GTX Residents: Free Spay/Neuter Clinic for Cats

Spring is around the corner, and with spring comes kitten season!  The Georgetown Animal Shelter is again holding three free spay/neuter clinic for cats this spring – February 16, April 27, and June 22. The goal of the clinics is to reduce the cat population in Georgetown.  This is the seventh year that the shelter has offered free spay/neuter clinics for cats to help manage overpopulation in Georgetown.

Spay and neuter surgeries and rabies vaccinations will be provided at no charge. Other services available at the clinic include a combo test (feline AIDS/leukemia test) for $20, an FVRCP vaccine for $5, microchip for $10, and e-collar for $10.

Appointments are required for the free clinics, which are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Cats or kittens must be at least three months old. The clinic is offered only for cats whose owners live in the city limits of Georgetown.

Additionally, the shelter continues to offer low-cost vaccine clinics every few months, which are walk-up clinics for vaccinations only (not spay/neuter surgeries).  Dates for the shot clinics can be found at pets.georgetown.org/programs/low-cost-shots-and-neutering/.

Email animalsvc@georgetown.org or call (512) 930-3592 to schedule your cat for surgery. All spay or neuter surgeries will be done by a licensed veterinarian.

The spay and neuter clinic will be held at the City of Georgetown Animal Shelter at 110 W.L. Walden Drive near the McMaster Athletic Fields. Contact the shelter at (512) 930-3592 or by email at animalsvc@georgetown.org. The City of Georgetown Animal Shelter website is pets.georgetown.org.

Proposed Voluntary Annexation of Shell Road Development

The City of Georgetown is considering a voluntary annexation of property into the city limits. The Public Hearings will be held at the February 12, 2019 meeting at 3 pm and February 12, 2019 at 6 pm. City Council meetings are located at the City Council Chambers, 101 E. 7th Street, at the northeast corner of Seventh and Main Street. The area being considered for voluntary annexation is generally approximately 262.011 acres in size and located along Shell Road, north of Williams Drive to be known as the Shell Road development.

After holding the required public hearings, the City Council will consider an ordinance for the annexation.

For additional information, please contact Chelsea Irby in the Planning Department, 512-931-7746 or email to chelsea.irby@georgetown.org.

Shell Road Development Location Map

Georgetown Parks and Recreation announces spring break camps

Georgetown Parks and Recreation will offer spring break camps for students March 11-15. Pricing and schedules vary for each program.

Participants can select from three camps:

  • Camp Goodwater (ages 5-12; $150 resident/$185 nonresident) includes a variety of activities, such as games, crafts, and weird science projects. The week will end with a field trip to Mt. Playmore.
  • Tennis Camp (ages 7-12; $150 resident/$185 nonresident) focuses on stroke instruction, footwork drills, court games, and match play.
  • Teen Adventure Camp (ages 12-17; $250 resident/$315 nonresident) will travel to the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge near Lawton, Oklahoma, for a week of camping, hiking, rock climbing, and rappelling.

Spring Break Camp registration begins Friday, Feb. 1, at 8 a.m. For more information and to register, visit parks.georgetown.org/camp or call (512) 930-3596.

Proposed Voluntary Annexation of Maravilla Subdivision

The City of Georgetown is considering a voluntary annexation of property into the city limits.  The Public Hearings will be held at the February 12, 2019 meeting at 3 pm and February 12, 2019 at 6 pm. City Council meetings are located at the City Council Chambers, 101 E. 7th Street, at the northeast corner of Seventh and Main Street.  The area being considered for voluntary annexation is approximately a 23.10-acre tract of land situated in the Joseph Pulsifer Survey, located at 34 Skyline Road, north of W University Ave and east of DB Wood Road, to be known as the Maravilla Subdivision.

After holding the required public hearings, the City Council will consider an ordinance for the annexation.

For additional information, please contact Chelsea Irby in the Planning Department, 512-931-7746 or email to chelsea.irby@georgetown.org.

Maravilla Subdivision Location Map

Applications for spring Citizen Police Academy due March 4

The Citizen Police Academy is an 11-week course taught by police officers and firefighters to educate citizens about the Georgetown Police and fire departments’ protocols and procedures. Classes in the spring 2019 academy include code of criminal procedure, criminal and accident investigations, lethal and less-than-lethal weapons, crime scene investigations, victim services, response to resistance, officer safety, and Fire response. The deadline to apply is 5 p.m. on March 4.

Weekly classes are on Thursday evenings starting on March 21 through May 30. Class sessions are 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The first class will be held in the training room of the Public Safety Operations and Training Center, 3500 D.B. Wood Road.

There is no charge to attend the academy, but seating is limited and applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Applications are available at the Georgetown Police Department reception desk at the Public Safety Operations and Training Center or by emailing a request to randy.mcdonald@georgetown.org. All applicants will be notified of acceptance via email.

Georgetown Parks and Recreation hosting breast cancer recovery course

The City of Georgetown Parks and Recreation Department is hosting The Pink Plan, a recovery course for survivors of breast cancer, on Saturday mornings in February.

The program will provide breast cancer survivors who have undergone breast surgery with comprehensive tools for managing post-mastectomy syndrome.

The four-part course provides participants with information, techniques, and tools for self-management to reduce adverse effects such as limited range of motion, loss of functionality, muscle atrophy and muscle weakness. The course will be taught by certified personal trainer Shanna Cahill, a non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and breast cancer survivor.

