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Burnet County commissioners will approve a new budget and tax rate after public hearings at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 24, in the Burnet County Courthouse, 220 S. Pierce St. in Burnet. The commissioners will begin their regular meeting at 9 a.m. followed by the public hearings at 9:30 a.m. After going back into regular session, they are expected to vote on the 2021-22 budget and tax rate. 

The new budget submitted by County Judge James Oakley, which goes into effect Oct. 1, is 16.9 percent higher than last year’s budget, mainly due to new property added to the tax rolls. Of the  $4.5 million increase, almost $1.8 million is tax revenue from new property. In 2020, the budget increased by 4.3 percent with $919,909 from new property. 

An increase of $2.76 million comes from rising property values across the county. The county has also received $4.68 million from the American Recovery Plan Act, a federal stimulus package designed to help communities recover from the economic hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The total adjusted taxable value of property in the county increased over the last fiscal year to $6.75 billion from $5.66 billion, a jump of $1.08 billion.

Commissioners proposed a tax rate at their Aug. 10 meeting of $0.3997 per $100 valuation, down from last year’s $0.3999 per $100 valuation. 

The new budget proposes to spend $26.96 million in the general fund, $4.5 million in road and bridge, and $3.37 million on debt service. 

Commissioners also are expected to have a final answer for the four justices of the peace on whether or not their court clerks will be raised from level 60 on the county organizational chart to 68, making them comparable to other court clerks. It will be the third appearance by the JPs in as many meetings to lobby for their request.