Navarro County Commissioners met Friday in a special meeting to address several issues, and most importantly, consider the 2018 Fiscal Year budget.
Following a lengthy executive session to discuss personnel, commissioners reconvened the meeting in order to approve the adoption of the 2018 Tax Rate of $0.6270 per $100 of taxable valuation.
The court also approved the adoption of the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 Budget.
“We approved the budget with a record vote, which means everyone voted yes,” said County Judge H.M. Davenport. “We also had an amendment, which gave all four constables a higher travel allowance than they had, going from $6,000 per year to $9,000. This puts all four constables on the same level. Their retirement is not taken from that travel allowance, but standard deductions are.”
Also decided in Executive Session was the hiring of Tim Easley as the Veterans Administrator, a part-time position that’s been occupied by Billy Richards. Richards plans to retire soon. Easley, who formerly worked in the County Auditor’s office, has been passionate about helping veterans for many years, often organizing the Memorial Day ceremony and the Veterans Day ceremony held at the courthouse.
Other items discussed and considered by the commissioners court included:
• Approval of the Consent Agenda, which approves and pays the State Quarterly Fees for the third quarter of Fiscal Year 2017 by the County Auditor
• Public hearing on the proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2017-2018. District Clerk Joshua Tackett spoke, stating that he requested he and Sherry Dowd, County Clerk, be allowed to pay their chief deputies who have been busy scanning and logging old documents an increase from a special fund established from filing fees.
“We must have the county commissions approval,” Tackett said. “This is for Ms. Robinson and Ms. Grounds, and we would even pay for Jackie Owens in the tax office, too. We didn’t know this fund was available — we just found it.”
• Awarding of bids for service, parts and labor. Bid tabulations from all bids were supplied to each commissioner and the judge, who stated in regard to auto parts, they would award to all who submitted, but go with the lowest bid. Only one bid was given for culverts, so Wilson Culverts got that bid. Two companies submitted bids to provide fuel, and Johnson Oil was the low bid. And of the six bidders for hauling road material, commissioners said they would use all, and go with the lowest bid out of the six bids per job.
• Approved consideration of awarding annual bids for auto parts, culverts, fuel, road materials and hauling.
• Considered approval of nomination of Bill Kilgore to the Appraisal District Board of Directors ballot. Kilgore replaces Gayle Steed.
• Considered appointment of Gail Smith, former interim Tax Asssessor/Collector, as Commissioner for ESD 1. Smith was sworn in by Davenport for her new position. She replaces Eric Phillips.
Monday, there will be a special County Commissioner’s meeting at 1 p.m. Oct. 2 at the County Annex, 601 N. 13th St., for the purpose of considering the burn ban, which is currently in effect.