Interlocal agreement with county on city commission agenda
By DAWNE LEIKER
In relation to a sales tax ballot question proposed to be put before Ellis County voters in 2013, Hays city commissioners at their Thursday meeting will consider an interlocal agreement between the city and Ellis County.
The meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. at city hall.
City commissioners were approached by County Administrator Greg Sund at their Jan. 17 work session. While Sund asked the city to support legislation giving the county all of the money from a half-cent sales tax, the city instead suggested an agreement turning over its share to the county through the agreement.
Currently, the county is required to share sales tax proceeds with cities in the county, leaving the county with only about 42 percent of the total revenue. For the county to get all of the money, new legislation would have to be passed. If the city agrees to turn over its share, Ellis County would get most of the money raised.
The tax sought by Ellis County would be used to build a joint EMS/rural fire facility and renovate the Ellis County courthouse and jail for an estimated $14.5 million. The tax would sunset when payment for the facilities is completed.
Hesitant to support the legislation due to the fact it would be in effect not just for the 2013 sales tax question but for any future sales taxes by the county, city commissioners, at the suggestion of City Attorney John Bird, requested City Manager Toby Dougherty draft instead an interlocal agreement pertaining specifically to the 2013 sales tax measure.
"You could achieve the same thing with an interlocal government cooperation agreement, where the city and the county agree that if the voters approve these projects, they would then turn over their share of that sales tax," Bird told commissioners at the Jan. 17 work session.
The interlocal agreement Doughtery will present to commissioners states the city will rebate any sales tax funds collected in accordance with the ballot questions, so the debt for those projects can be retired faster.
Other agenda items include:
* Resolution of support and Rural Housing Incentive District request from Overland Property Group LLC.
* 2013 street maintenance program award of bids.
* Business license for Hays Regional Airport.
* Award of bid for a sand filter building and main control building roof replacement.
* Supervisory Control and Data Acquision upgrades at the wastewater treatment plant.