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[1. CALL TO ORDER]

[00:00:05]

>> LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, IT'S TUESDAY, APRIL 7TH. AS AUTHORIZED BY SECTION 551-701 THIS MEETING MAY BE CONVENED IN CLOSED EXECUTIVE SESSION FOR THE PURPOSE OF SEEKING ADVICE FROM THE CITY ATTORNEY ON ANY AGENDA ITEM HERE IN. CITY OF ROWLETT RESERVES THE RIGHT TO CONVENE. DUE TO PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY AND TO CONFORM WITH SOCIAL DISTANCING REQUIREMENTS THE CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS WILL BE HELD VIA TELECONFERENCING.

THE PUBLIC CAN VIEW LIVE ON THE CITY'S WEBSITE AND OUR STREAMING VIDEO.

IF YOU LISTEN TO THE MEETING LIVE CALL 877-853-5247 AND ENTER MEETING NUMBER 136667610.

[2. EXECUTIVE SESSION (6:00 P.M.)]

SO THE FIRST ITEM ON THE AGENDA IS OUR EXECUTIVE SESSION. THERE WAS AN AMENDED AAGAIN TKA ISSUED THIS AFTERNOON. SO THERE'S TWO EXECUTIVE SESSIONS.

I'LL READ BOTH OF THOSE INTO THE RECORD AND THEN WE'RE GOING TO DISMISS THIS REGULAR MEETING, GO INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION SO FOR THOSE THAT ARE WATCHING, WE'LL END THIS MEETING AFTER I READ THESE INTO RECORD. WE'LL GO INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION AND WE'LL COME OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION AND THEN THIS MEETING WILL RESUME ON ALL THOSE METHODS WE JUST TALKED ABOUT, HOW TO WATCH THIS MEETING. SO ITEM 2A, CITY COUNCIL SHALL CONVENE INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION 551-077 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND SECTION 551.071 CONSULTATION WITH ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS COMMERCIAL OR FINANCIAL INFORMATION WITH WHICH THE CITY IS CONDUCTING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT NEGOTIATION AND CONSULT WITH AND RECEIVE LEGAL ADVICE FROM THE CITY ATTORNEY AND PROPOSED IMPROVEMENTS TO THE I 30 BRIDGE BY THE TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION.

OUR SECOND EXECUTIVE SESSION ITEM WHICH IS ON SUPPLEMENTAL EMERGENCY AGENDA THAT WAS ISSUED THIS AFTERNOON. ITEM 2C, COUNCIL SHALL, COUNCIL WELL CONVENE UNDER 551-071.

CONSULTATION WITH THE CITY'S ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS AND RECEIVE LEGAL ADVICE FROM THE CITY ATTORNEY ON LOCAL COUNTY AND STATE ORDERS RELATED TO COVID-19.

SO AT THIS TIME, IF WE COULD PLEASE ADJOURN FROM THIS MEETING >> YES.

>> OKAY. IT IS 7:13 P.M. ON TUESDAY APRIL 7TH.

WE HAVE CONCLUDED OUR EXECUTIVE SESSION AND WE ARE RECONVENING INTO OUR REGULAR SESSION AND OUR NEXT ITEM FOR CONSIDERATION IS ITEM 3A UPDATE ON THE FUNDING ALLOCATIONS WITHIN THE

[3A. Update City Council on the CDBG funding allocations within the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) and discuss Life Message’s request for additional funding in the amount of $200,000. (20 minutes)]

CORONAVIRUS AGE ECONOMIC SECURITY ACT CARE AND DISCUSS LIFE MESSAGES AND ADDITIONAL

FUNDING. >> CAN I UNMUTE IT? >> LORI, YOU NEED TO MUTE YOUR

MICROPHONE. >> ALL RIGHT. >> THANK YOU.

WOULD YOU PLEASE PULL UP MY PRESENTATION?

>> I DIDN'T HEAR. WHICH ONE IS IT?

>> IT'S 3A. >> OKAY.

THANK YOU.

>> THANK YOU. FIRST SLIDE.

