The Erath County Commissioners Court held its regular meeting on Monday and heard presentations on property-tax collection and a long-term strategic plan for the county, among other agenda items.
Robert Meyers of McCreary, Veselka, Bragg & Allen, P.C. Attorneys at Law spelled out some significant and positive points regarding recent trends in the county’s tax-collection efforts:
• Current collections: In the past four years, the county’s total annual tax collections [current and delinquent taxes, penalties and interest] actually exceed the amount of taxes that have been levied.
• As of the date of the report, the county has collected 99.31 percent to 99.61 percent of the taxes that were levied for each of the last four years.
• In order to collect the county’s delinquent taxes during this report period, the law firm sent 2.825 delinquent tax notices, filed 45 delinquent tax suits, recovered 20 judgments and post 21 properties for sale.
Meyers said, “Tax collection in Erath County has been very good, much better than is many other Texas counties of late. The oil-and-gas industry downturn has affected Erath County as it has much of the state, but that downturn has not been negatively reflected in property tax collection.”
Following Meyers’ presentation was TSU Public Administration Masters student and Erath County volunteer firefighter, Dallas Sims. He delivered a long-term strategic plan covering 2016-2025 that he has authored as part of his degree program.
The comprehensive plan lists radio communications, recruitment and retention of those who provide county services, communication between departments and community outreach as its major topics.
In his report Sims stated, “Creating a mission statement started the strategic planning process. With input from elected officials, department heads, and leaders in Erath County, the mission statement was created. Then a values and a vision statement was created with the same input.”
The strategic plan is the result of that research.