By Nathan Straus
The Jacksonville City Council heard from Richard Ott of Texas Parks and Wildlife on the status of grass carp and hydrilla levels in Lake Jacksonville.
Though this presentation, which occurred during the regular monthly council meeting Tuesday, resulted in no action taken, it will likely be revisited in a future meeting.
Ott said the hydrilla levels in the lake dropped to just a trace amount by August.
“The floods came when the hydrilla was very buoyant,” he said.
Because hydrilla levels are low and native plant numbers seem to be declining, council members heard a recommendation for permitted removal of grass carp. Ott said this wouldn't allow general harvesting of the fish, but a more controlled removal system.
One other item not decided on during the meeting was approval of a letter of understanding for auditing services to be performed by Henry & Peters PC for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2009. This was tabled due to the need for clarification on parts of the letter.
Several points were approved by the council, including:
• Approval of minutes of special meetings of Sept. 1, 8, 15 and 23, and minutes of regular meeting on Sept. 8.
• Public hearing and request for zone change from “G”-Commercial District to “G-Special Use” permit to allow for a church at 1518 East Rusk Street. The applicant was Iglesia Apostolic De La Fe En Cristo Jesus. This was approved unanimously with none speaking out for or against the item.
• Public hearing and request for zone change from “P”-Planned Development to “P-Special Use” permit to allow for a 100-foot self-supporting tower for internet at Lon Morris College. Applicant was CKS Management Inc. This was approved; there were two comments in favor of the tower at the meeting.
• The Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce's 2010 Hotel/Motel Occupancy proposed budget was approved.
• A resolution submitted for the energy-efficiency and conservation block grant programs was approved.
• Approval was granted for the fire department to apply for the 2009 Fire Prevention and Safety Grants program. If won, this would give the department around $5,000 for smoke detector and battery use.
• The certified tax roll submitted by the Cherokee County Appraisal District was approved.
• Brent Stahelin was nominated as a candidate to the Cherokee County Appraisal Board of Directors in a resolution passed by the council.
• Emergency Medical Services write-off accounts were approved, though this does not change the status of the accounts.
• Several members were appointed to the library board.
The meeting was adjourned around five minutes after 6 p.m.
By Nathan Straus
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