Anna’s city council meeting on Tuesday evening started on an upbeat note with some well-deserved recognitions.

A proclamation was presented to Council by Anna Fire Chief Tim Gothard recognizing October 6-12 as Fire Prevention Week. Gothard said that that the fire department staff will be visiting city schools and daycares throughout the week with fire safety and prevention programs.

In conjunction with Fire Prevention Week, the Anna Fire Department members and employees were recognized. The AFD, as explained by Gothard, is a combination department of five paid staff members, three part-time staff and 21 volunteer firefighters. The department responds to more than 1,020 calls per year and provides Advanced Life Support services to the community. Of the 21 volunteers, Gothard pointed out that 10 are certified firefighters through the Texas Commission on Fire Protection, nine are certified emergency medical technicians, two are emergency care attendants and three are paramedics.

Gothard said that from January 2013 through September 30, 2013 the department members have logged 15,854 man hours of station time and 680 man hours of training.

"The members take great pride and ownership in the organization and the community," Gothard said.

Homeowners will love this next bit of news: Deputy State Fire Marshal Jesse Williams presented the city with a plaque for achieving ISO (Insurance Services Office) Class 2 rating. He pointed out that in April the city underwent an I.S.O. study in three areas that evaluated communications, water supply and fire protection. At the conclusion of the study the information was graded and the city received a Class 2 rating, which is the second-highest rating available. That means that homeowners may be eligible for discounts on their home insurance policies.

"It was quite an achievement as the city originally started with a Class 7 rating," said Williams.

Council approved a resolution to establish public hearing dates for the proposed voluntary annexation of 33 acres located east of CR 286 and west of U.S. 75. On December 8, 2010 Council accepted and approved a three year development agreement with Mixon Realty Company, owners of the property to be voluntary annexed. City staff recommended that Council act now on the agreement to ensure protection of land uses of this property which is adjacent to U.S. 75.

Council also approved a request by Troy Colombo to place a bat house in Natural Springs Park as part of his Eagle Scout project. The bat house will be located away from the trails behind a tree line. Columbo, in his powerpoint presentation to Council, pointed out reasons why we want to keep bats in Anna, the primary reason being that bats are a natural controller of mosquitoes. He also said that the biggest danger bats face are humans destroying their natural habitats. "I am looking to help these little guys."

A public hearing was held on an ordinance approving a negotiated resolution between the Atmos Cities Steering Committee (ACST) and Atmos Energy Corporation, Mid-Texas Division regarding the company’s 2013 annual rate review filing. The city of Anna, along with 164 other cities serves by Atmos, is a member of ACST. While Atmos’ filing sought a $22.7 million system wide natural gas rate increase, the negotiated rate increase is $16.6 million. The settlement is expected to increase the average residential customer’s natural gas bill by approximately $.74 per month.

Following the public hearing, with no comments from those in attendance, council passed the ordinance.