Arlington council briefs

Posted Tuesday, Mar. 05, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Shuttle service update

The Arlington City Council could hear an update within the next 30 days on the possibility of contracting with Dallas Area Rapid Transit or the Fort Worth Transportation Authority -- or both -- to provide shuttle service between downtown Arlington and the Trinity Railway Express CentrePort Station.

The city hopes to begin a two-year shuttle service pilot project as soon as August. The project is expected to cost $700,000 a year to operate and would transport an estimated 300 to 600 riders each weekday between selected downtown locations and the rail station south of Dallas/Fort Worth Airport.

The University of Texas at Arlington and the business community have pledged to pay half the cost of the shuttle service during the pilot phase.

So long, return envelopes

The city could stop including return envelopes with monthly bills as soon as May. That would save the city about $24,000 a year and reduce waste, officials say.

The number of mailed payments dropped 53 percent between 2006 and 2012 as more customers use online payment options.

Customers can request to continue receiving a return envelope in their mailed bill or can pick up envelopes at a customer service office.

Capital budget presentation

The council heard a presentation on the proposed $54.6 million capital budget, which also includes a new fire station, park, road and sidewalk projects and significant water and wastewater system work throughout the city.

The city plans to sell $29 million in bonds in June to pay for a portion of the infrastructure improvements.

New red-light cameras

Five new red-light cameras will be installed next month, bringing the city's total to 26, the council was told. According to a 2011 audit, the number of collisions has declined at monitored intersections.

Violators pay a $75 fine. Since starting six years ago, the red-light camera program has generated about $8.4 million in revenue.

More road work urged

District 3 Councilman Robert Rivera asked the council to consider tapping revenue sources, such as the $20 million-plus landfill reserve, to aggressively tackle the city's estimated $425 million street repair backlog. -- Susan Schrock

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