THANK YOU. COUNCIL, WE'VE BEEN FOLLOWING VERY CAREFULLY THE CARES ACT, ESPECIALLY AS IT RELATES TO CDBG FUNDING. THE NCDA AND APA HAVE ALSO BEEN WORKING VERY, VERY CLOSELY WITH ASSOCIATED AGENCIES SUCH AS HUD TO MAKE SURE THAT WE SECURE AS MUCH FUNDING AS POSSIBLE IN ORDER TO PROVIDE NECESSARY FUNDING IN DIFFERENT FUNCTIONS.

THAT BEING SAID, THE NCDA RECENTLY HAS CONTINUED TO RELEASE INFORMATION RELATED TO FUNDING.

WHAT THEY'VE TOLD US, AND WE WOULD, AS PART OF THE CARES ACT,

[00:05:05]

BE ABLE TO SECURE FUNDING IN THE AMOUNT OF $161,000.

IN ADDITION, WE WILL ALSO FOR PROGRAM YEAR 2020 BE RECEIVING APPROXIMATELY $274,000. I KNOW NOT EVERYBODY IS FAMILIAR WITH THE CARES ACT AND WHAT THAT BUNDLE DID FOR US.

THERE WAS A GOOD AMOUNT OF ALLOCATION FOR CDBG FUNDING.

AS PART OF THIS FUNDING, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE, IT WAS DETERMINED THAT THE 15% CAP ON PUBLIC SERVICES, THAT'S WHERE THE CAP FALLS ON OUR PUBLIC SERVICES WAS SUSPENDED OR HAS BEEN SUSPENDED.

AND FLEXIBILITY IN PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS.

I KNOW I SOUND A TAD BIT VAGUE, BUT THAT'S, UNFORTUNATELY, THE REALITY RIGHT NOW. WE STILL DO NOT KNOW THE PROCESS ON HOW TO EXPEDITE FUNDING AND WHAT THE ADMINISTRATIVE MECHANISMS ARE. WE ARE AWAITING A RESPONSE FROM HUD TO DETERMINE IF THAT DEDICATED PUBLIC FACILITIES CAN BE SHIFTED TO NOW NONCAPPED PUBLIC SERVICES AND WHAT THAT MECHANISM WOULD BE. IN FACT, JUST AS OF TODAY, NCDA HAS WRITTEN TO HUD REQUESTING AGAIN SOME OF THESE ANSWERS ON HOW DO WE MANAGE THIS? WHAT DO WE NEED TO DO IN ORDER TO BE ABLE TO START UTILIZING THOSE FUNDS? WE'RE HOPEFUL THAT IN THE VERY NEAR FUTURE WE WILL BE HEARING BACK FROM THEM. NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

AS PART OF THIS DISCUSSION, LIFE MESSAGE HAS APPROACHED COUNCIL TO DETERMINE IF THERE ARE ANY OPPORTUNITIES TO SECURE ADDITIONAL FUNDING FOR PUBLIC SERVICE FUNCTIONS.

THE CURRENT PROGRAM YEAR THEY WERE AWARDED A TOTAL OF $36,630.

THEY HAVE USED APPROXIMATELY $11,000, $12,000, AND THEY'RE GOING TO -- THEY WERE REQUESTING FORWARD FUNDING OF THEIR BALANCE, WHICH WE WERE ABLE TO PROVIDE TO THEM.

BUT BEYOND THAT, LIFE MESSAGE HAS INDICATED THAT THE CURRENT PANDEMIC IS PLACING A BURDEN AND A HARDSHIP ON THEIR ABILITY TO SUPPORT FAMILIES THAT ARE IN NEED.

JUST AS AN EXAMPLE, THIS COMMUNICATION IS A FEW WEEKS OLD, BUT THEY'RE DEALING WITH 26 NEW FAMILIES THAT ARE SEEKING ASSISTANCE A DAY. SO THE CASH THAT THEY NEED TO OPERATE LIFE MESSAGE IS EXTENSIVE, AND THEY DON'T HAVE THE FUNDS TO DO THAT. THE FEAR IS THAT THEY MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO CONTINUE THEIR OPERATIONS, GIVEN THE FACT THAT THERE'S BEEN AN INCREASE IN NEED.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE. I WANTED TO GIVE A BIT OF AN IDEA ABOUT LIFE'S MESSAGE, WHAT THEY'VE BEEN DOING RECENTLY.

