COPPERAS COVE — “You’ve done this before,” Judge Bill Price joked as he stood before Mayor-elect Bradi Diaz to administer the oath of office Tuesday evening.

It took about 30 seconds for Diaz to recite the oath and take the mayor’s chair for the first time in more than a decade. Diaz was the city’s first woman and youngest-ever mayor when she was elected in 2004, but she lost her re-election bid in 2007.

She won the job back after being elected April 27, getting 61.75% of the 757 votes cast.

She succeeds former Mayor Frank Seffrood, who won reelection in a runoff in December but died Dec. 28.

Mayor Pro Tem Dan Yancey said during a council meeting in January that Seffrood had learned he had cancer just before the runoff took place.

The two dozen people in the city council chambers Tuesday applauded Diaz, and the city council members congratulated her with hugs and handshakes.

Then it was on to business.

The Parks and Recreation Department honored former Mayor Seffrood’s support and dedication by presenting his wife with a special bat engraved with his name.

Rita Seffrood told those in the council chambers that her husband “loved everything about this city and always had a good word no matter where he went.”

In other business, interim City Manager Ryan Haverlah gave a detailed presentation about the city’s street maintenance plan. The city is considering asking voters to keep a one-eighth of a cent sales tax to fund street maintenance and repairs, as well as instituting a fee that would generate more money to help fix city streets.

Haverlah said the city should begin maintenance work such as crack sealing and herbicide to help prevent more costly repairs. He also showed that the transportation workgroup had recommended Constitution Avenue as the number one roadway in need of work in the city. The workgroup also recommended Pecan Cove Road for reconstruction.

After some discussion, the council directed Haverlah to work toward hiring a maintenance crew that would work solely on city streets.

Several council members said they would like to see some extra calculations worked into the plan to repair city streets. They hoped the additional information would give them a better idea of what streets need to be prioritized.

Council members sped through a packed agenda at the regular council meeting that began a little after 6 p.m.

During the citizens forum, Copperas Cove Chamber of Commerce President Alicia Menard gave the council an update on the turnout for Rabbit Fest.

Menard said 31,027 attended the festival over four days. Nearly 7,000 people rode carnival rides during the event. Menard said six city hotels said the Rabbit Fest generated 425 room stays during its four-day run.

Among other items, the council:

Heard no opposition to amending several sections of the budget for the current fiscal year during a public hearing. A second public hearing on the budget amendments will be held at the next council meeting on June 4.

Heard no opposition during a second public hearing on adjusting the current fiscal year budget to allot $11,255 to the Copperas Cove Chamber of Commerce for the 2019 Rabbit Fest. The funding was approved unanimously.

Heard no opposition during public hearings on amendments to a Future Land Use Plan and a rezoning request from Manning Homes regarding phase two of the Liberty Star Addition. The amendment and rezoning were approved without objection.

Appointed new members to the Library and Quality of Life advisory boards.

Approved a final plat for phase one of the Persimmon Springs development.

Discussed and directed city staff to look at possible changes to the way the city deals with appointments to advisory bodies and boards Specifically, the council wants to clear up sections of those appointments dealing with whether a person can serve on a board if they do not live in the city limits, but live within the city extraterritorial jurisdiction.

Agreed to a joint meeting with the Copperas Cove Economic Development Council on June 25 for a workshop.

After an executive session to discuss the search for a new city manager, the council returned to chambers and took no action, and then adjourned for the night.

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