The Pink Plan will be held Saturday mornings from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Georgetown Recreation Center, 1003 N. Austin Ave. Course fees are $45 for Georgetown residents and $55 for nonresidents.

For more information and to register, visit parks.georgetown.org/the-pink-plan.

City adjusts customer energy charge

The City of Georgetown will increase the power cost adjustment, or PCA, on customers’ electric bills starting Feb. 1. The PCA allows the City to recover costs associated with purchasing energy.

Customers will incur an increase of $0.0135 per kilowatt hour, resulting in a new PCA of $0.0175 per kilowatt hour through September. The average customer uses 949 kilowatt hours per month and will experience a $12.82 increase on their monthly bill.

Over the past few years, the energy market in Texas experienced a fundamental change. Forecasts provided by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the State’s energy grid operator, have proven to be unreliable. What were perceived as anomalies in 2016 and 2017, such as reduced consumption, unpredictable pricing, and unusually cold weather, masked the true impact of a depressed global energy market. The effect of depressed energy prices became abundantly obvious in 2018.

In 2016, 2017, and 2018, the City addressed these ongoing challenges with one-time solutions, including adjusting how the City financed electric infrastructure projects, such as cash versus debt financing, adjusting the timing of projects, increasing the PCA on electric bills, and completing a rate study. All these efforts were intended to resolve what was previously perceived as one-time problems.

This year, recognizing a fundamental shift has occurred in the energy market, the priority for the City is to change the on-going financial obligations of the electric fund. This could involve reducing the energy Georgetown is obligated to purchase, selling a portion of the energy to a third-party, adjusting the terms of some of the financial obligations, or some combination of all these efforts. The City is also exploring options to better manage the energy portfolio day-to-day.

The current challenge is not related to renewable energy sources. While the City has received national recognition for its move to renewable energy, it was originally a decision driven by economic considerations to stabilize long-term power rates through fixed-price contracts while reducing any regulatory risks associated with fossil fuels.

The City executed its current energy contracts based on a 20-year forecast of continued City growth. Like most city-owned utilities, Georgetown contracted for more energy than it currently needs. Georgetown continues to be one of the fastest growing cities in Texas, and the City must be ready to serve demand from consumers and businesses. The crux of the current challenge hinges on the large amount of energy the City must sell on the market that is not currently consumed in Georgetown.

The PCA is one tool to ensure the financial stability of the electric fund as the City works to address its current financial arrangements.

For more information, please visit https://gus.georgetown.org/electric/

City staff moves to new City Hall building Jan. 22-25

The City of Georgetown will move into the new City Hall at 808 Martin Luther King Jr. St. starting Jan. 22.

The City’s Human Resources Department will move Jan. 22, with the City Manager and City Secretary offices and Finance Department moving Jan. 23-24. Additional departments, including communications and economic development, will move into the building on Jan. 25.

City Hall will be closed Jan. 23-24 during the transition and will reopen Jan. 25 in the new facility.

A grand opening celebration with a ribbon cutting and tours of the new facility is being planned and will be announced at a later date.

The old City Hall, located in the historic Post Office at 113 E. Eighth St. will be redeveloped as a ballroom, restaurant, and bar.

Candidate filing period for May election begins today

The filing period for candidates who wish to run for a seat on the Georgetown City Council begins today, Jan. 16. The places for Districts 3, 4 and 7 will be on the ballot for the election this spring.

John Hesser is the current council member for District 3, Steve Fought for District 4 and Tommy Gonzalez for District 7.

The filing period ends Feb. 15. Completed applications for candidacy should be submitted at City Hall, 113 E. Eighth Street, through Jan. 22 and at 808 Martin Luther King Jr. St. after Jan. 25. (City Offices are moving to the new City Center and will not be open Jan. 23-24).

To see maps of council districts, go to maps.georgetown.org/council-district-maps.

Georgetown City Council members serve three-year terms representing one of seven single-member districts. A candidate for city council must be 21 years of age and a citizen and qualified voter of the state of Texas and the City of Georgetown. Candidates for council district seats must be a resident of the council district the member would be representing for a period of twelve months as of the last legal date for filing.

The last day to register to vote in the May election is April 4.

Early in-person voting is April 22-30. In the early voting period, voters may cast ballots at any early voting location in Williamson County.

On Election Day on May 4, voters may cast ballots at any vote center location in Williamson County. Polling places, dates, and times will be listed at wilco.org/elections.

For details about the city election, contact Robyn Densmore, city secretary for the City of Georgetown, at Robyn.Densmore@georgetown.org or (512) 930-3652.

GoGeo passengers can now pay fares with Hopthru app

GoGeo riders can now use smart devices to purchase bus passes. Using the Hopthru app, riders are able to purchase passes anytime, anywhere and present them while boarding. Riders may purchase passes with their credit card, debit card or commuter benefits card and store them until they are ready to ride.

Riders can download from the app store or receive a link to download the app by texting “hopthru” to 43506. After signing up, riders will be prompted to select the transit agency, rider type and ticket type, then complete the purchase. Once a rider is ready to board, they can activate their pass and then present it to the operator while boarding. Purchased passes can be activated at any time with or without an internet connection.

For more information, visit RideCARTS.com, email info@RideCARTS.com or call at (512) 478-RIDE (7433).