Hopkins County Commissioners Court has a Monday ahead with redistricting discussions, consideration of a road drainage systems grant, and appointment of architects for construction of a community safe room among the items on the day’s three meeting agendas.
The county applied to FEMA through Texas Department of Emergency Management for Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grant Program/Building Resilience Infrastructure and Communities Program grant, with a goal of constructing a Community Safe Room. An approved grant requires a 80/20 percent match, with 80 percent of funding coming from the grant and the county providing a 20 percent match.
The Community Safe Room will serve multiple purposes, including serving as a community shelter in times of extreme weather or as a site for certain types of mass distributions, such as a safe space from which vaccines could be administered or supplies distributed. The Community Safe Room too would likely serve as a new Emergency Operations Center for the entire county.
In order to make it as safe a location as possible, the Community Safe Room would be built much like the portion of Hopkins County Law Enforcement Center where inmates are housed. It’s planned to have solid concrete floors, as well as solid walls and ceilings to make it sturdy, able to withstand extreme weather such as a tornado. CSR is to be located across from the county jail, would include restrooms and a kitchenette, county officials reported during sessions held over the summer.
During the special 10 a.m. court session Monday, Nov. 1, the Commissioners Court too is slated to meet in the first floor courtroom at the courthouse to consider Grand Application DR-4586 for drainage systems associated with County Roads 1178, 1180, 1186 and 4729, as well as Pipeline Road.
The court too will be asked during that session to commit to providing a 20 percent funding match on local and county government lightiung conversion to LED lights.
An agreement between the County Clerk and Vista Solutions Group and contract between county and DRG Architects LLC for construction of a Community Safe Room are also on the 10 a.m. Commissioners Court Agenda.
Following the special called meeting, the court is slated at 10:30 a.m. Nov. 1 to reconvene again in the Commissioners Courtroom on the first floor of the Courthouse, 118 Church St., in a work session to discuss redistricting of Hopkins County. A budget work session may also be held during that work session.
The Commissioners Court, in addition to their other duties in their precincts, are scheduled Monday to then conduct another work session at 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 1, in the emergency operations center/training room at Hopkins County Law Enforcement Center. This will be their regular meeting with the volunteer fire department officers. They many also hold a budget work session at that meeting, according to the agenda.
The court is then scheduled to meet again in an executive session at 9 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 4, at the Sulphur springs-Hopkins County Economic Development Corporation offices, located at 1200 Enterprise Lane, to discuss in closed session an economic development opportunity for the county. The agenda sites Texas Government Code Chapter 551 Section 087, which, specifically notes these type of meetings may be discussed in closed session:
“(1)to discuss or deliberate regarding commercial or financial information that the governmental body has received from a business prospect that the governmental body seeks to have locate, stay, or expand in or near the territory of the governmental body and with which the governmental body is conducting economic development negotiations; or(2) to deliberate the offer of a financial or other incentive to a business prospect described by Subdivision (1).”
The agenda does not show the court resuming open session Thursday to take any action related to the closed session, but does list a budget work session afterward.