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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 15, 1980, New Braunfels, Texas Microfilm Center, inc.P.O. Box M 136 Ta]]IR px 7 v New Braunfels, Texas Herald-Zeitung40-cent tax rate adopted By Robert Johnson After setting the tax rate at 40 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. City Council Monday voted to hold a public hearing on the fiscal 1980-81 budget at its May 26 meeting. The hearing will begin in council chambers at 7:30 p.m. The 40-cent rate—“one of the lowest in the state for a city of our size,” City Manager E.N. Delashmutt said—is an 11-cent reduction from last year’s 51-cent rate. The rate was adjusted downward to compensate for a change in state law, Delashmutt explained. Under provisions of Senate Bill 621 (passed by the 66th Legislature in 1979), all property must be assessed at fair market value for tax purposes. Previously, the city had been assessing property at 80 percent of that fair market value. If the adjusted tax rate increases the city’s revenue from last fiscal year by three percent or more, SB 621 requires the city to hold a special taxpayers’ meeting to discuss the increase and set a date to vote on the increase. Proper public notice must be given for the subsequent meeting, at which the tax rate will be voted upon. Forty cents is the highest rate the city can adopt without falling under these guidelines, Delashmutt explained. The new rate will generate fP74,992—approximately 19 percent of the estimated $4,137,023 in revenue expected for fiscal 1980-81. Sales tax revenue, increases in sanitation charges and funds from New Braunfels Utilities and unexpended funds from previous fiscal years make up 61 percent of that total. The proposed budget includes $4,137,023 in expenditures—an increase of $603,367 over fiscal 1979-80. The increase is primarily due to inflation. Delashmutt had indicated previously. Delashmutt said additional employees are needed in almost all city departments, but cannot be provided due to funding limitations. Only one additional employee will be hired, he said. That employee will help the finance department meet state and federal laws concerning personnel records and reporting requirements, which have increased tremendously, Delashmutt said. As promised, the new budget also includes a seven percent salary increase for city employees effective July 1,1980, and an additional five percent hike effective Jan. I, 1981. Both increases are contingent upon approval from an employee’s department head. The largest chunk of the anticipated expenditures—$1,603,895—will go to public safety. Of that total, $769,453 will go to police, $538,768 to fire protection, $186,505 for ambulance services and $37,385 for animal control and protection. The second largest total is public works, which will receive $1,087,485 under the proposed budget. A total of $461,020 will go toward street repair and maintenance, while $503,735 has been allocated for sanitation services. Parks and recreation will require $661,970, including $376,469 for park operation and maintenance, $105,546 to operate the city’s swimming pools, $129,166 to operate and maintain luanda Park golf course and $50,789 to maintain city cemeteries. A total of $214,479 has been allocated to replace worn-out and obsolete machinery, equipment and vehicles, while $61,758 has been earmarked for contingencies. 13 1 4 15 16 1 CO Cl 22 23 24 27 28 29 30 26 20 21 22 23 24 27 28 29 30 31 Vol. 39 - No. 20 May 15, 1980 144 Pages — 25 Cents (USPS 377 880) City must s-t-r-e-t-c-h budget He didn’t say it in so many words, but the message City Manager E.N. Delashmutt brought to City Council Monday was clear—if you think next year’s budget is tough, wait’ll you see the one after that. That budget will pose a unique problem—how to cover 15 months of operating expenses with 12 months of revenue, Delashmutt indicated. And to make matters worse, if revenue and expenditures go as outlined Monday, the city will have a carryover balance of zero from previous fiscal years to take into that extended year, which will run from July I, 1981 until Sept. 30, 1982. Reason? As projected, the proposed 1988-81 budget will use all $638,878 left over from previous budgetary years, Delashmutt said. The situation is somewhat confusing, but it has its roots in Senate Bill 621 passed by the 66th I legislature in 1979. Under that bill, taxing entities throughout the state are required to change their tax year to a calendar year and their fiscal year to coincide with the federal fiscal year (Oct. I to Sept. 30). Right now, the city is looking at what may be its last budget under its present fiscal year. The 1980-81 budget covers a period running from July I, 1980 to June 30, 1981. Taxes to help fund operating expenses for this year will be collected this month. June and July. SB 621 would change all that. To make the transition from the current fiscal year to one beginning in October, the city will have to tack three months onto the 1981-82 