HONEY GROVE — The Honey Grove City Council reseated two aldermen and the mayor at a Monday night meeting here, and voted to spend up to $91,000 to upgrade its website and to update the city’s information technology system.
Mayor Claude Caffee, along with Aldermen Terry Paul Cunningham and Brian Owen, took the oath of office administered by City Secretary Sally Wright after the council canvassed results from the Nov. 3 election.
Information technology purchases depend on the city collecting up to $91,000 in CARES Act funding, the amount allocated to the city through the Coronavirus Relief Fund, which, among other things, allows municipalities to claim salary expenses for police and fire departments affected by the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“What we are doing now is requesting the state to reimburse us for what we paid during this Covid period for our police department,” Caffee said. “This money then comes back to us and can be utilized for other kinds of things.”
Based on the amount of Cares Act funding the city actually receives, the council approved an update of the city’s website, along with computer hardware for the front office to allow staff to work remotely, if needed. An updated sound system with virtual meeting and video conferencing capabilities is part of projected expenditures as is an upgrade to police department hardware.
As follow-up action to the recently passed off-premise beer and wine election on Nov. 3, the council instructed City Attorney David Hamilton to draw up an ordinance to restrict the distance from a church or school that beer and wine can be sold. Council is expected to decide on the number of feet in the restriction, and to take action on the ordinance at its December meeting.
In other action, the council approved a reimbursement ordinance for the initial development cost of water and sewer lines connecting the Hidden Grove recreational vehicle development east of town to city services. As new development takes place, the city and Hidden Grove will be reimbursed for initial costs.
Aldermen also approved a $20,000 wastewater treatment plant study to appease the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, extended a limited access and maintenance agreement with the Lake Club to operate a fishing club at the former Honey Grove Country Club, renewed a reduced-cost uniform contract for utility employees, passed a grease trap ordinance and extended the proclamation of local disaster related to the coronavirus epidemic for a month.