Nancy Hunter

The Stephenville City Council convened twice during the month of October. One item that continues to be debated is whether to allow or prohibit wind turbines within the city limits. With the ever growing interest in alternative energy sources, this question has been raised in Stephenville as well as over a hundred other Texas cities. In 2008, the city council requested that the Planning and Zoning Commission research the issue and report their findings to the council. Earlier this year, an ordinance outlining specific guidelines for the construction of wind turbines within the city limits was presented to the city council by the commission. On Oct. 6, a public hearing was held in council chambers, giving our residents a chance to voice their opinion and share their concerns before any action was taken. One resident spoke at the public hearing. The ordinance was referred to the Planning and Development Committee for further exploration. After lengthy discussion weighing the pros and cons, the committee voted to refer the issue once again to the full council. The ordinance is scheduled to be voted on in November.

During a meeting of the Public Health and Safety Committee, a loitering ordinance was proposed. There have been ongoing difficulties with young people “hanging out” at area businesses without purpose. Local business owners report disturbances, thefts and graffiti both inside and outside their establishments and have asked the city for assistance.

The proposed ordinance prohibits loitering in, on or about any street, public place or place of business when such loitering is accompanied by activity or circumstances that would be reasonably likely to disturb, annoy or frighten persons of ordinary sensibilities. Violation of this ordinance carries a fine up to $200. The ordinance was unanimously recommended for approval by the committee and will be voted on in November.

Plans were presented to the Planning and Development Committee for the construction of a new T-ball complex at Stephenville City Park. The complex will be located adjacent to the concession/restroom facility in City Park. The current T-ball complex will remain intact and will be used as practice fields. With over 400 children participating in the T-ball program each year, the additional fields will provide a safe alternative for team practices as well as additional space for spectators. The plans have been forwarded with a favorable recommendation by the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board.

For those of you who are interested in becoming involved with the city of Stephenville but are unsure how to go about doing so, you may want to consider serving on one of our various boards or commissions.

We will accept applications for open positions until Nov. 5. These citizen committees serve as advisory committees to the city council. Nominations Committee will meet on Nov. 10 to make recommendations on appointments to the city council. Anyone interested may obtain additional information as well as an application on the city’s Web site at www.ci.stephenville.tx.us.

Nancy Hunter is the mayor of Stephenville. Her column appears monthly.