrath - Cochran's Crossing; expressed concerns with subsidence and the Panther Branch Fault.
  • Claude Hunter - Alden Bridge; provided general commentary regarding Township governance, annexation, covenants, Residential Design Review Committee and Incorporation.
             
PROCLAMATIONS
             
5. Receive, consider and act upon proclamations;
             
a. Receive, consider and act upon a proclamation recognizing retiring President/General Manager Don Norrell for his service to The Woodlands community; 

Chairman Gordy Bunch read a proclamation recognizing President/General Manager Don Norrell for his 14 years of service to The Woodlands community and proclaimed August 26, 2020 as Don T. Norrell Day. A congratulatory video was shown featuring both current and former Township Board of Directors and The Woodlands Township Executive Management Team and staff thanking Mr. Norrell for his service, leadership and well wishes upon his retirement.
             
CONSENT AGENDA
             
6. Receive, consider and act upon the Consent Agenda;
(This agenda consists of non-controversial or "housekeeping" items required by law. One motion with modifications, if applicable, approves for action, all items contained within the Consent Agenda. Items may be moved from the Consent Agenda to the Regular Agenda by any Board Member making such request prior to a motion and vote.)
  Motion by: Secretary Ann Snyder moved to approve the consent agenda.
  Second by: Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs 
Passed: Chairman Gordy Bunch YES
Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser YES
Secretary Ann Snyder YES
Treasurer John Anthony Brown ABSENT
Director Bob Milner YES
Director Jason J. Nelson YES
Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs YES
 
             
a. Receive, consider and act upon a Park Use Agreement with Interfaith of The Woodlands for Veggie Villages (C-2020-0204);
             
b. Receive, consider and act upon revisions to The Woodlands Township Personnel Policy Manual;
             
c. Receive, consider and act upon the purchases of equipment related to COVID-19 response;
             
REGULAR AGENDA
             
7. Receive, consider and act upon emergency authorities related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic, and authorizing the President/General Manager to act in connection therewith;

Note:
No action was taken on this agenda item.
             
8. Receive, consider and act upon an update from the San Jacinto River Authority on operations within The Woodlands (as requested by Chairman Bunch);

Chairman Gordy Bunch introduced San Jacinto River Authority General Manager Jace Houston. Mr. Houston thanked the Chairman and Board and congratulated President General Manager Don Norrell on his retirement. Mr. Houston then gave a presentation on topics requested by the Board related to the Lakeside Cove odor issue, fault movement near The Woodlands High School, and long term water supply and demand in Montgomery County. 
  Motion by: Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs moved to accept the report.
  Second by: Director Bob Milner 
Passed: Chairman Gordy Bunch YES
Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser YES
Secretary Ann Snyder YES
Treasurer John Anthony Brown ABSENT
Director Bob Milner YES
Director Jason J. Nelson YES
Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs YES
 
             
9. Receive, consider and act upon the financial report;

Assistant General Manager of Finance and Administration Monique Sharp provided an overview of the General Purpose Statements for the seven months ended July 31, 2020. The report reflected an unfavorable revenue of $2.5 million, with the primary component of a $1.7 million decrease in Sales Tax Revenue, and a $2.3 million decrease in program revenues for Aquatics and Park and Recreation program revenues. Ms. Sharp shared that the report also reflected a $3 million favorable variance expense offsetting the unfavorable variance in program revenues.

Next, Ms. Sharp reported that the unfavorable variance is offset by the $2.2 million in revenue through the contract negotiated by the Board and funds received from the Anadarko Abatement Agreement and the $600,000 contract revenue from the Comprehensive Community Services Agreement. 

Ms. Sharp reported that, the total year-to-date expenditures budget is $57.4 million, actual expenditures total $50.5 million, leaving a $6.9 million favorable expense variance. She also noted that this was achieved by the work of the Budget Task Force and by the Board of Directors. Mrs. Sharp reported on the August 2020 Sales Tax Deposits, with a year-to-date collection of $32.5 million which reflected a $2 million or 6% decrease from the same seven months in 2019.
  Motion by: Director Bob Milner moved to apporve the financial report for the seven months ended July 31, 2020.
  Second by: Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser 
Passed: Chairman Gordy Bunch YES
Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser YES
Secretary Ann Snyder YES
Treasurer John Anthony Brown ABSENT
Director Bob Milner YES
Director Jason J. Nelson YES
Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs YES
 
             
CLOSED MEETING (if applicable)
             
10. Recess to Executive Session to discuss matters relating to real property pursuant to §551.072, Texas Government Code; deliberation of economic development negotiations pursuant to §551.087, Texas Government Code; discuss personnel matters pursuant to §551.074, Texas Government Code; discuss IT network or critical infrastructure security pursuant to §551.089, Texas Government Code; and to consult with The Woodlands Township’s attorney pursuant to §551.071, Texas Government Code;

Chairman Bunch shared that it would not be necessary to recess to executive session.
             
11. Reconvene in public session;

Chairman Bunch shared that it would not be necessary to reconvene from public session.
             
DISCUSS FUTURE AGENDA /ANNOUNCEMENTS
             
12. Consideration of items to be placed on the agenda for next month's meeting;

Secretary Ann Snyder requested an update on The Woodlands Fire Station No. 5.
             
13. Board announcements; and

Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs reminded residents that volunteers are needed for COVID-19 vaccine trials.

Chairman Bunch reported that path of Hurricane Laura is due to move east of The Woodlands area, and noted that residents may experience downed trees, power lines and power outages.

Chairman Bunch acknowledged Mr. Norrell and shared that this would be his last meeting as the official President/General Manager. He also shared that Jeff Jones would be joining the next meeting as President/General Manager for The Woodlands Township.
             
14. Adjournment.
  Motion by: Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser moved to adjourn the meeting at 7:42 p.m.
  Second by: Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs 
Passed: Chairman Gordy Bunch YES
Vice Chairman Bruce Rieser YES
Secretary Ann Snyder YES
Treasurer John Anthony Brown ABSENT
Director Bob Milner YES
Director Jason J. Nelson YES
Director Shelley Sekula-Gibbs YES
 
_____________________________________
Ann Snyder
Secretary, Board of Directors

    

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