Dayton City Council eyes street projects for new year

The City of Dayton, Texas, has set its sights on significant infrastructure improvements for 2024, focusing on street rehabilitation projects. City Council on Monday, Nov. 20, was presented with a Street Assessment Analysis by Public Works Manager Murphy Green that prioritized 20 street rehab initiatives being proposed.

City Manager Kim Judge explained that some of the streets slated for repair need only to be resurfaced while others will require sewer and water lines to be replaced or repaired.

“We will have to address the utilities under the roads. For us to make the necessary repairs to these roads, we have to do it right. Until you fix the underground utilities, you are going to continue to deal with patchworked streets,” said Judge.

The estimated costs just for stabilizing and resurfacing the streets is around $4.3 million, which does not include funding for water and sewer improvements. Detailed inspections to identify breaks and stresses in the aging sewer lines, some of which are believed to be old cast iron lines, are essential, explained Green. To help facilitate this, Council gave the green light to an expenditure of up to $100,000 to scope the sewer lines.

Council briefly pondered the reinstatement of a Dayton Street Committee, which was disbanded in 2022 by the previous council. While acknowledging the merits of having members of the community involved in designating street rehab projects, Judge said she believes it is not necessary to reinstate the committee at this time.

“We have a clear assignment of what we need to do with funds,” Judge said.

Mayor Martin Mudd explained to Council that it was his idea to put the street committee reinstatement on the meeting’s agenda, but he was having second thoughts after seeing the Street Assessment Analysis.

“At the time I didn’t think we had enough staff to do an assessment, but I feel differently about it tonight. I would say that I am much happier tonight with the presentation that the City has given us. I think we can forego the street committee,” Mudd said. “We might revisit it next year when we are in the thick of street repairs.”

Dayton Economic Development Corporation-funded improvements to Daniel Park’s ball fields and fencing totaling $25,000 were on the agenda; however, Council members accused Dayton Youth Sports Association, which manages the fields for the City, with mismanaging its budget. While two council members were in favor of the agenda item, three members – Valorie Barton, Tonya Smikal and Janette Frick – were against it, so the motion failed.

Council also nixed a resolution to amend the DYSA Parks Use Agreement for use and maintenance of Daniel Park. According to information provided at the meeting, DYSA was hoping to rent the fields to Select baseball and softball teams. Council unanimously tabled the resolution until it could be determined how much it would cost for the City to take over management of the fields.

Dayton Police Department will soon add two new Chevrolet Tahoes to its fleet. Council unanimously approved the $141,376 purchase of the vehicles from Parkway Chevrolet in Tomball. Both will be completely outfitted for police work. Police Chief Derek Woods thanked Councilman John Headrick for helping the department locate the vehicles. Woods said he currently has four Ford Explorers that are out of service, but with the addition of the Chevy Tahoes, along with other vehicles purchased in recent years, the PD fleet will be in pretty good shape for now.

“I am thinking we should get a couple per year to get us back to where we need to be,” Woods said. “Once all the Explorers are phased out, then we might be able to skip a year,” he said.

The Public Works Department also was authorized to get a new Vactor truck, priced at $371,540, to replace one that is inoperable. Green explained that the truck’s main goal is to unclog sewers but it also can be used to vacuum dirt around fiber optic lines when making repairs.

In other business, Council approved a reimbursement agreement relating to the Westpointe Villages Public Improvement District and agreed to set a hearing regarding the creation of a tax increment reinvestment zone for the D.R. Horton Homes development.

Council heard two readings of a resolution approving $399,382 in DEDC funding for OmniSource, LLC, which plans to build a scrap metal recycling facility in the Gulf Inland Industrial Park west of Dayton. The agreement with DEDC sets three milestone payments making up the $399,382 in funding. OmniSource, LLC, operates roughly 70 scrap collection and processing facilities in the United States and Mexico.

Councilwomen Tonya Smikal and Valorie Barton said they would like to see a timeline for when the milestones will be met. The final milestone involves the average salary for the 50 or so positions that will be created.

A short executive session was held toward the end of the meeting. When Council returned to the regular session, they voted in favor of approving a settlement agreement with the owner of Summit Inn, which was temporarily closed by the City after fire code violations reportedly were discovered. The hotel has since reopened. The terms of the settlement agreement are not public at this time.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


  1. Glad the city finally came to their senses about DYSA. Why the hell is a private group managing a city park that is funded by tax payer money?

    I’m glad the council raised questions about the ability of DYSA to properly manage a budget. The math has been questionable for well over a decade (felony embezzlement not included), entry fee multiple by number of participants less cost equals where the hell did all that money go? Long-standing board members (Barry Pruitt, Chrissy Wiley, Kyle Jones, Dustin Mactavish, Bruce Woods, Tonya Terrell, Derek Randall) should resign, be removed or at the very least publish financials to be transparent if no wrong doing has occurred.

    This organization has been too wrong for too long. Kudos to the city for saying no and expecting a modicum of accountability from DYSA.

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