Glen Rose mayor Sue Oldenburg was obviously pleased following last week’s special meeting of the City Council, in which the proposed tax rate for the upcoming fiscal year was approved by unanimous vote.
Council members voted 4-0 in an afternoon session on Aug. 31 — in the second of two required public hearings — to approve a maximum tax rate of $0.38407400 per $100 valuation for the 2017 tax year.
Council member Robert Marquez did not attend the meeting. Members Doug Mitchell, Linda James, Sandra Ramsey and Dennis Moore voted in favor of the tax rate.
That will keep the city of Glen Rose’s tax rate the same as it has been since 2013.
On Monday, Sept. 11, the City Council is scheduled to vote on adopting the proposed budget for the fiscal year that runs from Oct. 1, 2017 through Sept. 30, 2018. That meeting, open to the public at City Hall, is scheduled to start at 5:30 p.m.
“The main thing I’d like to stress is, we haven’t (raised) the tax rate since 2013,” Oldenburg said after last week’s meeting. “I think it shows what a good job the staff is doing to maintain the quality of life in Glen Rose.
“All of our employees are doing an exceptional job so that we haven’t had to raise it (during that span). I think that says a lot for our staff. I’m so proud of all our staff, from the administration to our work staff. That means we’re doing a good job of holding expenses under control.”
The tax rate will increase the revenues for the new fiscal year by approximately $47,522 — or 7.2345 percent — over last year, according to information provided by City Manager Chester Nolen through City Secretary Terri Johnson.
The effective tax rate for 2017 is $0.3606940, which would bring in the same amount of revenues the city received in fiscal year 2016-2017. The proposed tax rate for 2017 is lower than the rollback rate of $0.38945811.
“Payments on our bonded indebtedness will total $438,919 to be made in 2018,” according to a statement provided by the mayor. “Proposed capital improvement projects total $1,608,600, which includes the Stone View Lift Station at a cost of $755,000 and possible pool renovations of $250,000 at The Plunge (Oakdale Park).
“Total general fund expenditures are projected to be $2,179,772 with revenues projected at $2,021,894 for a deficit of $157,878 to be funded out of the fund balance.”
Last week’s meeting also included two unrelated items on the agenda.
The Council voted, 4-0, to approve an Economic Development Corporation grant of $3,000 to Miss Dixie’s Cottage of Glen Rose. The grant is for the purpose of increasing inventory and expand services for that downtown business, according to Nolen.
The Council also voted unanimously to approve a new ordinance regulating right of way regulations for cell phone nodes that may be installed by wireless phone service providers in the city. The cell phone nodes will provide better cell phone service and coverage in the areas where they are placed.
The Texas Legislature has ruled that the cell nodes can be placed in cities, but the local governing bodies can restrict how they look and where they can be placed.
The nodes will not be allowed within 250 feet of a schools, churches or parks, and also may not be placed in residential or historical areas of the city. The equipment must be underground, and at least two feet from any sidewalk.
The ordinance states that the wireless companies will pay the city right-of-way permit fees of $28 monthly, plus an installation fee.
The Council also adopted a penalty clause, which will assess a fine of “not less than” $50 per day” and “no more than” $2,000 per day for violations of the new ordinance.