During its regular Feb. 18, 2020 meeting, the Forney City Council met to consider fiber connections, sidewalks, childcare parking, annual audit, call for an election, reposition public input, get a racism update (with some push-back).   (watch official video)

  • Mr. Thomas moved to suspend rules to take an item out of order; there was a unanimous vote in the affirmative.
        He then moved to consider consent item 7, and to move the public communications to the end of the meeting:
    • Approved action to ratify the Rules of Procedure for the City Council and the Boards, Commissions and Committees of the City of Forney, Texas reestablishing the Agenda Order for regular City Council and its Board, Commission and Committee meetings.
          It was unanimously approved.

  • Approved as one consent item:
    • the quarterly investment report ending 12/31/19.
    • approving a Professional Services Agreement with Surdukan Surveying, Inc.
    • a revised site plan for Criswell Elementary School, located southwest of the intersection of Ridgecrest Road and Pinson Road.
    • advertising a Request for Proposals (RFP) - Outside Plant Optical Fiber Backbone Infrastructure.
    • the acceptance of public improvements for the construction of the Lady Liberty Monument project.
    • the acceptance of public improvements for the Ridgecrest Center Addition project.
    • the acceptance of Public Improvements - Golden Chick.
    • authorization to allow staff to seek bids for the residential sidewalk improvements, and all related issues.

  • Held Public Hearings -
    • Approved an Ordinance amending the City of Forney Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance by amending the parking, loading, and unloading requirements for a childcare use.
          Mr. Morgan briefed the council: currently require circular drive, which is no longer preferred design.   Ordinance allows exceptions, engineer shall review the plans.
          There was no public input.

  • Vision 2025 -- Goals and Initiatives - no update.
  • Received annual audit presentation by Pattillo, Brown & Hill.
        Mr. Chris Pruitt presented the report and a letter.   He mentioned last years' Certificate of Achievement by GFA that city has received for years, expects them to receive the award again in fall.   They received a modified "clean" opinion.   General fund fund reserve about $7 million, water/sewer fund at $21.4 million is extremely healthy.   Notes contain nothing new.   Took in $635k less than expected, spent $400k less than budgeted.   Roadway impact fund is a positive.   HOT funds and Fox Hollow on separate pages.   Government audit standards report - concerns compliance issues, nothing came up.   The letter has items to discuss - all standard.   There were no findings, much cash in investments.
  • a Resolution awarding a contract with R&P Hunt Brothers for the Forney Parks and Recreation maintenance and fertilization.
        Rouvaldt said in 2019 FISD and city mutually agreed to end interlocal agreement, which required the city to maintain several FISD properties.   The reason for bid was city no longer required to maintain those.   Mr. Carson said this is a $40k reduction from what paid last year, so another one of these companies is still cheaper.   Mr. Rouvaldt said previously paid for Henderson and admin football field, not doing those this year.   Mr. Myers suggested & moved to have Hunt Brothers mow, Enhanced Views do fertilizing, approved unanimously .
  • Approved a Resolution to waive penalties and interest on delinquent taxes for Tax Parcel # 185246 and 191685, pursuant to Section 33.011 Texas Tax Code.
        Mr. Thatcher said this regards property purchased in 2019, two tracts in Mustang Crossing were not transferred by appraisal district, became delinquent.   State law says if penalties due to mistake by district, required to waive those fees.
  • Approved appointing Tye Bowden as an ad hoc member of the Capital Improvements Advisory Committee representing the extra territorial jurisdiction of the City of Forney pursuant to Chapter 395 of the Texas Local Government Code.
        Mr. Thatcher said has to be a member to represent ETJ residents for the committee.
  • an Ordinance ordering a special election to be held on May 2, 2020, for the purpose of voting on the adoption or rejection of proposed amendments to the existing City Charter of the City of Forney, Texas; designating the places at which said election is to be held; appointing the early voting clerk; and providing for posting and publication of the election notice.
        Mr. Thatcher said Charter Review Commission provided recommendations, staff created an ordinance to include those and call for an election to be held with council election.
  • Public Comment
  • Mr. John Daniels said he represents city of Forney organization, white, brown, blacks, standing together to fight the open racists in city hall.   He said Mayor Penn and City Manager Carson refuse to meet with peoples of color.   He was taught: when you hear something wrong, say something; if you see something wrong, you're supposed to do something.   He asked Mr. Carson and Ms. Penn if they were willing to meet with peoples of color, they have been trying for several months; they did not respond.   He said there is no way on God's green earth they should sit there and say nothing.   He said they have been putting out flyers, and have heard crazy things about the mayor: that she is a drug user, a drunk, also Mr. Carson.
        Mayor Penn informed him his 3 minutes were up.
  • Mr. Hobbs spoke saying he has heard things that disturb him, by law, as is up on the screen, council can not respond to accusations in a public meeting.   He asked what kind of drugs - prescription or unsubstantiated accusations.   There is no way the mayor is racist.
  • Chasitee Albertie said as a black woman of the city, she has never been racially subjected by the council.   She's appalled by the things she's hearing.   All persons of color are subject to rumors or stereotypes, being 'ghetto' or drug-dealers, those are issues they have constantly.   By using these racial slurs, are back-pedaling.   Instead of using hateful words to deter people from coming and voicing their opinions, should be encouraging their community.
  • City Manager's report - as heard from Mr. Pruitt, he wants to thank finance department ; Feb 25 workshop at 6.
  • Council Comments - Mr. Johnson thanked staff; Mr. Cooper said need comments from public; Mr. Moon thanked finance & public; Mr. Myers thanked staff & finance; Mr. Thomas thanked finance; MP mentioned ,,, killed in head-on collision.  
  • Mayor Penn read a prepared statement, refuting claims made during public comments. It was:

    "In accordance with Section 551.042 of the Texas Government Code, the following is a statement of factual information given in response to certain inquiries that have been made during the open forum of this and other recent Council meetings.

    Several assertions and statements have been made about me as the Mayor, as well as other Council members and City staff.   Such statements have included allegations of improper conduct and have publicly challenged my character.   While the Constitution protects speech from government intrusion, it does not protect false statements made with actual malice.   This includes blatantly false statements that are only made to defame me or any other Council member or City employees.

    The fact is, that these statements and any referenced "complaints," are false, baseless, without merit, complete lies and have the sole purpose of causing harm to the City of Forney.

    The City of Forney works for the benefit of the public as a whole, rather than the unreasonable demands of a single individual.   As Mayor, I will continue represent the interest of the City to the best of my ability and respectfully reject any claims to the contrary."

  • Held a 35-minute executive session re:
    • Settlement Agreement and Release between the City of Forney and Alan Kent Erdman.
    • City of Forney Parks Facilities Utilization Agreement.
    • Demand Letter - James and Gail McCurry
    • Project CP

  • approved settlement agreement between city and Alan Kent Erdman as discussed in executive session.
  • Adjourned at 1954
Tuesday, 2020, February 18