The Denison City Council on Monday took a big step toward annexing 427 acres southwest of the city as part of developer Tom Johnson’s Gateway Village project. In the highlight of a brief meeting, councilors voted to adopt a resolution calling for public hearings on the annexation.

The Denison City Council on Monday took a big step toward annexing 427 acres southwest of the city as part of developer Tom Johnson’s Gateway Village project. In the highlight of a brief meeting, councilors voted to adopt a resolution calling for public hearings on the annexation.


"We’re excited about (Johnson’s) vision for that corner. We’re currently working through the development agreement with him, to see exactly what that looks like," said Denison Mayor Jared Johnson. "Today, we called for the future public hearings to respond to the voluntary annexation request. We already provide city services out there, so there’s not really any drawbacks to having it within city limits."


The legally-required public hearings on the annexation tentatively will be held on Dec. 2 and 4 at City Hall. If all goes according to plan, the annexation would be finalized early next year.


In other business, the Council passed an amended ordinance regarding the Joint Airport Zoning Board for North Texas Regional Airport-Perrin Field. The amendment reduced by one, the number of Board members representing the interests of Grayson County, meaning the board will now have equal representation among the County, Denison, Sherman and Pottsboro. The change in Board membership was required by state law.


After hearing a report from Chief Building Official Dale Jackson, the Council voted to approve the demolitions of unsafe structures at 226 and 228 E. Nelson St., 522 E. Acheson Rd. and 715 W. Texas St.


The Council approved staff recommendations for two tax-exempt, lease-purchase agreements totaling $582,500 for equipment including a brush truck for the fire department, a commercial side loader, a dump truck and numerous smaller pieces of capital equipment. The amounts are included in the city’s 2014 budget.


Council members approved two resolutions relating to the city’s participation in two government investment programs, TexPool and TexSTAR. Action on the former Central Ward School, located at 715 W. Sears, was tabled for a future meeting. In August, the Council approved demoltion of the building and was scheduled to consider bids for the project Monday.