The Gonzales City Council says goodbye to one of its longest serving members at the Thursday, May 11 regular council meeting.
Bobby O’Neal served the city council in two different districts (as part of District 4 from 1994 to 1996 and District 3 from 2017 to 2023) and was Gonzales’ mayor from 1996 to 2012.
Mayor Steve Sucher read a proclamation honoring O’Neal’s service to the community of Gonzales.
“Bobby O'Neal has generously used his talents, expertise and judgment while conducting business with the city of Gonzales with the utmost integrity to implement projects and programs necessary for the well-being of the city and its citizens,” Sucher said.
O’Neal has been part of the major decision in helping the city that includes maintaining a strong healthy financial condition, numerous street paving projects, authorizing purchases of lift safety equipment for the Gonzales Polices and Fire Department and advocating for all city employees.
“The city council does further wish to express his sincere gratitude for the amicable attitude and working relationship with which Bobby O'Neill has tirelessly worked with his fellow council members, city staff, community leaders and most importantly the citizens of Gonzales.” Sucher said.
O’Neal spoke to his fellow council members one last time before passing to the torch to newly elected District 3 council member Lorenzo Hernandez.
“It's been an honor serving y'all and it's been an honor just to be able to serve to city for the 24 years that I did,” O’Neal said.
Six years ago, the city was almost broke, O’Neal said, and he added the city’s tax rate was down to 15 cents and the reserves were almost depleted; but within that six-year period, the city managed to get above ground again.
“We're on the right track and I just encourage the council and citizens of Gonzales to continue moving forward. Just don't go back to where we were before, where we get close to being totally broke,” O’Neal said.
“We have a good city manager that we've just recently hired … the city staff and our employees, we have good employees. As far as I'm concerned they're the backbone of the entire city,” O’Neal concluded.
The council approved the following agenda items:
– approved canvassing the returns and officially declaring the results of the Saturday, May 6 city of Gonzales regular election.
– approved the certification of election and swearing in of the city of Gonzales council members: District 3 Lorenzo Hernandez and District 4 Ronda Miller.
– approved of the annual comprehensive financial report for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2022.
– approved accepting the proposals and awarding the contract for the 2022 Street Improvement Projects to Central Texas Site Prep, LLC.
--approved the event application for funding to the Come & Take It Committee in the amount of $25,000 in funding and authorizing the city manager to negotiate and execute an agreement with Gonzales Chamber of Commerce for funding the in-kind contributions from the City of Gonzales for the Come and Take It Celebration on Oct. 6-8, 2023.