LOCAL GOVERNMENT

Two new bonds for Killeen utility ratepayers could be on the near horizon, according to a five-year capital improvement program plan the Killeen City Council will discuss Tuesday.

The city will propose issuing two bonds to pay for water-sewer and drainage projects beginning in fiscal year 2020, according to a city PowerPoint presentation attached to the council’s online agenda.

Unlike roadway project debt, which is paid back through property tax revenue and must be approved by voters, the city’s two proposed debt issues will be “revenue bonds” — meaning they are paid back through utility fees and do not need voter approval.

While the presentation does not specifically list a total dollar amount for each bond, a spreadsheet shows around $9.2 million in estimated drainage projects through fiscal year 2023 and $14.75 million in water-sewer projects.

Among the water-sewer projects the city has put as top priority include the multi-year installation of an 18-inch sewer gravity main, water infrastructure to connect to the coming Bell County Water Control and Improvement District No. 1 treatment plant on Stillhouse Hollow Lake, the 11th phase of the city’s septic tank elimination program, and the third phase of the city’s water line rehabilitation program.

Drainage projects include the completion of a drainage master plan, and the reconstruction of Valley Road Ditch and Patriotic Ditch at Zephyr Road.

The city last updated its drainage master plan in 2012.

According to the City Charter, the council must draft a capital improvements program every five years to arrange for long-term funding. According to the city’s presentation, there are 138 citywide projects listed as “long-range unfunded” with a price tag of more than $879 million.

On Tuesday, the city will ask the council to discuss prioritization of those projects in the next five fiscal years and possible funding sources.

In other business, the council will consider approving a $409,313 contract for the fifth phase of the city’s sewer line sanitary sewer evaluation survey.

The evaluation, which will include “smoking” sewer lines,” covers 637,169 feet of sewer line.

Since 2011, the city has been a participant in the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s Sanitary Sewer Overflow Initiative Program, which requires the evaluation and rehabilitation of defects in the city’s sewer system.

According to the city, the evaluation and rehabilitation of defects is complete in all sewer lines in phases one to three, and phase four rehab is underway.

The city said funding for the project is available in the 2013 water-sewer bond.

The council’s regular meeting will begin at 5 p.m. at City Hall, 101 N. College St.

The council’s workshop will take place after a meeting of the city’s employee benefits trust immediately following the council’s regular meeting.

The workshop will take place at the Utilities Collection Building, 210 W. Avenue C.

kyleb@kdhnews.com | 254-501-7567

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