Council awards bicycles to 1st - 4th graders for Get Fired Up reading program.

During its regular May 02, 2023 meeting, the Forney City Council met to award Get Fired Up winning students, consider statement of support for Terrell State Hospital.
(watch official video)

  • Public Comment - none.
  • presented bicycles, donated by partner Wal*Mart, to winning students for Get Fired Up reading program.
  • Approved as one consent item:

    • modifications to the existing school zone limits for Willett Elementary on Gateway Blvd.
    • the acceptance of public improvements for the Brookville Estates Phase 2 Public Improvements.
      The contractor has completed the public improvements for the Brookville Estates Phase 2 subdivision project.  City Engineer T. John Casey, P.E., C.F.M.. has submitted the attached letter stating that all punch list items have been addressed and that the public improvements can be accepted.
    • a Resolution for an Interlocal Agreement between the City of Forney and the City of Seagoville.

  • Approved support of state funds to construct a new facility to replace Terrell State Hospital.
        Dr. Messer said hospital been around since 1885 - one building had to be taken offline due to foundation problems, now down to 214 beds.  There is a wait-list for persons in jails (which are now the largest mental health provider), waiting for beds in hospital to restore competency to forensic patients.  Their role in lowering number of people in jail is not just Kaufman, but surrounding areas, including Dallas County.
        Ms. Schlensker asked how long it takes to move a patient - Dr. Messer said (in the state) for maximum-security persons, it's over 400 days.  Non security patients (at Terrell) is about 6 months.  Several hundred are waiting now.  Ms. Schlensker said they are a huge asset to the state.  Dr. Messer said they accept patients who are no longer deemed a threat.  When legislation went to the House, it was for 308 beds, Senate changed it to 250, with 50 max security.  
        Ms. Primous asked about forensic patients - Dr. Messer said it is when a defendant can't form a defense with their attorney, or understand the charges; many people with mental illness can't do that.  They can teach them competency.  Ms. Primous asked about institutionalizing patients - Dr. Messer said those days are long gone, since 80's.  They are 1 of 10 state hospitals.  Might have 50 people who have been there a year, very few more than 1 year.
        Ms Salgado asked if state is providing funding, since they serve 31 counties.  Dr. Messer said focus is on providing competency training in the jails, so no waiting for beds.
  • Approved removing signer(s) from American National Bank account.
        Ms. Woodham said due to departure of Dorothy Brooks, and Mayor Lewis not running for re-election, need to remove those 2 names from the list.
  • City Manager's report - said wine/art festival had a good turnout, thanked staff, PD and FD for their work.  Free Cinco de Mayo concert 630-1030 at Spellman amphitheatre.
  • Upcoming Events - Mayor Lewis said school uniform drive is under way, until May 24 can drop off clean and gently used uniforms at campuses, admin building, and Presbyterian Church.
  • Held a 48-minute executive session re:
    • City Manager
    • NTMWD v. The City of Heath, et al., Cause No. 1-22-0704
    • Ridgecrest extension

  • Adjourned at 1949
Tuesday, 2023, May 2