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County extends homes program
by Kenda Nelson
Oct 12, 2012 | 897 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
REFUGIO — The county fell three short of the six homeowners identified to get their homes repaired or replaced under a grant from the Department of Housing and Community Affairs under the Texas HOME Investment Partnerships Program.

Donna Johnson of GrantWorks told the commissioners court Tuesday morning that the program has been extended and, with approval from the court, could include up to 10 homes. The county’s contribution is $1,600 per home.

The county was approved for six homes originally but three are still being assessed for eligibility.

“They’re not fully qualified yet,” said Donna Johnson of GrantWorks. “It’s just a matter of clearing up their titles.”

Johnson will work to identify other eligible homeowners who must have a clear title to their property and taxes must be paid and up to date. Income restrictions also apply.

Johnson said finding eligible homeowners was “a statewide problem” so an additional two years was added to the program.

In budget matters, Commissioners Gary Bourland and Stanley Tuttle questioned auditor Margie Moeller the about nine additional line item transfers out of salaries.

“I thought all the line-item transfers were done last year,” Bourland said. “...did we discuss last year not to take any line-item transfers out of salary?”

“Yes, we did,” said Commissioner Ann Lopez.

“There shouldn’t be anything left in salary,” Judge Rene Mascorro said.

However, Margie Moeller, said just about all the departments had some money left over and she would provide the figures on the next report.

In airport matters, Lopez requested that the county move forward with appointing a new airport advisory committee to devise a plan for the airport in order to obtain grants.

The plan must be in place by 2014, according to Lopez.

The commissioners tabled certifying the tax levy for 2012-2013 until the county’s chief appraiser can come explain the levy. The commissioners also ratified contracts with Philpott Motors for the purchase of two vehicles for animal control.

The judge said he had spoken to John Fuller with the Texas Association of Counties last week and ratifying the contracts for the purchase of two trucks for animal control is all that is necessary. Mascorro told the court that no action was necessary.

Tuttle said he wanted to go on record as not opposing the purchase of the trucks.

“What I am opposed to is the procedure by which the vehicles were purchased,” he said.

The commissioners also approved the interlocal agreement for animal control with the town of Refugio for $29,080; Woodsboro, $16,619; Bayside, $3,116; and Austwell, $1,057.

The commissioners went into executive session behind closed doors to discuss the duties of the county treasurer and the county auditor.

When the commissioners reconvened in open court, a motion was made to go into executive session again on Monday, Oct. 15 at 2 p.m. to discuss the duties again.

In other matters, the commissioners:

• Approved the annual contribution of $2,500 to the Copano Bay Soil and Water Conservation District, as requested by J.D. McGuill.

• Acknowledged the employment of Ronnie D. Crisp as a traffic control deputy for the sheriff’s department, effective Oct. 1 at a salary of $42,696 per year.

• Acknowledged the employment of Juan Rivera as a justice court clerk for the justice of the peace, #1 effective Oct. 1 at a salary of $34,622 per year.

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