Commissioners’ Court continues to work on budget

By Gilda Morales

Culberson County Commissioners met last Monday to continue to work on the 2017-2018 budget, while tackling a varied agenda.  Commissioners heard from County Tax Assessor-Collector, Mollie Hernandez, who reported that her office had collected about 97% of county taxes to date, for a current total of $3,236,313, leaving $117, 025 uncollected. She also gave the Court the proposed tax rate which will be officially adopted after required posting in the newspaper.  The Court accepted required continuing education hours as presented by Commissioner Adrian Norman before listening to Lanie Koch, County Extension agent, on the most recent activities of her 4-H club.

Commissioners then approved a resolution to rename, Red  Sox field in honor of the late Rale Navarette, who served as county commissioner and took a great interest in promoting baseball in Van Horn.  The Court also approved a utility permit for BHP Billiton in the northern part of the county parallel to Carlsbad Road.

Sheriff Oscar Carrillo presented new mandates passed by the Texas Legislature which will require additional funding to comply.  He reported that going forward, any judge holding court, will have to be protected by a specially trained officer in addition to a bailiff.  He also reported on another mandate requiring new protocols and training as well as sophisticated monitoring equipment to address a burgeoning population suffering from mental problems.  The new requirements are a response to a well-publicized case involving Sandra Bland, who died in her cell after being arrested during a traffic stop.  The ruling effectively handcuffs police officers from searches stemming from traffic stops and requires that any mentally ill person be transported to the nearest facility for treatment instead of imprisonment.


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