— By JUDY SHERIDAN
Almost $70,000 left over from projects that came in under budget will be used to repair roads in Annetta North, Annetta and Annetta South, according to action taken by Parker County commissioners Wednesday.
Commissioners voted 4-0 to amend Precinct 4 Commissioner Dusty Renfro’s $1 million discretionary fund, revising the totals for the Inspiration Drive and Willow Park Ranch House Road bridge projects downward and authorizing $40,000 for projects in Annetta North and about $13,000 each for projects in Annetta and Annetta South.
“I wasn’t around whenever the funds were allocated for precinct 4, and I was trying to spread it around a little more than it was originally,” Renfro said, “so we’ve been really trying to save money on the projects that we’ve been working on with those discretionary funds in order to take those savings and distribute them to some cities that got nothing.”
Renfro said the money — $66,000 — was saved on materials and by being more efficient with employee time.
“It’s not much in the grand scheme of $1 million,” he said, “but it is sharing good will, specifically with the Annettas.”
Before he became a commissioner, Renfro said, each precinct received a $1 million allocation — as part of the transportation bond — for road improvements within the precincts or within cities within the precincts. The vast majority of the money went to city projects.
Portions of nine cities are within precinct 4 boundaries.
About $204,000 was set aside for the Ranch House Road Bridge, $112,000 for Inspiration Drive in Hudson Oaks and $300,000 for the Aledo High School bypass, Champions Drive, according to precinct 4 office staff. The Airport Road Bridge Project received $150,000, with the remainder set aside for chip seal projects throughout the precinct.
Renfro said the Annettas were not slighted in the original allocation.
“The cities were given an opportunity at the beginning — I’ve been told — to submit projects for court approval for these discretionary funds, but did not submit requests,” he said.
In Annetta North, the money will fund chip seal for Centerpoint Road and Quail Road, while in the town of Annetta, the funds will applied to portions of Lakeview, Woodland Hills, Highland and Deer Creek, according to precinct 4 office staff.
In Annetta South, the money will fund two courses of chip seal for South Point Road.
The county will offer labor and equipment for the projects, Renfro said, but cities may also choose an outside firm.
“If they go with an outside firm, the county will go out for bids and work with the contractor directly,” he said, “but it’s more than likely that the cities will use the county because we’re cheaper.”
Renfro said Annetta North has been proactive in pursuing the funds.