THEY'VE BEEN OUR PARTNER FOR ALMOST A DECADE NOW.

THEY'VE BEEN SERVING THE COMMUNITY.

THEY HAVE A FOOD PANTRY AND CLOTHING CENTER.

THEY'VE PROVIDED ASSISTANCE TO APPROXIMATELY 45,000 LOW INCOME FAMILIES. THEY'VE PROVIDED VETERANS WITH A LOT OF ASSISTANCE SUCH AS FOOD, CLOTHING, HOUSING, TRANSPORTATION, JOB PLACEMENT. THEY ARE A VERY NEEDED RESOURCE FOR OUR COMMUNITY. NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

UNFORTUNATELY, WE'RE STILL IN THE INFORMATION SEEKING STAGE WITH HUD. WE'RE VERY, VERY HOPEFUL WITH THE PRESS PUSH THAT WE WILL GET OUR ANSWERS THAT WE NEED FROM HUD. IT FEELS GOOD TO KNOW THAT A LOT OF REPORTING ELEMENTS HAVE BEEN REDUCED, AND SOME FLEXIBILITY.

THEY'VE BECOME MORE LAX WHERE IN THE SENSE THAT IF FUNDS ARE USED WE CAN RETROACTIVELY REPORT THEM.

THAT'S OUR UNDERSTANDING. AGAIN, WE ONLY HAVE BEEN ALLOCATED $161,000 IN TOTAL, AND SO AT THIS TIME, I AM SEEKING DIRECTION FROM COUNCIL ON THE ALLOCATION OF THE ADDITIONAL CDBG FUNDS THAT I JUST MENTIONED AND HAPPY TO TRY AND ANSWER ANY

QUESTIONS THAT YOU MAY HAVE. >> I UNDERSTAND WE'RE IN A HUGE DILEMMA HERE. WE WANT TO HELP LOTS OF THINGS, LOTS OF PEOPLE, LOTS OF BUSINESSES, BUT WE REALLY JUST DON'T KNOW YET WHAT'S ALLOWED. IS THAT CORRECT? I HEARD ALL YOUR WORDS, BUT BOTTOM LINE, WE DON'T KNOW WHAT WE'RE GOING TO BE ALLOWED TO DO WITH THE 161 YET CORRECT?

>> YES. BECAUSE THERE'S NO CAP ON PUBLIC SERVICES, YOU COULD ALLOCATE THAT ENTIRE AMOUNT.

BUT HOW TO IN THAT MECHANISM, BECAUSE HUD IS TRYING TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO DO THAT. I DO KNOW FOR A FACT THAT THESE VERY QUESTIONS HAVE BEEN POSED TO HUD.

[00:10:01]

THE VERY SAME QUESTIONS THAT WERE IN THE REPORT THAT I PROVIDED. THERE WERE A LITTLE MORE IN DEPTH, BUT WE ARE HOPEFUL THAT OUR HUD REPRESENTATIVES, THEY HAVE BEEN COMMUNICATING WITH US MORE THAN IN THE PAST JUST BECAUSE WE HAD OFFICES CLOSE DOWN, PEOPLE WORKING REMOTELY, ALL THOSE HICCUPS ASSOCIATED WITH THAT.

THEY ARE PUSHING UP TOWARD THE NCBA WEBSITE TO SEEK ANSWERS.

NOW I SEE THERE'S MORE COLLABORATIONS TO FIGURE OUT WHAT WE NEED TO DO SO CITIES CAN START UTILIZING THESE FUNDS.

>> I AM HOPEFUL THAT WITHIN THE NEXT WEEK, TEN DAYS, WE SHOULD HAVE A GOOD AMOUNT OF RESOLUTION AS TO HOW TO.

ONE OF THE QUESTIONS WAS CAN WE USE CURRENT PUBLIC FACILITY FUNDS AND PUSH THEM INTO PUBLIC SERVICE FUNDS? MORE THAN LIKELY, BASED ON WHAT WE HEAR, YES, ABSOLUTELY.

