EDC gets update on Upchurch Field

The updates around Upchurch Field dominated most of Monday’s Economic Development Corporation meeting.

Charles Hyles, board member, updated members about the walking trail and the remaining items to complete the project.

He said he contacted the Lyndsey Family who donated all the sand for a sand volleyball pit. Hyles said he would get the net for $210 and get the boundary for $55. He said he would get poles from Mullers and install the poles for about $50. He said he would donate his time.

Elmerine Bell, vice president, said she didn’t know the sand pit was part of the package.

She questioned Teri Murdock, city secretary/administrator, as to whether this project is in compliance with EDC requirements. Murdock assured her that it was in compliance because it was a park project and open to the public. Bell said she wanted to see the page in the book that states this project is in compliance.

Hyles said they still had $9,400 left from the $44,500 walking trail project. He said the benches and fencing will cost about $6,500. He only had one fencing estimate and members questioned the need for two or more estimates. Hyles said he had contacted Martin Fence Company who never returned his phone call.

Darrell Rosemond, member, volunteered to contact Martin about getting an estimate for a fence that would separate a part of the walking trail from one of the ballpark’s outfield.

Bell said they didn’t have to spend all the monies approved for the project. She said the remaining funds could be put back into the EDC’s general fund. She said this type of project seems to be used by the IYAA and the additional items were not part of the original package.

After a great deal of discussion, Tom Little made the motion to approve money for two benches and a sand volleyball court. Rosemond seconded the vote which passed unanimously.

The group voted to table election of officers until the seat vacated by Mark Stiles has been filled.

Murdock said two people have applied for the seat and one person will be appointed at the next city council meeting. She said the city will continue to accept applications until Wednesday, Dec. 4.

The group voted not to hold a December meeting.

During the financial report, which was approved unanimously, Murdock said the November sales tax was down 11.33%. The operating fund balance is $2,939.34, money market balance is $103,352.06, bond money is $2,157.05, debt service is $15,214.12 and escrow account is $37,266.72.

During member comments, Bell said she wanted to pursue a museum project. She also said she would like to use the remaining money from the pavilion project to decorate the front of the pavilion.

Little said he felt the Boze Building was sitting there unused and felt the rental fees should be lowered.

Murdock said cost is $30 per hour with a $100 deposit and said people have it rented several times within the next couple of months.

He then said they needed to do something about the McConnell building.

Murdock said she was in that building recently and said the doors are falling off their hinges and there were holes in the roof. She said the building is literally falling in on itself.

Hyles thanked the committee for allowing him to oversee the Upchurch project. He added that the Texas Parks and Wildlife will soon offer matching grants for playground equipment. He warned members to be prepared because he wanted to complete the Upchurch project with playground equipment.

Joyce Hobbs thanked Hyles for his time and effort toward this project.

Randy Boyd thanked the citizens of Italy and the school district for all they did during the recent evacuation of the City of Milford.