One of the specified items promised when the City established a property tax in 2015 was a location for city offices and a community meeting space within Talty's city limits. Following road renovations, greatly expanding police coverage hours and funding a portion of Kaufman County's emergency communications system, city officials focused on this final project.
"We were able to acquire two acres for this facility and much more alongside it for a future roadway between CR 213 and the future I-20 frontage roads," stated Mayor Frank Garrison. "It then took time to prepare for the construction and accumulate funds to reduce costs and impact on the tax rate."
The facility will provide a dedicated area for the police department, which currently shares a small office with the court. The current budget provides for 160 hours of police coverage out of a week's 168 hours. The area provided will serve the department's needs well into the future.
There will also be a large community room which can serve as a meeting space for city meetings, municipal court and community groups. During planning, the design team was instructed to provide enough flexibility to allow for the space to be utilized as a temporary shelter and or command center during emergencies. As with the police department, the facility provides for current court and administrative staff needs and some increases in personnel.
The city will utilize $500,000 from the 2019 county bond program to begin the frontage road connection in order to provide access to the police and staff parking behind the facility and some additional parking parallel with the roadway. The City also will apply $685,000 in American Rescue Act and Texas Department of Emergency Management funds to the project.
In addition to accumulating funds to offset over $2 million of the facility's initial cost, the City obtained an A1 rating from Moody's Investor's Services. This highly desirable rating and other factors led to a 3.918% interest rate on the $4.075 million certificate of obligation financing the remaining construction costs. One fourth of the City's sales tax revenue and other funds on hand shall be utilized to offset adverse impact on the tax rate.
The project architects, WRA, has placed a video depiction of the project on Youtube (Click to view.)