BUT WE WANT TO MAKE SURE WE'RE DOING IT RIGHT, WE'RE DOTTING OUR I'S AND CROSSING OUR T'S AND WE UNDERSTAND HOW TO DO THAT.

AND THOSE ARE QUESTIONS WE HAVE TO KEEP POSTED ON.

>> THAT'S NOT THIS 161, THAT'S OTHER FUNDS?

>> EXACTLY. WE BUNDLED A NUMBER OF THINS.

WHAT DO WE DO WITH CURRENT ALLOCATION? AND HOW CAN WE USE PAST ALLOCATIONS THAT'S IDENTIFIED IN A DIFFERENT FUNCTION OR ALLOCATION? AND HOW CAN WE USE THE CURRENT FUNDS THAT ARE GOING TO COME

FORWARD, TOO? >> WHAT WE'VE USED PUBLIC SERVICES FOR BEFORE, I WOULD JUST LIKE TO GO OVER WITH COUNSEL. CERTAINLY, LIFE MESSAGE CONTRIBUTIONS, CERTAINLY WATER BILL ASSISTANCE THROUGH OUR SALVATION ARMY ADMINISTRATION. WHAT ELSE, DOES ANYBODY

REMEMBER? >> AT ONE POINT WE HAD A HABITAT

ALLOCATION AS WELL. >> YEAH.

>> REHAB. >> IS THAT WHAT WE USED IT FOR HISTORICALLY IN REGARDS TO PUBLIC SERVICES?

SO QUESTIONS, COMMENTS, COUNCIL? >> QUESTION.

ARE WE STILL ALLOWED TO USE 10% FOR ADMINISTRATIVE FEES?

>> THE EASY ANSWER IS YES. THEY HAVEN'T TALKED ABOUT THAT MUCH. WHAT THEY HAVE DONE IS THEY'VE MADE THE ADMINISTRATIVE FUNCTION FOR FLOW.

HOPEFULLY THERE WILL BE SOME GIVE IN THAT.

>> I WILL TELL YOU WHEN WE HAVE A PRESENTATION ON THE SCREEN, I CAN'T SEE YOU RAISE YOUR HAND ELECTRONICALLY SO I APOLOGIZE FOR -- NOW I CAN. MARTHA.

>> YEAH, OKAY. I DO HAVE A FEW COMMENTS.

LIFE MESSAGE HAS BEEN A WONDERFUL PARTNER IN OUR CITY AND I WOULD CERTAINLY SUPPORT DOING WHATEVER WE CAN FOR THEM, ESPECIALLY WITH THE UPTICK THAT THEY'VE HAD IN FAMILIES NEEDING HELP. ONE THING THAT I'M CURIOUS ABOUT, I KNOW THAT THEY SERVICE FAMILIES OUTSIDE OF THE ROWLETT COMMUNITY, AND SO I WONDER IF POSSIBLY GARLAND, MAYBE DALLAS MIGHT BE ABLE TO FREE UP SOME OF THEIR CDBG FUNDS AND APPROVE FUNDING THAT'S COMING IN TO THEM.

WHEN WE SAY 5,000 FAMILIES, IT'S WONDERFUL THAT THEY'RE NOT ALL ROWLETT FAMILIES. SO, YOU KNOW, I WOULD LIKE TO BE ABLE TO EXPLORE THAT POSSIBILITY IF GARLAND AND DALLAS COULD PARTICIPATE SOME IN FREEING UP SOME OF THEIR ADDITIONAL CDBG FUNDS FOR LIFE MESSAGE. AND THEN I KNOW, I'M NOT SURE WHAT THE ADMINISTRATIVE REQUIREMENTS ARE GOING TO BE AND HOW THEY WOULD LAST. IN THE PAST, ONE OF THE REASON WES EVE BEEN SO SUPPORTIVE OF LIFE MESSAGE IS THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE PROGRAMS, BUT ALSO THEIR ABILITY TO NAVIGATE THE ADMINISTRATION THAT'S REQUIRED, THE REPORTING THAT'S REQUIRED. THEY'RE VERY FAMILIAR WITH THAT AND ABLE TO DO IT AND THERE ARE A LOT OF ORGANIZATIONS THAT CANNOT. OF COURSE, SALVATION ARMY IS ABLE TO DO THAT AS WELL, AS IS HABITAT FOR HUMANITY, WHICH IS WHY WE'VE SUPPORTED THOSE ORGANIZATIONS.

