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Liberty council adopts budget, plans tax decrease

The Liberty City Council, at their Tuesday meeting, adopted a budget for Fiscal Year 2018-2019 of approximately $35.3 million. Council also held the second and final public hearing on the proposed city property tax rate for this coming fiscal year. As reported, Liberty Council has proposed lowering the city’s property tax rate from the current 61 cents per $100 of assessed property value down to 58.5 cents per $100 of value. Increased property values mean the city will still take in more revenue in the coming fiscal year even though the tax rate is lower. Estimates are the average Liberty property owner will see a savings of about $35 per year due to the property tax decrease. Liberty City Council is scheduled to consider final approval of the new tax rate at a meeting on Tuesday September 25th. In other action Tuesday, Liberty Council voted Mayor Carl Pickett to another two year term as one of the city’s representatives to the Sam Rayburn Municipal Power Agency Board of Directors. As for the second Liberty representative to the SRMPA Board, Council also voted to appoint new Liberty City Manager Tom Warner to fill the unexpired term on the SRMPA Board left vacant by former city manager Gary Broz’ departure. Liberty Council also approved more duties for their new city manager. Council voted to appoint Tom Warner as General Manager of the Liberty Community Development Corporation. That was another responsibility held by the previous city manager. A new responsibility added to Mr. Warner’s duties Tuesday authorizes City Manager Tom Warner as a signatory on city financial accounts. Previously only two city employees have been authorized to sign off on financial documents. The action taken Tuesday insures that someone is available to act as signatory on city checks and other financial documents when City Secretary Dianne Tidwell and City Finance Director Naomi Herrington are not available.         

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