year. As a result, the year would end Sept. 30, 1982 instead of June 30. The 1982-83 year would begin Oct. I, as SB 621 guidelines stipulate The problem is readily apparent with a quick look at tax collections When the fiscal year changes, the tax collection period will change from May to July to October through January, Delashmutt explained. As a result, the current collection period will be tha city's last until Get. I, 1981 through Jan. 31, 1982 Since most taxes traditionally are paid in the last month of the collection period, the result is an 18-month gap in tax revenues instead of the usual 12. Not suprisingly, Delashmutt said the three months tacked onto the 1981-82 fiscal year (which he and City See CITY, Page 18A Gifted pupils Need for additional personnel questioned Gifted and talented students in New Braunfels Independent School District schools will get some special attention next year. Exactly what that attention will be has not been decided yet. Assistant Supt. Oscar Snuth told NB1SD trustees that even though the schools conduct enrichment programs there is still no program for the upper three to five percent of the district's enrollment. That group is those children with special gifts and talents in certain subject areas, whether it is math, writing, art or history. Plans which the administration has made to implement a gifted and talented students' program include hiring a teacher to direct the program and an aide to assist the director in implementing the program, Snuth said. Instructional materials will be ordered, also. Set aside in the budget is $34,375, he said. Of that, approximately $15,000 will be used for the director’s salary with the remainder for the aide’s salary, materials, field trips and transportation. Funds mandated by the state legislature are available for use in establishing and implementing gifted and talented programs, he continued. The district must apply by June I for any state assistance and limy receive $175 for each identified student up to five percent of the enrollment. He added that there is no guarantee on the amount of funds, if any, that NB1SD will receive. Smith said he wants to hire a teacher with a master’s degree and about eight years experience, but that teacher will not be an aduumstrator. The program office will be housed in one of the elementary schools, and the teacher will work with students in each school. “I don’t feel that the present teachers could handle the extra load (of a gifted and talented program),” he said. Margy Waldnp, trustee, said he had visited with Ann Shaw, Texas Education Agency director of gifted and talented programs, and received some advice from her. “She said don’t try to do too much See GIFTF.D, Page MA Staff photos by John Sontrn Nearly two and a half inches of rain fell Tuesday to end a dry spell, but even that did not keep New Braunfels residents indoorsGrowth, annexation link cited by trio New Braunfels is going to grow no matter what, and annexation is the best way to control it. That was the thread which ran through statements made to Planning and Zoning Commission Tuesday by Tom Purdum, Chamber of Commerce executive vice president; Jack Ohlnch, a former commission member, and Dr. E A. Grist, county sanitarian. The occasion was a special meeting called by the commission to consider annexation of several tracts suggested by conumssion members and the chamber. “No matter what we do, we’re gonna grow,” Grist said. “Let’s move out and quit worrying about it.” The commission’s job is to plan growth, not worry about the costs involved, Chinch maintained. Referring to concern about the cost of extending utilities to some areas being considered, Ohlrich said this was the first he has heard negative comments on utilities when annexation was being discussed. Both Purdum and Grist emphasized the limited powers a city has in its extraterritorial jurisdiction aren’t enough to ensure orderly growth and zoning control. Purdum urged the city to annex developing areas before they developed. This way, controls would be built in rather than added on after development has started. Annexing these areas would put the city on more solid footing with industrial prospects, he felt. Regardless of when it happens, a city runs the risk of appearing greedy if it annexes an existing industry, Purdum explained. If potential industrial property is already in the city, companies know this from the outset. However, when the ideal site is outside the city, companies often want some protection from annexation. This problem came up when The Coleman Co. was looking for a site The firm chose a site on FM 306 east of Hunter Road outside the city limits The site is earmarked for annexation from 1979-84 on the city master plan. No guarantees were made that Coleman wouldn't be annexed, but Purdum indicated Coleman representatives were told the city’s proposed annexation program is five years behind schedule. The plant opened last month, and now a portion of the Coleman property is in a tract See GROWTH, Page7A ;