The municipal commissioners had a lively meeting in the evening on Monday. A public hearing set things in motion. Citizens from the neighborhoods affected by the commercial land rezoning project were present.
The first stretch discussed was the 202 E. Hanks Trail. First Baptist Church Trustee Austin Hickman requested the rezoning but was not present at the hearing. The application would allow for the construction of a 160-foot freestanding tower for rent for Internet services.
Johnny Evans represented the Marvel Road Neighbors.
“This plot is basically in our backyard and a tower is not something we would like to wake up and see in the morning. We are also concerned that the value of our land will go down with this. We also wonder if this is approved for this church, how many more will want to do the same and continue to rezone neighborhoods,” he said. “Looking at other towers, they’re attracting turkey buzzards and that’s definitely not not something we would want in our neighborhood.For these reasons, we strongly oppose this rezoning.
The second plot discussed was the small patch of land just north of Braum’s. Rezoning to allow construction of a free-standing internet tower up to 100ft for the Internet Horizons company.
Jenny Desai spoke for the residents of Spring Creek Addition. She said: “I have several other residents present with us tonight. We’re talking about the little patch of land just north of Braum. As a neighborhood we oppose rezoning, we collected over 20 signatures. Concerns center on the value of our property, with the tower being an eyesore for the community and safety. It is a border separating the commercial area from our neighborhood.
“At the moment it’s for one tower, but we already have options from Suddenlink, AT&T, Chisholm and possibly Pioneer. We think we’ve got enough cover as far as it goes. Braum’s Corridor, McDonald’s, Grease Monkey brings a lot of people to the area We feel that it just doesn’t look good in our community to be right in the middle of a neighborhood and where so many people from out of town will be able to see it so easily.
She continued: ‘Another concern is the safety of children who may decide to be curious and climb on them while out for a walk with their friends.
“If for some reason the tower doesn’t go up and it’s still marked for commercial use, what will be in its place?” A restaurant, a bar? The street is not prepared to handle this. There are currently no sidewalks, no crosswalks, no lines on the road. This would increase the amount of traffic in our neighborhood that people are already slowing down. We would like to keep the tract as a boundary between us and the commercial district.
Abel Miramontes, as owner, requested the rezoning and was present and spoke on behalf of the company.
He said: “We bought this internet business about a year ago, but it’s been around for 22 years. Our children go to school nearby. We try to keep things safe and this place is the best for our business. I understand the eyesore, but we would keep it presentable and clean. We are a local business.
“We would like to keep the money in this community because if people spend it on us, we will spend it here. It would be better for everyone, there are still a lot of people on the west side who don’t have affordable internet.
After all parties spoke against or for the rezoning, the hearing was adjourned and the commission meeting began. All items have been approved on the consent file.
Commissioner Sandi Liles spoke about the residents in attendance before further discussing the rezoning.
She said, “I really appreciate all the residents who came out and took the time to not only be here, but to learn about what’s going on in their neighborhoods. I think you all deserve kudos for both sides of the two rezonings. I know we all want progress, but I can sympathize too, and I wouldn’t want that to happen in my backyard either.
Both tracts related to rezoning failed due to lack of movement.
A resolution has been passed by the city and municipal authority nominating City Manager Shaun Barnett as a candidate to fill a vacancy on the Oklahoma Municipal Retirement Fund (OkMRF) Board of Directors representing District 8 for a five-year term beginning October 1. 2022- October 1, 2027.
The economic development contracts with the Woodward Industrial Foundation and the Chamber of Commerce were approved as well as the professional services contract with the Main Street program.
The Stewards accepted White’s Welding’s only offer for a used cargo truck fitted with a finished brush pump to replace the old truck.
The collective agreement for the 2022-2023 fiscal year between the Town of Woodward and the International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 2560 has been approved for a term of one year. This includes a 2% split between stages as well as two new top stages and getting a leave position.
Hoidale Co. Inc.’s Avgas and Jet A Fuel System Change Order No. 1 for West Woodward Regional Airport has been approved. The amount of $4,250.00 was requested for additional lighting under the fuel system tank to control LED lights.
“We use LED fixtures instead of retrofitting them so we can keep up with maintenance. Over time with upgrading you may lose the ability to change fittings over time. With these there is has much more serviceability and longer life,” Barnett said.
A resolution was passed to accept a US Department of Transportation Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) grant offer for the construction of the taxiway. “This is a 90/10 grant, so the FAA will pay 90% and we will pay 10% for the design and preparation of this. It’s been great to help us keep the airport operational through this program,” said Barnett.
Derrell White of FSW&B described the audit for the 2021-2022 financial year.
Commissioners approved the budget for the 2022-2023 fiscal year.
With inflation, difficulty getting supplies and rising operating costs, there will be a 6% increase for all utilities.
For the past six years, Town of Woodward employees have been on 10% mandatory furlough. Barnett insisted on cutting that in half during this tough budget.
“One of my main goals this year was to change leave. Everything is going up and our employees are going through the same thing. Financially, we can’t change everything, but giving them half is doable,” he said. “Employees will work two hours overtime a week and increase their welcome wages and increase their pension contributions.
“They will continue to close at noon on Fridays for the benefit of employees by continuing the two and a half days every weekend.”