The City of Brenham has extended the contract of City Manager James Fisher.
After meeting in executive session today (Thursday), the Brenham City Council unanimously approved an extension of Fisher’s employment agreement for an additional one-year period, making the agreement effective through January 10, 2022.
The council also approved an increase to Fisher’s annual salary, raising it to $166,000. The amount is roughly 2 percent above Fisher’s previous salary of $162,464.
Fisher said he is thankful for the continued support he receives from the city.
Several members of the council offered high praise to Fisher, including Mayor Milton Tate, who said he has “all the confidence in the world” in Fisher’s ability to continue to lead the city.
Councilmember Susan Cantey said she wants Brenham to know how lucky it is to have Fisher as city manager, stating he has taken the city “through some uncharted and very dicey waters” and come through “with flying colors.”
Councilmember Keith Herring spoke on the behalf of Blake Brannon of Brannon Industrial Group, who he said was “very complimentary” of Fisher at a recent meeting of county, city, and local economic leaders. Herring, quoting Brannon, said Fisher “can be hard-nosed, but he drives a hard bargain in favor of the city.” Herring added that Fisher understands some people do not always agree with his decisions, but he is “looking for the best prospects for the city.”
Councilmember Andrew Ebel echoed the comments of Tate and the council, saying he believes the city is “really blessed” to have Fisher as its leader.
Fisher was named city manager in January 2018, replacing the retiring Terry Roberts, who spent 17 years in the position. Prior to taking the position in Brenham, Fisher served as city manager in Forney, Texas.
During regular session at today’s meeting, the council:
- Approved an ordinance on its first reading amending Chapter 23 – “Subdivisions” of the city’s Code of Ordinances. The amendment requires commercial development, not just residential development, to place all utilities underground. It also changes the assurances for completion of improvements.
- Held workshop discussion on City of Brenham Parks and Recreation projects. The projects discussed were the same as those brought up at Wednesday’s meeting of the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board.
- Approved a pair of resolutions authorizing the submission of grant applications to the Texas General Land Office (GLO) for the Community Development Block Grant – Mitigation (CDBG-MIT) Program.
- Approved an ordinance on its first reading providing for increased prior and current service annuities in the Texas Municipal Retirement System (TMRS) for retirees and beneficiaries of deceased retirees of the City of Brenham and electing to make current service and prior service contributions to the city’s TMRS benefit accumulation fund at the actuarially determined rate of total employee compensation.
- Approved an amendment to the system water availability agreement between the city and Brazos River Authority (BRA). The amendment is the same that was approved by the council on May 7th, and concerns the temporary resale of water. In September 2019, the city agreed to purchase 774 acre-feet of raw water per fiscal year from the BRA, to sustain long-term future growth for the city. The city currently uses about 2,777 acre-feet of the 4,200 acre-feet available to it through the city’s primary water availability agreement. The amendment is effective until August 31, 2021. Councilmember Clint Kolby was the lone vote against the item, saying he would feel better if this item was presented next summer in order to allow the city to gauge how much water it has already used in anticipation of a potential drought.
- Met in executive session to consider an amendment to the gas sales contract between the city and WTG Gas Marketing, Inc. No action was taken.