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TipSheet: Travis County, 10.24.17

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 by Caleb Pritchard

The Travis County Commissioners Court meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday. In the interest of space, we’ve decided not to post the entire agenda here. The County Clerk’s office hosts a copy at its website.

6. Receive FY17 end-of-year report from Travis County Justice Planning Workforce Development Task Force. (Commissioner Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: It’s not the flashiest of briefings, but may it warm your cold heart to know the county is doing its part to help ex-convicts start anew by arming them with job training. In fact, of the 785 people who have participated in the workforce development program since 2012, a total of 535 have found employment. Even though it’s not perfect, that 69 percent success rate is still pretty nice.

11. Consider and take appropriate action regarding a resolution to the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) in support of a grant for Meals on Wheels and More Home Delivered Meals. (Commissioners Shea & Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: Per state law, Meals on Wheels needs an official resolution of support from the county in order to qualify for annual state grant money. Unsurprisingly, the court is positioned to back the food delivery nonprofit with both the resolution and its own $167,000 grant.

28. Consider and take appropriate action on legislative matters, including possible congressional efforts to repeal the state and local tax deduction. (Commissioner Shea)

Monitor’s Take: As obsessed as we are with local politics, we are at least aware that tax reform is a topic currently echoing in lobbies, cocktail parties and cloak rooms across Washington, D.C. One potential element of that reform, apparently, is the elimination of the state and local tax deduction, or SALT. On the advice of the National Association of Counties, the court will consider a resolution preemptively condemning the proposal on the grounds that it would impose on residents “double taxation.”

32. Receive “Truth in Borrowing” Award from the Travis County Taxpayers Union. (Commissioner Daugherty)

Monitor’s Take: The Travis County Taxpayers Union has established a reputation for itself as a dogged enemy of bond proposals across the region and even deserves no small credit for its role in sinking the county’s $287 million proposal in 2015 to build a new courthouse. However, the scrappy group that helped launch the brief, blazing City Council career of Don Zimmerman isn’t reflexively opposed to every bond referendum. This year, the union is formally awarding the county its Truth in Borrowing Award for, according to the certificate, “providing an accurate annual tax bill impact statement for the 2017 county bond campaign.”

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Key Players & Topics In This Article

Travis County Commissioners Court: The legislative body for Travis County. It includes representatives from the four Travis County Precincts, as well as the County Judge. The County Judge serves as the chair of the Court.

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