Council hears proposed property tax rates; record vote tonight
By LYNETTE SOWELL
The Copperas Cove city council is holding a succession of meetings tonight, starting with a special meeting at 5 p.m., when it will hold two public hearings, one for the proposed budget for the Copperas Cove Economic Development Corporation and the other for the city manager’s proposed city budget and plan of municipal services. Both budgets are for the 2017-2018 fiscal year, set to begin Oct. 1.
Following the public hearings, the council has another special meeting set for 5:10 p.m., during which it will take a record vote on the proposed property tax value.
On Thursday night, the Copperas Cove city council heard the results of the number-crunching performed by the city’s budget department. The city’s property values, not including any frozen tax values, amount to $1,201,444,307.
The current property tax rate is $0.79708 per $100 valuation and has been so for two years. If the council decides to keep that property tax rate, property tax revenue would increase by $107,895 in 2018 compared to the current year, said Ryan Haverlah, the city’s budget director/deputy city manager.
The rollback tax rate is $0.875972, which if approved by the council, would collect a whopping $1,036,412 million in additional property tax revenue for the city.
The effective property tax rate is $0.785421 which would bring in $40,629 less than the present year.
If this rate is approved by the council, the city’s proposed budget would also have to decrease by that amount as well.
All three rates consist of two parts, the debt service rate, which is regulated by state law, cannot be changed, and funds the city’s debt payments for the upcoming year. The second part is the maintenance and operations rate. Also with all three rates, the city would still be above its ideal fund balance.
The council will also set the date to officially adopt the property tax rate and set two public hearing dates for the proposed tax increase for the 2017-2018 fiscal year, as well as the date to adopt the tax rate.
After the two special meetings, the council will conduct its first regular workshop for August. The council will hear from Police Chief Eddie Wilson about area of responsibility (AOR) and geographic policing for the Copperas Cove Police Department. His presentation will include ideas for ways that groups in the community, as well as neighborhoods, can work together with city law enforcement.
The council will then hold its first regular meeting for August, scheduled to start at 6 p.m.
There is one public hearing set for the regular meeting, for an ordinance amending the city’s code of ordinances for the maximum allowable height of a fence located on residential zoned properties. The amendment would authorize the city planner to approve an overall fence height not to exceed eight feet, based on specific proposals.
Several professional services agreements with BSP Engineers are up for approval for the council tonight, and the projects are for basic design services, the NEPA basic environmental report and contract bidding for the FM 116 and FM 3046 sidewalk projects, sidewalks for The Narrows Business & Industrial Park, along with the Business 190 median project, all of which are part of the 2040 Metropolitan Transportation Plan.
The council will vote to fill two vacancies on the Library Advisory board. Jill Stelow, Elizabeth Chrzstek, and Margie Holt submitted applications.
An agreement that would open City Park for food trucks during events is coming before the council for approval. It would permit trucks vetted by the city’s Parks & Recreation Department to set up at the parks for events for either a daily or weekly fee.
Deputy Fire Chief Gary Young is bringing request to the council where mobile radios are concerned, that of declaring 41 of the handheld radios as surplus so they can be traded in for credit on the purchase of new radios totaling $94,565.67.
The Nov. 7, 2017 election is on the agenda twice this evening, with a resolution ordering and establishing procedures for the general election.
Also, an ordinance ordering a special election on November 7 is also up for approval, which includes the proposition to create a Municipal Development District within the city limits and its extraterritorial jurisdiction.
All meetings and the workshop will take place at the Economic Development Corporation building, located at 210 S. 1st St.