Mabank ISD lowers tax rate
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
MABANK–A public hearing on the adoption of a tax rate of $1.674 per $100
valuation Monday was unattended by any of Mabank Independent School
Business manager Scott Adams explained the proposed rate and the unusual
motion required by the state legislature.
While the motion reads that property taxes be increased by the adoption
of the tax rate, last year’s rate was $1.76 per $100 valuation,
resulting in a nine-cent decrease.
The rate for the 2006-07 school year will be $1.334 for maintenance and
operations, and 34 cents for debt service.
The total amount of outstanding and unpaid bonded indebtedness for the
district is $41,771,327.
The motion also included the state mandated words: “The tax rate will
raise taxes for maintenance and operations on a $100,000 home by
Appraised values on property across the district were raised, which may
increase the payment for some taxpayers.
The motion states the rate will raise more taxes for maintenance and
operations than last year’s rate ($1.46 per $100 valuation).
Trustees also approved the 2006-07 budget, totaling $22,328,177.
The largest single budget item was payroll and payroll-related items,
“As a general rule, approximately 80 percent of a budget is devoted to
payroll,” Adams said.
In other business, trustees:
• heard the accountability ratings for the high school.
MHS is a Recognized high school, one of two so named in the area.
High school principal Tommy Wallis said while the other high school
reached Recognized status because it made good improvements, it did not
meet criteria requiring a certain number of students to make the passing
grade of 70 on their Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS)
The required number of MHS students tested 70 or better, he said.
• heard the monthly report from Richard Crump of Claycomb Associates on
the construction progress at the new high school.
For August, the rooftop air-conditioning units were installed in several
areas, the concrete seating risers were installed in the competition
gym, electrical and plumbing rough-in work installed in the E&F upstairs
areas, and the goalposts at the football and band practice fields are
The new MHS construction has passed the half-way mark, with 51 percent
• approved the application of the grant for the Governor’s Excellence
• approved the first reading of Local Policy Update 78, by a 6-1 vote,
as trustee Cindy Holstein voted no.
• awarded the fuel bid to Borders & Long Oil Inc. of Kaufman.
• agreed to remove penalty and interest on two delinquent tax customers
on a 4-3 vote, with trustees Michael Cathey, Kenneth Odom, Gary Sapp and
Holstein voting for, and Darrell Kinnard, Scott Tuley and Dean Fannin
• heard Superintendent Russell Marshall discuss future items to be
considered – the stadium track will be needing work, at some point, the
home sign needs to be moved, and an appraisal of the warehouse in Seven
Points must be done.
Once the new high school opens, the current high school will probably
sit empty for a year, he said.
“This will give us time to assess the affect of the new high school and
to do remodeling and make repairs,” Marshall explained.
• heard the superintendent’s report.
Marshall said the marquees and scoreboards are ready to be delivered.
School openings went smoothly, Marshall said, and consideration for
standardized dress has been postponed.
“I feel like our kids are doing a good job. I don’t feel like we ought
to take that away from them,” Marshall said.
County proposes tax increase
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
KAUFMAN–A split vote set in motion the legal actions necessary to adopt
a proposed 2.45-cent tax increase for Kaufman County.
Commissioners approved the increase Monday by a 3-2 vote, with County
Judge Wayne Gent breaking the tie.
Gent, Precinct 1 Commissioner Jerry Rowden and Precinct 4 Commissioner
Jim Deller voted in favor of the increase.
Precinct 2 Commissioner Ken Leonard and Precinct 3 Commissioner Kenneth
Schoen voted no.
The total proposed tax rate is 56.22 cents per $100 valuation, with 46
cents designated for the general fund, 6.80 cents for Road & Bridge and
3.42 cents for interest and sinking (debt service).
The county owes $21,790,00 on bond indebtedness.
For an average home (appraised value $119,714), taxes would total
approximately $673, or about $77 more than last year, if the proposed
tax rate is approved.
Commissioners also set two public hearing dates – at 10 a.m. both
Monday, Sept. 11, and Thursday, Sept. 14.
A public hearing was also set for 10 a.m. Monday, Sept. 18, on the
proposed fiscal year 2007 budget.
In other business, commissioners:
• accepted the 2006 appraisal roll as the 2006 tax roll, as presented by
tax assessor/collector Richard Murphy.
• approved the sheriff’s and constable fees for 2007, with no changes.
• approved the list of early voting locations and election day locations
for the Nov. 7 General Election as presented.
• authorized purchasing agent Jack Sabastian to advertise for bids to
provide and install concrete at the planned Precinct 4 Convenience
Station, now under construction in Kemp.
Sabastian said bidding will close Friday, Sept. 15. Bids will be opened
at 10 a.m. Monday, Sept. 18.
• awarded the bid for county HVAC services to Combine Mechanical of
Bi-annual inspections of heating and air-conditioning will be at no
charge, although there will be a $91 per hour rate for other services,
and equipment technician time is $77 per hour.
• amended the Precinct 3 budget for salaries through Sept. 30.
• set a 30 mph speed limit for county roads 301, 312, 340, 345 and 355
in Precinct 3.
• approved a request from Embarq to install buried communications drops
in Precinct 4.
• approved budget transfers as presented by auditor Hal D. Jones.
• paid bills totaling $321,044.44.