THOSE ARE MY ONLY COMMENTS. I'M ALL IN FAVOR OF DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN FOR LIFE MESSAGE, BUT I WOULD LIKE TO SEE SOME PARTICIPATION FROM OTHER CITIES, IF IT'S AVAILABLE.

>> WHAT WE REALLY NEED TO DO IN THAT REGARD IS MAKE SURE CHRIS

[00:15:03]

IS SOLICITING THAT SUPPORT FROM OTHER CITIES.

>> YEAH. >> CAN YOU TAKE THAT MESSAGE BACK TO HIM? IS THAT APPROPRIATE?

>> ABSOLUTELY. >> WHITNEY, DO YOU HAVE YOUR

HAND UP? >> I DO.

I ECHO MARTHA'S COMMENTS, BUT IN ADDITION TO THAT, I'M WONDERING HOW LONG LIFE MESSAGE HAS BEFORE THIS BECOMES A CRISIS FOR THEM? SO I'D LIKE TO FIND OUT HOW MANY DAYS OF CASH THEY HAVE ON HAND AND WHAT THEIR BURN RATE IS, SO THAT WE KNOW, YOU KNOW, DO WE NEED TO CONSIDER THIS WITHIN THE NEXT TWO WEEKS OR IS THIS SOMETHING THAT, YOU KNOW, WE CAN WAIT 60 OR 30-60 DAYS TO FIGURE THIS OUT? IT SOUNDS LIKE WE DON'T HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS YET FROM HUD AND WE REALLY NEED TO GET SOME OF THOSE ANSWERS BEFORE WE COMMIT TO THAT.

>> NOTED. >> MARTHA, YOU STILL HAVE YOUR HAND UP. MATT?

>> I AGREE WITH EVERYTHING THAT WAS SAID.

I DEFINITELY WANT TO HELP THEM. THE REASON WE GET THIS EXTRA FUNDING IS TO HELP WITH PUBLIC SERVICE AND THEY'RE OUR BIGGEST PUBLIC SERVICE DIVISION HERE WITHIN THE CITY THAT WE'VE HAD SUCH A LONG PARTNERSHIP WITH. SALVATION ARMY IS GONNA BE OKAY.

THEY'VE GOT DEEP POCKETS AND BIG FUNDERS AND I'M SURE WILL HELP.

I DON'T SEE US NEEDING TO GIVE THEM MORE MONEY FOR LOCAL ASSISTANCE. TO ME THIS IS IMMEDIATE HELP.

I JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE WE'RE GOING TO HAVE OUR OWN BUDGET SHORTFALL, IS THAT WE'RE KEEPING OUR MAX AMOUNT FOR ADMINISTRATIVE OVERHEAD OUT OF THIS SO THAT WE CAN COVER OUR COSTS AND THE ADMINISTRATION OF THIS ADDITIONAL FUNDS.

>> SO I WILL DISAGREE WITH THAT SALVATION ARMY COMMENT IN REGARDS TO THE FUNDING ALLOCATED TO SALVATION ARMY HAS SPECIFICALLY BEEN TO ASSIST OUR RESIDENTS WITH UTILITY BILLS AND NO RESIDENTS OF ANY OTHER COMMUNITY.

THERE'S NO FUNDING FOR THAT PROGRAM COMING FROM THE SALVATION ARMY. IT'S 100% FUNDED BY THE CITY.

SO I THINK WE NEED TO -- ARE YOU STILL ON THE BOARD?

>> YES. >> CAN YOU MAKE A CALL TO THE SALVATION ARMY AND FIND OUT WHERE THEY'RE AT ON THAT FUNDING AND WHAT KIND OF NEEDS THEY'RE HEARING?

