The City Council will vote Tuesday to approve residents who have applied to serve on a citizens focus group to improve the city.

As of mid-December, the city received at least 15 applications, according to Public Information Officer Kevin Keller.

“As a result of success with employee focus groups and the number of complaints received from citizens, we want to try to establish a citizens’ focus group,” City Manager Andrea Gardner said at the Dec. 3 council meeting.

Council members were in agreement.

“It’s something good I would like to see happen,” Councilman Gary Kent said.

Citizens will review issues and make recommendations based on results from a survey in September asking for residents’ opinions on various city services.

The top three issues according to respondents were expanding, improving and creating new businesses, controlling traffic congestion and volume, and providing more recreational activities for youth and young adults.

Respondents requested the city consider four potential future projects including upgrades to City Park to include walking trails, and soccer complexes, construction of a recreation center, support downtown revitalization projects, and expand city-sponsored activities for youth.

In a straw poll conducted by the Copperas Cove Herald, 45 percent of residents asked about where the city should spend its money said recreation and youth activities.

“I think we could use (the money) around here in recreation and the park and maybe doing some more community service things for veterans and single parents,” LaShanda Wilson said.

“That money can go to something else for the kids. It expensive for them to do stuff. The money can help build other orgnaizations and have more fun activities for the kids,” Kia Kelly said.

Two years ago, the Parks and Recreation Department created the Youth Activities Council with a slate of teenage officers to plan and implement activities for youth. YAC sponsored a movie night in Ogletree Gap Park on Dec. 14 and planned events in the new year.

Respondents surveyed said the city’s top funding priorities should be firefighting and rescue services, emergency medical services, crime control and police services, sewer services, street lighting, city staff responsiveness to utility problems, and new business development.

Mayor John Hull looks forward to the group being formed and receiving feedback.

“Anything we can do to improve our city is worth our time,” he said.

Contact Wendy Sledd at or (254) 501-7476

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