Cedar Hill City Council Swears in New Fire Chief Richard L. Davis, Jr.

Chief Davis with cake
Photo credit City of Cedar Hill

CEDAR HILL – The Cedar Hill City Council meeting Tuesday night opened with Mayor Pro Tem Alan Sims at the helm. Mayor Stephen Mason was out briefly for an emergency during the presentation section of the council agenda.

To open the presentations, an oath was administered to new Cedar Hill Fire Chief Richard L. Davis, Jr. Davis brings 31 years of experience in the fire service profession from the City of Austin. He most recently served as the City of Austin’s Assistant Fire Chief for the past 14 years.

Davis said after he was administered the oath, “This achievement is as much hers (speaking of his wife) as it is mine; I am profoundly thankful for the journey we have shared.”

“I am honored to be your next fire chief. It is my privilege to work with an outstanding team of dedicated individuals from the Cedar Hill Fire Department whose values of respect, integrity, courage, and honor are part of everything they do. Their commitment to premier customer service is nothing short of outstanding. I am humbled to be part of a great organization. My vision is to continue the trajectory toward excellence and build a better tomorrow that coincides with operational effectiveness, inclusiveness, innovation, and community service, which is the heartbeat of a thriving community”.

Chief Davis with fire fighters
Photo credit City of Cedar Hill

Cedar Hill invites the community to a Welcome Reception – Fire Chief Richard Davis on Saturday, February 10 at the Government Center!

Council Meeting Recap

The council heard a six-month update on Star Transit operations in the city. The program launched in June last year. Star Transit offers a demand response service, a pre-booked service with fares ranging depending on the distance for riders in the city. Same-day service is also provided, and part of the demand response was added in June. For the same-day service, an app is available for bookings with a goal for the ride to arrive in 15 minutes with a fare of $2 if staying in the Cedar Hill zone.

Mayor Mason mentioned one of the highest usages of Star Transit in Cedar Hill is the senior center.

A public hearing was held for a Conditional Use Permit to sell alcoholic beverages at Royal Side Seafood and Grill on W. Belt Line Road in the Lake Ridge Shopping Center. One person spoke on behalf of the item, and the council voted unanimously to pass it.

The second public hearing was for the adoption of a Zoning Ordinance to reauthorize existing fees for zoning applications and site plans, repealing and replacing the Public Hearing Signage Fee and amending “Subdivision Regulations” to reauthorize existing application fees for plats. This was also necessary due to recent legislative changes. No one spoke on this item.

Adopting the actual ordinance was a vote on the consent agenda, which passed.

One item was pulled from the consent agenda items to authorize the Mayor to execute a five-year agreement with Flock Safety Group, not exceeding $87,500, to provide a public safety camera system for five years. Cedar Hill Police Chief Ely Reyes said these cameras had helped his department solve two murder cases in the city. He said having this type of technology for the officers definitely has an impact. The item was approved unanimously.

The additional consent agenda items approved unanimously included the minutes of the December 12, 2023 Regular City Council Meeting, authorizing the Mayor to execute a contract with Whirlix Design Inc. for Bond Related Improvements at The Lagoon at Virginia Weaver Park in an amount not to exceed $70,000, authorizing purchases related to the Lagoon at Virginia Weaver Park for an amount not to exceed $80,000 from Sunbelt Pools, the authorizing of a purchase of EMS medical supplies from Bound Tree Medical for $105,060,  and ordinance for an application on a property in Ten Mile Estates, 1556 and 1560 North Cedar Hill Road to Replat currently zoned single-family residential – 1-acre minimum lot size.

One regular agenda also passed: an ordinance updating the city’s ambulance fee services. The last fee change schedule for ambulance services was in 2012.