>> OKAY. >> SO THAT WE CAN HAVE THAT INFORMATION WHEN WE ULTIMATELY MAKE THIS DECISION.

SO WE HAVE BOTH PIECES THERE. BECAUSE IT IS A DIRECT IMPACT TO OUR MOST AT RISK RESIDENTS IN THIS COMMUNITY.

>> I WOULD ALSO SAY THAT THAT FILLS A GAP THAT LIFE MESSAGE DOES NOT. LIFE MESSAGE DOES NOT HAVE UTILITY OR RENT ASSISTANCE, ANY OF THAT.

AND SO IT DOES REALLY FILL THE GAP THAT IS STILL NEEDED IN OUR COMMUNITY. I AGREE WITH YOU THERE, TAMMY.

>> AND IF WE DECIDE TO FUND SOME MORE UTILITY ASSISTANCE FOR ROWLETT RESIDENTS, WE'LL NEED TO LOOK AT THE RULES, BECAUSE THE RULES ARE BASED ON A NORMAL STATE OF AFFAIRS, NOT A DISASTER SITUATION. FOR INSTANCE, OUR RESIDENTS CAN ONLY APPLY FOR ASSISTANCE ONCE EVERY 12 MONTHS.

MAYBE THAT RULE, IF WE DECIDE TO ALLOCATE SOME OF THAT MONEY, MAYBE THAT RULE NEEDS TO BE LIFTED AT THIS POINT IN TIME.

SO, PAM, IF YOU COULD GET THOSE INQUIRIES GOING, THAT WOULD BE

HELPFUL. >> OKAY.

I'LL DO IT. >> BRIAN?

>> MAYOR, MY ONLY QUESTION IS, IF WE COULD GET THESE QUESTIONS ANSWERED THIS WEEK, IS COUNCIL COMFORTABLE WITH US BRINGING THIS BACK AS EARLY AS MONDAY NIGHT?

>> I AM. >> I'LL CALL TOMORROW.

>> I HAVE GOT THREE HANDS RAISED.

BRIAN, YOU'RE DONE TALKING. MARTHA, DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING ELSE? BROWNIE?

>> I JUST WANTED TO SAY THAT I THINK I BELIEVE LIFE MESSAGE'S THRIFT STORE IS CLOSED, IS THAT CORRECT? SO THAT'S PART OF THEIR INCOME RIGHT THERE FOR GETTING FOOD FOR PEOPLE. SO THEY'VE LOST PART OF THEIR

INCOME. >> YEAH.

IT'S A HUGE REVENUE STREAM THAT THEY'VE LOST.

THEY'RE COMPETING -- THE OTHER PROBLEM THEY'RE HAVING IS THEY'RE COMPETING WITH ALL THE OTHER FOOD BANKS THAT ARE OVERWHELMED WITH NEEDS FROM PEOPLE.

SO A LOT OF THEIR PRODUCT HAS REALLY DIMINISHED, ALSO.

IT'S HITTING THEM IN A LOT OF DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS.

SO ANYTHING ELSE ON THIS, COUNCIL? LET'S TRY TO GET THOSE ANSWERS AND PUT THIS BACK ON THE AGENDA FOR MONDAY. HOPEFULLY, WE'LL HAVE SOME MORE

[00:20:03]

INFORMATION BOTH FROM THE GOVERNMENT AND FROM LIFE

MESSAGE. >> YES.

>> THANK YOU VERY MUCH. WE'RE GOING TO HAVE TO MOVE ITEM

[3B. Discuss the creation of a Small Business Grant program to aid and assist qualifying businesses that have suffered economic loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (40 minutes)]

3B TO THE END OF THE REGULAR SESSION.

AND WE WILL START, I HAVE BEEN REMINDED THAT WHEN I CAME OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION, I DID NOT SPECIFY THAT NO FORMAL ACTION WAS TAKEN IN EXECUTIVE SESSION. I DID THAT ONCE BUT WE HAD TECHNICAL DIFFICULTY AND I DIDN'T DO IT THE SECOND TIME.

SO NO FORMAL ACTION WAS TAKEN WHEN WE CAME OUT OF

* This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.