Goliad County faces tax increase after suit filed
Public hearings on tax increase
First hearing: 7 p.m. Sept. 5, in the district courtroom
Second hearing: 11 a.m. Sept. 10, in the commissioners courtroom
The court also voted, 3-2, to place the county under a 90-day burn ban.
Goliad County Commissioners voted on a higher proposed tax rate on Monday.
The court voted 4-1 to increase the tax rate to 69.84 cents per $100 valuation after Coleto Creek Power filed suit on Aug. 16, against the Goliad County Appraisal District to lower its taxable value.
The court previously discussed adopting a tax rate of 64.84 cents per $100 valuation, down from the current rate of 65.65 cents in 2011.
County Judge David Bowman, who was not available for comment Tuesday, said previously his office is budgeting for the worst case scenario - more than $650,000 in lost revenue for the county.
Bowman and commissioners Julian Flores, Alonzo Morales and Jim Kreneck voted in favor of the new proposed rate Monday.
"It is unknown what the factors are going to be at this point," said Morales, Precinct 2 commissioner. "This tax rate takes all that into consideration ... That is why we went to that higher rate, because if you set it lower, like the tax rate we had originally proposed, you can't go up. And with the uncertainties that are going on with the budget and the power plant, it is just an unknown."
Ted Long, Precinct 4 commissioner, was the only commissioner to vote against the proposed rate.
He said there are too many uncertainties at this time, and the county should not rush a decision.
"We are going to have to take a shot in the dark, there is no doubt about that, but at this point in time I'm not comfortable voting for the tax rate that was calculated," Long said. "I'm just not comfortable doing it. I realize we have time constraints, but I think we could look at this a little bit harder."