Weatherford Democrat

August 23, 2013

College enters into agreement with city over fire training location


Weatherford Democrat

— By SALLY SEXTON



Weatherford College trustees Thursday approved an interlocal agreement between the college and the City of Weatherford for fire training.

Under the approved five-year agreement, Weatherford College is to construct a fire science training center on city property at 722 E. Oak St.

“The agreement is that we would build the facility, with a gravel pad below, and add a couple of metal storage buildings onto the property,” said Richard Bowers, interim vice president of instruction. “In return, the city would let us use the land and the city fire department would have training access to the facility when it isn’t being use by the fire academy.”

Currently, the college’s fire science academy has been using facilities in Cleburne and Hudson Oaks, and would still maintain the use of the tower at the Hudson Oaks location.

Weatherford College’s classroom training is with Hudson Oaks and live burn exercises are conducted in Cleburne. The new Weatherford facility would be used for the fire skills training component only.

The two metal storage containers, each 8 feet high and 40 feet long, will be welded together, according to Bowers.

Trustees on Thursday also approved the 2013-14 ad valorem tax rate, as proposed by Andra Cantrell, vice president of financial and administrative affairs, at an effective rate of 11.46 cents per $100 valuation. That rate is this year’s effective tax rate, the rate that would generate the same amount of revenue on existing properties as the current tax rate. The new rate means an annual increase of $1.03 for a Parker County taxpayer with a home valued at $100,000.

Trustees also approved the 2013-14 budget of $53.5 million, as previously presented to the board last week.

In other news, the board:

• Approved the naming of four classrooms of the new academic building after four donors committed funds last week. Marjorie Kimbrough Dome, Charlie and Trina Gilchrist, Rena Mae and Scott Woody, and Frances Zellers, pledged a total of $115,000 to the Weatherford College capital fund-raising campaign.

• Approved the disposal of obsolete and surplus items through online auction as well as donations to West ISD.

• Approved the transferring of $300,000 from the Unrestricted Reserves Fund to the Auxiliary Fund.

• Approved a resolution to authorize an interlocal cooperation contract with the Texas Association of Community Colleges for participated in the Texas Community College Cooperation Purchasing Network.