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Section A: General News


WCAD board gets organized


WCAD board gets organized
WILLIAM J. GIBBS JR./Reprints at wilsoncountynews.com Collections Manager Jo Ann Wiatrek of the Wilson County Appraisal District administers the oath of office to board members (from left) Robert Gregory, Frank Pruski, Lynn Ray West, Jim Yanta, and Scott Sisti at the beginning of the Wilson County Appraisal District board of directors’ March 20 meeting.


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Wilson County News
March 28, 2012
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Lynn Ray West will continue as president for the Wilson County Appraisal District board of directors, following a unanimous vote by the board March 20 to reappoint him. Scott Sisti will serve as vice president and Jim Yanta has been selected as the board’s secretary.

Also during the meeting, which was the board’s first meeting since October, West, Sisti, Yanta, and Frank Pruski welcomed new board member Robert Gregory, who represents the city of La Vernia and the La Vernia Independent School District. He replaces longtime board member Ewald Koepp Jr., whose term ended in December.

As president, West assigned Pruski and Gregory to serve on the board’s budget committee. Sisti and Yanta will serve on the building committee. These actions did not require a vote of the board.

In keeping with the spirit of organization, Pruski suggested the board should have more meetings. He expressed concern over the lapse of time between meetings, which resulted in the board having to approve four months’ worth of check payments.

Sisti suggested the board should meet at least every other month. West suggested daytime meetings are inconvenient for the working public, which would allow for easier attendance by board members and taxpayers.

“Some people are not going to take a day of vacation [to come to a meeting],” West said.

The board’s next meeting is set for Wednesday, April 4, at 5 p.m. Items on that agenda will include building expansion and personnel issues. These items were listed on the March 20 agenda, but not acted upon. This was after the board attempted to convene in closed session until the Wilson County News informed the board that a closed session was not listed anywhere on the agenda.

Sisti suggested that the next agenda should list those items for closed session. He also said that the appraisal district should structure its agendas like those for the Wilson County Commissioners Court, which indicate that the commissioners have the right to convene in closed session for any of the listed items, “pursuant to Section 551.071 through Section 551.076 of the Texas Government Code.”

“We’ll cover it both ways,” he said.

In other business, the board heard public comments from Debbie Rice, who owns a wholesale nursery, about her struggle to protest the appraisal on four pieces of property she owns. Rice outlined nine months of attempting to resolve the matter with the appraisal district, which allegedly made several procedural errors, including losing recordings of Appraisal Review Board hearings.

Chief Appraiser Eddie Bridge said he finally stepped in, alleging that Rice had not filled out her form in a way to indicate she was protesting. Bridge helped Rice correct her forms and get the matter resolved. He admits that the appraisal district could have caught the error sooner.

“We’re going to get a little more diligent in our phone calls,” Bridge said.

The board also approved an anti-fraud policy -- which every district employee will be required to read and sign on an annual basis -- and a computer backup policy. Both of these policies were drafted following recommendations from the district’s fiscal year 2011 audit.
 

Your Opinions and Comments

 
The Marcelina Muse  
Dry Tank, TX  
March 29, 2012 11:40am
 
It's a good idea when appearing before the Review Board to take your own recorder and keep copies of every document submitted, including photographs. Also when you file a protest make sure you have a copy of your protest time ... More ›

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