City council changes Couch Avenue to Rosemond Lane

The Italy City Council unanimously approved a request from residents and property owners on Couch Avenue to change the street name to Rosemond Lane at its monthly meeting held Monday evening.

Residents from Couch Avenue presented a petition to the city council requesting the road name change since there is also a Couch Street in town. Alysa Kirton, a representative from the group, told the council that a resident on Couch Avenue recently called an ambulance. The ambulance was discovered searching for the residence on Couch Street. Kirton said, “Fortunately, this was not an emergency situation. Had it been an emergency, however, those wasted minutes could have had a tragic outcome.”

Greg Richards made the motion, with a second from Bruce Utley, to adopt the ordinance (#13-0114-01) changing the street name.

In other business, the council also approved an ordinance (#13-0114-02) scheduling the city’s general election on May 11 for the purpose of electing a mayor and two city council members. They also approved a joint election agreement with the Italy ISD. Teri Murdock, city secretary/administrator, said this year’s election will be held at the Boze Community Center, 161 W. Main.

Those up for election include Mayor Frank Jackson and council members Rodney Guthrie and Greg Richards.

Murdock said those wanting to run for city council may pick up a packet on Jan. 30 and must be turned in by 5 p.m. on March 1. She said applications are available at city hall or online at the Texas Secretary of State website.

During departmental reports, Police Chief Diron Hill said he would have an in-depth report for 2012 at the February meeting. Overall, he said crime is down 1.5% and serious crimes are down 13.9% from the previous year.

Hill said officers were called to service 235 times in December and made nine arrests. Officers worked 1,320 hours. The code enforcement officer was called to service 16 times in December. The animal control officer picked up six animals and was called to service 26 times.

Dean Carrell said concrete has been poured at the site of the new Family Dollar Store. The building should be on site by Jan. 28 and should be up by Feb. 5. Plans, he said, are to have the store open by the second week of April. He said the Taco Bell store is about one-quarter into the project.

Carrell said the street/water department is having a tough time with the budget due to various emergencies. He said, “I am doing the best I can but several emergencies have come up that were not budgeted.” Murdock said the city is cutting back where they can to help with these emergencies.

The council also approved minutes, bills and earned compensatory time for the month of December.