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TipSheet: Travis County, 4.17.18

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 by Caleb Pritchard

The Travis County Commissioners Court meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday. In the interest of space, we’ve decided not to post the entire agenda here. The County Clerk’s Office hosts a copy at its website.

5. Receive presentation on evaluation of the Capital Area Private Defender Service. (Commissioners Daugherty & Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: Three years into its run, CAPDS gets an examination into its state grant-funded operations. The Commissioners Court will hear the results of this survey in the context of County Judge Sarah Eckhardt’s stated interest during her State of the County address in a fully operational public defenders unit.

12. Accept and open bids relating to, and consider and take action on, an order authorizing the issuance of an amount not to exceed $44,775,000 Travis County, Texas, Certificates of Obligation, Series 2018 (Limited Tax), and related matters. (Commissioner Gómez)

13. Accept and open bids relating to, and consider and take action on, an order authorizing the issuance of $38,465,000 Travis County, Texas, Permanent Improvement Bonds, Series 2018 (Limited Tax), and related matters. (Commissioner Gómez)

14. Accept and open bids relating to, and consider and take action on, an order authorizing the issuance of $16,460,000 Travis County, Texas, Unlimited Tax Road Bonds, Series 2018, and related matters. (Commissioner Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: The court is poised to make it rain to the tune of $99.7 million on roads, parks and flood mitigation projects across the county. Voters gave the green light to a good chunk of the improvements last November, while the court itself also approved a substantial outlay of certificates of obligation at the same time.

17. Receive update on recruiting efforts for the County Executive of Transportation & Natural Resources. (Commissioners Travillion & Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: The process to replace outgoing TNR head Steve Manilla is entering its next phase. According to a staff memo, 58 candidates have applied for the gig but only a baker’s dozen met the minimum qualifications. Those lucky 13 will be winnowed down by further rounds of interviews ahead of the planned presentation of finalists before the Commissioners Court on May 22. Whoever gets the final nod will have the happy job of administering the department that oversees, among other things, the county’s roads, fleet vehicles, flood infrastructure and solid waste services.

24. Consider and take appropriate action on request by Contract Compliance Program to adopt recommendations for implementation of the Travis County Better Builder Program – Phase 1: Public Works. (Commissioner Daugherty)

Monitor’s Take: At long last, staff has delivered to the Commissioners Court a draft policy adopting the Workers Defense Project’s Better Builder Program, a set of standards aimed at improving safety for construction workers involved with county projects. One big hitch here is that this “Phase 1” set of recommendations does not cover projects in public improvement districts or ground-lease projects (308 Guadalupe Street, for example).

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Key Players & Topics In This Article

Travis County Commissioners Court: The legislative body for Travis County. It includes representatives from the four Travis County Precincts, as well as the County Judge. The County Judge serves as the chair of the Court.

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