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TipSheet: Travis County, 8.15.17

Tuesday, August 15, 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.

7. Receive update on venue tax and take appropriate action. (Commissioner Travillion)

Monitor’s Take: The court forges ahead in its quest to recruit the city of Austin in its plan to create a venue district wherein Hotel Occupancy Tax revenues could be used for improvements at and around the Travis County Exposition Center. Last week, County Judge Sarah Eckhardt consented to her colleagues’ request to bring back for their approval any new correspondence she sends on their behalf to City Council. Here then is the latest missive bound for City Hall in the effort to get Council’s attention, which otherwise appears to be focused on Mayor Steve Adler’s proposal to max out the legal HOT cap on an Austin Convention Center expansion.

10. Receive update and take appropriate action on recommendations from the Employee Compensation Committee for FY18. (Commissioners Travillion & Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: Travis County employees could get a 2 percent raise next year, if the court accepts the recommendation of its Employee Compensation Committee. Given the general buoyancy of the county’s finances, we can’t imagine that the court would balk, but now that we’ve said that, we’re going to feel just awful if we just jinxed things.

12. Consider and take appropriate action regarding the proposed 2017 Bond Election, including: a. Adoption of an order calling for a bond election on November 7, 2017. b. Elections schedule/timetable. c. Next steps. (Commissioners Travillion & Shea)

Monitor’s Take: With the bond project list finally set, the big decision before the court now is when to set the election. The Chamber of Commerce has signaled that it would prefer the county to punt it to May in order to give the Austin Independent School District’s $1.05 billion bond a better chance of success this November, a request with which the court will have to grapple. Luckily, Eckhardt has scheduled a special voting session on Thursday in order to continue the discussion just in case no decision is reached today.

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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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