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TipSheet: Travis County, 9.3.19

Tuesday, September 3, 2019 by Jack Craver

The Travis County Commissioners Court meets every Tuesday at 9 a.m. To help our readers stay informed, each week we offer a selection of interesting items from the voting session agenda. The entire agenda is available at the Travis County website.

4. Receive briefing on duties and responsibilities of County Court at Law Number 4 of Travis County. (Judge Eckhardt)

Monitor’s Take: This is another step in the court’s process of filling the vacancy created when County Court-at-Law Judge Mike Denton stepped down from the position. Last week the commissioners agreed to review the applications and interview three of the candidates. Although the legal requirements of the position are quite low – any U.S. citizen who is at least 25 years of age, is a licensed attorney and has lived in Travis County for two years is eligible – the commissioners are seeking a candidate with several years of courtroom experience, preferably in criminal law.

7. Receive update on the grant application to the Texas Indigent Defense Commission for a public defender office in Travis County. (Judge Eckhardt)

Monitor’s Take: Well, the good news is that Travis County was awarded the grant and will finally have a public defender’s office. Now comes the hard work of setting it up. The grant approved by the state agency is $20.1 million over four years, rather than the $24.6 million requested by the county. Now the commissioners will have to decide what they can and can’t afford in the new office.

24. Consider and take appropriate action regarding the quarterly status update on the 2017-2022 Bond Program in Travis County. (Commissioners Travillion & Shea)

Monitor’s Take: Of the 59 projects in the bond program, county staff say three – Thaxton Road, South Pleasant Valley Road and Harold Green Road – may not be completed by the Dec. 31, 2022, deadline, due to concerns about right of way and utilities. The commissioners may also discuss the prospect of an interlocal agreement with the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority to manage six county roads projects. CTRMA is already managing the widening of Elroy Road and the creation of Ross Road South.

A1. Consider and take appropriate action on compensation for FY 2020, including issues related to the Peace Office Pay Scale (POPS). (Commissioner Gómez)

Monitor’s Take: Shortly after approving at least a 3 percent raise for all other county employees, the Commissioners Court will consider approving the same raise for law enforcement personnel.

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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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