Abilene City Council to discuss new health district jobs, zoo master plan and Fire Prevention Week


ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The Abilene City Council is set to discuss 11 new jobs at the health district, master plans for the Abilene Zoo, and Fire Prevention Week.  


New health district jobs come after the district is receiving a $1.5 million work force grant. 

The purpose of the workforce grant is to establish and grow the district to support COVID-19 prevention, preparedness, response, and recovery initiatives. 

“We’ve almost doubled the size of our staff since COVID started and it has taken that many people plus more to keep up with the level of activities and data that we need to put out,” said Public Health Director Annette Lerma. 

Some of the current job listings include a grant manager, epidemiologist, and health equity specialist. 

The health department is also pending approval from city council for a $400,000 health equity grant they plan to pour into communities of color and LGBTQIA+ groups. 


The Abilene Zoo is working on their 5-to-10-year master plan now that the Madagascar exhibit has been completed. 

“The zoo tries to encapsulate all the continents of the world, one big continent we haven’t tapped into is Asia, and there’s a lot of very cool species that come from Asia. We really want to bring the tigers back,” said Abilene Zoo Director Jesse Pottebaum. 

They will be asking the city council to approve a $148,000 dollar contract with Park Hill, an architecture and engineering firm, to complete the master plan designs.  

The Zoo wants the plans to be finalized by the spring of 2022 before their main fundraising gala– Zoobilation. 


This week the Abilene Fire Department is recognizing fire prevention week. 

The fire department is having a poster contest for kindergarten through 5th grade to celebrate. 

The theme is “Serve Up Safety in the Kitchen.” 

Kids can create a poster on an 8.5×11 sheet of paper and label their name, parents phone number, email and street address on the back lower right-hand corner.

Submit the poster to any of the fire stations by 5 p.m. this Wednesday. One winner will be chosen for each fire station. 

The Abilene City Council will vote this week to approve a new fire prevention code, the last time it was updated was in 2009. 

City council will be meeting in a new location this week, The Abilene Library South Branch Library. Since the elevators at city hall will be getting work done, the council wants to make sure the meeting is accessible to all.

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