• October 15, 2019

Investigator added to fight dumping - Odessa American: Local News

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Investigator added to fight dumping

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Posted: Thursday, October 3, 2019 12:28 pm

Ector County Commissioners are beginning to tackle concerns plaguing county residents this fiscal year using revenue collected from the Ector County Assistance District.

Precinct 1 Commissioner Eddy Shelton said the assistance district gives the Commissioners’ Court an opportunity to catch up in areas where the county has fallen behind.

County residents told commissioners before the November election that gave the county the tax money that road infrastructure, law enforcement and illegal dumping were their top priorities, and the Commissioners’ Court promised to direct funds to those areas if the proposition for the assistance district was given the green light.

To date, the county has received about $7.64 million since voters approved levying a sales tax of 1.25 cents per dollar and creating an assistance district in all of Ector County outside the city limits of Odessa and Goldsmith. The assistance district sales tax did not officially go into effect until April 1.

During a Thursday meeting, commissioners approved adding an investigator to the Ector County Environmental Enforcement unit, which is tasked with combating illegal dumping throughout the county.

“Those funds are just a long time coming but it was one of the things we promised the citizens,” Shelton said, “that if we get this tax, this is where we’re going to put it.”

Environmental enforcement currently has a total of three officers. Reports created by the unit show 702 total cases were filed between October 2017 and September 2018.

The department’s director, Rickey George, previously said the total number of cases in a given year equates to known incidents of illegal dumping to demonstrate a crime analysis of how big the problem is in the county, but not all cases listed are resolved due to a lack of evidence and resources.

Environmental Enforcement was given an increase of about $57,000 in funding for 2019-20. The unit’s general fund now totals about $375,000.

IN OTHER BUSINESS, COMMISSIONERS:

  • Accepted donation of $50 from Daniel J. Runzheimer for the Ector County Sheriff’s Office.
  • Accepted donation of $20,000 from Occidental Petroleum Corporation for the Ector County Sheriff’s Office.
  • Approved closure of Flamingo Avenue, north of University Boulevard, for one block from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. October 26.
  • Approved donation of all leased equipment from Tyler - Eagle Recorder Division.
  • Approved change of subscription fees for official public records to $125 for weekly updates and $25 for monthly updates.
  • Approved specifications to seek out quotes to build two 400-foot guyed towers with the attached load data.
  • Approved purchase of Panasonic Toughbooks for Sheriff’s Office; and approved the budget amendment to Capital Projects Fund, Special Departmental Equipment , 045-990-5507 for $316,886; and to Law Enforcement Supplies, 045-990-5183 for $43,456; from Unreserved Fund Balance 045-3310 for $360,342.
  • Approved purchase of a tractor.
  • Approved agreement between Permian Basin Community Centers, PermiaCare, and Ector County for jail based mental health services and continuity of care services.
  • Approved an interlocal agreement between the City of Odessa and Ector County for the 2019 Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program.
  • Approved an interlocal cooperation agreement between Ector County and Burnet County for Jail Services.
  • Approved an application for fiscal year 2020 Victim Assistance Grant No. 3928401.
  • Approved the recommended benefits and rates for the change from a Medicare Supplement Plan Design to a Medicare Advantage Plan Design.
  • Approved proposed MHRC Sandy's Ranch Mobile Home Park 5521 W. 29th Street Odessa, Texas 79764 Westgate Subdivision Section 13, Block 43, T-2-S Co., Ector County.
  • Approved giving CGG Land permission to conduct a 3D geophysical survey for lands which Ector County is the acting agent and/own the surface mineral.
  • Approved line item transfer to 001-5-024-5161 Educational Travel from 001-5-021-5161 in the amount of $1,216.
  • Approved budget amendment to General Fund, Library, Office Supplies, 001-690-5171 for $133, to Audio Visual Supplies, 001-690-5178 for $516, to Library Supplies, 001- 690-5185 for $3,542, to New Books, 001-690-5201 for $36 and to General Fund, Donated Revenues, 001-4171, for $4,227.
  • Approved budget amendment to General Fund, Human Resources, Professional Services, 001-030-5307, from General Fund, Unreserved Fund Balance, 001-3310 for $ 11,000.
  • Approved the accounts payable fund requirements report for Oct. 3, 2019 and reviewed county financial statements and reports.

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