— By BRIAN SMITH
Approval to move a proposed Parker County Veterans Memorial was granted Tuesday by Weatherford City Council.
Members of the American Legion Post 163 and VFW Post 4746 had brought the idea to move the planned memorial from the corner of Eureka Drive and Santa Fe Drive to a spot in Soldier Spring Park. The Parks and Recreation Board approved the move, provided a completed memorial site plan was submitted prior to starting any construction.
Parks and Recreation Director Danielle Felts said the move was considered after the VFW and Legion began working with Gold Star Mothers of America. The groups decided a larger memorial with more features was warranted. All construction costs will be paid for by the groups.
No time frame for a site plan or construction was given.
An item to consider placing a statue of Weatherford icon Larry Hagman in Heritage Park was removed from the agenda. City Manager Jerry Blaisdell said a dedicated place for a statue of the actor, who died last year, has not been determined. Staff members are looking to hire an architect to design a spot for the statue.
Funds for the statue are still being raised, with no construction date set.
Council member Waymon Hamilton asked if the Hagman committee had the parks and rec board’s approval for a statue in the park and was told they didn’t. Blaisdell told Hamilton there was no written policy on how that should be handled.
Gas hike proposed
The council also tabled an item from the Texas Gas Service Company, which is asking for a rate hike.
The increase, which would amount to about $1.75 a month for the average residential customer, drew the ire of several council members who criticized the company for a number of rate increases over the last several years.
Company spokespersons said the increases were going toward the replacement of antiquated pipes and to pay for items the Texas Railroad Commission, which oversees the company, had required.
TGSC had asked for the increase at the council’s April 23 meeting and was asked to provide additional information, which was given at a work session before Tuesday’s meeting. Council member Heidi Wilder said she wanted a chance to go over the newly provided information before making a final decision.
The item is expected to be on the council’s May 28 meeting agenda.
In other news, the council appointed Carole Peterson to the Historic Preservation Commission with Debbie Browder and Jim Tilger named to the Weatherford Housing Authority Board.