KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) The Killeen City Council Tuesday approved a change to the city’s street fee ordinance and a change in management at the city’s only golf course.
Council members voted unanimously Tuesday to amend the citywide street maintenance fee ordinance to apply the same rate, 24 cents per thousand square feet, to all religious institutions.
The co-founder of the Islamic community of Greater Killeen says he filed an appeal with the city weeks ago on the grounds that the square footage of the mosque was inaccurate and that the rate was discriminatory.
He says he is elated with the council decision to amend the ordinance but would like to see the city do even more.
"I think that the city made the right decision, a step in the right direction,” says Osman Danquah.
“Our city should remain diverse, and in the celebration of our diversity there should be fairness, justice and equality for all."
In response to the New Zealand shootings, he has also put in a request for the city to provide police officers during Friday prayers and worship services during the month of Ramadan which starts in May.
Before Tuesday’s vote, Killeen city councilman Gregory Johnson described Killeen as a “melting pot” and stated that the city should never pass an ordinance that intentionally or unintentionally discriminates against anyone.
The council also approved handing the city's only golf course over to new management.
According to city officials, the Stonetree Golf Club has been lacking revenue at an average amount of $317,957 over the past 5 years.
In February, the golf shop manager retired, and the course superintendent resigned.
Billy Casper golf will take over managing the property and wants to bring in more tournaments, and possibly add a military rate and app for scheduling tee times.
The company also plans to bring in a general manager and new superintendent.
"We hope to have an internal person that we can bring in,” says Regional Director of Operations Mark Wesolek.
“They're going to find ways to improve what's already a really solid product, so we're very excited about showing the golfers that we can actually make the golf course they love just a little bit better."
Employees already at the club will be invited to stay or may have an option to continue working for the city.
The company also says they do not plan to raise golf rates.