Board approves city beautification project; Public hearing to be conducted
FERRIS - The Ferris Type B Economic Development Board approved a downtown beautification project with estimated costs around $32,000 Monday, Jan. 31.
The project, even though approved by the board, will still have a public hearing for citizen input and needs to be approved by council in order for the project to continue.
Within the next six months, the board would like to restore or replace old benches, trash cans and planters along Main Street, adding color to the city as well as hosting a "Trash-off" day and home tour.
Medium term goals, approximately two years, would complete a plan for city lighting, wayfinding signs, landscaping, incentives for businesses and adding concrete pads, screens or fences for dumpsters.
Longterm goals, within five years, would have the downtown beautification completed or well underway, master plan implementation city-wide and create sustainable traditions to generate and keep interest in Ferris.
Even if approved by citizens and council, under Texas law, funds cannot be used until 60 days after public notice.
The 2009 legislative session changed all 4 –A and 4- B names to Type A and Type B with a few moderations since years past.
Each board gets $0.5 cents of the sales tax from their city.
Type A is designed to create and retain primary jobs. Type B can do everything Type A does as well as enforce quality of life initiatives.
Also discussed during Monday night’s meeting was the Main Street Façade Improvement Program.
FIP, according to the materials given to board members, is a grant that will match up to $5,000 in funds per building, per year.
The grant would help local business owners to improve and restore the historic charm in their building by assisting with exterior main entry walls, windows and frames, doors, thresholds, transoms and canopies, as well as primary business signage.
All businesses interested must be within the Ferris Commercial Historic District, be the owner of the building and applications must be approved before expenditures are made.