Editor’s note: The story posted Tuesday was incorrect on the tax rate. The Odessa American regrets the error.
Ector County Commissioners on Tuesday kept property taxes at 36.5 cents per $100 in valuation for the 2020-21 fiscal year although they had been discussions in recent weeks to raise it to 36.9 cents per $100 valuation.
County Clerk Jennifer Martin said Commissioner Greg Simmons made the motion and County Judge Debbi Hays seconded it. The vote was 4-1 with Armando Rodriguez voting against it because he wanted the county to have more of a cushion.
The 36.9-cent rate was the effective rate and would have raised the same amount of revenues that the current rate produced in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30.
The schedule of 2020-21 expenditures was approved on a 4-1 vote with Commissioners Eddy Shelton from Precinct 1, Greg Simmons from Precinct 2 and Dale Childers from Precinct 3 voting “yes” along with Judge Debi Hays.
Helped considerably by the 1.25-cent sales tax enacted by the voters in November two years ago, the new budget is for $64,887,521 in general fund expenditures and $20,051,588 from the sales tax fund, which is used to bolster law enforcement, maintain and rebuild roads and curb illegal dumping. The total is $84,943,109.
The current year budget is for $81,849,488 with $67,143,225 in the general fund and $14,706,263 in the sales tax fund.
In other business, the court proclaimed Oct. 4-10 National 4-H Club Week after hearing Club President Roxie Hernandez and Vice President Kayla Shrum say the state- and county-sponsored youth organization’s multitudinous opportunities had greatly boosted their confidence and increased their capabilities.
Accompanied by Texas A&M Extension Service Family and Community Health Agent Abigail Pritchard of Odessa, Ector County Agent Steve Paz said the four h’s represent the development of the “head, heart, hands and health” of members from ages 8 to 19.
The court also:
>> Tabled its consideration of a letter of intent from the airport advisory board concerning proposed improvements at Schleymeyer Field while more detailed information is developed for its regular Oct. 13 meeting.
>> Approved seeking a credit rating from the Standard & Poor Co. for the $26-million issuance of certificates of obligation to build a new juvenile detention center and possibly other purposes.
>> OK’d a contract with the Permian Basin Community Centers, doing business as PermiaCare, to bolster the work of deputies certified to deal with mentally disturbed inmates at the county jail.
>> Approved Sheriff Mike Griffis’ plan to apply to the Texas Department of Transportation for a “Click It or Ticket” program grant to encourage the use of seat belts in motor vehicles.
>> Approved its 2020-21 maintenance grant contract with the Texas Attorney General’s Office.
>> Renewed its contract with the Area Agency on Aging.
>> Approved interlocal governmental agreements for vehicle fleets’ maintenance among the Vector Fleet Management Co., the Medical Center Health System, UTPB and the county.
>> OK’d leasing a mail machine for the county’s mailroom.
>> Approved Health Department Director Brandy Garcia’s request for a 36-month contract with the eClinicalWorks Co. to provide electronic medical records.
>> Approved requests from County Attorney Dusty Gallivan and Medical Examiner Chuck Moad to hire investigators.
>> OK’d Human Resource Director Patricia Patton’s proposal to spend $220 for professional fees and dues, $400 for office supplies and $1,700 for furniture and equipment.
>> Allocated $50,000 for contract services and monitoring fees for post-sentence monitoring.