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Poth could allow hens, rabbits in city limits
The water tower located off Railroad Street in Poth has stood high above the city for nearly 80 years. Graduating seniors from Poth High School are invited to submit essays on whether to save the structure as part of a scholarship contest.
POTH -- Feathers and fur may be more prevalent in Poth, as the city council here is considering changes to a 2007 ordinance related to the keeping of animals, including laying hens. This was a significant topic of discussion during the Feb. 24 Poth City Council meeting.
Mayor Pro Tem Jason Smolka, who presided over the meeting, said the current ordinance allows residents to keep chickens on lots that measure 2 acres or more. Some residents, who wish to raise laying hens so that they might have fresh eggs, have asked the city to reconsider this rule.
“Past administrations wanted to clean up the town without regard for its roots as an agricultural community,” said Councilman Steve Martinez.
The current animal ordinance indicates that goats and sheep are allowed to be kept if the owner first obtains a permit from the city. However, City Secretary Rose Huizar said there is no fee for the permit and no one has ever applied.
The council took no action, but plans to discuss possible changes at a future meeting.
In other business, the council voted on the parameters for the city’s 2014 scholarship competition. Poth Independent School District graduating seniors will be asked to write an essay on whether to save the city’s water tower, located off Railroad Street. The steel structure has towered over the city since 1936.
In 2012, after becoming apparent that the tower could not be returned to service, the council had discussed three possible options:
•Renovation, which at that time was estimated to cost at least $150,000
•Demolition and removal, which one company has proposed to do if the city pays the workers’ compensation insurance expenses associated with the job
•Remove the tower and relocate the tank portion to Railroad Park, at an approximate cost of $25,000 to $30,000.
The scholarship application deadline is April 7. For more information, call Poth City Hall at 830-484-2111.
Also during the meeting, the council voted to hold a city-wide cleanup May 24, from 8 a.m. to noon. For no cost, residents living within the city limits can dispose of non-hazardous items at the Poth Railroad Depot located between U.S. 181 and Railroad Street.
The council, during the reports portion of the meeting, was informed by police Chief Lowell Hull that the city still is grappling with a recent increase in burglaries. (See related article, page 8A.)
Poth Patrolman Roberto “R.J.” Sanchez also received a commendation for his service; see page 1A.
Also in attendance: Councilmen Keith Rodgers and Darren Dylla; Patrolman Roberto “R.J.” Sanchez Jr and Sgt. Jonathan Kurtz of the Poth Police Department, City Attorney Acie McAda, Municipal Judge Hilda Tejada, City Engineer Dean Bayer, and Public Works Supervisor Kenneth “Buck” Griffin.
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