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Letter: Questions arise over county finances
Editor’s Note: A copy of these points was delivered to the Wilson County clerk Sept. 16 for distribution to the Wilson County Commissioners Court.
To the Honorable Commissioners Court of Wilson County, Texas:
As a working man, I was unable to make it to the 9 a.m. public hearing on the proposed county tax rate held Sept. 16. However, I do have some points I wanted to raise with the commissioners.
Concerning the 5 percent raises for elected officials and county employees, I’d request these be incentive and/or merit-based, or that the county should use the Consumer Price Index as a true metric to determine raises, in the same way the Consumer Price Index is used for cost of living increases for programs such as Social Security, federal Civil Service, retirees, food stamp recipients, school lunch programs, Armed Forces personnel, etc.
On the matter of the $8.5 million Certificates of Obligation for courthouse repairs, renovations to Wilson County Courthouse Annex III, and other projects, it was stated during the Aug. 12 commissioners court meeting by Pct. 2 Commissioner Paul Pfeil that the county needs to get the correct numbers out to the people. I would like to request that the commissioners “market” the individual project expenditures through newspaper notices, ballot language, the Wilson County government website, town hall meetings, etc.
Also during the Aug. 12 commissioners meeting, the issue of TexPool Funds (Wilson County Reserve/Rainy Day Fund) arose to allocate toward courthouse repairs. Use of these emergency funds is limited -- no roads, fire, or EMS projects can utilize the funds, among other things. A proposal to allocate funds for Wilson County Courthouse Annex III and the courthouse has been deemed not an emergency, due to the fact that it has been more than two years since the courthouse was declared endangered, and it still has not fallen.
I would like to know why or how the county can budget $2.4 million for the 2014 tax year specifically for the courthouse, in light of this?
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