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WCAD proposes $1.2M budget
According to a budget unveiled at the July 8 meeting of the Wilson County Appraisal District (WCAD) board of directors, it will take a total of $1,211,796 for the organization to operate during the 2015 fiscal year.
Chief Appraiser Brian Stahl said the budget includes an estimated $1,021,032 for appraisal-related functions, with the remaining $190,764 being allocated for tax-collection activities within the cities and school districts of La Vernia, Poth, and Stockdale. The budget is $30,900 larger than the current year’s spending plan. Stahl said a majority of the increase, approximately $18,000, is being earmarked for a 5-percent across-the-board salary increase for WCAD’s 14 employees.
Stahl said he based the increase on a salary study he conducted among other area appraisal districts, which revealed WCAD’s employees to be among the lowest-paid. Because of this, Wilson County has historically been a training ground for workers who obtain their necessary certification -- at the appraisal district’s expense -- before obtaining higher-paying work with another district, he said.
“I’m trying to retain the experience of the folks I have here right now,” Stahl said.
Copies of the budget are available for public inspection at the WCAD’s office at 1611 Railroad St., Floresville. That also is the location of a public hearing that will be held during a special meeting set for Tuesday, July 29, at 5 p.m. A vote on the budget will follow.
Once the board approves the budget, the county’s taxing entities will decide whether to approve the spending plan. The budget becomes effective once a simple majority of the entities approves it -- either by an affirmative vote, or by taking no action.
As the board looks ahead toward the upcoming fiscal year, it also has taken a look back at the previous one with the approval of its fiscal year 2013 financial audit. Stahl said that Wayne Beyer of Pleasanton-based Beyer & Co. gave the district an unqualified, or “clean,” opinion.
Beyer recommended that all of WCAD’s employees should use timesheets and that the district should have a designated public funds investment officer. Stahl said he since has taken the necessary certification courses in order to perform that function.
Stahl said that on Thursday, July 17, Capital Appraisals representatives will be present to hear protests related to assessed mineral values. Only an estimated 300 of the roughly 800 tax protests filed for the 2014 tax year are related to minerals, Stahl said. Based on this number, he expects the district to have its tax roll certified Monday, July 21.
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