By Chris Edwards
WOODVILLE – Tyler County officials got down to business on Monday morning in a regular meeting to set proposed tax rates for the county.
The first proposed tax rate on the brief agenda for Monday’s meeting was to set the proposed rate for the county’s general fund. Pct. 2 Commissioner Stevan Sturrock recommended adopting a rate of $0.6492, which, he said, would cover the increases of retirement and longevity pay. That proposed rate would represent a 2% increase to the budget, according to Sturrock’s estimate, but a decrease to the current tax rate.
County Judge Jacques Blanchette wanted to clarify what the officials were discussing and voting on in adopting the proposed tax rates.
“For clarification, it’s just putting it out there to let the public know what the thinking of the court is at this point; not that we’re setting it today,” Blanchette said.
The proposed tax rate for the general fund was approved with a 3-1 vote with Pct. 1 Commissioner Joe Blacksher voting in opposition.
Another tax rate the commissioners had before them for a proposed rate was that of the county’s farm-to-market flood control fund. Blanchette spoke about the item before it came before a vote. The fund falls under the county’s road and bridge fund and explained that the taxation was labelled specifically for an accurate, correct reflection.
The commissioners voted to adopt a proposed rate of $0.2337 per $100 of valuation. This is the no new tax rate.
The proposed tax rate for the Tyler County Hospital District was also adopted, unanimously, at $0.2133, the no-new-revenue rate. The state’s no-new-revenue taxation rate allows a taxable entity to produce the same amount of tax revenues if applied to the same levied properties in both years.
A public hearing was set for the time and date of 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 7 for the proposed tax rates for the county’s general fund and the farm-to-market flood control fund.
Sturrock gave the commissioners an update on the remediation work with the Tyler County Courthouse. Later in the day, he said, the architect working on the project, Dohn LaBiche would be showing the work done thus far to James Malanaphy, a project reviewer with Texas Historical Commission.
During Monday’s meeting, Tyler County Commissioners also voted to create a separate fund for the American Rescue Act Money.
Blacksher brought the items on the agenda before the court pertaining to the funding. Another item approved by the officials was to set a maximum amount allocated to Tyler County Hospital out of the first round of American Rescue Act funds. Earlier in the month, the commissioners voted to assist TCH with these funds to help acquire certain staffing, specifically with registered nurses, cardiopulmonary and X-Ray.
TCH CEO Sondra Williams spoke about the hospital’s needs regarding the grant funding. She said the amount needed by TCH for the necessary staff would be close to $600K.