Local News Headlines–4/23/2013

The Bryan City Council is the next governing body to consider a large economic development agreement.  Tonight’s city council agenda includes a proposed agreement with Kuadrum Pipe and Tube to locate in the Texas Triangle Park north of Bryan.  The council paperwork calls for adding at least $120-million of improvements, resulting in hiring a minimum of 285 employees with a minimum annual payroll of more than $10-million. The city would not annex the land for ten years, but starting in year four the city would be paid at least half of what would have been collected in property taxes. And the corporation would agree with city development codes. Last week, the Bryan school board endorsed proceeding with negotiating an agreement.  Still to come are terms with Brazos County.

Tuition and fees at Blinn College are going up, in part because the state isn’t paying its share of teacher retirement contributions. Spokesman Brandon Webb says it amounts to a combined $6 per credit hour.   Blinn administrators say the state’s share of teacher retirement they plan on covering is $1.5-million over the next two years.  The increases also cover anticipated costs in growing Blinn’s distance and online learning and starting a summer orientation program where more advisers will be hired.

And, the mortgage collapse of five years ago is giving qualifying homebuyers more opportunities.  Paul Turney at the Brazos Valley Affordable Housing Corporation says groundbreaking recently took place on a home that was designed and will be built by A&M students.  The 36 lots are in the Falls Creek subdivision, located off Mumford Road south of F-M 2818 near Bryan.  Down payment assistance of up to $30,000 is available.