The Ector County Hospital District will revisit whether or not they want to participate in the Downtown Odessa Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone during a regularly scheduled meeting today.
The meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. in the second-floor board room of Medical Center Hospital, 500 W. Fourth St.
The board tabled their decision of whether or not to join the TIRZ during their last meeting Dec. 4 after concern was expressed by District 1 board member Bryn Dodd. Dodd said due to the long-term nature of the TIRZ, she didn’t want to vote on the item the same night they were receiving information about it so she could fully consider its ramifications and weigh its pros and cons.
Dodd said she also did not feel comfortable voting on the item without the full board present, as District 3 board member Richard Herrera was absent. There was also concern discussed involving a potential conflict of interest with District 7 board member Ben Quiroz, who owns property in the TIRZ.
The TIRZ will run from Second Street to Eighth Street and Adams Avenue to Bernice Avenue. Within those boundaries, property tax revenues would be frozen at a base level for a 20-year period and as property tax values rise as the area is developed, revenues collected above that level would be used for further projects during the course of the 20-year period.
The hospital district can choose which tax percentage to use, whether it be 100 percent like the city will be doing, 75 percent, 50 percent or 25 percent. Development Services Manager Vanessa Shrauner told the board during the Dec. 4 meeting if ECHD joined at 100 percent, they could collect about $2.2 million over the 20-year period from the hospital district. The city is estimating to collect about $9 million on its own. Money from the TIRZ can only be used for public improvement.
Medical Center Health System President and CEO Rick Napper previously told the board he thinks it is in the hospital’s best interest to participate in the TIRZ in some way, since revitalization of the downtown area would benefit the hospital facilities since they are located in the downtown area, recommending they join at 75 percent.
The board will also consider an interlocal agreement with the City of Odessa regarding radio communications.
The city of Odessa switched to their own radio system last year, cutting off their ability to communicate with any other local entities, which were previously all on the same radio system. The city switched because the former radio system is dying out.
At the end of December, Ector County joined the city’s radio system, which will give the county interoperability with the city and allow law enforcement and fire rescue to communicate with each other once again.
The hospital will now consider joining the city’s radio system to have the same interoperability with local first responders. A memorandum detailing MCH’s radio system states the ECHD Police Department desires to connect and operate 25 portable radios owned by the hospital to the city’s system.
The hospital’s police department began preparations in 2017 for the transition of radio service by purchasing radios compatible with the city’s new system, which were approved by the board May 2, 2017, the memorandum states.
All systems and equipment are in place for the radio transfer, pending the agreement approval. The cost associated is to assist in the maintenance of the equipment, repairs and staff to operate the system.
IN OTHER BUSINESS, THE BOARD WILL CONSIDER:
- New administrative staff members Ellie Bane, Leah Robertson and Michaela Johnson.
- A consent agenda including approval of regular meeting minutes from Dec. 4, approval of executive committee minutes from Dec. 20, and an investment policy annual review and approval.
- Committee reports.
- A TTUHSC at the Permian Basin report.
- A request to sell property for less than market value located at 301 Fitch Ave.
- A request to sell property for less than market value located at 9510 W. Westridge Drive.
- An MCH ProCare semi-annual report.
- An order of election of directors of the Ector County Hospital District.
- Changing ECHD Board of Directors finance committee and regular meeting date from Feb. 5 to Feb. 12.
- Changing ECHD Board of Directors finance committee and regular meeting date from July 2 to July 9.
- Entering into executive session for the following reasons: consultation with attorney regarding legal matters and legal issues, deliberation regarding exchange, lease or value of real property, deliberation and evaluation of officers and employees of Ector County Hospital District, deliberation regarding negotiations for health care services, information that if released or disclosed would give advantage to a competitor, and advice, recommendations, opinions or other material reflecting the policymaking processes of Ector County Hospital District.