Grayson County commissioners Tuesday took to their bench ready to hear from residents about the proposed 2015 tax rate. But when it came time to hold the public hearing on the rate, no one came forward. Grayson County Judge Drue Bynum called for comments from the public a number of times before he declared the one-minute long public hearing over and went on with the rest of the items on the Court’s short agenda Tuesday.
Grayson County commissioners are proposing a tax rate of of 49 cents per $100 valuation. Grayson County Auditor Richey Rivers told commissioners, at a previous meeting, that the County’s general fund can expect about $1 million more income from that tax rate this year than last year thanks to new property and increased appraisal values.. Commissioners said that extra $1 million was eaten up in increased costs. Commissioners are planning on giving county employees a raise and approved several new hires, many with the Grayson County Sheriff’s Office, at recent budget sessions. Those items will be paid for, commissioners said, out of fund balance.
County residents have one more shot at discussing the tax rate with County officials before it becomes official. The Court will hold another hearing at 10 a.m. on Sept. 9 in the Grayson County Courthouse, 100 W. Houston in Sherman.
Commissioners also accepted into the minutes of their meeting the salary set for Grayson County Purchasing Agent Jeff Schneider. Schneider’s salary of $75,443 is set by the District courts and includes the 3 percent raise commissioners approved for County staff.
Next commissioners approved a request from Grayson County Sheriff Keith Gary to reduce a chief’deputy position formerly held by Ron Brown to a captain’s position. Chief Deputy Tom Rains said the move will save the County about $6,100 in the coming budget.
Commissioners also approved an interlocal agreement with the city of Whitesboro for street repairs. Grayson County Commissioner Phyllis James asked that the Court approve the agreement which will see her staff chip and seal some roads in the city. The work is expected to cost the city $7,355.
Bynum asked the Court to table the last item that came before them Tuesday. Phil Roether had come to the Court asking for funds to purchase insurance for legal services that might be needed by members of the Joint Airport Zoning Board if anyone sues over the North Texas Regional Airport - Perrin Field Land Use Compatibility Zoning Regulations.
In asking for the matter to be tabled, Bynum said the people who serve on the Board are appointed by the County and it is a County entity. He said any suit brought against that Board is ultimately brought against the County. The County already has legal counsel that would handle any such case. However, he said, he wanted the folks who work with the County’s insurance to make sure that he is right about that. So the matter is expected to come back to the Commissioners Court next week for further discussion.